Annual state drought council meeting set for April 28

RALEIGH

WHAT: N.C. Drought Management Advisory Council annual meeting

WHEN: April 28, 10 a.m. – noon

WHERE: Gov. James G. Martin Building, North Carolina State Fairgrounds, 1025 Blue Ridge Road, Raleigh

The N.C. Drought Management Advisory Council will discuss the dry conditions parts of North Carolina are experiencing and the possible impacts from those conditions at its annual meeting on April 28.

Most of the state is experiencing abnormally dry conditions with 88 counties listed as of the latest map, released April 21. Abnormally dry is not drought, but means drought could emerge without adequate rainfall. The last time any part of the state experienced drought conditions was September 29, 2015.

The N.C. Forest Service is currently working several large wildfires across the state. Due to increasingly dry conditions, making forest fuels more susceptible to fire, they are encouraging residents to refrain from burning until conditions improve.

The council will discuss conditions in North Carolina as it relates to streams, rivers, lakes, agriculture and wildfire activity, and will also provide North Carolina’s short-term climate outlook. The council is made up of experts on drought, climate, water and forest resources, geology, agriculture and water conservation.

This is the first in-person meeting for the council in 2016. The council is required by Session Law 2008-143 to meet at least once in each calendar year in order to maintain appropriate agency readiness and participation.  Members of the drought council conduct a conference call each week to discuss the impact of rainfall and provide recommendations for the U.S. Drought Monitor.

The U.S. Drought Monitor uses the council’s advice to generate a map depicting areas experiencing drought, abnormally dry and normal conditions. The drought map is released every Thursday and posted to the state’s official drought website at www.ncdrought.org.

If you have questions about the meeting, please contact Bob Stea, chairman of the N.C. Drought Management Advisory Council, at 919-707-9035, or bob.stea@ncdenr.gov.

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