Puerto Rico DroughtWatch
Drought and Surface Water
Streams, rivers, lakes and reservoirs - collectively referred to as surface water - are important natural resources for irrigation, public supply, wetlands and wildlife. Surface water can be estimated as annual runoff, which is the amount of rain after the demands of nature- evaporation from land, and transpiration from vegetation - have been supplied.
The USGS Caribbean-Florida Water Science Center measures the flow of surface water, and annual runoff, using a network of about 175 streamgages that collect real-time data at locations throughout Puerto Rico. These gages are part of the larger USGS national streamgage network that contains about 8,000 continuous-record stream-gaging stations. The stream-gaging network provides a continuous source of well-archived, well-documented, and unbiased water data. Streamflow data assist water managers in making daily operational decisions related to water requirements for municipal, industrial, and agricultural purposes, demands for hydroelectric power generation, and controlling water storage in reservoirs to ensure adequate water supply
Surface Water, Drought, and Climate
The discharge and quality of water from Puerto Rico rivers and reservoirs affects water availability and ecosystem health. The discharge and water quality of rivers and reservoirs varies on timescales ranging from minutes to centuries in complicated ways that require careful consideration. Understanding temporal variation and the links to climate change will provide a better scientific basis for predicting and planning for droughts, floods, and adequate water supply.
Map of below normal 7-day average streamflow compared to historical streamflow for the day of year
This map (from USGS's National Drought Watch Web site) shows the real-time current streamflow conditions in hydrologic units. Thus, the map shows conditions adjusted for this time of the year. The colors represent current streamflow percentiles for the day of the year. USGS sites having at least 30 years of record are used. The data used to produce this map are provisional and have not been reviewed or edited.
Explanation of the Percentiles classes
A percentile is a value on a scale of one hundred that indicates the percent of a distribution that is equal to or below it. See more
Below normal average streamflow
General water conditions
Reservoir and lake-level information