Map: weekly drought reports

This map depicts data from the National Drought Mitigation Center. Drought intensity categories are based on numerous indicators and local reports from more than 350 expert observers around the country.

The Drought Monitor publishes a weekly map that shows areas of the country that are in drought, using five classifications: “abnormally dry” (D0), which indicates areas going into or coming out of drought, and four levels of drought: “moderate” (D1), “severe” (D2), “extreme” (D3) and “exceptional” (D4).



See this post to learn more about this dashboard and other interactive visualizations.

The timeline at the bottom of the screen shows the various levels of drought over time for the selected geographic level. By default, the chart shows the drought conditions for the contiguous United States since January 2000. 

Using the dropdown menu above the chart – or clicking a state on the map – will display the drought conditions over time for the selected state or region. Clicking on the timeline or dragging the slider will update the map display to the selected week.

The “i” icons on the map indicate that a narrative description about that location or region is available for the selected week. Clicking on the icon will reveal a text box with a narrative description and forecast written by the U.S. Drought Monitor analysts.

The Water Desk’s mission is to increase the volume, depth and power of journalism connected to Western water issues. We're an initiative of the Center for Environmental Journalism at the University of Colorado Boulder. The Water Desk launched in April 2019 with support from the Walton Family Foundation. We maintain a strict editorial firewall between our funders and our journalism. The Water Desk is seeking additional funding to build and sustain the initiative.