The Commonwealth Drought Coordinator manages drought related activities and monitors drought conditions statewide. Drought watch and warning declarations are determined by the Coordinator and other DEP staff, with support of the Drought Task Force. Drought emergency declarations follow a similar process and are given final approval by the Governor.
Current Drought Declaration Status
Pennsylvania drought condition monitoring indicators provided by the U.S. Geological Survey can be found here.
Drought declarations aren't based on one indicator alone. DEP makes drought watch, warning, or emergency declaration recommendations based on four numeric indicators: stream flow, groundwater level, precipitation, and soil moisture. There are normal ranges for all four indicators. DEP makes its drought declarations after assessing the departures from these normal ranges for periods of 3-12 months. DEP also factors in information it receives from public water suppliers.
Drought announcements for 2023 will be posted here when they occur.
Susan K. Weaver, P.E.
Commonwealth Drought Coordinator
Phone: 717 772-4048
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