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Published on
November 23, 2021

NIDIS drought email alerts provide up-to-date local drought information right to your inbox. Since the launch of the new Drought.gov at the beginning of 2021, NIDIS has partnered with NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI) to deliver these alerts with the latest changes to local U.S. Drought Monitor conditions. Now, NIDIS and NCEI are expanding this climate service by providing information on the latest drought outlooks.

Published on
November 9, 2021

Although wildfire is part of the natural ecosystem cycle over the western U.S., its intensity and frequency has been increasing at an alarming rate in recent decades. A new study shows that climate change is the main driver of this increase in fire weather in the western United States. And even though wetter and cooler conditions could offer brief respites, more intense and frequent wildfires and aridification in the western states will continue with rising temperatures.

Published on
October 19, 2021

NASA DEVELOP addresses environmental and public policy issues through research projects that apply the lens of NASA Earth observations to community concerns.  NIDIS has been involved with the NASA DEVELOP program hosted at NOAA's National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI) in Asheville, North Carolina since 2018. NIDIS supports drought-focused projects at the DEVELOP NCEI location each year, and our coordinators have been involved as partners in past projects. This fall, the NASA DEVELOP NCEI team is working to create evapotranspiration and water balance climatologies for the Midwestern United States.

Published on
October 12, 2021

Drought represents a globally relevant natural disaster linked to adverse health. But while evidence has shown agricultural communities to be particularly susceptible to drought, there is a limited understanding of how drought may impact occupational stress in farmers. To address this problem, NIDIS co-funded a study to examine the relationship between drought conditions and measures of job-related stress (job strain ratio) in farmers. The study, led by Jesse Berman with the University of Minnesota School of Public Health and published in Science of The Total Environment, looked at the association between drought conditions and increasing occupational stress among nearly 500 Midwest farm owners and operators over 2012–2015.

Published on
September 28, 2021

Since early 2020, the Southwest United States has suffered record low precipitation and near-record high temperatures, gripping the region with an unyielding, unprecedented, and costly drought. This exceptional drought—marked by massive water shortages, destructive wildfires, emergency declarations, and the first ever water delivery shortfall among the states sharing the Colorado River—punctuates a two-decade warm and dry period that has baked the Southwest. A newly released report from the NOAA Drought Task Force, which is a collaboration between the NOAA Climate Program Office, National Integrated Drought Information System (NIDIS), and leading scientists, addressed four critical questions about the 2020–2021 Southwestern U.S. drought.

Published on
September 9, 2021

The National Integrated Drought Information System (NIDIS) will host a four-day Southwest Drought Virtual Forum on September 21–22 and 28–29. The Forum will assemble stakeholders, decision makers, and drought experts for a cross-cutting dialogue on worsening drought conditions in the Southwestern United States, and response and relief efforts across levels of government and sectors, with the goal of supporting communities impacted by ongoing water scarcity and building long-term drought resilience in the region. 

Published on
September 8, 2021

For the past two decades, the southwestern United States has been desiccated by one of the most severe long-term droughts—or ‘megadroughts’—of the last 1,200 years. And now, scientists say the risk of similar extreme megadroughts and severe single-year droughts will increase in the future as Earth’s temperature continues to rise, according to a new study in Earth’s Future sponsored by NOAA’s Climate Program Office and National Integrated Drought Information System, and led by NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies.

Published on
August 10, 2021

The National Integrated Drought Information System is pleased to announce two new interactive features on Drought.gov: new customization and sharing options for all maps as well as new interactive economic sector maps. These new communication tools will help decision makers and the public respond to the current drought, prepare for future drought conditions, and improve the nation’s long-term drought resilience. These tools were launched in collaboration with NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information.

Published on
June 30, 2021

Effective use of drought forecasts is critical for farmers to make proactive, well-informed decisions. A key factor that determines how decision makers respond to and use drought forecasts is the extent to which they trust those forecasts. However, modeling studies of forecast valuation have rarely considered the role of user trust in a forecast’s value.  To help integrate user trust into forecast valuation, a new NIDIS-funded study proposes a framework to model trust in drought forecast information that captures how users’ trust forms and evolves over time and shows how trust influences users’ decisions. 

Published on
June 9, 2021

The National Integrated Drought Information System (NIDIS) is pleased to announce the release of A Strategy for the National Coordinated Soil Moisture Monitoring Network: Coordinated, High-Quality, Nationwide Soil Moisture Information for the Public Good (also known as the “NCSMMN Strategy”). Developed in part to fulfill the requirements of the NIDIS Reauthorization Act of 2018 (P.L. 115-423), the NCSMM Strategy is the result of a 2-year multi-agency effort that included broad community engagement.