Sunday, March 27, 2011

March 27 - Expecting a breezy week especially Monday and Wednesday afternoons.

This afternoon's MODIS AOD is spotty so not a lot of information but shows low aerosol over western NM.

Today's AQI forecast shows good air quality over the Land of Enchantment.

The NMED air quality data website is not providing data so no plots today.

The outlook for tomorrow is definitely for some winds. The main question is how strong and will dust be an issue. The 00Z-12kmNAM model output shows peak winds at around 6 pm on Monday (see below map). Winds are above 15 to 25 mph throughout the region.
At 21 UTC (3 pm) the 00Z-12kmNAM shows the higher winds north of I-10 (see below)
However the 03Z RUC run paints a slightly different picture with less intense winds. The RUC is similar in that it shows the highest winds north of I-10.
At this point I'm tending to go with the RUC solution. The NWS is forecasting west winds between 22 and 25 mph. Winds could gust as high as 40 mph and areas of blowing dust after noon. No reason to doubt their forecast but it doesn't fit the pattern for a major dust event.

Regarding the next high wind event, I'm still looking at Wednesday afternoon but still too soon to give a prediction for dust.

All of these storms are bone dry for us. All of the precipitation is headed north and east. Below is the 5-day Quantitative Precipitation Forecast (QPF) plot for the upcoming week. Notice the lack of colors in NM. The present La Nina pattern continues to weaken and return to ENSO neutral around June or so. Right now southwestern NM is classified as D3-extreme drought according to the National Drought Monitor with no relief in sight.

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