BOWLING GREEN, Ky. - The National Weather Service is teaming up with WKU and the Kentucky Division of Water to host the biennial U.S. Drought Monitor (USDM) forum in the Bluegrass State next month. 

“The U.S. Drought Monitor Forum will provide an excellent learning and professional development opportunity for our students," said Dr. Fred Siewers, chair of WKU’s Department of Geography and Geology.

Scientists and policymakers from across the nation will head to WKU’s Knicely Conference Center from September 17-19 to address administrative issues, highlight scientific advances in drought monitoring, and recommend drought-monitoring improvements to the USDM.

David Miskus, meteorologist, USDM author and drought point of contact for the Climate Prediction Center, NOAA, explained, “Past forums have taken place in the west, plains, mid-Atlantic and southeast, and from these meetings we have discovered useful information that was specific to these regions that were eventually incorporated into the production of the USDM.”

Although the most extreme Kentucky drought took place in 1930, there have been several severe droughts in recent years. According to Kentucky Division of Water environmental scientist Chip Zimmer, holding the biennial forum in Kentucky will bring to light the unique conditions of the Tennessee and Ohio Valleys.