Wet Year So Far in Illinois

The statewide precipitation for June is 6.6 inches, 2.5 inches above the 1971-2000 average (normal). That makes it the ninth wettest June on record (based on preliminary numbers as of June 28, 2011).

The statewide precipitation for the first six months of 2011 is 27.2 inches, 7.7 inches above the 1971-2000 average. That makes it the fourth wettest January-June on record. Statewide records go back to 1895.

The figure below shows the June departure from normal precipitation across the US. Cool coolers (green, blue, purple) show abnormally wet conditions. Warm colors show abnormally dry conditions. Wet conditions have prevailed from Montana, into the Dakotas, Nebraska, Iowa, northeastern Missouri, across Illinois, and much of the lower Ohio River valley. However, dry conditions are not far from Illinois borders, especially to our southwest.

June rainfall across the US (courtesy NOAA).

June departure from normal precipitation across the US (source NOAA). Click to enlarge.

TheĀ figure below shows the year-to-date departure from normal precipitation across the US. Like June, the band of above-normal precipitation extends from Montana, down the Missouri River, and up the Ohio River valleys. This area has seen abundant atmospheric moisture and a strong, persistent jet stream for much of winter and spring. Meanwhile, the Southwest and South have struggled with dry conditions. BTW, it is not unusual to have one part of the US experiencing drought while another part experiences heavy rains and flooding. It is amazing that you can go from southern Illinois with its 8 to 16 inches of above normal precipitation to Arkansas and Mississippi and find areas that are 8 to 16 inches below normal on precipitation.

Year to date precipitation departure for the US.

Year to date departure from normal precipitation across the US (source NOAA). Click to enlarge.

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About Jim Angel

I have been the state climatologist for Illinois since 1997 and have worked at the Illinois State Water Survey since 1984.
This entry was posted in Climate Monitoring, Drought, Heavy Rains and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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