Monitoring Water Conditions
Maine Drought Monitor
The National Integrated Drought Information System (NIDIS) provides extensive information on water conditions throughout the United States and a map of current drought conditions in Maine. This map is used by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) in making decisions about providing drought assistance.
U.S. Drought Monitor
A weekly drought monitor is produced jointly 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. The map uses measurements of climatic, hydrologic and soil conditions, and reported impacts at locations around the United States.
U.S. Seasonal Drought Outlook
The National Weather Service (NOAA) produces a monthly U.S. Seasonal Drought Outlook that uses extended weather forecasts to predict whether an existing drought is likely to persist, remain but improve, or subside. It also projects locations where drought development is likely.
Hydrological Drought Monitor
The U.S. Geological Survey monitors hydrological drought conditions through WaterWatch and GroundwaterWatch. WaterWatch monitors streamflow levels in real time and compares them to their historical averages at specific locations, and groundwater watch does the same for ground water levels.
Agricultural affects from drought are noticed after signs of meteorological and hydrological drought are observed. The Palmer Drought Severity Index (PDSI) is one of the oldest tools used to measure drought and was developed primarily for agricultural purposes. The PDSI uses temperature and precipitation data to estimate relative dryness. Monthly PDSI values capture long term trends and not data on time scales of less than 12 months.
For current weather forecasts, go to the National Weather Service and enter your location.