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2022 Workshop Summary: Sharing Knowledge on Farming, Water, and Drought in Alaska

Participants viewing a drought scenario at the Delta Junction workshop.
Participants at the Delta Junction workshop viewing drought scenario plans.

On 14 and 16 November 2022, workshops on drought and agriculture in Alaska occurred in Delta Junction and Palmer. Both workshops focused on precipitation and temperature as it relates to agriculture; drought indicators and monitoring; and drought scenarios and peer-to-peer learning for producers and home gardeners. These workshops were co-hosted by the University of Alaska Fairbanks Extension, National Drought Mitigation Center, and United States Department of Agriculture Northwest Climate Hub.

Workshop agenda

Introduction to the Palmer workshop by Jodie Anderson, University of Alaska-Fairbanks and Holly Prendeville, USDA Northwest Climate Hub (video)

U.S Drought Monitor by Deb Bathke, National Drought Mitigation Center at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (video; click to download the presentation)

2022 Climate Overview

  • Rick Thoman, University of Alaska-Fairbanks and Alaska Center for Climate Assessment and Policy, presented a climate overview to the Delta Junction workshop (video; click to download the presentation)
  • Brian Brettschneider, NOAA NWS Alaska Region, presented to Palmer (video; click to download the presentation)

Farm Service Agency: Disaster Designations

  • Robert Garcia, Farm Service Agency, presented to Delta Junction workshop
  • Shelby Johnson, Farm Service Agency, presented to Palmer (video; click to download the presentation)

Adaptation Resources for Agriculture: Responding to Changes in Climate in Alaska by Holly Prendeville, USDA Northwest Climate Hub (video; presentation)

These workshop presentations and videos are mostly from the Palmer workshop. For an overview of information shared in both workshops and a summary of the workshop evaluation see this report.


US Drought Monitor map of Alaska

For the lower 48 states the US Drought Monitor uses over 100 climate variables to assess drought, whereas in Alaska fewer metrics are available (see list below).

Historical drought data and conditions is a tool for exploring historical drought conditions from 2000 to the present via a graph or map of the state. One can also click on a census area to see area drought conditions.

National Drought Mitigation Center

CoCoRHaS, Community Rain Hail and Snow Network, is a national non-profit community-based network focused on precipitation measurements. If you are interested in participating in CoCoRHaS by submitting precipitation observations, review the following resources to begin:

Alaska Center for Climate Assessment and Policy is a NOAA Regional Integrated Sciences and Assessments program focused on conducting climate research in Alaska.

          Webinars, including a monthly climate outlook for the state by Rick Thoman.

NOAA National Centers for Environmental Information: Alaska State Climate Summaries 2022 is a yearly summary of climate in the state.

4th National Climate Assessment - Alaska is a summary of climate, climate impact information focused on Alaska.

PRISM climate group’s Alaska average monthly and annual precipitation and minimum, maximum, and mean temperature for 1981-2010 are the most up to date climate data from PRISM for Alaska.

Northwest Climate Hub

Farm Service Agency (FSA)

Risk Management Agency (RMA)

  • Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS)

    • Disaster recovery page lists NRCS programs to assist farmers, ranchers, and landowners after a disaster.