May 1, 2014

Water Year in Review

This water year was above normal:

55 inches of rain compared to the long-term average of 51.

The above bar chart displays a month-by-month history of south Florida's water years, 1970 to present. The cool colored segments of each bar show the summer wet season months whereas the warm colored segments indicate rain totals for the winter dry season months. Technically speaking, May and October -- the first and last months of the wet season, are hybrids of both seasons. However, for water accounting purposes, i.e. keeping the seasons even with 6 months each, and because rains that fall during each month tend to cumulatively boost summer water levels they get lumped with the other four core season wet season months. This is a fun chart because if you look close you can eagle eye some really interesting individual months. Can you see the Mitch-enhanced November 1998? Or how about the prodigious rain total for June 2005? 

The difference maker this year was the summer half of the year,

And specifically July during which 12 inches fell.  That was the water year's biggest month.  The smallest contributing month was December with only an inch.  But if only an inch is going to fall, December is the month for it.  Evaporative losses are low and transpiration is on seasonal hold.


We've now had two rainy wet seasons in a row (over 40 inches).

Can this year make it three in a row?

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