Drought Monitor

The drought monitor was developed at the Helmholtz Center for Environmental Research (UFZ), which provides daily comprehensive information on the state of soil moisture in Germany. Drought describes the deviation of the soil moisture from the long-term condition in the respective month (statistical comparison with the period 1951-2015), not absolute drought. The soil moisture is calculated depending on the actual soil type over the entire soil horizon (in Germany on average 1.80m thick) and for the top 25cm. The basis are simulations with the mesoscale hydrological model mHM developed at the UFZ.

Interactive Map

What is the drough monitor showing?

The map shows the drought values for the last two weeks (with two days delay). The classification of drought is based on the soil moisture index (SMI). This is based on the soil moisture distribution over a 65-year period since 1951. A value of 0.3 (unusual dryness) means that the current soil moisture is as low as 30% of the cases from 1951-2015. Likewise, an SMI of 0.02 (exceptional drought) means that the value is only undercut in 2% of the long-term simulation values. On the "topsoil" card, the soil moisture index of the topsoil up to a depth of 25 cm is shown in 5 dryness classes. On the "Total Soil" map (selectable via the button at the top right) the soil moisture index is shown up to a depth of approx. 1.80 meters in 5 dryness classes. The actual soil depth varies greatly in Germany and is derived from the soil overview map in the mHM model.
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Last updated at: 19.05.2022