The mission of the Midwest DEWS is to enhance drought resilience in the Midwest region by improving the ability for communities to collaborate, plan and be prepared for drought, understand the relationship between drought and high precipitation events, better utilize available tools and climate forecasts and to proactively identify, mitigate and respond to drought impacts. NIDIS and its partners launched the Midwest DEWS in February 2016. The Midwest DEWS is a collaborative federal, state, and local interagency effort to improve early warning capacity and resilience for both drought and high precipitation events throughout the region. This is accomplished through local stakeholder-driven activities encompassing data collection and monitoring; research; planning for climate extremes; and communication, education, and outreach. Activities will focus on areas throughout the upper Mississippi River and Ohio River basins in Minnesota, Iowa, Missouri, Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, and Ohio. Specific objectives of the Midwest DEWS are to: Provide a forum for a diverse group of federal, tribal, state, and local stakeholders that represent all economic sectors, including water and land resource management, to strategize and develop appropriate, relevant, useful and readily available drought, climate, weather and water-related information. Develop an understanding of the existing observation and monitoring networks, data, tools, research and other planning and mitigation resources available for a drought early warning system. Identify the economic sector-specific and geographic needs for future monitoring, prediction, planning and information resources. Activities 2016 Regional Assessment Workshops – NIDIS and its partners held four Midwest DEWS Regional Workshops in November and December 2016, gathering information providers and stakeholders in Minnesota and Wisconsin, Iowa and Missouri, Illinois and Indiana, and Kentucky and Ohio. The workshops offered a historical drought overview and climate outlook, discussion of priority drought-related needs and critical issues, information from state agencies on how drought events are planned for and managed, available drought and climate tools, and thoughts on strategies to improve drought early warning and resiliency in the Midwest. Click here for a summary of the meeting series, with agendas, attendees and presentations from each workshop. Midwest DEWS Kickoff - The Midwest DEWS was launched in St. Louis, on February 9, 10 and 11 at the Midwest DEWS Kickoff meeting. The multi-day event brought together partners and stakeholders for an in-depth discussion on drought and high precipitation events and how to improve the capacity to meet the early warning information needs. Read/download a full report from the meeting (pdf) Midwest DEWS Strategic Plan – This plan will be available by the end of 2016. It will provide a framework of priority actions to further develop and implement the DEWS in the Midwest over the next two years. Midwest climate webinars and outlooks - Provided on a quarterly basis on current climate conditions, impact and forecasted climate conditions. Cedar Rapids Multi-Hazard Tournament - Hosted by the USACE, NDMC, NOAA, DOE, and the City of Cedar Rapids during summer 2016 in Cedar Rapids, IA. This tournament will provide the opportunity for stakeholders to collaborate on drought and other climate adaptation strategies. More... Midwest Climate and Agriculture workshop - Held on Sep 29-Oct 1, 2015 in Champaign, IL convened Extension, federal agencies and organizations, private consultants, product developers, and researchers to discuss climate extremes and variability impacts on specialty crops and livestock. See the agenda Midwest Mesonets for Climate Monitoring and Assessment Workshop - The workshop was convened in Champaign, IL on Sept 28-29, 2015 to collaborate on ways to havea consortium of local and regional observational data networks that provide sustained, organized, and reliable high-resolution observational data for the long-term monitoring and assessment of surface climate conditions. See the agenda DEWS planning workshops - Held in November in Louisville, KY and Bloomington, MN in 2015 to discuss the appropriate, relevant, useful and readily available drought-, climate-, weather-, and water-related information in the Midwest. These workshop informed the DEWS launch.