- Over the month of August, generally the upper 50% of the state was downgraded from a drought designation to abnormally dry conditions and drought became more severe in parts of the lower half of the state. The drought intensified the most along a portion of New Hampshire's southern border. Recent rain improved conditions along the border, and the area has been downgraded from extreme drought (D3) to severe drought (D2).
- Currently, the lower half of the state is experiencing moderate drought (D1) or severe drought (D2) and the upper half of the state is experiencing abnormally dry or normal conditions.
Groundwater monitoring wells in Southeastern New Hampshire, the Connecticut River Valley and the White Mountains Region indicate groundwater levels continue to be low to below normal (0 to 25th percentile). Groundwater levels in northern Coos and Merrimack Counties and western Hillsborough County are at normal to above normal levels.
- The rain received this past week provided a much-needed relief pulse to some of the state's rivers; however, the groundwater deficit suggests that the recent relief may be short lived.
- The monthly precipitation outlook leans toward below normal precipitation and the three-month precipitation outlook indicates an equal chance of above, below, or near normal precipitation. These outlooks do not provide a strong indication that the state will receive enough precipitation to improve drought conditions.
- The monthly temperature outlook leans towards above normal temperatures and the three-month temperature outlook indicates above normal temperatures are likely. The warmer temperatures may lead to more evaporation than normal during this time of year and less recharge of water supplies.
- The weekly forecast indicates a dry weekend with a likelihood of showers on Tuesday.
It is going to take much more rain than received this past week to alleviate drought conditions and precipitation outlooks do not provide any reassurance.
Community water systems and municipalities experiencing drought, as indicated on the U.S. Drought Monitor map, should leave outdoor water restrictions in place. The level of restriction shall be based on the information above, known local impacts and if known, current availability of water supply. NHDES recommends the following:
- In all areas experiencing drought, limit landscape watering to before 7am and after 8pm.
- In areas of moderate drought, reduce landscape watering to even and odd days based on address.
- In areas of severe drought, limit landscape watering to two days a week and limit unnecessary water use such as washing cars and driveways and filling pools.
- Despite the level of drought, in areas with much below or low groundwater levels, ban outdoor water use with the exception of hand watering vegetable gardens.
Community water systems, as well as municipalities implementing lawn watering restrictions within town boundaries pursuant to RSA 41:11-d, should report restrictions to NHDES using the Water Use Restriction Reporting Form.