Less rain results in decreased stream ﬂow, fewer plants, and less wildlife. Over the last 15 years, the Southwest has experienced signiﬁcant drought conditions. These conditions can lead to changes in our state's water supply availability. It will be critical to manage water use in the future despite the recent decline in use.
Arizona is currently in its 21st year of a long-term drought. Drought in the West is a long-term concept where a single dry year does not constitute a drought. Since Arizona has an arid and semi-arid climate, extreme variability in precipitation is normal, and drought is characterized by a string of drier than normal years, often interrupted by a few wetter than normal years. Currently most watersheds in the state have experienced only 7 or 8 normal or wetter than normal years during the past 21 years. Source: Arizona State Drought Office