Although, news media coverage of the California drought has fizzled over time, the reality is that many parts of my home-state continue to be under “Extreme” or “Exceptional” drought conditions.
The United States Drought Monitor (USDM) is a useful tool in analyzing current drought conditions across the United States. The USDM is a joint project by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the National Drought Mitigation Center at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
With weekly comparisons, data tables, and even GIS data (among other useful tools), anybody can log on and examine the different effects of drought conditions. Users can examine specific attributes such as percent of normal rainfall and the Vegetation Drought Response Index (VegDRI) of a given state.
As the drought in California and other parts of the United States drag on, it is important to be informed about conditions and develop plans to save water.