August rains broke the cycle of fiercely hot and dry summer days in much of New Mexico, but the recent monsoon moisture was not enough to overcome the effects of a mercilessly arid July.
Drought conditions are now a little worse than they were a month ago, thanks to a July that turned out to be the 10th-driest in the state’s history.
Information released Thursday by the Drought Monitoring Workgroup shows that moderate drought in the state has increased from 21 percent to 26.6 percent and – for the first time since April – there’s an area in severe drought: 1.1 percent of the state north of Hobbs. Overall, 87 percent of the state is abnormally dry.
Even so, the state is in much better shape than it was a couple of years ago. In July 2014, no part of the state was free of some degree of drought and 77 percent of the state was in severe to exceptional drought conditions.