Related topics: climate change ยท climate

Drought saps California reservoirs as hot, dry summer looms

Each year Lake Oroville helps water a quarter of the nation's crops, sustain endangered salmon beneath its massive earthen dam and anchor the tourism economy of a Northern California county that must rebuild seemingly every ...

Mountain fires burning higher at unprecedented rates

Forest fires have crept higher up mountains over the past few decades, scorching areas previously too wet to burn, according to researchers from McGill University. As wildfires advance uphill, a staggering 11% of all Western ...

How is the Western U.S. drought impacting the power grid?

The western United States is currently experiencing severe drought, particularly in California and the Southwest. As of June 10, 88.5% of the West was in moderate to exceptional drought, compared to 42.17% at the same time ...

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Drought

A drought (or drouth [archaic]) is an extended period of months or years when a region notes a deficiency in its water supply. Generally, this occurs when a region receives consistently below average precipitation. It can have a substantial impact on the ecosystem and agriculture of the affected region. Although droughts can persist for several years, even a short, intense drought can cause significant damage and harm the local economy.

This global phenomenon has a widespread impact on agriculture. The United Nations estimates that an area of fertile soil the size of Ukraine is lost every year because of drought, deforestation, and climate instability. Lengthy periods of drought have long been a key trigger for mass migration and played a key role in a number of ongoing migrations and other humanitarian crises in the Horn of Africa and the Sahel.

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