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Drought

Drought poses a serious threat to the resilience of communities and ecosystems in the U.S. USGS has developed a new coordinated and integrated drought science strategy that represents a new path forward towards understanding the complexity of drought issues, their impact on human and natural systems, and the opportunities to inform policy and decision-making for adaptation and mitigation.

News

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Lake Powell’s storage capacity updated for first time since 1986

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Future Peak Flow Along Rio Grande May Arrive Early Due to Climate Change

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Groundwater Flow to Colorado River May Decline by a Third over Next 30 Years

Publications

USGS integrated drought science

Project Need and OverviewDrought poses a serious threat to the resilience of human communities and ecosystems in the United States (Easterling and others, 2000). Over the past several years, many regions have experienced extreme drought conditions, fueled by prolonged periods of reduced precipitation and exceptionally warm temperatures. Extreme drought has far-reaching impacts on water supplies, e

Variability and trends in runoff efficiency in the conterminous United States

Variability and trends in water-year runoff efficiency (RE) — computed as the ratio of water-year runoff (streamflow per unit area) to water-year precipitation — in the conterminous United States (CONUS) are examined for the 1951 through 2012 period. Changes in RE are analyzed using runoff and precipitation data aggregated to United States Geological Survey 8-digit hydrologic cataloging units (HUs

Enhancing drought resilience with conjunctive use and managed aquifer recharge in California and Arizona

Projected longer‐term droughts and intense floods underscore the need to store more water to manage climate extremes. Here we show how depleted aquifers have been used to store water by substituting surface water use for groundwater pumpage (conjunctive use, CU) or recharging groundwater with surface water (Managed Aquifer Recharge, MAR). Unique multi‐decadal monitoring from thousands of wells and

Science

Brook trout vulnerability to drought: eastern component of USGS national integrated ecohydrological research and monitoring plans

There is a growing and urgent need to develop and implement innovative strategies to research, monitor, and manage freshwater resources as societal demands escalate simultaneously with climate-driven changes in water availability.
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Brook trout vulnerability to drought: eastern component of USGS national integrated ecohydrological research and monitoring plans

There is a growing and urgent need to develop and implement innovative strategies to research, monitor, and manage freshwater resources as societal demands escalate simultaneously with climate-driven changes in water availability.
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Pennsylvania Drought Condition Monitoring

The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection relies upon a number of parameters to monitor water-supply-drought conditions, among which are four parameters displayed herein—precipitation, streamflow, groundwater levels, and the Palmer Drought Severity Index, an indicator of soil moisture dryness.
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Pennsylvania Drought Condition Monitoring

The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection relies upon a number of parameters to monitor water-supply-drought conditions, among which are four parameters displayed herein—precipitation, streamflow, groundwater levels, and the Palmer Drought Severity Index, an indicator of soil moisture dryness.
Learn More

Drylands are highly vulnerable to climate and land use changes: what ecosystem changes are in store?

Improper land use during drought has been a major driver of land degradation in drylands globally, especially in the western U.S. Increasing aridity in western U.S. drylands under future climates will exacerbate risks associated with drought and land use decisions. This project provides critical observational, experimental, and modelling evidence to support our DOI partners with decision processes...
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Drylands are highly vulnerable to climate and land use changes: what ecosystem changes are in store?

Improper land use during drought has been a major driver of land degradation in drylands globally, especially in the western U.S. Increasing aridity in western U.S. drylands under future climates will exacerbate risks associated with drought and land use decisions. This project provides critical observational, experimental, and modelling evidence to support our DOI partners with decision processes...
Learn More