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US Drought Monitor

The National Drought Monitor is issued weekly on Thursdays, and shows areas of the country that are under drought conditions, the intensity of the drought, and whether the drought is agricultural, affecting farming and fields, or hydrological, affecting the water supply.

National Drought Monitor

Descriptions of the levels used in the weekly drought monitor

DescriptionCriteria

D0 Abnormally Dry Going into drought: short-term dryness slowing planting, growth of crops or pastures; fire risk above average. Coming out of drought: some lingering water deficits; pastures or crops not fully recovered.

Palmer Drought Index -1.0 to -1.9
Standard Precipitation Index -0.5 to -0.7
Percent of Normal Precip. <75% for 3 mo.
Satellite Vegetative Health Index 36-45
CPC Soil Moisture Model 21-30%
U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Weekly Streamflow 21-30%

D1 Moderate Drought Moderate drought Some damage to crops, pastures; fire risk high; streams, reservoirs, or wells low; some water shortages developing or imminent; voluntary water use restrictions requested.

Palmer Drought Index -2.0 to -2.9
Standard Precipitation Index -0.8 to -1.2
Percent of Normal Precip <70% for 3 mo.
Satellite Vegetative Health Index 26-35
CPC Soil Moisture Model 11-20%
USGS Weekly Streamflow 11-20%

D2 Severe Drought Crop or pasture losses likely; fire risk very high; water shortages common; water restrictions imposed.

Palmer Drought Index -3.0 to -3.9
Standard Precipitation Index -1.3 to -1.5
Percent of Normal Precip <65% for 6 mo.
Satellite Vegetative Health Index 16-25
CPC Soil Moisture Model 6-10%
USGS Weekly Streamflow 6-10%

D3 Extreme Drought Major crop or pasture losses; extreme fire danger; widespread water shortages or restrictions.

Palmer Drought Index -4.0 to -5.4
Standard Precipitation Index -1.6 to -1.9
Percent of Normal Precip <60% for 6 mo.
Satellite Vegetative Health Index 6-15
CPC Soil Moisture Model 3-5%
USGS Weekly Streamflow 3-5%

D4 Exceptional Drought Exceptional and widespread crop or pasture losses; exceptional fire risk; shortages of water in reservoirs, streams, and wells, creating water emergencies.

Palmer Drought Index -5.5 or less
Standard Precipitation Index -2.0 or less
Percent of Normal Precip <60% for 12 mo.
Satellite Vegetative Health Index 1-5
CPC Soil Moisture Model 0-2%
USGS Weekly Streamflow 0-2%

Weekly National Drought Summary