This new report from the NOAA Drought Task Force highlights the crucial role NOAA research plays in advancing our ability to prepare for and react to drought. Click here to learn more...

Leadership

Lead: Marty Hoerling, NOAA ESRL

Co-Lead: Mark Svoboda, University of Nebraska, Drought Mitigation Center

Co-Lead: Eric Wood, Princeton University

Co-Lead: Randy Koster, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center

Mission

This Drought Task Force is follow-up to the first group, which was established in October 2011 and ran until September 2014. The overall goals of the NOAA Drought Task Force are to achieve significant advances in understanding and in the ability to monitor and predict drought over North America. The Task Force is an initiative of NOAA’s Climate Program Office Modeling, Analysis, Predictions, and Projections (MAPP) program. The research results are expected to help advance basic understanding of drought mechanisms, official national drought products, the development of early warning systems by the National Integrated Drought Information System (NIDIS), and experimental drought monitoring and prediction activities and tools for operational and service purposes as part of the National Centers for Environmental Prediction's (NCEP) Climate Test Bed. The Task Force will coordinate with other relevant national and international efforts including the emerging National Multi-Model Ensemble (NMME) capabilities, and the international effort to develop a Global Drought Information System (GDIS).

This Drought Task Force started its activities in October 2014 and will have a duration of three years. 






Research Objectives

In the following we describe the issues underlying our key research objectives in more detail.

News & Events

Persistent U.S. droughts could be forecasted years in advance 24 April 2017

Persistent U.S. droughts could be forecasted years in advance

Two new studies that hint at the tantalizing possibility that persistent drought conditions could be predictable one or more years in advance, using the influence of the tropical Pacific Ocean’s slow changes in temperature.

Scientists link California droughts and floods to distinctive atmospheric waves 6 April 2017

Scientists link California droughts and floods to distinctive atmospheric waves

The crippling wintertime droughts that struck California from 2013 to 2015, as well as this year's unusually wet California winter, appear to be associated with the same phenomenon: a distinctive wave pattern that emerges in the upper atmosphere and circles the globe.

What can drought-stricken California expect from the El Niño winter forecast? 12 February 2016

What can drought-stricken California expect from the El Niño winter forecast?

A subgroup of the NOAA Drought Task Force recently released a science assessment looking at the relationship between El Niño and the California drought, a discussion that is pertinent within the context of the strong 2015/2016 El Niño event.
NOAA research improves our capacity to prepare for and react to drought, says new Drought Task Force report 9 February 2016

NOAA research improves our capacity to prepare for and react to drought, says new Drought Task Force report

A new report from the NOAA Drought Task Force, “Research to Advance National Drought Monitoring and Prediction Capabilities,” highlights the crucial role NOAA research plays in advancing our ability to prepare for and react to drought.

Two new MAPP-funded studies provide new insight into drought understanding and prediction in the Central U.S. 18 January 2016

Two new MAPP-funded studies provide new insight into drought understanding and prediction in the Central U.S.

New research funded by CPO’s MAPP Program focuses on drought in the central U.S./Great Plains region and evaluates why summer droughts occur in the Southern Great Plains during some La Niña years but not in others, and how several drought indicators may promote drought preparedness during future flash drought (droughts that intensify rapidly) events.
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ABOUT OUR ORGANIZATION

Americans’ health, security and economic wellbeing are tied to climate and weather. Every day, we see communities grappling with environmental challenges due to unusual or extreme events related to climate and weather. In 2011, the United States experienced a record high number (14) of climate- and weather-related disasters where overall costs reached or exceeded $1 billion. Combined, these events claimed 670 lives, caused more than 6,000 injuries, and cost $55 billion in damages. Businesses, policy leaders, resource managers and citizens are increasingly asking for information to help them address such challenges.