Agricultural Drought Indices: Combining Crop, Climate, and Soil Factors

Authored by: Nicolas R. Dalezios , Anne Gobin , Ana M. Tarquis Alfonso , Saeid Eslamian

Handbook of Drought and Water Scarcity

Print publication date:  July  2017
Online publication date:  August  2017

Print ISBN: 9781498731027
eBook ISBN: 9781315404219
Adobe ISBN:


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Agriculture depends highly on climate and is adversely affected by climate extremes caused mainly by anthropogenic climate change and increasing climate variability. Moreover, agricultural production risks and the vulnerability of agriculture may become an issue in several regions around the world as mainly droughts and heat waves are likely to increase the incidence of crop failure. Indeed, drought is considered one of the major natural hazards with significant impact to the environment, society, agriculture, and economy. Specifically, agricultural drought refers to the availability of soil water to support crop and forage growth and there is no direct relationship between precipitation and its infiltration into the soil. In this agricultural drought chapter, several factors, such as climate, soil, and crop, are considered. This is followed by a presentation of existing and widely used, as well as new, agricultural drought indices and methods. Finally, all these contribute to integrated modeling and simulation methodologies for monitoring agricultural drought at different scales.

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