Online Drought Indicators and Indices

Standardized Water-Level Index (SWI) 

 

Index name: Standardized Water-Level Index (SWI).

Ease of use: Yellow.

Origins: Developed by Bhuiyan at the Indian Institute of Technology, India, as a way to assess groundwater recharge deficits.

Characteristics: As a hydrology-based drought indicator, it uses data from wells to investigate the impact of drought on groundwater recharge. Results can be interpolated between points.

Input parameters: Groundwater well levels.

Applications: For areas with frequent seasonal low flows on main rivers and streams.

Strengths: The impact of drought on groundwater is a key component in agricultural and municipal water supplies.

Weaknesses: Only takes groundwater into account, and interpolation between points may not be representative of the region or climate regime.

References: Bhuiyan, C., 2004: Various Drought Indices for Monitoring Drought Condition in Aravalli Terrain of India. Proceedings of the XXth ISPRS Conference. International Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing, Istanbul, Turkey, http://www.isprs.org/proceedings/XXXV/congress/comm7/papers/243.pdf.

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