National Weather Service United States Department of Commerce

Drought Information Statement  Issued: 11/08/2019 09:54:13 AM HST


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Drought Information Statement
National Weather Service Honolulu HI
954 AM HST Fri Nov 8 2019

...SEVERE TO EXTREME DROUGHT PERSISTS OVER PORTIONS OF MAUI COUNTY
AND THE BIG ISLAND...

SYNOPSIS...
Although the west half of the state is drought-free, portions of
Maui County and the Big Island remain under persistent severe to
extreme drought conditions. The areas of extreme drought, or the
D3 category on the U.S. Drought Monitor map, are located along the
lower leeward slopes of Haleakala on Maui, and over the northern
tip of the Big Island near Mahukona and Upolu Point. In Maui
County, severe drought, or the D2 category, covered the west half
of Molokai, the southwest tip of Lanai, the lower southern slopes
of Haleakala, and leeward West Maui from Maalaea to Lahaina. On
the Big Island, D2 conditions were over the lower Hamakua slopes
and a very small area near South Point.

Moderate drought, or the D1 category, covered the middle and upper
slopes of Haleakala including the Upcountry and Kaupo regions, but
was removed from west Oahu.

SUMMARY OF IMPACTS...
Kauai and Oahu
There are no drought areas in both counties.

Maui County
Pastures in the lower leeward slopes of Haleakala remained in poor
condition. Satellite-based vegetation health data showed
worsening conditions along the lower leeward slopes of the West
Maui Mountains. This is consistent with rainfall data in the area,
and the ignition of a serious brush fire that threatened
communities in the Kaanapali area. On west Molokai, a recent
ground survey indicated very dry vegetation conditions over many
areas. These dry conditions also extended eastward along the lower
slopes from Kaunakakai to Kawela.

Big Island
Reports and pictures from ranchers operating along the Hamakua
slopes indicated poor pasture conditions, especially from Paauilo
to Honokaa, and from Honokaa to Mana and Waimea. Pastures were in
extremely poor shape from Mahukona to Hawi based on pictures and
satellite-based vegetation health data. Pastures in the drought
area near South Point improved a bit, but soil moisture is
reported to be very low.

DROUGHT MITIGATION ACTIONS
A Stage 1 Water Shortage declaration, issued by the Maui County
Department of Water Supply, remained in effect for Upcountry
Maui. The declaration requests residents to voluntarily reduce
water consumption by 10 percent.

Assistance programs from the U.S. Department of Agriculture`s
Farm Service Agency have been implemented for farmers and ranchers
in Maui County and the Big Island due to the ongoing drought
conditions.

LOCAL DROUGHT OUTLOOK
The Long-Lead Hawaiian Islands Outlook issued on October 17 by the
NOAA Climate Prediction Center shows probabilities favoring above
normal rainfall across the state through the remainder of 2019 and
into early spring 2020. Probabilities also favor above normal
temperatures across the state through spring 2020 due to the
forecast of persistent above average sea surface temperatures
around the Hawaiian Islands. The next long-lead outlook will be
issued by the Climate Prediction Center on November 21.

For the rest of 2019, drought conditions should ease with the
onset of the Hawaiian Islands wet season along with the forecast
for above normal rainfall. The wet season weather systems provide
a higher likelihood of rainfall getting into the leeward areas
which currently have drought.

NEXT ISSUANCE DATE...
The next Drought Information Statement will be issued on December
5, 2019 or sooner if necessary in response to significant changes
in conditions.

RELATED WEB SITES...
Additional information on current drought conditions may be found
at the following web addresses:

U.S. Drought Monitor: droughtmonitor.unl.edu/
Hawaii Drought Monitor: dlnr.hawaii.gov/drought
USGS Hawaii - Recent Conditions: hi.water.usgs.gov/recent/index.html
Climate Prediction Center long-lead Hawaii outlook:
www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/predictions/90day/fxhw40.html
Hawaii Drought Impact Reporter: hawaii.droughtreporter.unl.edu/

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS...
Information for this product was compiled from a number of sources
including the county boards and departments of water supply, U.S.
and State of Hawaii agriculture agencies, the U.S. Geological
Survey, and the media.

CONTACT INFORMATION
If you have any questions or comments about this drought information
statement, please contact:

Kevin Kodama
National Weather Service
2525 Correa Rd. Suite 250
Honolulu HI 96822
Phone: 808-973-5276
Email: Kevin.kodama@noaa.gov

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