CALIFORNIA, (KTXL) — New mapping shows that California’s drought issues are only increasing as the percentage of the state experiencing Exceptional Drought has jumped from 12% to 17%, according to the National Integrated Drought Information System (NIDIS).

New mapping shows that southern San Joaquin and southern Calaveras County are now experiencing Exceptional Drought while the northern portion of both counties are experiencing Extreme Drought.

An area’s drought category is based off the Palmer Drought Severity Index, the CPC Soil Moisture Model, USGS Weekly Moisture Model, USGS Weekly Streamflow, Standardized Precipitation and Objective Drought Indicator Blends.

Also local condition reports and impact reports.

According to NIDIS, some of the possible impacts of Exceptional Drought include:

  • Fields are left fallow; orchards are removed; vegetable yields are low and honey harvest is small
  • Fire season is very costly; number of fires and area burned are extensive
  • Fish rescue and relocation begins;
  • Pine beetle infestation occurs; forest mortality is high; wetlands dry up; survival of native plants and animals is low; wildfire death is widespread; algae blooms appear

In May 2021 the state saw one of its highest recorded levels of areas with Exceptional Drought, as 50% of the state was shown to be in the category and 77.7% of the state was experiencing Extreme Drought.