Coping with Drought in Support of the National Integrated Drought Information System

NOAA’s Sectoral Applications Research Program (SARP) is announcing four new one-year projects that aim to expand the capabilities of the National Integrated Drought Information System’s (NIDIS) regional Drought Early Warning Systems. The competitively selected projects total $673 thousand for grants.

Since 1980, droughts have caused roughly $250 billion in damages in the United States. Extreme events like drought may only increase in the coming years, so planning our response is becoming increasingly vital. To be better prepare for future droughts, decision-makers need reliable climate information related to drought to help their businesses or municipalities plan and respond. SARP’s Coping with Drought initiative funds integrated research across the country to develop drought information that can help people make well-informed decisions. The four new projects build on SARP Coping with Drought’s overarching objective to help evolve our NIDIS’ drought early warning systems (DEWS), improve their regional-scale resolution, and provide more advanced warning.

The new projects will focus on two specific topics: Business and Decision Calendars, and Drought Triggers and Indicators. Under the first topic, one new project’s research will focus on understanding calendars specific to businesses, industry, and the economy that are impacted by drought. The project’s results will help provide an understanding of business decision making that will help inform NIDIS’s regional DEWS ability to provide actionable scientific information for decision-making.

The three new projects under the second topic will focus on the development of NIDIS’ newest regional Drought Early Warning System in the northeastern United States (the New England States and New York). Results from these projects will help improve understanding of the critical, relevant, and appropriate drought triggers and indicators in this region, as well as develop new ones to inform decision making across all time and spatial scales.

The four new projects funded by the SARP Program in FY19 are:

  • “Developing Drought Triggers and Indicators Using the National Water Model: A Case Study to Improve the U.S. Drought Monitor in Support of the Northeast DEWS”
    • Arthur Degaetano, Cornell University
    • Craig R. Ferguson, University at Albany
    • Charles N Kroll, SUNY - ESF

  • “Identifying and quantifying triggers, time scales, and tools to support management of different drought types in the Northeastern United States”
    • Daniel McEvoy, Desert Research Institute, Western Regional Climate Center
    • Imtiaz Rangwala, University of Colorado
    • Arthur DeGaetano, Cornell University

  • “Utilizing Drought Forecasts to Develop Decision Calendars for Reoperation of California's Hydroelectric Reservoir Systems and Managed Aquifer Recharge”
    • Erfan Goharian, University of South Carolina
    • Dennis P. Lettenmaier, UCLA
    • Josue Medellin-Azuara, UC Merced

  • “Identifying Drought-related Triggers and Impacts on Decision Calendars for the Ski Industry”
    • Becky Bolinger, Colorado State University
    • Russ Schumacher,Colorado State University
    • Natalie Ooi,Colorado State University

GRANTS/FFO NEWS


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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 2017, the United States experienced a record-tying 16 climate- and weather-related disasters where overall costs reached or exceeded $1 billion. Combined, these events claimed 362 lives, and had significant economic effects on the areas impacted, costing more than $306 billion. Businesses, policy leaders, resource managers and citizens are increasingly asking for information to help them address such challenges.

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