Drought -- National Drought Mitigation Center


Date of this Version



Published in Towards a Compendium on National Drought Policies: Proceedings of an Expert Meeting, July 14-15, 2011, Washington, D.C. USA, pp. 46-55, edited by M. V. K. Sivakumar, R. P. Motha, D. A. Wilhite, and J. J. Qu (Geneva: World Meteorological Organization, 2011).


After prolonged drought events, especially in the western United States, in the last few decades of the 20th Century, Congress created the National Drought Policy Commission (NDPC) to develop a comprehensive national drought policy. The NDPC held fact-finding hearings around the country to better assess stakeholder needs and to coordinate policy issues. A National Drought Policy Act was developed with preparedness as the foundation. The Act had five major goals, each with specific recommendations. The Act was presented to Congress in 2000, during an election year, as the National Drought Preparedness Act.