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South Carolina State Climatology Office
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South Carolina Current Drought Status

State Climate Office      (803) 734-9100
SPECIAL NEWS RELEASE
Statement Date:November 8, 2006:

MODERATE DROUGHT STATUS MAINTAINED FOR SAVANNAH RIVER BASIN

South Carolina Drought Status by County.
Table of all counties and drought status.

State and local Drought Response Committee members maintained a "moderate" drought for the Savannah River Basin during a conference call meeting Wednesday, November 8, 2006, in Columbia based on the hydrologic conditions in the basin. The consensus was to maintain a moderate drought designation in Oconee, Pickens, Anderson, Abbeville, McCormick, Edgefield, Aiken, Barnwell, Allendale, Hampton and Jasper Counties.

The state and local representatives of the West Drought Response Committee declared a moderate drought on September 20, 2006. Moderate drought means there is a continued threat of drought as demonstrated by the drought indices. According to Hope Mizzell, South Carolina State Climatologist, the U.S Army Corps of Engineers' drought designations and what Duke Energy are observing in the basin were the primary factors influencing the Committee's decision to maintain a moderate drought designation.

"The long-term rainfall deficit in the Upstate isn't leaving us much in the way of maneuvering room," said Freddy Vang, DNR deputy director of the Land, Water and Conservation Division. "What we need to see is a significant change in rainfall over the winter, otherwise, the situation will continue to deteriorate." According to Bud Badr, the State Hydrologist, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers remains at Drought Stage 2 and may reach level 3 by mid-February 2007 based on their current projections. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has reduced the flow from Lake Thurmond to 3,800 cubic feet per second (cfs). This helps retain more water within the system and balance the flows from the Duke lakes.

Bill Stroud, Duke Power hydro manager, "We can't recover Keowee and Jocasse until Hartwell and Thurmond are fully recovered." Duke Power built and controls Lakes Keowee and Jocassee, "For us it makes sense to maintain the moderate drought in the Savannah Basin." Mizzell explained the moderate declaration does not require any mandatory action by public water systems or the public, but all water systems in the Savannah should take the opportunity to review their local drought plans and ordinances and where needed implement accordingly. The call concluded with committee members agreeing to continue monitoring the situation closely and call a meeting as needed with weekly email updates of data from the Office of State Climatology.


Drought Status Table

Current Drought Status by County
Normal Incipient Moderate Severe Extreme
County
Status
County
Status
County
Status
County
Status
County
Status
ABBEVILLE
Moderate
AIKEN
Moderate
ALLENDALE
Moderate
ANDERSON
Moderate
BAMBERG
Normal
BARNWELL
Moderate
BEAUFORT
Normal
BERKELEY
Normal
CALHOUN
Normal
CHARLESTON
Normal
CHEROKEE
Normal
CHESTER
Incipient
CHESTERFIELD
Normal
CLARENDON
Normal
COLLETON
Normal
DARLINGTON
Normal
DILLON
Normal
DORCHESTER
Normal
EDGEFIELD
Moderate
FAIRFIELD
Normal
FLORENCE
Normal
GEORGETOWN
Normal
GREENVILLE
Normal
GREENWOOD
Normal
HAMPTON
Moderate
HORRY
Normal
JASPER
Moderate
KERSHAW
Incipient
LANCASTER
Incipient
LAURENS
Normal
LEE
Normal
LEXINGTON
Normal
MARION
Normal
MARLBORO
Normal
MCCORMICK
Moderate
NEWBERRY
Normal
OCONEE
Moderate
ORANGEBURG
Normal
PICKENS
Moderate
RICHLAND
Normal
SALUDA
Normal
SPARTANBURG
Normal
SUMTER
Normal
UNION
Normal
WILLIAMSBURG
Normal
YORK
Incipient


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Find out more about the State Climatology Office at http://www.dnr.sc.gov/climate/sco/ or by calling (803) 734-9100.

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