Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Site Section
By Sector

Water Utilities

Drought can result in significant operational impacts to water utilities, including a loss of water supply and poor source water quality. Building drought resilience for water utilities means increasing their ability to respond to water supply threats, withstand impacts from drought, and quickly recover when drought does occur.

U.S. Water Supply Conditions

The map depicts real-time streamflow conditions compared to historical streamflow conditions for the day of the year. U.S. Geological Survey stream gages are displayed alongside current drought conditions from the U.S. Drought Monitor. Learn more.

The National Weather Service's Climate Prediction Center (CPC) produces precipitation outlooks for the U.S., which depict the probability (percent chance) of above-normal, below-normal, or near-normal conditions during the noted time frame. This map shows the CPC's 6-10 day precipitation outlook. Learn more.

Streamflow Percentiles

The color with the hex code #ff0000 identifies:
Low
The color with the hex code #b12121 identifies:
Much Below Normal (< 10%)
The color with the hex code #ffa400 identifies:
Below Normal (10% - 24%)
The color with the hex code #00ff00 identifies:
Normal (25% - 75%)
The color with the hex code #40dfd0 identifies:
Above Normal (75% - 90%)
The color with the hex code #0000ff identifies:
Much Above Normal (> 90%)
The color with the hex code #000000 identifies:
High

U.S. Drought Monitor

The color with the hex code #ffff00 identifies:
D0
The color with the hex code #ffcc99 identifies:
D1
The color with the hex code #ff6600 identifies:
D2
The color with the hex code #ff0000 identifies:
D3
The color with the hex code #660000 identifies:
D4

Probability of Below-Normal Precipitation

The color with the hex code #4f2f2f identifies:
> 90%
The color with the hex code #804000 identifies:
> 80%
The color with the hex code #934639 identifies:
> 70%
The color with the hex code #9b5031 identifies:
> 60%
The color with the hex code #bb6d33 identifies:
> 50%
The color with the hex code #d8a750 identifies:
> 40%
The color with the hex code #f0d493 identifies:
> 33%

Probability of Above-Normal Precipitation

The color with the hex code #b3d9ab identifies:
> 33%
The color with the hex code #94cd7e identifies:
> 40%
The color with the hex code #48ae38 identifies:
> 50%
The color with the hex code #3a7b5f identifies:
> 60%
The color with the hex code #008e40 identifies:
> 70%
The color with the hex code #28553d identifies:
> 80%
The color with the hex code #285517 identifies:
> 90%
Key Issues

Operational Impacts

Drought impacts on water utility operations range from loss of water supply to increased costs and reduced revenues. 

Increasing Demand

Higher temperatures result in increased water demand for both agricultural irrigation and drinking water supply.

Aquifer Depletion

Limited surface water storage, among other factors, has contributed to significant depletion of aquifers in many U.S. regions.

Related Content

Data & Maps | Water Supply

Identify and access datasets and maps for monitoring water supply.

Data & Maps | Snow Drought

A collection of tools for accessing observed and forecasted snow data.