Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Variability and trends in global drought

June 1, 2015

Monthly precipitation (P) and potential evapotranspiration (PET) from the CRUTS3.1 data set are used to compute monthly P minus PET (PMPE) for the land areas of the globe. The percent of the global land area with annual sums of PMPE less than zero are used as an index of global drought (%drought) for 1901 through 2009. Results indicate that for the past century %drought has not changed, even though global PET and temperature (T) have increased. Although annual global PET and T have increased, annual global P also has increased and has mitigated the effects of increased PET on %drought.

Publication Year 2015
Title Variability and trends in global drought
DOI 10.1002/2015EA000100
Authors Gregory J. McCabe, David M. Wolock
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Earth and Space Science
Index ID 70189347
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization National Research Program - Central Branch