Needed Precipitation Appears in Early February Forecast for Great Plains and Paraguay

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Highlight: Great Plains turn stormy days 11-15, NOAA projects widening drought for Nebraska and Kansas and wet forecast change for Paraguay.

Fig. 1-2: GFS ENS percent of normal precipitation forecast the next 10 days and 11-15-day period.

North America discussion: Soil moisture is trending drier in the Central and Mid-south U.S. for meteorological winter (so far) due to a generally dry climate. The dryness continues the remainder of January (Fig. 1). However, a pattern change for the U.S. is forecast for early February. At that time, the cold pattern in the East U.S. fades to normal and cold arctic air generates in Southwest Canada with some of that chilly air seeping into the Northwest and North-central U.S. During the temperature transition, the Central/East-central U.S. turns stormy and areas which are dry for winter so far turn much wetter including heavy snow risk for the Northern Corn Belt (Fig. 2).

NOAA issued a new 90-day U.S. drought outlook a short time ago. The outlook emphasizes expanding drought into Nebraska/Kansas and also Florida (Fig. 3).

Fig. 3: U.S. seasonal drought outlook issued by NOAA is updated today.

South America discussion: In the 7-day percent of normal rainfall analysis valid Jan. 12-18, 2022 the recent wet pattern change is visible across Uruguay into Northeast Argentina and will continue the remainder of January (Fig. 4). However, the parched soil across Paraguay and vicinity continues to worsen as anomalous heat and dryness persist.

The most recent 2-week forecast of rainfall across Argentina and Brazil indicates more heavy precipitation in Argentina in the 7-day outlook while the heat and dryness persist across Paraguay eastward (Fig. 5). However, a forecast change is indicated by all models in the 8-14-day period as heavy rains reach Paraguay and Southeast Brazil while Argentina trends drier (Fig. 6).

Fig. 4: The last 7 days percent of normal rainfall across South America.

Fig. 5-6: The ECM ENS percent normal forecast of rainfall for days 1-7/days 8-14 across Argentina and Brazil.