Monday, May 21, 2018

National Drought Mitigation Center

U.S. Drought Policy

Federal Drought Policy

The White House released the Presidential Memorandum on Building Long-term Drought Resilience, March 21, 2016. 

The Public Policy Institute of California in February 2016 released a report on Improving the Federal Response to Western Drought.  

The Obama Administration launched the interagency National Drought Resilience Partnership in November 2013 to make it easier for people to access federal drought resources. 

The Congressional Research Service issued a report in August 2012, Drought in the United States: Causes and Issues for Congress

National Integrated Drought Information System (NIDIS), 2006-Present

NIDIS logo“Based on needs articulated by the National Drought Policy Commission in 2000, and the Western Governors’ Association in 2004, the National Integrated Drought Information System (NIDIS) Act of 2006 (Public Law 109-430) was passed and signed by the President. The law calls for an interagency, multi-partner approach to drought monitoring, forecasting, and early warning led by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). NIDIS is envisioned as a dynamic and accessible drought risk information system that provides users with the capacity to determine the potential impacts of drought, and the decision support tools needed to better prepare for and mitigate the effects of drought.”

From “Activities and Plans of the National Integrated Drought Information System,” by Jim Verdin and Roger Pulwarty, presented at Climate Information for Managing Risks, University of Florida, June 2008.

The NIDIS Portal – – went on-line in October 2007 to provide a coordinated federal drought monitoring and research presence.

Western Governors’ Association Drought Initiative

The Western Governors’ Association has been a driving force in getting NIDIS established and in pushing for a more comprehensive U.S. water policy.

National Water Resources Association

The National Water Resources Association maintains a list of positions, or recommendations, that it says would strengthen and clarify U.S. water policy. Among other things, it advocates more federal investment in water infrastructure.

Managing Drought and Water Scarcity in Vulnerable Environments – A Roadmap for Change in the United States, 2006-2007

In July 2007, the Geological Society of America organized a Congressional briefing on “Managing Drought: A Roadmap for Change in the United States,” in association with the Congressional Hazards Caucus and the Hazards Caucus Alliance. The document by that name was the culmination of a conference by the same name in September 2006. A press release with links to the full report and related documents is available on the GSA’s website.

National Drought Policy Commission, 1998-2000

NDPC imageThe National Drought Policy Commission was established under the National Drought Policy Act of 1998 (Public Law 105-199) to ensure collaboration between different government agencies on drought-related issues. The Commission’s work concluded when it issued its final report, Preparing for Drought in the 21st Century, in 2000.

Western Drought Coordination Council, 1997-1999

WDCC logoThe Western Drought Coordination Council (WDCC) was in operation from 1997 through 1999, and went on hiatus as the National Drought Policy Commission was forming. Despite its short existence, the WDCC was highly productive.

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