Drought is one of the most costly natural disasters affecting the United States. The National Integrated Drought Information System (NIDIS) helps the nation and North America understand and proactively prepare for drought by providing data and information about the extent and potential impacts of drought and associated risks. The system provides a variety of decision support tools to help people prepare for and mitigate the effects of drought.
This video from ClimateCentral looks at the way climate conditions can affect vegetation in the West, and what influence this has on wildfires. Drought and rainfall can have very different wildfire outcomes, depending on vegetation type, extent, and location.
This activity uses geophysical and geochemical data to determine climate in Central America during the recent past and to explore the link between climate (wet periods and drought) and population growth/demise among the Maya. Students use ocean drilling data to interpret climate and to consider the influence of climate on the Mayan civilization.
This video examines what will happen to crops as Earth's temperature rises and soils dry out because of changing climate. Students learn that a loss of soil moisture causes stress to plants, leading to crop withering. Since humans and animals depend directly or indirectly on plants for food, many societal problems can be expected to arise due to the impact of climate warming on crops and the societies that depend on them.
This video focuses on the science of climate change and its impacts on wildlife on land and in the sea, and their habitats in the U.S. There are short sections on walruses, coral reefs, migrating birds and their breeding grounds, freshwater fish, bees, etc. Video concludes with some discussion about solutions, including reduce/recyle/reuse, energy conservation, backyard habitats, citizen scientists.
When Every Drop Counts: Protecting Public Health During Drought Conditions—A Guide for Public Health Professionals
July 24, 2012
This publication, by the Centers for Disease Control, is intended to assist public health officials, practitioners, and other stakeholders in their efforts first to understand and then to prepare for drought in their communities. It provides information about how drought affects public health, recommends steps to help mitigate the health effects of drought, identifies future needs for research and other drought related activities, and provides a list of helpful resources and tools.
Some significant climate events are subject to a deeper analysis than is possible on the NOAA National Climatic Data Center's operational monitoring time scales. This section catalogs significant climate- and weather-related events from the late 1990s to the present. The catalog of Special Reports includes but is not limited to: hurricanes, droughts, wildfires, and flooding.
The National Drought Mitigation Center launched the Drought Impact Reporter (DIR) in July 2005 as the nation’s first comprehensive database of drought impacts. DIR collects and displays drought impact information for the U.S., providing researchers and interested members of the public with more context and detail on drought, as well as more readily summarized information.