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

New NOAA Report: Exceptional Southwest Drought Exacerbated by Human-Caused Warming 29 September 2021

New NOAA Report: Exceptional Southwest Drought Exacerbated by Human-Caused Warming

According to the report, the drought caused roughly $11.4–$23 billion in economic losses in 2020—including impacts from associated wildfires. Economic losses for 2021 will also be substantial, and the drought is expected to continue at least into next year.

Study: Dry Future Likely Unavoidable for Southwest, But Reducing Greenhouse Gases Can Still Help 8 September 2021

Study: Dry Future Likely Unavoidable for Southwest, But Reducing Greenhouse Gases Can Still Help

For the past two decades, the southwestern United States has been desiccated by one of the most severe long-term droughts—or ‘megadroughts’—of the last 1,200 years. And now, scientists say the risk of similar extreme megadroughts and severe single-year droughts will increase in the future as Earth’s temperature continues to rise, according to a new study in Earth’s Future.

Greenhouse Gas and Aerosol Emissions are Lengthening and Intensifying Droughts 18 May 2021

Greenhouse Gas and Aerosol Emissions are Lengthening and Intensifying Droughts

CPO-funded study shows human-caused boost to drying in Americas, Africa, and Asia

“There has always been natural variability in drought events around the world, but our research shows the clear human influence on drying, specifically from anthropogenic aerosols, carbon dioxide, and other greenhouse gases,” said lead author Felicia Chiang from the University of California, Irvine. 

Tackling the challenges of a drier, hotter, more fire-prone future 11 April 2021

Tackling the challenges of a drier, hotter, more fire-prone future

In a new EOS Opinion Article, MAPP Drought Task Force leaders Rong Fu, Andrew Hoell, Justin Mankin, and Isla Simpson, working with NIDIS staff member Amanda Sheffield, describe the disastrous impacts droughts, heat waves and fires have globally. They also highlight new MAPP- and NIDIS-funded research that tackles the challenges of a drier, hotter, more fire-prone future.
Drought Task Force Provides Rapid Response to Worst U.S. Drought Since 2013 26 January 2021

Drought Task Force Provides Rapid Response to Worst U.S. Drought Since 2013

The Drought Task Force’s rapid response will help us understand the ongoing drought’s causes, how our science is helping us understand the drought, to what extent climate change is playing a role, and how the event may evolve.

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Contact

Dr. Daniel Barrie
Acting MAPP Program Director
P: 301-734-1256
E: daniel.barrie@noaa.gov

Courtney Byrd
MAPP Program Specialist
P: 301-734-1257
E: courtney.byrd@noaa.gov

Wenfei Ni
MAPP Program Specialist
P: 
E: wenfei.ni@noaa.gov

Dr. Annarita Mariotti
MAPP Program Director, on detail to EOP/OSTP
P: 301-734-1237
E: annarita.mariotti@noaa.gov

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