After a year of drought, Charleston is officially wet again. Our 47 inches this year places 2008 right in the middle of recorded rainfalls over the last 80 years. But that’s after just 37.7 inches last year, the tenth driest in recorded history. January 2008 found every county in the state except for the southern tip of Jasper and Beaufort in “severe” drought.

Unfortunately, the Lowcountry’s good fortune is not replicated in the Upstate, where nine counties remain in “extreme” drought, the worst of five levels. Ten other counties are still in a severe state. The U.S. Drought Monitor lists the western corner of our state as currently having the most extreme drought conditions in the nation.