California drought significantly reduced from ongoing massive storms

More heavy rain on the way before pattern change

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CALIFORNIA – The latest update from the United States Department of Agriculture shows significant improvements to the longstanding and historic California drought situation. Several major storms have delivered record rainfall to parts of California over the first two weeks of the new year.

Last week, an extreme drought encompassed 27% of the Golden State.

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Drought Monitor (1/3/23)

As of Thursday’s update, that category has all but disappeared, amounting to less than 1%.

Thursday's drought monitor

Compare that to three months ago when the extreme drought conditions covered more than 40% of the state.

Drought monitor October

Severe drought status has also decreased to 46%, down from 71% just last week. Three months ago, that category took up 94% of the state.

The drought reduction has unfortunately come at a price, however, as the record heavy rain became deadly and destructive.

More heavy rain is expected through the middle of next week before the pattern finally eases up for California.

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About the Author:

Jonathan Kegges joined the News 6 team in June 2019 as the Weekend Morning Meteorologist. Jonathan comes from Roanoke, Virginia where he covered three EF-3 tornadoes and deadly flooding brought on by Hurricanes Florence and Michael.