All droughts originate from a deficiency of precipitation or meteorological drought but other types of drought and impacts cascade from this deficiency. (Source: NDMC) Meteorological drought is defined usually on the basis of the degree of dryness (in comparison to some “normal” or average amount) and the duration of the dry period.
Types of drought. As a drought persists, the conditions surrounding it gradually worsen and its impact on the local population gradually increases. People tend to define droughts in three main ways: Meteorological drought occurs when there is a prolonged time with less than average precipitation.
Hydrologists define drought as an extended period of less precipitation and stream flow. These definitions of drought bring us to the main types of droughts, which include: Meteorological drought; This kind of drought takes places when dry weather patterns outweigh other climatic conditions.
Meteorological Drought. A lack of precipitation is the most common definition of drought and is usually the type of drought referred to in news reports and the media. Most locations around the world have their own meteorological definition of drought based on the climate normals in the area.
Socioeconomic definitions of drought associate the supply and demand of some economic good with elements of meteorological, hydrological, and agricultural drought. It differs from the aforementioned types of drought because its occurrence depends on the time and space processes of supply and demand to identify or classify droughts.
Droughts caused due to meteorological factors are most common in nature and usually precede other types of droughts. Such an event is caused by a prolonged period of low precipitation. Dry weather patterns dominate the area experiencing a climatological drought.
The first drought type is an agricultural drought. It mostly concerns farmers and others in agricultural occupations more so than the general public. Whether there is a widespread drought or not, an agricultural drought occurs when there’s a shortage of water at the time in a crop’s growth cycle that it needs water most.
A meteorological drought often leads to hydrological drought. Generally it takes two successive meteorological droughts before the hydrological drought sets in. There are two types of hydrological droughts viz., (0 surface water drought and (ii) ground water drought.
Meteorological drought—This type of drought all about the weather and occurs when there is a prolonged period of below average precipitation, which creates a natural shortage of available water.
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