Spring arrived early but forgot to pack rain

February’s rainfall left much to be desired as the sub-basins struggled unsuccessfully to break the two-inch mark.

Thurmond collected the most at a paltry 1.78 inches (41 percent of its average, 4.3 inches), while Hartwell and Russell registered under 40 percent – just 1.77 and 1.64 inches, respectively.

If you’re into schadenfreude, (that German expression derived from taking pleasure in another’s misfortune), consider February 1978.

That month the entire upper basin barely received two thirds of an inch, total.

And while we’ve definitely seen worse, the outlook for 2017 looks anything but rosy.

Climatologists at the Southeast River Forecast Center in their recent Water Resources Outlook described a complex set of indices used to inform their predictions.

The short and the skinny, though, is that March through August could bring hotter than normal temperatures at a time when precipitation traditionally begins to decrease.

In addition, as the window slowly shrinks on the region’s primary “recharge” season, if we don’t receive solid rain in the next four to six weeks, drought conditions could intensify quickly, the climatologists said.

The upside to all this gloom (overcast skies withholding) is that the current conditions are optimal for planting crops.

This month is also the wettest month on average for the basin so keep your fingers crossed and let’s hope January wasn’t the aberration.

~ Jeremy S. Buddemeier, Corporate Communications Office

About U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Savannah District

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Savannah District oversees a multimillion dollar military construction program at 11 Army and Air Force installations in Georgia and North Carolina. We also manage water resources across the Coastal Georgia region, including maintenance dredging of the Savannah and Brunswick harbors; operation of three hydroelectric dams and reservoirs along the upper Savannah River; and administration of an extensive stream and wetland permitting and mitigation program within the state of Georgia. Follow us on Twitter @SavannahCorps and on Facebook.com/SavannahCorps
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