The monsoon has delivered much-needed moisture to the parched region and relief from scorching temperatures. Forecasters say Arizona has a good chance of getting above-average rain through the season that runs through September. New Mexico has equal chances of above, below and normal rainfall.
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In the latest example of the expanding reach of wildfires, a trio of blazes in Arizona has gutted several buildings at a national observatory, forced the evacuation of a historical monument and threatened other archaeological artifacts.
The fire, known as the Contreras fire, has scorched more than 18,000 acres, twisting among Indigenous-populated areas in the state near Tucson, and scientists might not be able to return to the observatory for weeks. But its telescopes, which number in the dozens, remained safe as of Sunday afternoon, officials said, and only the four buildings, which were not used for research, were destroyed.
Hundreds are urged to evacuate due to wildfire near Flagstaff, Arizona, as thousands more are told to prepare to leave
The Pipeline Fire was first reported by a fire lookout at around 10:15 a.m. Sunday and has grown to 4,500 acres, according to InciWeb, a US clearinghouse for wildfire information. Burning slightly west of Schultz Pass, the blaze is active on all sides and continues to grow, InciWeb said.
The Southwest is melting down. Between the heat and lack of moisture, it’s become an inferno. This year is already worse than last year, which was a catastrophe. So should we call this catastrophe-plus?
Hiking through the emerald green canopy of the bosque, or riverside cottonwood forest, near downtown Albuquerque, Tricia Snyder, an advocate for WildEarth Guardians, believes zero hour has arrived for the Rio Grande. Though the river this day is high and a rich chocolatey-red color, water levels are historically low and dropping precipitously. Experts predict the Rio Grande will dry up completely all the way to Albuquerque this summer for the first time since the 1980s.
Whatever buffer we may have had (or thought we had) at Lake Mead, it is quickly disappearing. The May 24-month study makes that plain. The monthly, two-year forecast from the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation has once again been revised down, with lake levels hitting a new potential low of 1,007 feet of elevation in November 2023.
It is a powerhouse: a 1,450-mile waterway that stretches from the Rocky Mountains to the Sea of Cortez, serving 40 million people in seven U.S. states, 30 federally recognized tribes and Mexico. It hydrates 5 million acres of agricultural land and provides critical habitat for rare fish, birds and plants.
Arizona needs to rapidly invest in both water conservation and new supplies to offset losses from a shrinking Colorado River, the state’s top water officials warned Friday.
After years of severe drought compounded by climate change, the water level in Lake Powell, the second-largest reservoir on the Colorado River, has dropped to just 24% of full capacity and is continuing to decline to levels not seen since the reservoir was filled in the 1960s.