Wednesday, 22 June 2005
The North America Drought Monitor (NADM) is a joint operational drought monitoring activity between scientists and other specialists in the United States, Mexico, and Canada. Like all weather phenomena, drought occurs irrespective of political and international boundaries. The monthly map and narrative product created by this first-of-its-kind effort provides an integrated continental-scale drought assessment tool for decision-makers in all three countries involved in drought monitoring, drought mitigation, and related climate services. The product is prepared by a primary author who utilizes drought indicators which are computed using standard methodologies for stations across the continent, plus national drought monitoring products and feedback from local experts in each of the three countries. The participants include, within the United States: the NOAA National Climatic Data Center, NOAA Climate Prediction Center, USDA Joint Agricultural Weather Facility, and National Drought Mitigation Center; within Mexico: Servicio Meteorologico Nacional/Comision Nacional del Agua; and within Canada: Agriculture and Agrifood Canada and the Meteorological Service of Canada. The NADM is part of a North America Climate Extremes Monitoring (NACEM) system which will monitor and assess climate extremes across the continent. Several climate indicators will be computed from station daily data to measure (in addition to drought) heavy precipitation, heat waves, cold waves, storms and severe weather, including the creation of a North America Climate Extremes Index (NACEI) patterned after the U.S. Climate Extremes Index (USCEI). This paper will review the history of the NADM/NACEM effort, the data utilized, the indicators computed, and the product preparation and peer review process.
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