In July 2005, the National Drought Mitigation Center (NDMC) took the first steps toward developing a potentially comprehensive drought impact database, the Drought Impact Reporter (DIR). The DIR is an interactive web-based tool designed to compile and display impact information from a variety of sources across the U.S. in near real-time. The information provided by the Drought Impact Reporter will help U.S. policy makers and resource managers identify what types of impacts are occurring and where. It can also help individual agricultural producers amass evidence of drought conditions.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Office of the Chief Economist publishes weekly updates showing how drought affects leading crops and cattle.
U.S. Agriculture in Drought archive
Ag in Drought web tool, with a different selection of crops affected by drought
Regular press releases from the Corps detail the effects of drought on reservoir storage, releases of water for navigation, and hydropower production.
Not all wildfires are due to drought, but drought can certainly be one of the underlying factors that makes fires more intense or more widespread. The National Interagency Fire Center publishes regularly updated statistics and situation reports.
Farmers submit comments on how their crops are doing to Farm Journal's Ag Web. Many of their comments are about the effects of drought.
As of June 2008, the nation’s 122 Weather Forecast Offices began producing Drought Information Statements, including information about impacts, whenever any part of their service area was in severe drought (D2) on the U.S. Drought Monitor.
The National Agricultural Statistics Service publishes the Weekly Weather & Crop Bulletin and Crop Progress reports.
The USDA's NASS publishes a monthly report on crop production, including estimates of upcoming harvest totals for various crops.
NOAA's National Climatic Data Center publishes monthly State of the Climate reports, including one on drought, which incorporates information about impacts.
We select interesting and representative drought stories from all over the U.S. and around the world. We group them into the same categories that the Drought Impact Reporter uses, as well as a few others.
Effects of Past Droughts
Impact archives in addition to the Drought Impact Reporter.