North American Drought Atlas

Civil War Drought 1856-1865
June-August PDSI

Welcome to the North American Drought Atlas.  This web application provides access to summer (June-August) reconstructions of the self-calibrating Palmer Drought Severity Index (PDSI) on a 0.5° latitude/longitude grid centered over North America from AD 0000-2005.  The reconstructions are derived from 1,845 tree-ring chronologies.  For further details on the reconstructions, see Cook et al. (2010, link below).

Maps and time series can be created using tools under the "Maps" and "Time Series" menus, respectively.  For details on how to create maps and time series, see the "Help" menu.  An animation that runs through each year of the reconstruction from AD 0000-2005 is available via the link below.

Questions, comments, or suggestions may be sent to Dorian J. Burnette.

Citation:  Cook, E.R., R. Seager, R.R. Heim Jr, R.S. Vose, C. Herweijer, and C. Woodhouse, 2010:  Megadroughts in North America:  placing IPCC projections of hydroclimatic change in a long-term palaeoclimate context.  Journal of Quaternary Science, 25, 48-61. [Download pdf]

The entire dataset can be downloaded from NOAA Paleoclimatology.

Scheduled Downtime:  This server may be down for maintenance on Saturday following the 2nd Tuesday of the month and any Sunday from 12-8 a.m. Central Time (0600-1400 UTC or 0500-1300 UTC when the U.S. is on standard and daylight savings time, respectively).