Island Drought Website and Factsheets Now Available

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When drought hits an island, nearly all sectors of society and the environment are quickly impacted. The CASCs have been working with partners over the last year to identify key threats, challenges, and management needs related to drought in the U.S. Caribbean and U.S. Affiliated Pacific Islands. Learn more about our work on drought in the U.S. Carribean and USAPI here >>  

Image: Lindbergh Beach, U.S. Virgin Islands

Lindbergh Beach, U.S. Virgin Islands. Credit: Randolph Femmer, USGS (public domain)

In 2015, the National CASC began working with each regional CASC to implement a network-wide initiative aimed at identifying what we know about the impacts of drought on ecosystems across the country. A key component of this initiative was the implementation of eight regional ecological drought workshops. One workshop was held at each CASC, and brought together regional drought experts to identify key threats, challenges, and management solutions related to ecological drought.

During these workshops, it became clear that islands such as Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and the U.S. Affiliated Pacific Islands (USAPI) experience unique challenges related to drought. To delve further into this topic, the National CASC worked with the Southeast CASC, Pacific Islands CASC, and partners to hold two workshops on island drought. The scope of these workshops was expanded to included not just ecological impacts of drought, but also impacts to agriculture and the water supply, and focused on drought monitoring and data needs. A key outcome of these workshops were the drought-related factsheets produced to summarize the impacts of drought on each region. 

The U.S. Caribbean workshop was hosted by the USDA Caribbean Climate Hub, in collaboration with the Southeast and National CASCs, in May 2018 at the International Institute of Tropical Forestry in San Juan, Puerto Rico. See fact sheets produced from the workshop here >>

The U.S. Affiliated Pacific Islands workshop was hosted by the Pacific Islands CASC, in collaboration with the National CASC, the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science Integration and Application Network, and the U.S. Forest Service, in August 2018. See fact sheets produced from the workshop here >>