Counties with the worst droughts in New York

Written by:
July 12, 2023
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Counties with the worst droughts in New York

Over a fourth of the continental U.S. is currently experiencing moderate to exceptional drought, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor.

While severe to exceptional drought conditions persist in the West—which is currently experiencing a brief reprieve from its driest period of the last 1,200 years—other parts of the country less associated with drought, like the northeast and the midwest, have also experienced spells of unusual dryness.

In periods of drought, levels of major reservoirs and rivers can fall dramatically. Groundwater systems too feel the effects, and shrinking water supplies impact agriculture, hydropower generation, and wildfire risk.

Periods of drought have intensified and become more frequent in recent years due to climate change. Scientists predict that even in low emissions scenarios, much of the U.S. will be drier by the end of the century.

Stacker cited data from U.S. Drought Monitor to identify the counties in New York with the worst droughts in the week leading up to April 18, 2023. Counties are ranked by percent of the area in drought conditions. Abnormally dry is not considered to be a drought, but is included as a separate data point. Additional data for the state overall is included.

New York statistics

- Abnormally dry: 7.6%
- Area in drought: 0.0% (#31 nationally, tie)
--- Moderate drought: 0.0%
--- Severe drought: 0.0%
--- Extreme drought: 0.0%
--- Exceptional drought: 0.0%

#1. Richmond County (tie)

- Abnormally dry: 1.2%
- Area in drought: 0.0%
--- Moderate drought: 0.0%
--- Severe drought: 0.0%
--- Extreme drought: 0.0%
--- Exceptional drought: 0.0%

#1. Ulster County (tie)

- Abnormally dry: 12.1%
- Area in drought: 0.0%
--- Moderate drought: 0.0%
--- Severe drought: 0.0%
--- Extreme drought: 0.0%
--- Exceptional drought: 0.0%

#1. Sullivan County (tie)

- Abnormally dry: 15.4%
- Area in drought: 0.0%
--- Moderate drought: 0.0%
--- Severe drought: 0.0%
--- Extreme drought: 0.0%
--- Exceptional drought: 0.0%

#1. Dutchess County (tie)

- Abnormally dry: 23.8%
- Area in drought: 0.0%
--- Moderate drought: 0.0%
--- Severe drought: 0.0%
--- Extreme drought: 0.0%
--- Exceptional drought: 0.0%

#1. Kings County (tie)

- Abnormally dry: 94.6%
- Area in drought: 0.0%
--- Moderate drought: 0.0%
--- Severe drought: 0.0%
--- Extreme drought: 0.0%
--- Exceptional drought: 0.0%

#1. Queens County (tie)

- Abnormally dry: 98.8%
- Area in drought: 0.0%
--- Moderate drought: 0.0%
--- Severe drought: 0.0%
--- Extreme drought: 0.0%
--- Exceptional drought: 0.0%

#1. Orange County (tie)

- Abnormally dry: 100.0%
- Area in drought: 0.0%
--- Moderate drought: 0.0%
--- Severe drought: 0.0%
--- Extreme drought: 0.0%
--- Exceptional drought: 0.0%

#1. Putnam County (tie)

- Abnormally dry: 100.0%
- Area in drought: 0.0%
--- Moderate drought: 0.0%
--- Severe drought: 0.0%
--- Extreme drought: 0.0%
--- Exceptional drought: 0.0%

#1. Rockland County (tie)

- Abnormally dry: 100.0%
- Area in drought: 0.0%
--- Moderate drought: 0.0%
--- Severe drought: 0.0%
--- Extreme drought: 0.0%
--- Exceptional drought: 0.0%

#1. Suffolk County (tie)

- Abnormally dry: 100.0%
- Area in drought: 0.0%
--- Moderate drought: 0.0%
--- Severe drought: 0.0%
--- Extreme drought: 0.0%
--- Exceptional drought: 0.0%

#1. Westchester County (tie)

- Abnormally dry: 100.0%
- Area in drought: 0.0%
--- Moderate drought: 0.0%
--- Severe drought: 0.0%
--- Extreme drought: 0.0%
--- Exceptional drought: 0.0%

#1. New York County (tie)

- Abnormally dry: 100.0%
- Area in drought: 0.0%
--- Moderate drought: 0.0%
--- Severe drought: 0.0%
--- Extreme drought: 0.0%
--- Exceptional drought: 0.0%

#1. Nassau County (tie)

- Abnormally dry: 100.0%
- Area in drought: 0.0%
--- Moderate drought: 0.0%
--- Severe drought: 0.0%
--- Extreme drought: 0.0%
--- Exceptional drought: 0.0%

#1. Bronx County (tie)

- Abnormally dry: 100.0%
- Area in drought: 0.0%
--- Moderate drought: 0.0%
--- Severe drought: 0.0%
--- Extreme drought: 0.0%
--- Exceptional drought: 0.0%

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