Keetch-Byram Drought Index (KBDI)
Keetch-Byram Drought Index (KBDI) is an index used to determining forest fire potential. The drought index is based on a daily water balance, where a drought factor is balanced with precipitation and soil moisture (assumed to have a maximum storage capacity of 8-inches) and is expressed in hundredths of an inch of soil moisture depletion.
The drought index ranges from 0 to 800, where a drought index of 0 represents no moisture depletion, and an index of 800 represents absolutely dry conditions. Presently, this index is derived from ground based estimates of temperature and precipitation derived from weather stations and interpolated manually by experts at Texas A&M Forest Service (TAMFS) for counties across the state. Researchers at Texas A&M University are working with TAMFS to derive this index from AVHRR satellite data and NEXRAD radar rainfall within a GIS.
KBDI product updates - January 2023
Frequently asked questions about KBDI products
KBDI measurement guide
KBDI interactive map