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California Drought Early Warning System

Drought in California is a common occurrence that can last for multiple years. The regional climate is characterized by a distinct dry season (approximately May to September) and wet season (October - April) defined by a few large precipitation events. Topography within the region creates a diverse set of climate conditions, from the snowy peaks of the Sierra Nevada Range to the Mojave Desert, to the mountains and valleys of the Basin and Range. Given the extreme variability, both spatially and temporally, efficiently using and effectively managing finite water resources is a high priority. Based on the many connections the two states share with respect to geography, climate, water, and drought, a joint CA-NV DEWS was developed to support enhanced drought early warning across the region and to build out NIDIS’s national drought early warning system.

Read more about the California DEWS

U.S. Drought Monitor - California DEWS

U.S. Drought Monitor - California DEWS
U.S. Drought Monitor - California DEWS
Drought Conditions (Percent Area)
WeekNoneD0-D4D1-D4D2-D4D3-D4D4
Current
10/20/2020
15.40%84.60%67.54%35.61%12.74%0.00%
Last Week
10/13/2020
15.40%84.60%67.54%35.61%12.74%0.00%
Three Months Ago
7/21/2020
40.34%59.66%48.21%21.50%3.04%0.00%
Start of Calendar Year
12/31/2019
96.43%3.57%0.00%0.00%0.00%0.00%
Start of Water Year
9/29/2020
15.35%84.65%67.65%35.62%12.74%0.00%
One Year Ago
10/22/2019
82.26%17.74%2.06%0.00%0.00%0.00%

Drought Intensities

  •       None: No Drought
  •       D0: Abnormally Dry
  •       D1: Moderate Drought
  •       D2: Severe Drought
  •       D3: Extreme Drought
  •       D4: Exceptional Drought
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Pie chart describing current drought for this location.