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ARS Home » Plains Area » El Reno, Oklahoma » Grazinglands Research Laboratory » Forage and Livestock Production Research » Research » Research Project #434950

Research Project: Evaluation of Frost and Drought Events in the U.S. Southern Great Plains from 1981 to 2040

Location: Forage and Livestock Production Research

Project Number: 3070-21610-002-13-S
Project Type: Non-Assistance Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Aug 1, 2018
End Date: Jul 31, 2020

Investigating changes of frost dates and drought events observed and projected from 1981 to 2040 in the Southern Great Plains (SGP) including Kansas, Oklahoma, and Texas.

Over large parts of U.S. Great Plains surface temperature has been increasing during last 100 years. Particularly minimum temperatures (thus frost dates) show a more pronounced increase than maximum temperatures and drought events has resulted in billions of dollars in agricultural losses in late 1980s and 2011-2012. In this project, both advanced statistical analysis and dynamic downscaling climate modeling are used to construct a historical dataset and a projected climate dataset from 1981 to 2040. The historical climate data (observed) will be area-weighted averaged into a crop-report-district (CRD) level after data homogeneity test passed and data quality assured. The projected climate data will be modeled by Weather Research & Forecasting Models (WRF) downscaling (16 km × 16 km grids). All data sets including surface precipitation, maximum temperature, and minimum temperature are integrated on a daily basis at a CRD level. Changes of drought index (SPEI and PDSI) and frost dates (both spring and fall frost) will be delivered from 1981 to 2040.