|Ideal Candidate Radar
||Despite a very dry Nov-Dec period, 2017 was an above average precipitation year for most areas because of the very active summer monsoon and the decreasing El Nino that peaked in spring 2016 . Many reporting stations were deluged by summer rains as the El Nino waaned intense for much of the Southeast US. Except for the areas of the radar rainshadow already in moderate to severe drought, as indicated on the map, the entire region remains poised with abundant soil moisture as the 2018 planting season gets underway. While most radar rain shadow areas received abundant rainfall during the summer monsoons of 2013, 2014, and 2015 due to the El Nino rising, the seven year average resulted in the continuation of minor drought for Euchee Valley, Ponce De Leon, and Graceville. The seven year average rain gage readings ranged from a high of 79" at Argyle in Walton County and a low of 49" at Bonifay in neighboring Holmes County The abundant rainfall at Fort Walton Beach, Eglin AFB, and Niceville Valpariso was the impact of the positive mode of AquariusRadar as explained on the Radar Rainshadow page. An estimated 80+ inches of rain fell in the area just north of Eglin AFB headquarters and Valpariso. These long term levels of rainfall are equalled only by the central Mississippi coast and the Olympic peninsula of Washington state. The striking ability of microwave heating to transport moisture is illustrated by the 29" difference between Bonifay and Argyle. The radar rainshadow emphasizes the dry conditions, as illustrated by the 29" differential between Florida DoF station Argyle and DoF station at Bonifay. As was the case for the forestry rangers at Prosperity, the personnel at Bonifay are under scrutiny because they can't make their measurements tally with "normal" expected values. Silviculture in Holmes County has suffered a decline as a result of the radar rainshadow. This, plus the stations inability to report "normal" precipitation values (60 inches) may have contributed towards the closing of the Prosperity station in 2010. While 2017 was a good wet year for most counties, after the wet years of El Nino, the regional drought conditions are expected to return and are the result of the reoccurring domes of high pressure which now dominate the region. A quick glance at the globe shows Jackson County in the area near 30º, the "horse latitudes, and the same latitude as most major desert regions. Historically, the Southeast US maintained a strong agriculture base with abundant rainfall because Gulf moisture collided with the unstable air of Temperate cyclones that were forced in a Southern arc by strong Polar high pressure systems. Global warming has weakened the Polar highs and strengthened "horse latitude" highs, forcing cyclones on a distant Northern track. It may be a full decade before El Nino returns with such strength as to override the increasingly dry climate. Ambitious politicians who fight every attempt to restrain global warming have doomed Southern agriculture to a hardscrabble and unprofitable future. Members of the Texas and Southeastern state governments must build irrigation systems much like those of the desert Southwest built decades ago by the Federal government in order to bridge the very wet years and dry years. Water from the Florida aquifer is too salty (calcium carbonate) for continued use in drought situations. Data sources can be seen here.CoCoRAHS, NW Florida Water Conservation District, and at Florida Department of Forestry.