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Characterizing drought frequency and economic impact in the Northeast of the United States.

Authors: Israel Vilchezv, NOAA CREST CESSRST, Luis Geraldino*, Lehman College, Nir Y. Krakauer, NOAA CREST CESSRST MENTOR, Tarendra Lakhankar, NOAA CREST CESSRST SCIENTIST
Topics: Environment, Economic Geography, Agricultural Geography
Keywords: Drought, crops, economy, money loss,
Session Type: Poster
Presentation File: No File Uploaded

We complied and analyzed 2422 drought reports, the National Weather Service Storm Events Database (SED), from the Northeast region of USA (which includes the states of New York, New Jersey, New Hampshire, Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Massachusetts, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Vermont) over the years 1997-2018. This study examines the number of drought reports and monetary losses in the database on annual, monthly and seasonal scales, and match up the SED data with those from other sources such as state-level reports. In the SED, the years with the highest number of drought reports for the Northeast was in 1999 and 2002, July-October were the months with the most drought reports. Most drought reports were from the summer months, followed by fall. Recorded economic losses summed to $982.2 million, July had by far the largest drought monetary losses, and only droughts in 1997 and 1999 were associated with economic losses in the SED, although it is clear from other sources that economic losses were also caused by droughts in other years, such as 2002. The recorded SED data is very limited for us to make aware of the scale on which drought is affecting the northeastern economy, still, it reflects that drought is a usual phenomenon that also affects the northeast region of the U.S.A.

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