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Missouri River Basin Drought Early Warning System
In the Missouri River Basin (MRB), drought is a common climate event. Significant drought events occurred in the 1930s and 1950s that substantially affected water supplies, crops and livestock, energy, transportation of goods, and the ecosystem. More recently, a large-scale drought event occurred in 2012, and was unique in that it followed a devastating flood across the MRB in 2011. Leading up to the drought of 2012, many were expecting a second year of flooding but what followed instead was a devastating drought event. The upper Missouri River Basin was hit again in 2017 with a flash drought that was characterized by a rapid decline in soil moisture, low spring rainfall, along with high temperatures and above-average wind speeds. Agricultural losses alone totaled in excess of $2.6 billion dollars. It was particularly the floods of 2011 and then the extreme and rapidly evolving drought in 2012 that emphasized the need for an early warning system that not only could improve how we anticipate drought events but could also improve collaboration and coordination of data and monitoring networks for floods in the Missouri Basin.
U.S. Drought Monitor - Missouri River Basin DEWS
As of March 31, 2020
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