Severe Drought Grips New Mexico as Communities Begin Restrictions


New Mexico droughtWe at continue to call on all Christians in New Mexico to pray and fast for New Mexico to heed the call of the Lord and return to Him that He will send the rains.

Where I live, the Village of Magdalena, NM has issued an Emergency Declaration limiting water usage effective June 4, 2013.

According to the document, the village is experiencing a water shortage caused by excessive water demands “threatening the safety, health, welfare and well-being of our citizens.”

New Mexico is slipping further into drought, having marked the driest two-year period in nearly 120 years of record-keeping.

According to the monthly status map from New Mexico’s Governor’s Drought Task Force, much of the state falls into the Extreme and Exceptional drought categories.

Representatives of the National Drought Mitigation Center, National Integrated Drought Information System, New Mexico State University, and state and federal agencies discussed the Spring and Summer 2013 drought and wildfire outlooks for New Mexico.

The USDA reports that at least 40 percent of the rangeland and pastures were rated very poor to poor in seven of the eleven Western States. New Mexico topped the list, with 98 percent of its rangeland and pastures rated very poor to poor, followed by Nevada at 69 percent Arizona at 63 percent.

A report from the Southwest Climate Change Network states that “since October 1, extreme to exceptional drought conditions have increased by about 70 percent in New Mexico. Temperatures were warmer than average in Arizona and colder than average in New Mexico in the last month, and precipitation has been minimal as is typical for this time of year.

“Above-average temperatures are predicted to persist in both states through August, and since May and June are historically dry months in the Southwest, any improvements in drought will likely not occur until the monsoon begins,” the report says.

“Although monsoon forecasts at this time of year are highly uncertain, there is some indication that the season may begin sooner than average, but this doesn’t necessarily mean that the season overall will produce above-average rainfall.”

Forecasters say the Santa Fe and Socorro areas have received just 17 percent of their normal snow and rainfall so far this year.

No part of the state has been left untouched. On the state’s eastern plains, dryland wheat farmers and cattle ranchers have been particularly hard hit. Farmers on the lower Pecos River are warring over scarce water supplies. Elephant Butte Reservoir on the Rio Grande, for the first time in its 98-year history, did not have enough water to release any water in the month of April to southern New Mexico farmers.

The past 36 months have been the fourth driest in New Mexico history, and conditions have reached “exceptional” levels in the Rio Grande Valley, according to Eric Luebehusen of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

The forecast offers little hope for change anytime soon. Dry conditions are likely to persist in New Mexico at least through the end of July, according to a seasonal forecast.

We have become accustom to having an abundance of water. Technologies have made it possible to divert water from the north into New Mexico. The truth is that New Mexico is still a dry wilderness. Making matters worse is the fact that we have turned away from the Lord and His principles. He blessed us with this abundance, however, our ingenuity cannot overcome our rebellion. Believers, it is time for us to heed the call to fast and pray for this dry and thirsty land.

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