West-wide drought analysis

U.S. Bureau of Reclamation
By: , and 



This chapter describes analyses of the variability and characteristics of drought for historical and future projected climate conditions across the Western United States. The analyses are performed using the Palmer Drought Severity Index (PDSI; Palmer, 1965) to define drought events. The advantage of using PDSI to define droughts is that it focuses explicitly on droughts driven by hydroclimate variability. The PDSI does not include anthropogenic effects, such as water management, including the effects of reservoirs and diversions. Thus, PDSI is well-suited to examine natural climate-driven drought characteristics (i.e., drought duration, severity, and frequency). The next section (Section 4.1) describes the PDSI dataset and how it is used in the analyses. Section 4.2 describes the methodologies used to identify and analyze drought events. Section 4.3 presents results, along with considerations regarding the interpretations of the results. Summary and next steps emerging from the analyses are described in Section 4.4. Lastly, a listing of key findings is given in Section 4.5.
Publication type Report
Publication Subtype Other Report
Title West-wide drought analysis
Chapter 4
Year Published 2021
Language English
Publisher U.S. Bureau of Reclamation
Contributing office(s) WMA - Integrated Modeling and Prediction Division
Description 54 p.
Larger Work Type Report
Larger Work Subtype Other Report
Larger Work Title West-Wide Climate and Hydrology Assessment, Technical Memorandum No. ENV-2021-001
First page 129
Last page 182
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