Skip Nav

Burn Bans

County-wide burn bans through May 1


Monthly Change in Drought Monitor Classification

U.S. Drought Monitor, April 2, 2013
U.S. Drought Monitor, April 30, 2013

Brazos Valley Counties Added to Governor’s Drought Disaster Proclamation- Nearly 99% of the state is now listed under dry conditions and these conditions have prompted Governor Perry to issue an emergency disaster declaration for much of the Brazos Valley. The outlook according to the state climatologist, Dr. John Nielsen-Gammon, isn’t good as we are behind normal for this time of year.
KBTX News, Clay Falls, April 3, 2013

Despite Heavy Rains, Drought Continues- After nearly 5 inches of rain fell around the Austin area this week experts still say much more is needed as the drought continues. Lake Travis and Buchanan are both still at 41% full and, despite the rains, the conservation board will announce stage 3 water restrictions for four counties in the region.
YNN Austin, John A. Salazar, April 4, 2013

Houston Continues to Slip Deeper into Drought- Parts of the metro area are now falling into an extreme drought category again as the area is under a 7 inch rainfall deficit for the year. Much rain is needed across the whole state to remove this ever persistent drought.
KPRC News, Eric Braate, April 5, 2013

Amid Drought, Texas Mayor Asks to Pray for Rain- The mayor of Odessa, Texas is asking community members to pray for rain for the region. The area is experiencing an extreme drought and water is needed to keep the community on its feet.
KBTX News, April 8, 2013

Rains did not Erase Drought for Area- According to the US Drought Monitor Hunt County is listed under a severe drought and is sitting about a two-inch deficit for the year’s precipitation. More than 69% of the state is labeled under severe drought or worse as of Tuesday.
Greenville Herald Banner, Brad Kellar, April 13, 2013

Water Nowhere in Sight- The drought in the Rio Grande Valley is the worst on record, nearly 6 inches below the record precipitation deficit. This prevents water from the Rio Grande from getting through the irrigation set up and to farmers. There is a desperate need for rainfall or cooperation between Mexico in releasing water from dams.
KGBT News, Daisy Barrera, April 17, 2013

Drought Webinar held at Corpus Christi International Airport- Meteorologists presented drought information at the airport on Monday to help raise awareness on the drought that has persisted across the region. About 40 people participated in the online discussion and said the biggest hope for busting the drought would be a tropical system.
KIII News, April 22, 2013


Feds Give Texas $31.2 million for 2011 Wildfires- FEMA has given Texas $31.2 million to recover from the terrible wildfires of the 2011 drought. The money will cover 75% of the cost of fighting the fires that raged across the state two years ago.
KBTX News, April 3, 2013

Water Supply

Canyon Renews Water Purchase Agreement with Amarillo- The city of Canyon announced that it will continue to purchase some of its water from Amarillo until at least 2033. This comes as Canyon grows and will help supplement water production in the city. The purchase is more expensive than producing it’s own water, but the mayor insists it will pay off in the long run.
KFDA News, April 1, 2013

A Necessary Step Towards Meeting the State’s Water Needs- The Texas State Legislature overwhelmingly passed House Bill 4 to create the State Water Implementation Fund for Texas, which will allow for the state to dip into the rainy day fund to provide for water resources. This will allow for $2 billion in state funds to supply new resources for water across the state due to increased demand and decreased supply.
The Austin American Statesman, April 2, 2013

SAWS Wants More Rain to Come our Way- The recent rainfall has benefited the San Antonio Water Systems water outlook by putting off stage 3 water restrictions to at least May. The water provider hopes for more rain because stage 3 restrictions will require homeowners to conserve water by only watering their lawns once every two weeks.
KENS News, Brix Fowler, April 3, 2013

CRMWD: If Weather stays same, Surface Water will be Pumped out by 2014- John Grant, the General Manager of the Colorado River Municipal Water District, said that if conditions do not change soon all the surface water from O.H. Ivey Reservoir will be pumped out by February 2014. Conservations must be put into effect to account for this, but hope does lie with new water resources out of Big Spring and Midland.
Midland Reporter Telegram, Stewart Doreen, April 8, 2013

Low Lake Levels Could Mean Tighter Water Restrictions- The dry conditions have left the North Texas Municipal Water District in search for ways to conserve water resources. Lake Lavon, the main water source, is nearly nine feet below normal and Lake Texoma is still unavailable due to a zebra mussel invasion, so stage three water restrictions may go into effect on June 1.
Plano Courier, Andrew Snyder, April 10, 2013

‘Stage 3’ Water Restrictions Set for June 1 Across North Texas- With drought conditions combined with zebra mussels in the water supply from lake Texoma, water is in short supply for the North Texas Municipal Water District. Because of the shortage 1.6 million people across north Texas will be placed under stage 3 water restrictions beginning on June 1. This will limit watering to once per week.
KTVT News, Bud Gillett, April 26, 2013

Beeville Seeks Funds to Secure Future Water Supply- In the current drought the city of Beeville only has water left to last two years. In order to better prepare for water deficits a $15.3 million bond has been put on the May 11 ballot to fund new wells and a treatment plant for water.
KXII News, April 29, 2013

Agricultural Impacts

Cold Weather Creates Set Backs for Big Country Vineyard- With the early season cold snaps vineyards in the Big Country are hurting for their crops as the freeze is killing of new leave shoots. The cold, just like the heat, is bad for the growth of grapes.
KTAB News, Kristin Anderson, April 14, 2013

New Outlook for 2013 Wheat Crop- After this late season freeze many worried that the wheat crop would be ruined, but luckily this is not the case. Due to drought conditions wheat was planted later in the year than normal, so the younger wheat growing now can resist cold much better than wheat right before harvest. The outlook for wheat is still good.
KFDA News, April 18, 2013

Austin Farmer: Recent Cold Snaps Won’t Affect Produce Prices- The recently cold weather had many worried about the condition of produce growing around Austin, but farmers in the area say that they handled the situation carefully and no price increases are expected at the markets. The only concern growers have is about the peach crop which may have suffered in the cold.
KVUE News, Andrew Chung, April 26, 2013

Inclement Weather

Cold/ Winter Weather

Sudden Drop in Temperatures Increase Heater Hazards- With the impending cold front to drop temperatures back into the 30s officials ask for caution in heating your home. Oftentimes when a heater hasn’t been used in a while the fire danger increases so fire departments urge people to check for flammable objects and the status of heaters to avoid fires.
KXII, Victoria Maranan, April 9, 2013

Old Man Winter Returns- A strong cold front pushed into the area on Tuesday dropping temperatures from the upper 80s to the 20s overnight. The cold front came with a slight chance for snow around Plainview.
Plainview Herald, Shanna Sissom, April 9, 2013

Weather didn’t get the Memo: It’s Springtime- When a cold front came through on Tuesday night it dropped temperatures in Abilene from 93 on Tuesday to below freezing on Wednesday morning. The front brought thunderstorms and caused two ACU softball games to be canceled.
The Optimist, Mark Smith, April 11, 2013

Cold Front Brings Frigid Conditions to West Texas, Panhandle Record- A powerful cold front brought a record low temperature of 30 degrees Fahrenheit to Amarillo overnight and high winds and ice are blamed for over 10,000 people being without power across the panhandle.
Abilene Reporter News, April 23, 2013

North Texans Wake up to Record Low Temperatures- An Alaskan cold front pushed through the DFW region on Tuesday and dropped temperatures quickly behind it. A record low temperature of 37 degrees Fahrenheit was recorded at DFW airport, shattering the old record of 41 degrees.
The Fort Worth Star Telegram, Domingo Ramirez Jr., April 24, 2013


Heavy Rains Bring Water Woes for Some- On West Houston Street in Marshall flooding is a common occurrence after heavy rains and resident Berda Moody has been asking for assistance for years. When the rains come a creek nearby does not drain well and overflows it’s banks into Moore’s yard. The city cannot do anything about it because the creek is on private property.
Marshall News Messenger, Naomi Prioleau, April 5, 2013

Storms Briefly Leave Thousands Without Power- Storms on Saturday dropped over 8 inches of rain in west Houston and flooding caused aver 128,000 people to lose power and prompting emergency crews to rescue 150 stranded motorists. Accumulated rainfall on a convenience store roof in Sugar Land caused the roof to cave in late on Sunday evening.
The Houston Chronicle, Brian Rogers, April 28, 2013

Flooding Washes Family from Apartment for Second Time in a Month- Heavy rains caused waters to rise quickly and flow into the apartment of the Martinez family. The rising water forced the family to go outside in the storm and all of their belongings got wet in the process of the storm.
KENS News, Karen Grace, April 29, 2013

Once-in-100-years Rainfall Hit some Houston Areas over the Weekend- Drains across Houston could not work fast enough to get rid of all the water flowing across the region. Highway 288 was flooded and many homes had standing water in them. Some compared the rain to Tropical Storm Allison.
KTRK News, Simon Gutierrez, April 29, 2013

Severe Weather

Severe Storms Hit Area Sunday Night- Late in the evening on Sunday a strong batch of severe storms moved through South Texas producing up to softball sized hail in Freer, Texas. Several areas saw large hail with Jim Wells County seeing hail upwards of 2.75 inches.
Alice Echo-News Journal, Julie Neal, April 1, 2013

Severe Storms Blast Austin Area with Rain, Hail- A line of strong storms rolled through the Hill Country dropping several inches of rain, one inch diameter hail, and causing power outages. At the storms peak about 2,000 customers were without power and flash flooding occurred in many low roadways and in creeks.
YNN Austin, April 2, 2013

Marble Falls sees Brunt of Tuesday Hail Storm- Estimates have the damage caused by the hail storm that passed over Marble Falls are in the millions. Roof damage, broken windows, and damaged cars is what is the most common damage across the area
YNN Austin, Russell Wilde, April 3, 2013

Hitchcock Residents Still Picking Up Pieces After Hailstorm- As a severe storm moved over the city of Hitchcock Tuesday night baseball sized hail fell and broke windows, and damaged property across the city. Many residents do not have insurance, so starting over financially will be difficult.
KHOU News, Sherry Williams, April 3, 2013

Man Struck by Lightning Along trail in Southwest Austin- While walking along a trail in Southwest Austin when he was struck by lightning. When emergency crews arrived he was alert and breathing and then taken to the hospital.
KXAN News, April 3, 2013

Wind, Lightning Blamed for Fires Across Houston Area- Overnight as storms rolled through the area lightning struck the Marquis Apartments in Houston causing a two alarm fire and damaging six units. High winds also brought down power lines catching a home on fire and knocking around trashcans.
KTRK News, Simon Gutierrez, April 3, 2013

Lightning Sparks Fore at Chemical Plant- Firefighters with the Houston Fire Department blame a lightning strike for causing a fire in at a chemical plant in east Houston overnight. No one was injured and the fire was extinguished quickly.
KPRC News, April 24, 2013

Three Injured in Lightning Strike near Bee Cave- Two construction workers and a food truck employee were struck by lightning at a construction site near Bee Cave. All three victims survived but two were placed under critical conditions at University Medical Center Brackenridge.
The Austin American Statesman, Julie Chang, April 29, 2013


El Pasoans don’t let Strong Wind, Dust Ruin their day- On Monday strong winds blew dust around the El Paso region, but many were taking the wind in stride with sports practices still going on and others going out to fly a kite.
KTSM News, Cathy Hernandez, April 8, 2013

Recycling not to be Collected on Windy Days- The city of El Paso Environmental Services Department is asking residents not to place out recycling bins on days when the wind exceeds 40mph. Winds in the upcoming days could be in excess of 60mph.
KTSM News, Adrienne Alvarez, April 8, 2013

Lubbock Resident Picking up the Pieces after Wind Storm- Late at night a strong gust of wind picked up a local Lubbock couples shed and other property and tossed it into the street causing a power outage for over 1600 customers. There is an estimate of anywhere between $15,000 and $20,000 in damage.
KCBD News, Alex Zielinski, April 23, 2013

Other Climate Impacts

Animals/Aquatic Life

Recent Rains Will Soon Bring Mosquitos- With the ample recent rainfall mosquitos will soon begin to hatch from stagnant water across the region. The city of Wichita Falls is currently hiring for treatment of standing water.
KFDX News, Mechell Dixon, April 5, 2013


Hail Damages more than Half of Hitchcock’s Police Cars- After a severe thunderstorm dropped massive hail in Galveston County on Wednesday 7 of the 11 Hitchcock city police cars suffered extensive damage. Windows were broken, electronics ruined and hoods dented by the hail. The worst of the damage in the city occurred from 2ndstreet out to Highway 6.
KHOU News, April 3, 2013

The drought has caused many lawn care companies to search for new ways to make a profit. Promoting synthetic grasses and Xeriscaping has kept businesses up and running. These new techniques of lawn care save water because synthetic grass doesn’t need it and Xericaping utilizes local drought tolerant plants to create a beautiful lawn.
The Midland Reporter Telegram, April 24, 2013


Dynamic Weather Impacts West Efforts- After the devastating explosion in West, Texas the weather is not cooperating. The winds were strong out of the south before spreading pollution and possibly dangerous chemicals northward, but after the passage of a cold front the wind switched directions spreading the pollutants southward.
KXAN News, David Yeomans, April 18, 2013


Lack of Rain takes Toll on Trees- Even with the great rainfall recently the large trees around southeast Texas are subject to dying because of a lack of rain. The recent rains have not been substantial enough to soak all the way down to the root of trees. In some places the soil is wet and malleable so strong winds may topple trees easily.
The Beaumont Enterprise, Tim Monzingo, April 17, 2013

Late Season Freezes Damaging Plants- The cold freezes overnight have damaged many plants and professional gardeners assert that the best way to save plants is to bring them in before a freeze or after a freeze picks of dead leaves and fertilizer.
KFDA News, April 24, 2013

Adapt Gardening to Spring Weather- With weather conditions always changing in the Panhandle gardeners need to know what to do to better their plants. The best advice given is to plant natives that can better adapt to the local weather. Tips include avoiding overwatering and over fertilizing.
Amarillo Globe News, Bob Hatton, April 26,2013


Keep Open, Positive Mind when Chasing Cold Front Bass- Fishing experts say that the record cold temperatures will require fishermen searching for bass to adjust techniques. The fishermen must be patient, and travel to where the fish are because in the cold they will stay put.
Herald Democrat, Lynn Burkhead, April 26, 2013


Grants to help Farms & Ranches Build Resilience to Drought- Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack awarded $5.3 million to help research ways to help farmers and ranchers cope with drought conditions brought on by climate change. The money went to groups that would invest in new technology and processes that would make farming more efficient during times of drought. This was due to the terrible drought conditions that gripped the country this time last year.
The Gilmer Mirror, April 4, 2013

Crape Myrtle Trees along Memorial Drive in Houston were painted blue earlier this week to raise public awareness of the drought conditions in Houston earlier this week by Michael Merritt. The blue is supposed to call attention to the trees and the worsening drought across all of Texas.
KPRC News, April 5, 2013

Okla. Water Arguments set before US Supreme Ct.- The Supreme Court is scheduled to hear arguments from both sides of the debate on whether or not the Tarrant Regional Water District is allowed to have access to water resources in Southeastern Oklahoma. The district claims that the barrier set up by Oklahoma law inhibits interstate commerce.
KXII News, April 23, 2013


Speedway Campers Ready for Potential Severe Weather- At the Texas Motor Speedway campers have already begun to file in and claim their spots for the first race of the season. With the possibility of severe weather campers have to be prepared for weather and many came with plans for shelter and supplies. TMS officials monitor the weather closely to warn campers about impending severe weather.
KXAS News, Chris Van Home, April 10, 2013

Houston Flooding Cancels Events- The heavy rains and flooding across Houston including the March of Dimes and IFest was delayed.
KIAH News, April 28, 2013

Geosciences TAMU Logo

Aggies can change the world. Geoscientists lead the way.