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Drought Information Statement  Issued: 03/06/2020 08:50:46 AM HST


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Drought Information Statement
National Weather Service Honolulu HI
850 AM HST Fri Mar 6 2020

...DROUGHT IMPROVED SLIGHTLY IN MAUI COUNTY AND THE BIG ISLAND...

.SYNOPSIS:
The first half of February brought rainfall to the leeward areas
of Maui County and the Big Island to help continue improvement
trends from January. Severe drought, or the D2 category on the
U.S. Drought Monitor map, improved to moderate drought, or the D1
category, along the leeward slopes of Haleakala on Maui. However,
rainfall amounts were insufficient over the leeward areas of
Molokai west of Kaunakakai to pull the area out of D2 conditions.
Moderate drought has been stubbornly persistent over the leeward
slopes of Lanai. On the Big Island, severe drought from Waimea to
Mana eased to moderate drought following the early February rain
events.

.SUMMARY OF IMPACTS:
Kauai County and Oahu
There are no drought areas.

Maui County
Satellite-based vegetation health data showed continued improvement
in conditions along the leeward slopes of Haleakala. In west Molokai,
recent ground observations showed that pastures and general vegetation
in the far western and southwestern portions of the island were still
in poor condition. This is consistent with the satellite-based
vegetation health data.

Big Island.
Ground reports and satellite-based vegetation health data indicated
improvements in pasture health over the past month in the area from
Waimea to Mana. However, conditions were still poorer than average
for this time of the year. The recent cooler temperatures and strong
winds in the Waimea area have hindered growth despite the uptick in
rainfall.

.DROUGHT MITIGATION ACTIONS:
A Maui County Department of Water Supply request for a voluntary
reduction in water consumption for all of its West Maui customers
remains in place due to a long term drop in treated water production
at the Mahinahina plant.

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 February 20 by
the NOAA Climate Prediction Center shows probabilities favoring
above normal rainfall across the state through summer 2020.
Probabilities significantly favor above normal temperatures across
the state through summer 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 March 19.

Based on the forecast for above normal rainfall, drought conditions
should continue to ease over the next several months. The wet
season (October through April) 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 April 10,
2020 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 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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