National Weather Service United States Department of Commerce

Drought Monitoring

 

Click here for latest Drought Information Product (issued ONLY when drought condition is D2 or greater):

 


Primary resources:


Current Drought Situation:

Maps of the latest drought conditions can be found at the U.S. Drought Monitor.

Archives can be found at the Drought Monitor Archive Page.

 


Precipitation/Temperature Outlooks:

This section contains the 8-14 day, monthly, and 3-month temperature and precipitation outlooks.

8-14 Day Outlook:

8 to 14 Day Temperature Outlook
8 to 14 Day Precipitation Outlook

Monthly Outlook: (These are updated on the third Thursday of each month)

Monthly Temperature Outlook
Monthly Precipitation Outlook
A narrative is also available at the following link.

3-Month (Seasonal)Outlook: (These are updated on the third Thursday of each month)

3-Month (Seasonal)Temperature Outlook
3-Month (Seasonal) Precipitation Outlook
A narrative is also available at the following link. Other 3-month temperature and precipitation outlooks are available out to a year in advance at the following link.

For updated temperature and precipitation probabilities consult the following Climate Prediction Center (CPC) Web Sites:

8 to 14 Day Outlook:

http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/
products/predictions/814day/

Monthly Outlook:

http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov
/products/predictions/30day/

Seasonal Outlook:

http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/ products
/predictions/long_range/lead01/
off_index.html



Ground Water Impacts:

The USGS maintains a network of wells to monitor the effects of droughts and other climate variability on ground-water levels. The network consists of a national network of about 140 wells monitored as part of the Ground-Water Resources Program, supplemented by wells in some States monitored as part of the Cooperative Water Program. Click on this paragraph for a map of ground water sites in NC.

USGS Ground-Water Climate Response Network

USGS Ground-Water Climate Response Network

Click here to see the latest ground water level near Duke Forest, North Carolina.

 

Additional information about ground levels can be found either at the USGS Ground-Water Climate Response Network at:

http://groundwaterwatch.usgs.gov/



Fire Danger Hazards:

Keetch-Byram Drought Index (KBDI):

This is a drought index that is specifically related to fire potential. The KBDI is broken into four categories which indicate the susceptibility of ground fuels to fire danger. The table in the right hand column indicates what the categories mean.

A national map of the latest Keetch-Byram Drought Index

Dead Fuel Moisture:

Dead fuel moisture responds solely to ambient environmental conditions and is critical in determining fire potential. Dead fuel moistures are classed by time lag. A fuel's time lag is proportional to its diameter and is loosely defined as the time it takes a fuel particle to reach 2/3's of its way to equilibrium with its local environment. Dead fuels in NFDRS fall into four classes (1-hour, 10-hour, 100-hour, and 1000-hour); however, when looking at droughts usually only the 100-hour and 1000-hour fuel moisture are watched.

100-hour Dead Fuel Moisture: Measured from fuels which are 1 to 3" in diameter. Computed from 24-hour average boundary condition composed of day length, hours of rain, and daily temperature/humidity ranges.

A national map of the latest Keetch-Byram Drought Index

1000-hour Dead Fuel Moisture: Measured from fuels which are 3 to 8" diameter. Computed from a 7-day average boundary condition composed of day length, hours of rain, and daily temperature/humidity ranges.

A national map of the latest Keetch-Byram Drought Index

The Keetch-Byram Drought Index (KBDI) is a drought index that is specifically related to fire potential. The KBDI is broken into four categories which indicate the susceptibility of ground fuels to fire danger. Below are the four categories and a brief description of each.

Low - Wet with little danger of fire initiation
Moderate - Drying occurring with some fire danger
High - Ground cover dry and will burn readily
Extreme - Dead and live fuels will burn readily

KBDI data can be found on the Wildland Fire Assessment System (WFAS) web site at:

http://www.wfas.net/content/view/32/49/

Dead Fuel Moisture data can be found on the Wildland Fire Assessment System (WFAS) web site at:

http://www.wfas.net/content/view/23/38/



Agriculture Impacts:

For additional information on agriculture impacts may be viewed at the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) National Agricultural Statistics Service NASS Web Site.