Drought is different from tornadoes, hurricanes, and floods. It can be more difficult to detect and it can last much longer than other weather events. We don’t have “watches” or “warnings” for drought like we do for other natural hazards. But just because drought is different from the other natural disasters doesn’t mean we can’t plan for it and take steps to help protect ourselves from the effects of drought. In fact, the National Drought Mitigation Center helps people plan for drought.
What does mitigation mean?
When you want to cross a street, you look both ways before crossing, don’t you? Of course you do! Looking both ways before crossing the street is a very simple thing that you can do to help reduce your risk of being injured by oncoming traffic. Reducing your risk of being injured would be an action that mitigates harm to you.
When we think about mitigation as it relates to drought, mitigation means taking actions before, or at the beginning of, drought to help reduce the impacts (or effects) of drought. We can do many things to mitigate drought. Let’s take a look at the ways that people, communities, states, and the nation can reduce drought risk.
In this section, we’ll learn about things we can do to ahead of time to prepare for drought in our communities and our environment. These things include making drought plans, conserving water, building dams and other structures that help us store water, and learning about drought and your environment.