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    Climate TimeLine Tutorial:
Focus on Drought

Introduction

The following is designed as a tutorial for the Climate Time Line. By focusing on drought, we will explore how to use the CTL and its various resources, including accessing and analyzing data that relate to your region of interest.

2002 might be known as the year of the drought in many parts of the United States. Across the country, headlines warn of drought emergencies and the potential for water rationing, particularly along the East Coast where an extended period of low precipitation has left reservoirs from Maine to Georgia far below normal.

In the West, an article in the Denver Post warned that "Four dry winters spell drought" due to snowfall levels well below average in mountain basins.
(See Colorado NRCS Snow Surveys).

Droughts occur periodically throughout time, while some parts of the world experience it on a regular basis. The Climate Timeline Tool offers several possibilities to explore drought periods at different time intervals.

What is Drought?
NOAA's All About Droughts page defines drought as

"a period of abnormally dry weather which persists long enough to produce a serious hydrologic imbalance (for example crop damage, water supply shortage, etc.) The severity of the drought depends upon the degree of moisture deficiency, the duration and the size of the affected area."

More detailed information about drought can be found on the Drought: A Paleo Perspective -- What is Drought? by NOAA's Paleoclimatology Program. Also see Current Drought Termination and Amelioration Ending Current Drought from National Climatic Data Center.

Is There a Drought Right Now?

The image below is a the most current snapshot of drought conditions across the U.S. It is provided by NOAA's Climate Prediction Center. More in depth information can be found on the U.S. Drought Monitor Page and the NOAA Drought Information Center.


Click the Drought Button to Continue
All images from NOAA
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http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/paleo/ctl/drought.html
Downloaded Tuesday, 21-Oct-2014 00:25:35 EDT
Last Updated Wednesday, 20-Aug-2008 11:22:39 EDT by paleo@noaa.gov
Please see the Paleoclimatology Contact Page or the NCDC Contact Page if you have questions or comments.