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Texas Drought 2011: Warm, Dry Weather Expected Over Next 3 Months

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BASTROP, TX - SEPTEMBER 7: Smoke from the wildfires hangs over Bastrop County September 7, 2011 in Bastrop, Texas. (Photo by Erich Schlegel/Getty Images) | Getty

WASHINGTON — The outlook for the next three months is bad news for drought-plagued Texas and its neighbors.

And that comes after the Lone Star State recorded the hottest summer for any state for as long as records have been kept, federal weather and climate experts said Thursday.

For the United States as a whole, it was the second hottest summer on record and the eighth warmest for the world's land areas.

The oceans were cooler than the land, thanks to La Nina, a periodic cooling of the tropical Pacific Ocean which eased and now has resumed, potentially affecting weather worldwide. The cool water extends deep into the ocean, which will help maintain the ongoing La Nina, forecaster Jon Gottschalck of the federal Climate Prediction Center said.

Among those effects are warmer than normal weather in the U.S. great plains and cool, wet conditions in the Pacific Northwest.

And the new outlook for October through December reflects Texas at the center of a region of above-normal temperatures that are expected to extend into New Mexico, Oklahoma, Kansas and Colorado, and could reach all the way to the western Great Lakes states. Cooler than normal is possible in southern Alaska and south Florida.

The outlook also calls for drier than normal conditions in that region, a weather pattern that likely will extend all across the Gulf Coast states to Georgia and South Carolina.

But wetter than usual conditions are expected in most of Washington and Oregon, possibly extending into northern California.



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