"Drought is more than a simple lack of rainfall. Drought is a persistent moisture deficiency below long-term average conditions that, on average, balance precipitation and evapotranspiration in a given area. Not all droughts are created equal; similar moisture deficits may have very different consequences depending on the time of year at which they occur, preexisting soil moisture content, and other climatic factors such as temperature, wind, and relative humidity. Drought can be defined in terms that go beyond the meteorologist's rainfall measurements. Hydrologic drought occurs when surface water supplies steadily diminish during a dry spell. If dry conditions continue, groundwater levels could begin to drop. Agricultural drought occurs when a moisture shortage lasts long enough and hits hard enough to negatively impact cultivated crops. Soil conditions, groundwater levels, and specific characteristics of plants also come into play in this functional definition of drought. Ecologic drought is detrimental to native plants that don't have the benefit of irrigation."1

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