Social and Political Aspects of Drought

The Robert E. Horton Lecture, presented at the 62nd Annual Meeting of the AMS, San Antonio, Tex., 14 January 1982

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  • 1 President, Linsley, Kraeger Associates, Ltd., Aptos, Calif. 95003
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In the technical sense, drought is a period of deficient precipitation. The social and economic impact of drought results from the effect of this precipitation deficiency on activities within the affected region. Thus, the way in which water is used and water resources are managed has much to do with the frequency of drought as it is viewed by the population. Prudent water management can greatly reduce the impact of meteorological drought, while poor management can make water shortages a frequent occurrence.

In the technical sense, drought is a period of deficient precipitation. The social and economic impact of drought results from the effect of this precipitation deficiency on activities within the affected region. Thus, the way in which water is used and water resources are managed has much to do with the frequency of drought as it is viewed by the population. Prudent water management can greatly reduce the impact of meteorological drought, while poor management can make water shortages a frequent occurrence.

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