Drought

A drought is a period of unusually persistent dry weather that persists long enough to cause serious problems such as crop damage and/or water supply shortages. The severity of the drought depends upon the degree of moisture deficiency, the duration, and the size of the affected area.

There are actually four different ways that drought can be defined.

  • Meteorological - a measure of departure of precipitation from normal. Due to climatic differences, what might be considered a drought in one location of the country may not be a drought in another location.
  • Agricultural - refers to a situation where the amount of moisture in the soil no longer meets the needs of a particular crop.
  • Hydrological - occurs when surface and subsurface water supplies are below normal.
  • Socioeconomic - refers to the situation that occurs when physical water shortages begin to affect people.

From the National Weather Service (NWS).

Case Study Background Siembra Tres Vidas is a farm on the southern side of the central mountains of Puerto Rico in the town of Aibonito where Daniella Rodriguez grows a variety of vegetables and lettuce, edible flowers, and aromátic herbs. The farm is situated at 2000 asl on…

Portions of Idaho, Oregon, and Washington have been experiencing abnormally dry to drought conditions since January 2018. On 28 and 30 July 2020, there was a virtual Northwest Drought Workshop with the goals of learning how the US Drought Monitor map is made each week, how…

On August 12, 2020, we convened scientists and technical and service advisors to share preliminary climate predictions for annual forage production on rangelands of the western US over the next three decades. After short presentations on climate, forage, and rancher experiences…

Project Area Description Haycamp Farm and Fruit is a small, diversified family farm sitting at 7,000 ft elevation on the eastern edge of the Colorado Plateau in southwestern Colorado’s Montezuma County. Landforms in most areas are controlled by the underlying sedimentary rock…

Did you know that the USDA Soil Conservation Service (now called the Natural Resources Conservation Service or NRCS) was founded in 1933 during the Dust Bowl to help farmers conserve soil, especially during times of drought? Today, NRCS offers cost sharing for practices that…

Nurseries and greenhouses are intensive production spaces where careful water management is critical to business. As the climate changes, there will be more periods of hot and dry weather in the region. Efficiently managing water resources will be essential to maintaining…

Included below is a collection of state-level drought information from a variety of sources for Alaska, Idaho, Oregon, and Washington. This is a living document that will be updated as new information becomes available. If you have suggestions or feedback, please contact our…

The USDA Midwest Climate Hub and the Indiana State Climate Office at Purdue University will provide a 1.5 day workshop on regional research, management and monitoring needs with an emphasis on herbicide/pesticide drift issues. The ADIM workshop will take place from TBD at the…