Sonora could be on track for another below average monsoon season

By Murphy Woodhouse
Published: Monday, May 16, 2022 - 5:46am
Updated: Monday, May 16, 2022 - 8:24am

Sonora Drought
Murphy Woodhouse/KJZZ
The El Novillo Reservoir supplies a substantial portion of Hermosillo's drinking water.

Impacts from a terribly dry 2020 monsoon season in neighboring Sonora are still being felt, and another below-average one may be on tap.

In the wake of the 2020 monsoon season, Sonoran cattle were sold off in droves and the capital city Hermosillo came close to losing access to one of its key sources of water, among other impacts. Last year was much better, but the likelihood of a La Niña climate pattern extending into this summer and fall could spell another summer that’s hotter and drier than normal, according to Sonoran Technological Institute Professor Luis Arturo Méndez.

“The outlook is not very encouraging,” he said.

Levels in the state’s system of dams are currently quite low, according to federal data. And if trends continue, Méndez, who specializes in water modeling and management, said that there is the real possibility of reduced acreage for the winter planting season, and even the prospect of cities struggling to ensure reliable water access.

Fronteras Sonora