ABSTRACTS

Abstracts are listed in alphabetical order by last name.

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

A

Andreadis, Konstantinos
Graduate Student
University of Washington
Wilson Ceramic Lab, Box 352700
Seattle, WA 98195
USA
Phone: 206-685-1796
Email: kostas@hydro.washington.edu

Presentation type: Oral and poster

Drought Identification and Recovery Prediction

Drought is one of the most costly natural disasters, with the annual economic losses in the U.S. estimated at $6-8 billion. Nonetheless, a consistent definition for drought has proved elusive, with many approaches focusing on the Palmer Drought Severity Index (PDSI). Unfortunately, there approaches neglect the spatial extent of droughts. A more robust method for drought identification is proposed, and is being tested as part of the University of Washington's real-time National Surface Water Monitor. The Monitor provides daily analysis of hydrologic conditions throughout the continental U.S., using a macroscale hydrology model to simulate soil moisture, runoff and snow water equivalent among other variables. The model used is the Variable Infiltration Capacity model, forced with real-time NOAA Applied Climate Information System (ACIS) precipitation and temperature data. Drought characterization is based on a thresholding approach and information obtained from a simulated archive of soil moisture, runoff, and other variables (for the period 1915-2003), and involves a set of spatial and temporal rules that identify and disaggregate drought events. Using soil moisture and runoff predictions from the University of Washington West-wide Seasonal Hydrologic Forecasting System, we are able to predict probabilities of recovery for the drought events identified in the nowcast. We assess the performance of this system during the southwestern U.S. drought during winter 2005-6, as well as recovery in summer 2006, and other selected drought events.

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B

Bair, Andrea
NOAA National Weather Service
125 S. State Street
Salt Lake City, UT 84138
USA
Phone: 801-524-5137
Email: andrea.bair@noaa.gov

Presentation type: Oral

Forecast Performance of the New Local Three Month Temperature Outlook

NOAA's National Weather Service (NWS) introduced a new experimental local temperature outlook, in July 2006. This product, called the Local 3-Month Temperature Outlook (L3MTO), is the first in a series of local climate products planned for release by the NWS over the next 2 to 3 years. The product is available for 1160 locations nationwide and can be accessed via any NWS Weather Forecast Office (WFO) climate website (under the Climate Prediction tab, or the NWS Climate website (http://www.nws.noaa.gov/climate/l3mto.php).

The L3MTO is an extension of the national 3-month temperature outlook that NOAA's Climate Prediction Center (CPC) issues on the third Thursday of each month (http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/predictions/90day/), to a specific site. The L3MTO features the same information as the national 3-month temperature outlook, meaning the outlooks are provided for 3 categories (below, near, and above normal), and for the probability of exceedance. The difference is the L3MTO extracts more spatial detail, includes multiple presentation formats and supportive text for easier interpretation.

Forecast performance evaluation is essential to 1) guide the ongoing improvement in forecasting procedures, and 2) to guide users in assessing the potential usability of this product. To accomplish the first purpose, an extensive study was conducted on the overall L3MTO performance that included analysis using Continuous Ranked Probability Skill Scores (CRPSS), modified Heidke Skill Scores, and reliability diagrams. To accomplish the second purpose a forecast evaluation tool (http://fet.hwr.arizona.edu/ForecastEvaluationTool/), developed at the University of Arizona, is available via the L3MTO webpage. This user defined forecast evaluation tool provides multiple verification statistics for both national and local 3-month temperature outlooks. The analysis is available for user defined selection of any combination of 3-month periods and/or years during 1994 to the present. Overall, the study identified locations and 3-month periods with satisfactory forecast performance, and their spatial and temporal variability.

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Barsugli, Joseph J.
NOAA-CIRES Climate Diagnostics Center
325 Broadway
Boulder, CO 80305
USA
Phone: 303-497-6042
Email: Joseph.Barsugli@noaa.gov

Presentation type: Oral

Integrating Assessments of User Needs with Weather Research: Developing User-centric Tools for Reservoir Management

Co-author, Andrea J. Ray, NOAA/ESRL

Development of user-centric products requires the linking of identified user needs with research on forecast tools. This presentation will describe the process of integrating two parallel lines of research: user-studies of U.S. Bureau of Reclamation (USBR) reservoir managers and research to improve medium- range weather forecasting (also known as intraseasonal forecasts). The user assessment found that USBR Lower Colorado River managers have substantial needs for intraseasonal forecasts. These needs relate to Lower Colorado River management goals to maximize storage in lower Colorado River Reservoirs; to balance flood control and storage criteria; to improve planning for releases for irrigation; and to carry out other USBR goals such as environmental releases. Intra-seasonal forecast information may be useful throughout the water year, as reservoir planning and management adjusts to both observed and forecasted conditions of winter snow accumulation, spring runoff, warm-season irrigation, and municipal and industrial uses all year. At each stage in planning, anomalous intra-seasonal temperature or precipitation conditions may significantly influence storage and releases planned, often affecting planning for many months in the future. Recently, the skill and reliability of probabilistic weather forecasts during weeks 1 and 2 has improved substantially using new techniques (Hamill et al. 2005, 2004). The resulting products include forecasts of temperature, precipitation, and other variables that are presented as maps of tercile probability and analog- based probability forecasts of precipitation downscaled to 5 km resolution. However, these forecasts are not yet in formats appropriate to many potential users. This presentation will describe our work with the USBR to improve the useability of these products for their operations, by reducing complexity and improving the accessibility of the forecasts. Because their goals are often similar to other large-scale reservoir management across the West, the results on usability of the products are likely to be transferable to a broader community of water managers. The USBR also works closely with a large number of its own stakeholders in reservoir management, so developing products that support these interactions will provide insight into the needs of a broader community of water managers.

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Bellow, John
Agro-climatologist
South East Climate Consortium
3325 Fender Dr. Unit B
Lynnwood, WA 98087
USA
Phone: 425-218-7756
Email: bellow@comcast.net

Presentation type: Oral

Predictability of Crop Specific Thermal Time: A Comparison of ENSO Climatology, Lagged JMA SST Anomalies, and the FSU Regional Climate Model

End users of climate information in the Southeast and the Pacific Northwest are interested in forecasts of thermal time accumulation as it is closely related to rates of plant development and critical dates such as flowering or maturation. Improved knowledge of crop phenology may help producers manage and market their products with greater success. Previous research has demonstrated the influence of the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) phase on bi-weekly accumulation of thermal time or growing degree days (GDD).

The current technique of forecasting based on classification of historical ENSO climatologies has some substantial shortcomings. Two that are most apparent, are A) issues related to skill or accuracy in the 2nd half of each year when the SSTs influencing conditions in the SE may have shifted, but no new ENSO phase can be defined and B) where annual ENSO phases fail to identify ENSO-like conditions such as those occurring in the spring 2006 when stereotypical La Niña conditions existed both for SSTs and climate in the SE, yet the period remains defined as a neutral year for climatological purposes. A likely impact of this issue is to inflate the variability associated with neutral phases and reduce the apparent predictive information associated with ENSO phases.

Using the TD3200 data (COOP observer network), we calculated observed growing degree days (GDD) for several crops at selected sites across the Southeastern U.S. We then assessed the use three potential forecast methods; a yearly JMA ENSO classification that uses climatologies since 1948, a monthly classification using 3-month mean JMA SST anomalies with 1 and 2 month lags and using 0.5 and -0.5 as thresholds, and bias corrected numerical model output from the FSU RCM. The three techniques were used to predict GDD accumulations during the period 1987-2004.

The results indicate differences in the magnitude of the predicted degree day accumulations as well as differences in the periods where each forecast method has some skill. The usefulness of the three approaches during spring and summer growing seasons and the implications for the use of alternate approaches to forecasting GDD probabilities are discussed.

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Belvedere, Deborah
Assistant Director
Center for Research on Environment and Water
4041 Powder Mill Road, Suite 302
Calverton, MD 20705-3106
USA
Phone: 301-902-1276
Fax: 301-595-9790
Email: debbie@iges.org

Presentation type: Poster

WaterNet: The NASA Water Cycle Solutions Network

Earth is a unique, living planet due to the abundance and vigorous cycling of water throughout the global environment. Water is essential to life and directly impacts society's welfare, progress, and sustainable growth. It is a national priority to use advancements in scientific observations and knowledge to develop solutions to the water challenges faced by society . NASA has collected substantial water cycle information and knowledge that must be transitioned to develop solutions for all twelve National Priority Application (NPA) areas and must establish collaborations and interoperability with existing networks and nodes of research organizations, operational agencies, science communities, and private industry.

Therefore the goal of WaterNet: The NASA Water Cycle Solutions Network is to improve and optimize the sustained ability of water cycle researchers, stakeholders, organizations and networks to interact, identify, harness, and extend NASA research results to augment decision support tools and meet national needs.

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Brekke, Levi
Hydraulic Engineer
U.S. Bureau of Reclamation
Denver Federal Center, Bldg 67, Rm 506
Denver, CO 80225-0007
USA
Phone: 303-445-2494
Email: lbrekke@do.usbr.gov

Presentation type: Oral

Exploring the Use of Risk Analysis to Study the Effects of Climate Change on California's Central Valley Water and Power Operations

Co-investigators: J. Anderson (CA DWR), E. Maurer (Santa Clara Univ.), M. Dettinger (USGS/Scripps)

This presentation highlights research on the use of risk analysis to study climate change effects on California's Central Valley water and power operations, which are sensitive to regional air temperatures, precipitation timing and type, runoff timing and quantities, and sea level conditions. Much has been discussed about how to assess potential impacts from regional climate change, and how such assessments might inform long-term water resources planning. Recent approaches have involved analyzing broad ensembles of climate projection scenarios to reveal impacts uncertainty. This work features similar ensemble impacts analysis, but also features methods to estimate relative scenario probabilities. Integrating impacts and probability components across scenarios allows the discussion to move beyond assessment of potential impacts to assessment of risk.

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Breuer, Norman
RSMAS-University of Miami
Rogers Hall
Gainesville, FL 32611-0570
USA
Phone: 352-392-1864 x. 180
Email: n.breuer@miami.edu

Presentation type: Oral and Poster

Stakeholder Participation Methods in Research and Development of AgClimate, a Climate-based Decision Support System for Agriculture

We describe an iterative process of developing and refining a climate risk decision support system, AgClimate.org, by working with farmers and a boundary organization, the Cooperative Extension Service. The work encompassed the identification of potential end users, understanding their decision processes, and the role climate forecasts play in these processes. We sought to assess the accessibility, relevance, utility of climate forecast tools from end-users point of view. To accomplish this we conducted Sondeos, semi-structured interviews, focus groups, workshops; and we elicited responses through surveys, and Internet feedback tools and we gave presentations at association and trade meetings. Here we report results which fed and continue to feed into the research and development of the Southeast Climate Consortium's main information outlet.

Through Sondeos and interviews we learned that producers require concise, site-specific information, presented in their own language, and that timing of information may be more important than accuracy; and that the forecasts need to be customized to a crop and zone-specific agricultural calendar. In addition historical weather/yield together with climate/yield forecast is very appealing. From interviews we learned greater detail of the farmer decision-making process including stated goals of avoiding catastrophic losses; to attain consistent production levels, and ensure timely market delivery. Through focus groups at farmers markets we learned that more loosely bound systems like livestock and row crops may be may be more able to make use of seasonal climate forecasts than more tightly bound systems such as vegetable and fruit production. At workshops we learned that diversity among producers including computer skills and time availability means that multi-tiered information delivery is necessary. Finally we researched the mutual benefits of assessment and outreach efforts.

We expect that the use of extensive stakeholder participation, multidisciplinary approaches, and assessment from the beginning of DSS development will lead to broader and longer adoption leading to useful adaptation in production and marketing practices for risk management. Preliminary results indicate good potential for adoption of climate forecast technology. Climate Projects with complex systems requirements might benefit from our methodologies in developing approaches where the expected outcome is science that works for society.

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C
Chelliah, Muthuvel
Physical Scientist
Climate Prediction Center/NCEP/NWS/NOAA
5200 Auth Road, NOAA Science Center
Camp Springs, MD 20746
USA
Phone: 301-763-8000 x7546
Email: muthuvel.chelliah@noaa.gov

Presentation type: Oral

A Program to Enhance CTB/CPC Interactions with the RISA's and ARC's

Muthuvel Chelliah and Wayne Higgins
Climate Prediction Center, NCEP/NWS/NOAA

A program to enhance interactions between CTB/CPC, the RISA’s and the ARC’s was initiated during 2006 in an effort to identify and meet user needs for regionally specific and enhanced climate forecast products and applications. Specific CTB/CPC personnel have been identified to work as liaisons with counterparts at the various RISA centers. As part of this program, CTB/CPC makes short visits to the different RISAs to provide customized CPC overviews of CPC’s forecast, monitoring and assessment products. The RISAs are invited to send longer term visitors (up to several months) to CPC to develop customized products off of the CPC product suite. So far CPC has initiated the partnership program with the following RISA centers and collaboration is underway at various levels: SECC (FL, GA, AL), PEAC/PACIS (HI), ALASKA, CAP (CA), CLIMAS (AZ, NM) and WWA (UT, CO, WY, NE). We intend to expand this program to include all of the RISA centers and the ARC’s. A brief summary of the nature and status of the program as well as the future direction of these activities will be presented.

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Crawford, Ben
Scientist
CLIMAS, University of Arizona
715 N. Park Ave, 2nd Floor
Tucson, AZ 85721
USA
Phone: 520-882-0879
Email: bercrawf@email.arizona.edu

Presentation type: Oral

Bi-national Border Climate Outlook Product

The region centered on the political border between the United States and Mexico is embedded within the larger climatic region of the North American Monsoon. Decision makers within this region are faced with similar issues regarding the effects of hydroclimatic variations on water supplies, range management, riparian protection, agricultural production, forest health and wildfire.

In order to make climate information useful and more easily accessible to border region stakeholders, and to help regional decision makers to make better informed decisions, a binational partnership of researchers and operational entities formed to create an experimental U.S.-Mexico Borderlands Climate Outlook product. The goals of the product are to (1) create a product that synthesizes hydroclimatic information for the U.S.-Mexico border region, (2) build capacity for land use managers, water providers, agricultural producers, and other decision makers to use climate information in their operations, and (3) improve the flow of climate information and collaboration between institutions in the U.S. and Mexico.

A prototype product has been developed with input from organizations in Mexico and the U.S. with information about precipitation, temperature, and ENSO conditions and forecasts. Based on increased feedback and collaboration between organizations in both countries, future issues will expand to include coverage of drought status, surface water supplies, wildfire conditions, and vegetation conditions. Future issues also will be published using the Climate Information Delivery and Decision Support System (CLIDDSS) which will (1) retrieve and fit graphics into a user-defined template and document layout, (2) allow multiple contributors to insert information and insights, and (3) produce a finished PDF product that can be served from contributors’ websites.

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Crimmins, Michael
Asst. Professor
University of Arizona
Dept. of Soil, Water, & Env. Sci.
P.O. Box 210038
Tucson, AZ 85721
USA
Phone: 520-626-4244
Email: crimmins@u.arizona.edu

Presentation type: Oral

Extending Climate Science And Drought Information To Arizona

Unique partnerships and projects have been developed across Arizona to communicate information on climate change and variability with specific applications for drought planning and preparedness. Coordination and collaboration between University of Arizona Cooperative Extension, the Climate Assessment for the Southwest (CLIMAS), state and federal agencies including the Arizona Department of Water Resources and local NOAA National Weather Service forecast offices as well as research partners from the three state universities have been the key elements to making this approach successful. This presentation will highlight the unique relationships and communication mechanisms being developed in Arizona in support of climate services and extension including citizen science programs designed to engage the public on the topics of climate change and variability and drought. Several collaborative research projects with implicit climate decision support and extension elements will also be highlighted.

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Curtis, Jan
Applied Climatologist
Natural Resources Conservation Service
National Water & Climate Center
1201 NE Lloyd Blvd., Suite 802
Portland, OR 97232
USA
Phone: 503-414-3017
Email: jan.curtis@por.usda.gov

Presentation type: Poster

Mission and Stakeholder Support

In response to an ever-growing need for water resource products, the NWCC implemented an extensive product line of real-time, map-based GIS products (http://www.wcc.nrcs.usda.gov/gis/) during 2006. Every day, an array of maps containing information describing state and regional snowpack, snow density, precipitation, and temperature are generated in a variety of contexts; including the data used to generate the maps in a format that allows users to perform local-scale custom analysis.

Beyond the familiar SNOTEL data displayed as percent of normal, new maps of percentile rankings and of record highs or lows help users determine the historical significance of current conditions. In order to monitor the current water year, most maps show the change in conditions over the last week, others show current status with respect to the entire season. Several precipitation and temperature maps combine SNOTEL data with data extracted from the Applied Climate Information System (ACIS). Using PRISM methodology, the NWCC has embarked on a new standard for improving data quality control to ensure that the unique SNOTEL data can be used in climate change research.

NWCC has also implemented several new forecast products that take advantage of the real-time data collected by the SNOTEL network to project snowpacks and update water supply forecasts on a daily basis. The snowpack and precipitation projection tool uses the historical SNOTEL record to project future snowpack and precipitation values and associated probabilities based on current conditions. The daily water supply forecast procedure was developed in response to user requests for calibrated water supply forecasts that could be run daily, during the water supply season, instead of a monthly water supply forecast generated only at the beginning of each month. The procedure uses hydroclimatic data collected by the SNOTEL and USGS data networks. The resulting water supply forecasts capture the impacts of rapid snowpack changes or prolonged periods of climate extremes, wet or dry, on expected water supplies. The daily updates allow water managers to modify operating plans as necessary to maximize water conservation during periods of increased climate variability.

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Curtis, Jan
Applied Climatologist
Natural Resources Conservation Service
National Water & Climate Center
1201 NE Lloyd Blvd., Suite 802
Portland, OR 97232
USA
Phone: 503-414-3017
Email: jan.curtis@por.usda.gov

Presentation type: Poster

Recent Effects of Climate Variability on Western Water Supplies

Western mountains trap up to 80% of the winter snowpacks that melt into spring and summer streamflow critical to agriculture, power generation, municipal water supplies, and species management. In the last 20 years, a region from California to Colorado & Idaho to Arizona has seen a shift towards multi-year extreme dry and wet periods, a kind of sequencing never seen before in at least 80 years. Just what this means to the Western US and its water supply that is heavily dependent on mountain snowpack and runoff is a subject of much research. Climate trends and inter-annual variability, along with population growth, all contribute to the complexity of effective water resource management. By measuring the weather and climate at high elevation with the 732 station SNOTEL network, the Natural Resources Conservation Service, Snow Survey and Water Supply Forecasting Program has provided water users with the data and water supply forecasts necessary to manage this precious resource. Recent examples of snowpack and streamflow variability and persistence patterns are examined along with their potential implications to future growth in the West.

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F
Ferguson, Ian
Graduate Student Researcher
UC Berkeley/Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory
1710 Davis Hall
Berkeley, CA 94720
USA
Phone: 415-533-2557
Email: iferguson@berkeley.edu

Presentation type: Poster

Reconciling Randomness & Potential Predictability of Drought

Hydroclimatic variability--including precipitation anomalies and ultimately drought--is commonly treated as a stochastic process by hydrologists, climatologists, and engineers. However, recent results in the atmospheric science literature suggest that anomalies at monthly and longer timescales are driven in part by potentially predictable surface-atmosphere interactions. In this study, we use an analysis of runs to identify timescales of non-random behavior in observed and simulated precipitation anomalies. We then evaluate the potentially predictable component of precipitation anomalies in an ensemble of AGCM simulations over a range of timescales. Both observed and simulated anomalies exhibit statistically significant non-random behavior over much of North America at monthly to seasonal timescales, with increasingly random behavior at longer timescales. In contrast, the boundary-forced component of simulated anomalies is found to increase at longer timescales. Using a schematic example, we show that these apparently conflicting results arise directly from the time series versus ensemble-based approaches to assessing potential predictability.

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Fontaine, Matthew
Graduate Research Assistant
University of Washington, Civil and Environmental Engineering
201 More Hall, Box 352700
Seattle, WA 98195-2700
USA
Phone: 206-543-6272
Email: mfontain@u.washington.edu

Presentation type: Poster

Assessing and Mitigating Drought in Washington State

We present results of a comprehensive study of drought and water shortages in Washington State. In this study, we (a) analyzed impacts from recent droughts, (b) identified the most vulnerable areas and sectors, (c) developed indicators to monitor and forecast drought conditions, and (d) determined ways to reduce drought vulnerability and impacts in the future, with an emphasis on drought monitoring, prediction, and response. Based on interviews with over 60 representatives of the agriculture, municipal water supply, environment, power, and recreation sectors throughout the state, we found that drought impacts were severe for junior water right holders (especially those that grow perennial crops); dryland farmers; growers, wholesalers, and retailers of landscape plants; fisheries in watersheds with large quantities of summer withdrawal; hydropower generators; and ski area operators. Recommendations for reducing drought vulnerability include improved monitoring and forecasting tools, such as a web-based system for tracking indicators in the state and seasonal and regionally specific climate forecast information in a format that is easy to understand and use. Results of this study can help decision makers to take early actions to reduce drought impacts, to allocate resources most effectively, and to improve drought preparedness and response in the future.

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Fry, Elliott
Planner II/Resource Analyst
San Antonio Water System
2800 US Hwy 281 North
San Antonio, TX 78212
USA
Phone: 210 -233-3657
Email: Elliott.Fry@saws.org

Presentation type: Poster

Climate Forecasts as a Critical Component to Water Resource Planning

The San Antonio Water System, a utility that serves approximately 1.3 million people in south central Texas, relies heavily on short, mid and long range forecast in order to maintain adequate flow to its customers. With groundwater as it's primary water source, predicting rainfall and recharge is key in deciding when and how to use various groundwater supplies. If the outlook is for cool and wet temperatures, groundwater can be pulled from a primary, heavily regulated source and stored in a secondary, less regulated aquifer. In dry and hot times, we can draw as much water as needed from the secondary aquifer and not have to worry as much about drought restrictions. The San Antonio region often gets only a few key opportunities to store water. Furthermore, groundwater withdrawals must be planned out up to a year in advance to meet regulatory and permitting requirements. Should the system not account for the short or long range forecasts, utility customers can be impacted by severe cutbacks in water usage. This not only hurts homeowners but also businesses that are trying to grow in an ever competitive global market. A key component of using the forecasts is interpreting the amount of uncertainty that might exist. For this reason, a committee of utility staff reviews climate and weather outlooks on a monthly basis during the cool season (November through February) and weekly during the remainder of the year. Multiple sources of weather data, including rainfall, drought and ENSO, is studied to determine the best strategy for production and operations. Over the last 5 years, San Antonio has, through various national and global datasets, identified very clear wet period/dry period climate signals that help decision makers with short and long term water resource strategies. For all these efforts, the San Antonio Water System has become one of the most reliable and efficient water delivery systems of its size in the country.

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G

Garfin, Gregg
(presented by Ben Crawford on behalf of Gregg Garfin)
Deputy Director for Outreach
Institute for the Study of Planet Earth University of Arizona
715 N. Park Ave, 2nd Floor
Tucson, AZ 85721
USA
Phone: 520-622-9016
Email: gmgarfin@email.arizona.edu

Presentation type: Oral

Arizona Drought Preparedness Innovations: Lessons for NIDIS

Co-Authors: M. Crimmins (Arizona Cooperative Extension), T. Haffer (National Weather Service), G. Woodard (SAHRA), K. Jacobs (Arizona Water Institute)

Drought is endemic to Arizona. The climate of the state is not merely arid, but characterized by multi-decade episodes of drought, punctuated by high interannual precipitation variability. The 2004 Arizona Drought Preparedness Plan (ADPP) mitigates drought impacts through continuous drought monitoring, a statewide drought and water conservation program, and an engaged public. For over one year, climatologists have worked with statewide drought plan coordinators to implement an innovative recommendation in the ADPP, a volunteer network of drought impacts reporting, and county-level mitigation and response planning coordinated with the ADPP. Multiple agencies, universities, and private sector partners, in conjunction with the Arizona Department of Water Resources, are developing a web-based hydroclimatic information system that will contribute to the National Integrated Drought Information System. The system coordinates hydroclimatic data for a temporal spectrum that ranges from long-term climate and streamflow data to real-time flood warning. This presentation will address the implementation of these innovations, and present lessons learned about the processes of coordinating between stakeholders, decision makers, and state and federal agencies.

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Goto, Yoshie
COAPS/FSU
Tallahassee, FL 32306-2840
USA
Phone: 850-645-7463
Email: yoshie@coaps.fsu.edu

Presentation type: Poster

Statistical Analysis of Freezes and Probability Freeze Forecast in Florida

The United States was the second largest citrus producer in the world in the 2003-04 season following Brazil (FAO, 2005) and Florida is one of the top two orange producing states in the US (USDA, 2006). Thus, Florida's citrus production plays an important role in the world citrus market. As with any agricultural activity, citrus production is sensitive to regional climatic conditions. Specifically, freezes are one of the major causes of loss of citrus production in Florida. In this research, freezing events in orange producing counties of Florida are statistically analyzed to find appropriate indicators of freezes in Florida. In addition, probability forecasts using global and regional climate models are also investigated. To accomplish these objectives, this study is divided in two parts. In the first part of this study, observed minimum temperature data are statistically analyzed based on the peaks-over-threshold (POT) method. The POT method is used to model frequency of cold temperatures in the region categorized by ENSO phases. The POT method is suitable to analyze extreme events in datasets taking only the distribution of extreme data, because distributions of entire datasets are often different from those of extreme events. The minimum temperature data are fit to the generalized Pareto distribution for the POT method. The results show that freezing events tend to occur more frequently in La Nina or ENSO neutral phases. In the second part of this study, we obtain indicators of winter freezes for use in the probability forecast. The indicators of the freezes are statistically calculated from results of the FSU/COAPS global and regional climate models. Those indicators have to reasonably represent freezes and also have to be apparent enough to be captured by the models. Characteristics of those indicators by both global and regional models are shown. Those indicators are useful for the probability forecast of freezes in Florida citrus farming regions as a precaution against extreme low temperatures in winter.

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Gottschalck, Jonathan
NOAA / Climate Prediction Center
5200 Auth Rd.
Camp Springs, MD 20771
USA
Phone: 301-763-8000 x7753
Email: Jon.Gottschalck@noaa.gov

Presentation type: oral

Storm Track Monitoring and Prediction-Related Activities at the Climate Prediction Center

During the past few years, the Climate Prediction Center (CPC) has initiated and developed storm track monitoring and prediction activities focused on aiding the National Weather Service (NWS) operational mission. Monitoring and assessment products (available via the WWW) include storm tracks during the past 10, 30, and 90 days with overlays of precipitation, low-level wind anomalies, significant wave heights, and sea ice for both hemispheres with a separate page focused on Alaska. Forecast storm tracks from the Global Forecast System (GFS) operational and ensemble mean model runs are also available and can be used for identifying upcoming periods of persistent storminess and therefore provide insight as part of week 1-2 hazard assessments. Example products from the web page will be displayed and their utility for assessing the linkage between the leading modes of climate variability (ENSO, AO, etc.) and the weather timescale are demonstrated. Storm track prediction related activities at CPC have initially focused on understanding the changes in storminess associated with the leading patterns of climate variability (ENSO, AO, etc.), documenting atmospheric and oceanic characteristics for seasons of extreme storminess, preliminary work towards the development of a storminess index, and investigating the utility of using the Climate Forecast System (CFS) to provide useful storminess related statistics to aid in predictions at longer time ranges. Initially both monitoring and prediction related activities cited above are being conducted in close collaboration with personnel from both the NWS Alaska Region and the University of Alaskan Fairbanks International Arctic Research Center. Although collaboration to date has focused on Alaska interests, it is hoped other regions may benefit from future collaboration. The purpose of this paper is to publicize current CPC storm track activities to the user community, solicit feedback and suggestions, and build a critical linkage with interested RISAs and other partners to better focus resources for developing storminess related monitoring, assessment, and prediction products at multiple time scales (i.e., weekly, monthly, and seasonal).

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Greenland, David
Louisiana State Univ Agricultural Center
c/o 64 Indian Pipe Drive
Wynantskill, NY 12198
USA
Phone: 518-326-8962
Email: greenlan@lsu.edu

Presentation type: Poster

Forecast Verification Related to Rice Production in Southwest Louisiana

Frequency of forecast, probability of detection, and false alarm rate, verification statistics are provided for 3-month, 1-month, 8-14, 6-10, and 1-7 day lead time climate and weather forecasts in relation to critical time windows of planting, grain-filling, and harvest periods for rice farming operations in SW Louisiana. The CLIMAS forecast evaluation tool suggests that the seasonal, 3-monthly, CPC forecasts are not very helpful for rice farmers. Verification of CPC monthly forecasts for the planting window indicated the forecasts were of little use because not many were made during the growing season. 6-10 and 8-14 day forecasts showed only medium, or less, skill. The 6-10 and 8-14 day forecasts, especially of dry periods, provide more guidance for the producer than did the monthly or seasonal period forecasts but they would have to be used with caution. The 1-7 day forecasts for precipitation during the planting and harvest windows during 2004 and 2005 had only about a 30% accuracy rate. This rate, in the cases of forecasts of 50% or greater probability, fell to zero when forecasting 4 or 5 days ahead. Hovmoeller-type diagrams revealed a mismatch in which forecasters tend to forecast a wide time band for rain conditions compared to a narrow time band in which rain is actually observed. The hypothesis that the shorter period forecasts would be more accurate than those pertaining to more distant times in the future is not supported with respect to the values of particular climatic variables and time windows studied in SW Louisiana. The background climatic conditions, especially the localized nature of summer convectional rainfall, and the lack of ENSO signal in the growing season, make it very difficult for forecasters to make useful forecasts of precipitation and temperature for the critical time windows. Based on the data in this study, rice farmers are advised to use published forecasts with caution and apply the forecasts to operational decisions only when the forecasts are issued with a high probability of confidence. Unfortunately such forecasts are infrequent in the study area.

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H
Haas, Niina
Assistant Staff Scientist
University of Arizona (CLIMAS)
715 N. Park Ave, 2nd Floor
Tucson, AZ 85721
USA
Phone: (520) 792-2246
Email: niina@email.arizona.edu

Presentation type: Oral

Communication Network Analysis, Stakeholders, and Information Flow

Scientists and professionals working to increase stakeholder awareness of climate information occasionally encounter obstacles related to the acceptance and spread of such tools among the desired population. A variety of institutional, occupational, or individual reasons may create these barriers. One such hurdle is the act of getting information to people who are in a position to spread the information to numerous other stakeholders. Therefore, identifying these key individuals becomes an important task. Network analysis identifies key individuals and their connections to other individuals through the use of qualitative and quantitative data.

Drawing upon ongoing communication network analysis research of stakeholders that deal with water-related topics in the Arizonan White Mountains region of Show Low and Pinetop-Lakeside, this presentation will explore the benefits of using a network analysis paradigm as it relates to isolating knowledge brokers and determining information flow within a communication network. Identifying the knowledge brokers and understanding information flow within this, and other, communication networks allows for the isolation of ideal entry points for climate information and tools.

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Hamlet, Alan F.
Research Scientist
CSES Climate Impacts Group
Box 352700
Seattle, WA 98195
USA
Phone: 206-616-9361
Email: hamleaf@u.washington.edu

Presentation type: Oral

Designing Hydrologic Modeling Studies to Support Diverse Climate Change Planning Needs in the Columbia River Basin

As the scientific consensus on the nature of global climate change and public awareness of the impacts of climate change on western water resources has grown in recent years, the need to incorporate climate change scenarios in water planning efforts and policy decisions has been widely acknowledged in the West. Here in the Pacific Northwest (PNW), although a number of pilot water planning efforts incorporating climate change have been carried out for specific water resources systems in the past five years or so, currently there is no comprehensive, up-to-date, self-consistent, and publicly available source of hydrologic scenarios incorporating climate change information available to guide water planners, managers, and policy makers in the PNW.

One of the central challenges of producing a set of comprehensive and self-consistent hydrologic scenarios for the Columbia basin is that water planning efforts are being carried out at a wide range of spatial scales from the watershed scale (e.g. salmon habitat restoration in small tributaries) to medium scale studies (e.g. water supply studies in the Yakima and Okanogan basins) to large scale studies encompassing the entire Columbia basin (e.g. for system-wide flood control and regional hydropower planning). Furthermore, water supply planning is frequently carried out at monthly or weekly time scales, whereas studies to evaluate flood and low flow risks, and water quality impacts require higher temporal resolution.

To address these diverse needs, the UW Climate Impacts Group at the University of Washington in collaboration with the WA State Department of Ecology has designed a research plan to provide appropriate climate change information to water planners in the Columbia basin. The VIC model will be implemented at 1/16th degree over the entire Columbia basin and coastal drainages in the PNW to provide hydrologic information at both large and medium spatial scales (encompassing many basin-wide planning needs), and fine scale simulations using the DHSVM will be implemented over a group of smaller watersheds in WA to encompass planning needs at the watershed scale. In addition, new calibration and downscaling procedures will be developed to facilitate both monthly time scale water planning studies and studies requiring higher temporal resolution.

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Hartmann, Holly
Assistant Physical Scientist 
Department of Hydrology and Water Resources
University of Arizona
715 N. Park Ave, 2nd Floor
Tuscon, AZ 85721
USA
Phone: 541-607-6722
Email: hollyoregon@juno.com

Presentation type: Panel discussion

Decision Support Tools: Partnerships for Connecting Technology and Applications

Across a variety of agencies and organizations, researchers have been working to develop applications and decision support tools for reducing societal vulnerability to climate variability and change. Some efforts focus on the resource-intensive cultivation of relationships with
> stakeholders, developing deep understanding of decision contexts and needs for climate and ancillary products, as well as effective means for supporting access to and use of information. Other efforts focus on the resource-intensive development of technology for managing information, including data storage, discovery, access, analysis, and visualization.

Typically, neither type of effort can afford to be all-encompassing. Stakeholder-driven projects are often limited in their ability to fully implement sophisticated engineered software projects required for successful transition to sustainable operations. Technology-driven projects are often limited in their ability to determine specific, yet scalable, user needs sufficient for developing design requirements, and in many cases, are necessarily focused on speculative information products that have limited interest for decision makers (e.g., from prospective satellite-based instruments not yet approved for any mission, or from experimental monitoring programs lasting only a few years).

The premise of this session is that development of sustainable user-centric decision support tools would benefit from partnerships across these two types of efforts. However, their respective communities have different priorities, processes, and pathways for decision support tool development activities. Several short presentations will highlight these differences. The bulk of the session will be focused on identifying opportunities for closer collaboration across these two communities.

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He, Yuxiang (Luke)
Meteorologist
Climate Prediction Center, NCEP/NWS/NOAA
5200 Auth Road
Camp Spring, MD 20746
USA
Phone: 301-763-8000 ext 7529
Email: Luke.He@noaa.gov

Presentation type: Oral

Tropical Pacific Climate Information & Prediction System (TPCIPS) -- Current Status and Future Plan

Luke He, Wayne Higgins, Ed O’Lenic
Climate Prediction Center, NCEP/NWS/NOAA

Research has shown that short term global climate fluctuations, such as those related to the El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) phenomenon, play a dominant role in the climate variability in the tropical Pacific islands. Because the demand for climate information in the tropical Pacific islands has risen in the last decade, a Pacific Climate Information and Prediction System (PCIPS) has been established at the Climate Prediction Center (CPC) to serve the tropical Pacific region. PCIPS provides useful climate information (e.g. seasonal climate outlook, climate monitoring. ENSO effects) to support the decision making processes undertaken in the Pacific region for water resource management, fisheries management, agriculture, natural disaster mitigation strategies, power utilities, coastal zone management, and other climate sensitive sectors. The monthly Islands Climate Teleconference and PEAC (Pacific ENSO Application Center) Teleconference have set up a bridge to exchange the climate information for the scientists from US, Australia, New Zealand, and Pacific island nations. An updated Pacific rainfall Atlas and an objectively consolidated seasonal rainfall forecast scheme for the Pacific region are underway by the NOAA PRIDE (Pacific Region Integrated Data Enterprise) project. There are great opportunities for conducting the cooperative research activities to improve the prediction skill and climate service over Pacific region among the NOAA Climate Test Bed (CTB), NWS Climate Services Division, PEAC, Pacific RISA (Pacific Islands Regional Integrated Science and Assessment), IPRC (International Pacific Research Center) and other institutes.

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Higgins, Wayne
Climate Prediction Center
5200 Auth Road
Camp Springs, MD 20746
USA
Phone: 301-763-8000 (7547)
Email: Wayne.Higgins@noaa.gov

Presentation type: Poster

An Alert Classification System for Monitoring and Assessing the ENSO-Cycle

An Alert Classification System for the ENSO cycle is introduced. The System includes Watches, Advisories and a five-class intensity scale for warm and cold phases of the ENSO cycle. A Watch is issued when conditions are favorable for the formation of an El Niño or La Niña within the next 6 months. An Advisory is issued when El Niño or La Niña conditions are present, based on NOAA's operational definitions. The intensity scale, referred to as the ENSO Intensity Scale or EIS, is used for operational and retrospective assessments of the intensity of warm (El Niño) and cold (La Niña) episodes, without being prescriptive concerning ENSO-related anomalies or impacts. CPC's monthly Climate Diagnostics Bulletin and ENSO Diagnostic Discussions will serve as the primary vehicles for disseminating real-time information concerning the ENSO Alert Status to the scientific community and public at large.

An objective method that relates the EIS to anomalies is used to assess the effects of warm and cold episodes. The method is illustrated using precipitation in the global Tropics and Subtropics and in the conterminous United States. The methodology is quite general and can be used to relate the ENSO cycle to other quantities.

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Hill, Harvey
National Agro-Climate Information Service,
Agriculture Canada
1011, 11 Innovation Boulevard
Saskatoon, Saskatchewan S7V 1B7
Canada
Phone: 306-975-4134
Email: hillh@agr.gc.ca

Presentation type: Oral

Developing a National Agro-Climate Information Service: The Canadian experience

Since 1995 an agro-climate information service has been developing in Western Canada under the auspices of the Prairie Farm Rehabilitation Administration Branch of Canada's Federal Agricultural Department. The service is best known for its domestic drought reporting as well as its contribution to the North American Drought Monitor, and near real time monitoring.

The unit is now refining its monitoring and drought reporting capacity. It is also expanding its remote sensing capacity to also better report on other forms of extreme events and near real time conditions. The unit is now developing its ability to support decision makers efforts to adapt to climate variability and change. Secondly it is supporting policy formulation to reduce Canada's agricultural sector vulnerability and increase its resiliency to climate variability and change.

This presentation describes the decision-maker, research, and policy issues that the unit is influenced by as it develops. How these activities are being developed methodically in the context of a 5 year plan. It also describes how lessons learned in the United States and Australia are being translated into the Canadian context. Finally the presentation considers potential opportunities for collaboration with U.S. Government agencies, academic research entities, as well as other nations and international bodies. Particular issues of interest include drought, other extreme events, desertification, trade issues, and risk management decision support.

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Hoogenboom, Gerrit
Professor
University of Georgia
Department of Biological and Agricultural Engineering
Griffin, GA 30223
USA
Phone: 770-229-3438
Email: gerrit@uga.edu

Presentation type: Oral

Climate Extension Education: The SECC Experience

El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) has significant implications for crop production in the southeast US. Climate forecasts can be used to reduce risks faced by an agricultural enterprise, but simply providing better climate forecasts to potential users in not enough. In an effort to integrate all aspects of applying seasonal climate forecasts to agriculture, the Southeast Climate Consortium (SECC) was formed as a research and extension partnership of six universities in Florida, Georgia, and Alabama. The overall goal of SECC is to apply ENSO-based forecasts to the development of decision support tools for agriculture, forestry, and water resource management. The SECC has developed a web-based information system called AgClimate (www.agclimate.org), for timely delivery of climate and weather information to farmers and producers. Information available in AgClimate includes climate forecasts combined with risk management tools and information for selected crops, forestry, pasture, and livestock. The system was developed to allow easy expansion of the topic areas, number of commodities, and risk management tools available for users. Adaptations include those that might mitigate potential losses as well as maximize yields. The responsibilities of the climate extension program are to disseminate climate-based information and develop decision support tools based on input from various stakeholders. The key to effective dissemination of climate-based information to growers is the partnership of the SECC and the Cooperative Extension Service of Land-Grant Universities. Extension agents play a key role in transferring information technology and new knowledge to farmers and stakeholders. The SECC Extension Team have conducted several training workshops on AgClimate decision support tools for county agents, as part of a program to increase awareness on the use of climate information and climate-based tools available to stakeholders. In addition, climate extension specialists have been involved in various agent trainings and county meetings, and are working with commodity specialists in emphasizing the importance of climate forecasts in farm decisions and risk management. Climate and commodity outlooks were developed in close collaboration with research and extension faculty. These outlooks were disseminated in various media forms and outlets to stakeholders including county agents and growers.

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Hu, Qi
Professor
University of Nebraska-Lincoln
707 Hardin Hall
Lincoln, NE 68583-0987
USA
Phone: 402-472-6642
Email: qhu2@unl.edu

Presentation type: Oral

Current Situation about Use of Climate Information in Flood Management in the Yangtze River Basin, China

Qi S. Hu(1), Hua Guo (1,2), and Tong Jiang(2)

The middle and lower reaches of the Yangtze River basin is a flood prone region in China. Since 1990, three major floods occurred in the summers of 1992, 1995, and 1998, devastating the region's economy, environment, and societies. Those major floods were developed primarily from intense rainfall events in the southern part of the Yangtze River basin, an observation suggesting applications of rainfall predictions in those areas may benefit flood predictions and management and alleviate flood damages. Interviews conducted in the summer of 2006 indicated that few predictions of rainfall were actually used by state and city management offices, however. Except for the Yangtze River Water Resources Commission (YRWRC) of the China's Bureau of Hydrology in the City of Wuhan, the central office for flood forecasting and management coordination, state and city water resources and flood control offices have used little information of regional and local rainfall predictions directly in their management decisions. Primary attentions of these offices have been placed at understanding the flood predictions made by YRWRC, monitoring flood development when flood occurs, and acting on flood control measures. A comparison between this flood control system and a more regional control models is made to evaluate effective ways to use climate and weather information for better management of flood in the Yangtze River Basin. Some results will be discussed in the presentation.

(1) School of Natural Resources, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Lincoln, NE 68583-0987
(2) Nanjing Institute of Geography and Limnology, Nanjing, 200018 China

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Hu, Qi
Professor
University of Nebraska-Lincoln
707 Hardin Hall
Lincoln, NE 68583-0987
USA
Phone: 402-472-6642
Email: qhu2@unl.edu

Presentation type: Poster

Think About It: Transitioning Climate Information and Predictions to Decision Aids

A recent study indicates that farmers rely on TV, radio, and crop consultants for their weather and climate information/prediction in making farming decisions. They use few predictions that they have direct access to on the Internet. An explanation for this behavior is that farmers find it difficult to understand and correctly or confidently use weather and climate information/prediction in decisions, so they rely on the experts. This can be illustrated using the following example. Take a look of the soil moisture maps made by NOAA and available at http://www.cpc.noaa.gov/products/soilmst/w.shtml. It is quite clear that it will take time and effort even for a professional to determine what soil moisture information is provided in these maps. A user without adequate training could quickly get confused and loose confidence in using the information in making decisions. This case is representative of the general situation for most of the current climate predictions/products. Thus, for people to use climate predictions it is important to increase their knowledge and confidence with the climate predictions, through training. This training could start with climate information and predictions tailored to particular decisions. In the training course, users faced with a particular decision that might benefit from using climate products will have access to various weather and climate products. When interpreting the products, users will be given the opportunity to read or listen to professional advice and coaching about how specific information or prediction should be interpreted and what the product is saying. Moreover, expert advice and suggestions will be provided to demonstrate how particular information and predictions should be integrated into the actual decision making. By walking users through the identification of relevant weather and climate products, understanding how they should be interpreted and used, and learning how they should be integrated in making the decision, users will gain both knowledge and self confidence in using the information and predictions. Through such training, which gives practice in applying climate products, users will develop the habits and skills to use climate information and predictions in their decision-making. Such a training system, Think About It, will be discussed in this presentation

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Hwang, Yeonsang
Research Associate
University of South Carolina, Department of Geography
709 Bull Street, Calcott Room 222
Columbia, SC 29208
USA
Phone: 803-777-0828
Email: yeonsang.hwang@sc.edu

Presentation type: Oral

Ensemble Forecast of Monthly Drought Indices in South Carolina

Yeonsang Hwang and Greg Carbone

While drought is part of natural climate variability, forecasting its occurrence remains challenging. Yet, anticipating drought weeks or months in advance would aid in the implementation of drought management plans designed to mitigate impacts on agriculture and water resources. Since perfect drought forecasts with these lead times remain elusive, it is important to evaluate the uncertainty associated with drought predictions. In this work, the authors examined a forecast of drought indices that considers uncertainties using a stochastic approach. The approach is based on an autoregressive model using historical record for mean drought indices forecasts, and then re-sampling of residuals to generate forecast ensembles. The method uses the basic residual re-sampling steps of the modified K-nn method, plus adjustment to consider divisional scale monthly temperature and precipitation forecasts. Monthly forecasts of the Palmer Drought Severity Index (PDSI) and standardized precipitation index (SPI-3) were made for South Carolina Climate Division 6. Climate information from CPC outlook division 13 was used for residual re-sampling. The Kuiper skill score of PDSI indicates good forecast performance up to 3 months, and some improvements for SPI-3 forecasts with 1-month lead time. CPC climate outlook significantly improved the forecast skill as much as 40% while the degree of improvements vary through seasons and forecast lead time. We also show that the forecast skills are more sensitive to the quality of temperature outlook than that of precipitation.

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I

Ingram, Keith
Southeast Climate Consortium
P.O. Box 110570
Gainesville, FL 32611-0570
USA
Phone: 352-392-1864 x 283
Email: ktingram@ifas.ufl.edu

Presentation type: Oral

Forecasting the Lawn and Garden Drought Index for the Southeast USA

For agriculture, drought occurs when water available from precipitation, stored soil moisture, or other sources is insufficient to meet plant needs for growth and development. Agricultural drought has three principal dimensions: intensity, duration, and timing during the crop season. With various levels of success, several indices have been developed to quantify the effects of drought as integrated across these dimensions. Using Doppler radar rainfall measurements The Office of the Alabama State Climatologist provides daily updates of a lawn and garden moisture index (LGMI) calculated to a 4 km grid. The LGMI is computed from the weighted sum of precipitation over the previous 21 days and adjusted for seasonal potential evapotranspiration (PET). Values of LGMI range from a minimum of -2 under dry conditions, to 2 or more under high rainfall conditions. To complement this work on monitoring LGMI, our objective was to develop methods to forecast of the LGMI for the Southeast US states of Alabama, Florida, and Georgia. Using 250 years of boot-strapped climate data for each El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) phase, we computed LGMI frequency distributions for all cooperative climate monitoring stations of the southeast US. From frequency distributions, we identified the probability that LGMI would be less than -1.5, that is, the probability of a severe drought, during each 10-day period of the year for each ENSO phase. These probabilities are mapped for the states of Alabama, Florida, and Georgia for each 10-day period during the year for each of the three ENSO phases. We have developed a series of web pages to display these forecasts on AgClimate (http://AgClimate.org). Although LGMI forecasts differed among ENSO phases, especially during spring and summer, previous research shows that differences in rainfall among ENSO phases amounts are most significant during winter months, when LGMI shows little or no probability of severe drought for all ENSO phases. Additional research is needed to estimate the skill of these forecasts, which will be an important factor in whether decision makers will use the forecasts. Also important, will be to conduct evaluations of the products with potential users.

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K

Kinter, James
Director
COLA
4041 Powder Mill Road, Suite 302
Calverton, MD 20705
USA
Phone: 301-595-7000
Email: kinter@cola.iges.org

Presentation type: Oral

Cholera and Climate in South Asia: Prospects for Predicting Outbreaks

The south Asian monsoon represents one of the largest variations in climate on seasonal to interannual time scales observed on Earth, yet our understanding of the monsoon remains rudimentary, and our ability to predict its variations is extremely limited. It affects the lives, property and economies of countries inhabited by nearly one out of five humans on the planet. Because the economies of south Asia have been largely agrarian, the monsoon rainfall has been, until recent decades, a life-giving and a life-threatening aspect of the environment. Furthermore, the ubiquitous presence of surface water in many densely populated areas during the monsoon rainy season, provides conditions that are ideal for the development and propagation of water-borne diseases such as cholera.

This paper describes the observed relationship between climate in south Asia, especially the monsoon, and incidence of cholera outbreaks in Bangladesh. The pronounced annual cycle of cholera incidence, its interannual variability and spatial distribution will be shown. The relationships between the annual cycle of cholera and monsoon rainfall and the interannual fluctuations of cholera and indicators of interannual climate variation such as ENSO and the monsoon itself will be explained. Prospects for predicting cholera outbreaks, based on antecedent conditions in the climate system, intrinsic disease dynamics, and hopes for predicting the monsoon will be outlined.

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L

Larsen, Peter
Resource Economist
Institute of Social and Economic Research, Univ. of Alaska Anchorage
3211 Providence Drive
Anchorage, Alaska 99508
USA
Phone: 907-786-5449
Email: anphl@uaa.alaska.edu

Presentation type: Oral

A Probabilistic Model to Estimate the Value of Alaska Public Infrastructure at Risk to Climate Change

Alaska has more dramatic recorded historical and projected future climate change than most other places in the world. Public works built on permafrost or on eroding river banks and coastal shorelines are at risk of degradation or complete loss due to impacts of long-term temperature rise. Changes in average annual atmospheric temperature affect average soil temperature and can lead to thawing of permafrost foundations and settlement of structures. Reduced sea ice cover has been noted in the long-term historical record and associated increase of open-water season on the Alaska coast is projected to continue. Increased wave energy will strike the coast and cause acceleration of erosion. Atmosphere-Ocean General Circulation Models (or AOGCMs) also predict changes in precipitation patterns, in particular rainfall increases, which can lead to increased flooding and stream bank erosion. These factors threaten buildings, pipelines, utilities, and other types of public infrastructure.

A database of public infrastructure was compiled by the Institute of Social and Economic Research at the University of Alaska Anchorage to assess vulnerability to and ultimately the public cost leading from ever changing site conditions caused by abrupt climate change. The coastal or riverine location of individual items is noted in the database, along with the regional prevalence of continuous, discontinuous, or sporadic permafrost. Regional projections of temperature and precipitation changes for the years 2030 and 2080 were attained from the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and the National Center for Atmospheric Research. Algorithms were formulated to estimate the additional replacement costs due to the reduced useful life of public works associated with melting of permafrost, flooding, or erosion.

Climate projections and related economic impacts are coupled and results report relative risk by type of infrastructure and location. Long-lived structures, such as bridges, larger public buildings, and major pipelines appear to have the greatest potential public cost as their site conditions continue to change over many decades. Shorter lived works, such as roads and airport runways, are not as vulnerable, since their routine use requires more frequent replacement regardless of climate change. Planned enhancement of both the public infrastructure database and climate change economic-engineering impact algorithms will enable researchers to produce robust results that could be used by policymakers to rank adaptation strategies.

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Le Comte, Douglas
NOAA Climate Prediction Center
5200 Auth Road., Room 800
Camp Springs, MD 20746
USA
Phone: 301-763-8000 ex 7567
Email: douglas.lecomte@noaa.gov

Presentation type: Oral

Drought Monitoring and Forecasting Products: Where to Find Them and How to Use Them

The U.S. Drought Monitor represents a synthesis of information from various sources, and this includes everything from streamflow and groundwater levels to topsoil moisture and crop and pasture conditions. Some of the sources for the USDM input will be discussed, as well as plans for future drought indicators. Users of the USDM must consider the pros and cons of combining a variety of indices in creating a single map when using the USDM, as well as the inherent problems (and benefits) of rotating authorship among several agencies. The origin of the drought classification scheme will be discussed, as well as a look at the definitions of the intensity levels. Looking at forecasting, interpretation of the Seasonal Drought Outlook will be discussed, as well as the sources for some of the many forecast indicators used to produce the product. As with the USDM, creating a single map to summarize numerous indicators has limitations, and users should be aware of this. Verification of the forecasts, along with measures of its performance, will be discussed. As we transition toward NIDIS, there will be a need for more quantitative drought forecast products at higher resolution, and some ideas on these will be presented.

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L'Heureux, Michelle
Meteorologist
NOAA/NWS/NCEP/Climate Prediction Center
5200 Auth Rd, Rm 605
Camp Springs, MD 20746
USA
Phone: 3017638000x7019
Email: michelle.lheureux@noaa.gov

Presentation type: Poster

Boreal winter links between the Madden-Julian Oscillation and the Arctic Oscillation

There is increasing evidence that the Madden Julian Oscillation (MJO) has a notable relationship to the mid-to-high latitude circulation, and in particular with the leading mode of extratropical variability, the Arctic Oscillation (AO). In this study, new insights into the observed similarities between the MJO and AO are explored.

It is shown that the eastward progression of the convectively active phase of the MJO is associated with a corresponding shift in the tendency of the AO index. Moreover, the AO and MJO share several analogous features in several atmospheric and surface fields. Also that the AO is linked to a pattern of eastward propagating MJO-like variability in the tropics that is reproduced in free runs of the NCEP CFS model. We will then comment on the potential to exploit the correspondence between the AO and MJO in order to improve subseasonal climate forecasts for the contiguous United States. We anticipate collaboration with one or more RISA's in order to develop products at subseasonal timescales applicable to their objectives.

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Littell, Jeremy
Research Scientist
CSES Climate Impacts Group
Box 352100
Seattle, WA 98195-2100
USA
Phone: 206-543-9138
Email: jlittell@u.washington.edu

Presentation type: Poster

Opportunities and Barriers to Incorporating Climatic Change Information into Forest Management: A Case Study from Olympic National Forest, Washington.

National forests in the U.S. Forest Service system are managed for many resources and amenities, but many of these are likely to be strongly affected by climatic change in the future. We describe the process and results of an exercise undertaken to identify barriers to and opportunities for adaptation to climate change in Olympic National Forest (ONF), WA. Scientific information played a key role in this case study by aiding the description of the biophysical environment as well as expected climatic changes and their impacts to natural resources in ONF. We also describe the management and policy environment that defines the framework within which near-term adaptation must occur. Several opportunities for adaptation exist. First, at the regional scale and within ONF, forest plans can be tools with which to identify climate-mediated processes and incorporate climate information. Second, ONF has implemented a strategic plan that has the capacity to guide prioritization and can incorporate climatic change elements now, rather than waiting for a national or regional plan. A third opportunity is to integrate climatic change into the Northwest Forest Plan guidelines. The legacy of the 20th century timber economy in the PNW has created ecological problems, but also opportunities. By recognizing the likely future impacts of climatic change on forest ecosystems, the NWFP can become an evolving set of guidelines for forest managers. A fourth opportunity is adopting an early detection / rapid response strategy, which can allow managers flexibility to deal with small problems before they become larger and less tractable. Major barriers to adaptation are: (1) policies that do not recognize climatic change as a significant problem or stressor, and (2) the lack of a strong management-science partnership. These limitations can be overcome by: (1) developing a managers guide to climate impacts and adaptation; (2) incorporating climatic change explicitly into policy; (3) re-examining the appropriateness of and regulations on management actions in the context of adaptation to climatic change; and (4) creating clear, consistent priorities and regulations that provide guidance but allow for strategies and management actions that increase resilience and reduce vulnerability to climatic change.

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Livezey, Robert
Chief
Climate Services/Office of Services/NWS
W/OS4, Rm. 13348, SSMC2
1325 East West Highway
Silver Spring, MD 20910
USA
Phone: 301-713-1970 x182
Email: robert.e.livezey@noaa.gov

Presentation type: Oral

Caveats for Producers, Purveyors and Customers of Normals, Risks, and Other Climate Statistics

At the 4th CPAS Workshop I pointed out that with few exceptions (sea-level rise is one) it is not possible to develop credible scenarios of future climate, especially its variability, for time and space scales of interest to most policy-makers, and practically all decision-makers, planners, and designers. In fact, the climate is changing so rapidly that it is difficult to develop credible descriptions of its current state; for example traditional 30-year normals reissued every 10-years are no longer generally useful for the customers and purposes for which they were intended. The difficulties increase with variables that are not normally-distributed (like precipitation) and for higher-order moments and the tails of distributions associated with weather variability and extremes respectively. The problems partially stem from limitations on historical weather records, but are mainly because of the non-stationarity in the climate. Because of this non-stationarity and its uniqueness over the historical span for which we can infer past climate with some granularity, paleo/proxy data cannot help us make better risk estimates. Recent work will be cited that quantifies the impact the changing climate has on the error in different empirical estimation methods for climate normals and some simple steps to produce better estimates. In the near future this work and work like it will materially impact the product suites at both CPC and NCDC. Customers who need to work with various climate statistics and risk estimates, for example the means and variances of heating degree days or the return periods for excessive precipitation events, should be educated in the expected error and limited applicability of these statistics. Ultimately the solution to this problem will be the same as that for credible future scenarios, namely validated high-resolution global coupled climate models.

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Love, Timothy
Meteorologist
NOAA Climate Prediction Center
5200 Auth Rd - Rm 811D
Camp Springs, MD 20746
USA
Phone: 301-763-8000 x7549
Email: Tim.Love@noaa.gov

Presentation type: Oral

Conversion of Climate Prediction Center's Web Products to GIS Format

Tim Love, Viviane Silva & Wayne Higgins
NOAA/NWS/NCEP/CPC Camp Springs, MD

User requests for CPC climate forecast products in Geographical Information System (GIS) format have been rapidly increasing over the past few years. GIS formatted products allow users to manipulate and display geographical information, such as topography, rivers, roads, population, etc. together with weather and climate data. In order to satisfy customer needs for improved climate information, CPC is transitioning its suite of climate monitoring, assessment, and forecast products into GIS format. This activity is directly related to CPC s mission to inform and serve the public. The objective of this project is to provide CPC data to customers in standard GIS format through an interactive, web-based system, as well as through direct data transfer. Our project and plans for the future will be described.

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M

Mauget, Steve
3810 4th Street
Lubbock, TX 79415
USA
Phone: 806-723-5237
Email: smauget@lbk.ars.usda.gov

Presentation type: Poster

Categorical Forecasts of Winter Season Precipitation for Agricultural Research and Resource Management

When used in modeling simulations, simple schemes to implicitly predict seasonal climate based on the phase of leading ENSO indicators can provide a way to study the effects of forecast information in agriculture and watershed management. However, the simple persistence-based methods that are frequently used may be limited in skill. Here, the skill of two 3-phase methods based on Niño 3 sea-surface temperature anomaly (SSTA) and Southern Oscillation Index (SOI) persistence are compared with that resulting from a statistical adaptation of a traditional two-tier forecast scheme. That approach first predicts Niño 3 seasonal SSTA, then converts those predictions to categorical hindcasts of seasonal precipitation over the continental U.S. via a simple phase translation process. The hindcasting problem used to conduct these comparisons is relevant to winter wheat production over the central United States: Given the state of seasonal Niño 3 and SOI indicators defined before August, the goal is to predict the tercile of following winter season (Nov.-Mar.) precipitation. In those areas where ENSO significantly effects winter precipitation, i.e., the Gulf Coast, the central and southern Plains, the Southwest, Northwest, and the Ohio River valley, the 3-phase method based on Niño 3 SSTA persistence provides spatially consistent hindcast skill. Although the 3-phase method based on SOI persistence performs poorly over most of those areas, it produces the best skill of both persistence and prediction-based methods over the Ohio River valley. Over the Gulf Coast and the northwest, prediction-based methods based on one of 3 SSTA prediction schemes consistently lead in skill. Hindcasts based on Niño 3 persistence is consistently skillful over the southwest, but prediction-based skill over many areas is higher over many areas. These results show that, outside of the Ohio River valley, hindcasts based on Niño 3 persistence are the more skillful of the two persistence-based method. However, the two-tier prediction based method provides higher skill over the northwest and those areas of the U.S. where ENSO precipitation teleconnections are strongest; i.e., the Gulf Coast region.

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Miles, Edward
Bloedel Professor of Marine Studies and Public Affairs
Co-Director, CSES/JISAO
University of Washington
Box 354235
Seattle, WA 98195
USA
Phone: 206-616-5348
Email: edmiles@u.washington.edu

Presentation type: Oral

Delivering Climate Services: Making Believers of a Skeptical User Community

It is now abundantly clear that delivering climate services involves much more than making forecasts. In fact, the most important parts of the job involve deeply interactive relationships with a wide variety of stakeholders who initially do not think your forecasts are useful to them in their particular situations and are skeptical that you have much to offer. The job turns out to be evolutionary and its crucial components turn out to be two-way communication, persistence, trust, education, and mutual learning. The presentation will be based on the eleven-year experience of the Climate Impacts Group at the University of Washington in an attempt to derive a strategic perspective applicable to the regional spatial scale in a nascent national climate service.

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Mo, Kingtse
Physical Scientist
Climate Prediction Center
5200 Auth Rd.
Camp Springs, MD 20746
USA
Phone: 301-763-8000 Ext 7540
Email: Kingtse.Mo@noaa.gov

Presentation type: Oral

Drought Monitoring Based on Multi-model Ensemble NLDAS

Drought monitoring is a part of the National Drought Information System. It informs decision makers the current hydrologic conditions and past history. A web page has been in operation to monitoring atmospheric and hydrologic conditions including soil moisture and temperature , snow conditions and runoff on the time scales from weekly to seasonal. The monitoring page is based on the North American Regional Reanalysis (RR) from 1979 to the present. The advantage is that the RR is an atmosphere-land coupled system. Therefore, the atmospheric conditions related to drought such as the moisture transport and total precipitable water are consistent with the land conditions.

The land conditions depend on model and input data. To estimate the reliability and errors of hydrologic conditions, many different land data assimilation systems (NLDAS) are needed. The EMC has just completed 10-yr four NLDAS systems: SAC, VIC, Noah and Mosaic. While there are large difference in total fields like soil moisture, anomalies with respect of the climatology of each given system are much closer. The ensemble means are more representative than each individual system. The differences can be viewed as the uncertainties. A new monitoring page will be established based on the ensemble means of NLDAS. Comments and suggestions from users will help us to design the web page.

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Murdock, Trevor
University of Victoria-Pacific Climate Impacts Consortium
199 Sedgewick
Victoria, BC V8W 2Y2
Canada
Email: TMurdock@uvic.ca

Presentation type: Oral

Regional Empirical Seasonal Climate Prediction

Trevor Murdock, Rick Lee, Dave Rodenhuis

Seasonal climate prediction as practiced by several national weather services and experimental forecast centers attempt to predict average conditions for large geographical areas. Regional differences are suppressed in favour of detecting major anomalies in temperature and precipitation that are a response to anomalous forecasting on a global scale. On the other hand, regional climate anomalies are also related to local conditions, as well as to global forcing. The Pacific Northwest of North America is attractive as a target for investigating regional climate prediction because of the relatively strong influence of the PNA and PDO variability.

In the 1990s the Canadian Institute for Climate Studies (CICS) contacted potential users of climate information and seasonal forecasts. User needs were examined from gas distribution, power generation, and agriculture. Three limiting factors were identified: a disappointment in forecast skill, a discrepancy in needed spatial coverage, and deficiency in utility of forecast variables.

Therefore, a prediction methodology was developed with the intention to improve the skill and to test the concept of regional empirical prediction (REP) of temperature on a seasonal time scale with lead times out to 3 seasons in advance. The methodology is based on multiple regression of North Pacific sea surface temperature, the primary indices of ENSO, and regional analogues from previous years. A forecast model was constructed and tested with cross validation for the period (1953-1992). For that period (40 years) skill scores from REP were compared with deterministic seasonal forecasts (26 years) with zero lead time. Selective improvement was evident, but the best scores were only 60% correct, and this occurred in the mountainous regions of BC and Alberta .

Subsequently, the REP was used to for experimental forecasting of temperature and precipitation for 11 years in the period (1996-2006). The skill of seasonal temperature prediction is evaluated for different lead times and different seasons. The circumstances are identified for which improved seasonal forecasts are possible, and user reactions to the forecast presentation are summarized.

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O
Osgood, Daniel
Associate Research Scientist in Economic Modeling and Climate
Columbia University IRI
61 Route 9W, Monell Building
Palisades, NY 10964-8000
USA
Phone: 845-680-4461
Email: deo@iri.columbia.edu

Presentation type: Oral

Index Insurance and Climate Risk Management in Malawi: Theory and Practice

This presentation will outline an index insurance system for smallholder farmers in Malawi, one of the first programs of its type. The insurance provides the backbone for a package of loans, groundnut, and maize inputs for smallholder farmers in Malawi, and is one of the few successfully established index insurance programs in the world. The insurance targets finance risk, allowing farmers access to loans, which, in turn provide access to inputs, and the cash necessary to pay for the insurance premium. The implementation will be discussed, as well as theoretical issues related to the program, centered on the interaction between insurance, seasonal forecasts and agricultural decision making.

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Owen, Tim
National Partnership Liaison
NOAA/NCDC
151 Patton Avenue
Asheville, NC 28801
USA
Phone: 828-271-4358
Email: Tim.Owen@noaa.gov

Presentation type: Oral

Development of a U.S. Drought Portal Under the National Integrated Drought Information System (NIDIS)

The National Integrated Drought Information System (NIDIS) was created to provide users with drought information and forecasts that facilitate effective preparation for and management of the effects of drought. The four key components of NIDIS are: (1) improved integrated observations and data systems and forecasts; (2) new tools for analysis and decision support; (3) coordinated monitoring, forecast, and impacts research and science; and (4) improved information dissemination and feedback.

All of these components are supported through the establishment of a U.S. Drought Portal (USDP). By definition, a portal is a site on the World Wide Web that typically provides personalized capabilities for visitors. The USDP will provide county, regional and national drought-related products (analysis, forecasts, and research-to-operations links) to a variety of users, ranging from individuals whose livelihood is impacted by drought to large corporations, water managers and the research community through a dynamic, Internet-based drought portal. For all of these users, access to a drought early warning system capable of providing accurate, timely, and integrated information describing drought conditions will be valuable.

This presentation will provide an update on USDP development and describe the goals of Phase I deployment, including:

Fulfillment of community need: The extended drought in the western U.S. over the past few years underscored the need for end-to-end drought information resources, which has been championed by the Western Governors' Association and other policymaking groups. Phase I deployment of USDP will begin to provide these resources and demonstrate the viability of NIDIS in future budget formulations.

USGEO obligations: NOAA’s success in contributing to the U.S. Group on Earth Observations (USGEO) and associated international obligations are predicated on demonstrated success in integration of climate information for thematic and sector-based uses. Phase I deployment of USDP will serve as a key deliverable to this end in the November 2007 South African meeting.

Leveraged collaboration: NOAA’s leadership in NIDIS provides a unique opportunity for the agency to substantially expand leveraging capabilities with numerous federal agencies (e.g., USDA, NASA, USGS, EPA BOR, USACE, etc.) and universities to understand, monitor, and predict drought. Phase I deployment of USDP will incorporate the U.S. Drought Monitor and other interagency activities under a single resource.

Branding NIDIS: Phase I USDP deployment will act as an attractor for understanding the comprehensiveness of drought-related issues and establishing a drought.gov presence with a unique look-and-feel that is meant to be the official national resource for drought information.

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P
Palmer, Richard
Professor
University of Washington
Box 352700
Seattle, WA 98195-2700
USA
Phone: 206-685-2658
Email: palmer@u.washington.edu

Presentation type: Oral

Planning for the Impacts of Climate Change on Municipal Water Supplies: Theory and Application

During the past two decades, the impact of climate change on municipal water supply systems has emerged as an important and active area of research. The most recent finding of the IPCC concludes that there has been a change in climate. Among the many impacts that are expected to occur, those associated with water resources are felt to be among the most important. Current planning paradigms suggest that integrated water resources planning (IWRP) is the most appropriate approach to defining water supply needs and availability. IWRP defines a holistic approach to the management of water systems combining water supply, water demand, water quality, environmental protection and enhancement, rate structures, financial planning, and public participation.

There are a variety of ways in which IWRP can incorporate climate change into water supply evaluations. These approaches range from very simple to extremely complex. Because most IWRP is long-range in nature, it is extremely important that such plans acknowledge the potential impacts of climate change and develop contingencies for coping with climate change. Four approaches for incorporating climate change into evaluating system performance are presented in this paper. These approaches range from simple modification of historic streamflow records to incorporation of the results of global circulation models. These approaches are characterized as: 1) detailed evaluations of past extreme events, 2) development regional climate change characteristics of meteorology, 3) development regional climate change characteristics of hydrology, and 4) development of comprehensive regional climate change assessments. There are uncertainties in the outputs of all of the approaches that must be addressed and quantified to the extent possible. Uncertainties associated with evaluating water supplies in the absence of climate change provide a frame of reference for the uncertainties associated with climate change.

This paper describes all of these approaches and provides examples of their application to water supply systems in the Pacific Northwest. The relative impacts of climate change on water supply performance is also compared to other challenges faced by water supply utilities including evaluating future demands, changes in service area and changes in environmental requirements.

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Palmer, Richard
Professor
University of Washington
Box 352700
Seattle, WA 98195-2700
USA
Phone: 206-685-2658
Email: palmer@u.washington.edu

Presentation type: Poster

Development of Climate Change Building Blocks for Use in Regional Planning

Austin Polebitski(1), Richard Palmer(2), Matthew Wiley(3), Courtney O'Neill(1), Ben Enfield(1), Kathleen King(1), and Lee Traynham(1)

For engaged stakeholders and city, county, state, and tribal governments to plan for and address the potential impacts of climate change, it is imperative that decision makers develop an understanding of the likely impacts of global warming and strive to communicate these impacts to the public with a common vocabulary. This can be extremely difficult due to the intricacies of the physical processes that underlie climate change, to the limited education the general public receives in the basic sciences, to the evolving nature of our understanding of climate change, and to the more general challenge of communicating complex, scientific issues. Despite these challenges the development of a basic appreciation of the potential impacts of climate change is necessary to adequately plan for the future.

A three county, water supply planning process in Western Washington has identified the need to distill the vast body of literature on climate change that is available into a series of simple building blocks that can be used to educate and inform the general public and stakeholders and decision makers. The goal of this effort was to identify the most salient observations that have been made in the peer reviewed literature during the past two decades of research. This information will be used to identify what is known at a global, regional, and watershed level in regards to the impacts of climate change on water resources.

This paper describes the process by which the thirteen building blocks were constructed and the sources of information that were used. The primary areas that are addressed include climate change impacts on temperature, precipitation, snowpack and glaciers, streamflows, sea level, and on salmonid habitat and populations. The participants in this process represented a wide range of government organizations, and the participants began the process with varying ranges of formal background in the subject. Through a series of facilitated workshops, the group was able to arrive at the building blocks that are now being used to help incorporate climate change impacts into regional water supply planning.

(1) Graduate Research Assistant, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Box 352700, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195-2700 (2) Professor, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Box 352700, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195-2700
(3) Engineer, 3Tier Environmental Forecast Group, 2001 Sixth Avenue, Suite 2100, Seattle, WA 98121

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Palmer, Richard
Professor
University of Washington
Box 352700
Seattle, WA 98195-2700
USA
Phone: 206-685-2658
Email: palmer@u.washington.edu

Presentation type: Poster

Impacts of Climate Change on Salmon in the Snohomish River Basin

Richard N. Palmer(1), Matthew W. Wiley(2), James Battin(3), and Mary H. Ruckelshaus(3)

There have been substantial efforts made in the Pacific Northwest, as well as in many other locations throughout the U.S., to restore aquatic habitats for fish. These efforts have come in the form of alternating the operations of major hydropower facilities, providing fish ladders, limiting changes in land-use, and maintaining environmental flows in major rivers. A missing component in these efforts is to estimate the impacts that climate change may have on natural water systems, as well as identifying alternative management strategies for managed water systems. Using a series of loosely-linked models of climate, land cover, hydrology, and salmon population dynamics, we investigated the impacts of climate change on proposed habitat restoration efforts designed to recover depleted Chinook salmon populations in a Pacific Northwest river basin. Two general circulation models (GCMs) were used to estimate the potential impacts of climate change. Both GCM runs use the A2 emissions scenario. Three periods were investigated, the decades surrounding 2000, 2025, and 2050. A spatially distributed hydrology model (DHSVM) was used to generate climate impacted streamflows using the downscaled climate information and watershed characteristics, such as elevation, slope, soils, and vegetative cover.

Model results indicate a large, negative impact on freshwater salmon habitat due to climate change. These negative impacts were characterized by higher winter flows, lower summer flows, and warmer stream temperatures during low flow seasons. Habitat restoration and protection can help to mitigate the negative effects of climate change and may even allow populations to increase in the face of climate change. The habitat deterioration associated with climate change will, however, make salmon recovery targets much more difficult to attain. Because the negative impacts of climate change are projected to be most pronounced in relatively pristine high elevation streams (where little restoration is possible), climate change and habitat restoration together are projected to cause a spatial shift in salmon abundance. If climate warming continues as expected, salmon recovery plans that enhance mid- and lower- river habitat are likely to be more successful over the next 50 years than those that rely heavily on production from high-elevation, snowmelt-dominated basins.

(1) Professor, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Box 352700, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195-2700
(2) Matthew Wiley, 3Tier Environmental Forecast Group, 2001 Sixth Avenue, Suite 2100, Seattle, WA 98121
(3) National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Northwest Fisheries Science Center, 2725 Montlake Blvd. E., Seattle, WA 98112

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Palmer, Richard
Professor
University of Washington
Box 352700
Seattle, WA 98195-2700
USA
Phone: 206-685-2658
Email: palmer@u.washington.edu

Presentation type: Poster

Climate Change Database for Water Resource Planning in the Puget Sound

Courtney O'Neill(1), Austin Polebitski(1), and Richard Palmer(2)

A necessary ingredient of any regional water resources planning process is open and convenient access to the data upon which analyses and recommendations are based. In the realm of climate change, this has been a challenge, as the science of climate change is relatively new, established protocols for analysis do not exist in all areas, and data sources are evolving. Without such access, the development of consensus for appropriate actions can be difficult. To address this challenge in a particular planning study, a prototype database was created. The database provides a consistent set of meteorological and hydrological data that can be applied in water resource evaluations in the future. In this study, data have been generated to estimate forecasted impacts of climate change using three different General Circulation Models (GCMs) that include two emission scenarios, for time periods associated with the years 2000, 20205, 2050, and 2075. The regional scale climate data have been derived from GCM simulations that were downscaled to local station points in the Puget Sound region. This downscaled climate data can then be used in simulations to evaluate the impacts of climate change on water resource impacts.

To facilitate the usefulness of this data for decision making, the data are organized and warehoused in a SQL database that is web accessible. Access to the database is facilitated by a user interface that was developed with the guidance of decision makers that are participating in the regional planning process. The primary objectives of the database and webpage are to:

  • Provide access to precipitation, temperature, and streamflow data at pseudo weather stations and pseudo stream stations for climate impacted periods, including 2000, 2025, 2050, 2075;
  • Provide interactive graphic and analysis tools for illustrating the trends of precipitation, temperature, and streamflow at specific stations; and
  • Provide interactive graphic and analysis tools for illustrating regional trends of precipitation, temperature, and streamflow.

(1) Graduate Research Assistant, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, , Box 352700, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195-2700 (2) Professor, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Box 352700 , University of Washington , Seattle , WA 98195-2700

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Perfect, Diana
NOAA National Weather Service
1325 East-West Hwy Stn 13380
Silver Spring, MD 20910-3283
USA
Phone: 301-713-1970 X 132
Email: diana.perfect@noaa.gov

Presentation type: Poster

Status Report on NWS Climate Services and Plans for the Future

Since 2001, NOAA's National Weather Service (NWS) has been working with partners and other NOAA components to establish an integrated climate services program that satisfies user requirements at national, regional, and local levels. Significant progress has been made in many areas. Standardized climate web pages have been implemented at the local level, providing easy access to new locally specific climate forecasts and to new climate data products. An on-going training program prepares NWS field staff for delivery of climate services and various tools are being developed to support their role in creating new climate products. To improve data stewardship, new Quality Assurance/Quality Control tools have also been developed for field office use, along with a web site addressing data continuity. Future plans include development of additional training and tools for field offices, additional new products and services for the public, and strategies for improved data stewardship.

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Pulwarty, Roger
NOAA/OAR/Climate Program Office
CIRES/CDC
216 UCB
Office No.: DSRC 1D111
Boulder, CO 80305
USA
Phone: 303-497-4425
Email: Roger.Pulwarty@noaa.gov

Presentation type: Oral

Implementing the National Integrated Drought Information System

The National Integrated Drought Information System (NIDIS) is intended to provide early warning information on drought risk and impacts in the 21st century and to better enable society to respond to periods of sustained drought. The Western Governors Association report, "Creating a Drought Early Warning System for the 21st Century: The National Integrated Drought Information System (2004)" was generated in order to improve the way the U.S. prepares for and responds to drought. It was clear to the report developers that they and the broader public were not being served to full potential by present mechanisms. The report called for a NOAA-led interagency effort to improve drought monitoring and forecasting, consolidation of physical/hydrological and socioeconomic impacts data and research, a suite of drought decision support and simulation tools, and interactive delivery of standardized products through an internet portal. This report has been followed by the signing of the NIDIS authorization Bill in December 2006, the development of an implementation strategy for the NIDIS, and the identification of near-term opportunities under the US-GEO. The vision for NIDIS is a dynamic and accessible drought information system that provides users with the ability to determine the potential impacts of drought across temporal and spatial scales, estimate the associated risks, and develop usable decision support tools needed to better prepare for and mitigate the effects of drought. In implementation, the NIDIS is intended to develop the leadership and partnerships to ensure successful implementation, and standardized products (databases, forecasts, GIS-based products, maps, etc.) to inform these partnerships. To this end the NIDIS provides a framework for interacting with and educating those affected by drought on how and why droughts occur, how they impact human and natural systems, and what mitigative actions can be undertaken, i.e. to be an information system in addition to providing coordinated forecasts. Most importantly, the NIDIS will focus on coordinating at-present disparate federal, state and local drought early warning monitoring, forecasting, and risk scenario generation. As part of this effort the NIDIS seeks to act as a clearinghouse for already existing innovations at a variety of scales (national, regional, watersheds, states, county) and to facilitate the diffusion of such innovations to other locations. These are, in principle, key aspects of any services-oriented system.

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R
Ray, Andrea
NOAA/ESRL
325 Broadway
Boulder, CO 80305
USA
Phone: 303-497-6434
Email: andrea.ray@noaa.gov

Presentation type: Oral

Lessons Learned from the 2000s Western Drought: Evolving Linkages Between Research and Activities

The Western Water Assessment (WWA), one of eight NOAA/OGP funded Regional Integrated Sciences and Assessments, started just prior to the inception of what has become a multi-year drought across much of the Intermountain West. This talk will describe lessons learned in the delivery of experimental climate services during this drought period, with experiences drawn from user studies and other activities targeting a variety of stakeholders. Stakeholders include municipal water suppliers, conservation and conservancy districts, and federal and state agencies that manage water and conduct policy and planning activities.

WWA has conducted user studies of, delivered experimental products to, and developed partnerships with a variety of different types of stakeholders. Service-related activities include a regularly-produced Climate Summary and several other climate products, reports, and other resources available on a webpage. WWA has also hosted workshops where scientists and policymakers and planners interact, and participated in several policy and planning fora. We also interact with several of the stakeholders' own networks, for example, the Colorado Water Availability Task force and several water management technical groups.

The drought has raised the level of interest in climate information in general, and highlights the need to provide drought information in a larger context of climate and climate-sensitive information. We have found evidence that stakeholders are bringing more and different types of climate and climate-sensitive information across planning timescales, and that the types of research by scientists have evolved in response to co-defined stakeholder needs. Mechanisms for successful delivery of information are not as simple as providing information on a webpage. Based on these experimental climate services, linkages between science and services have evolved within WWA and may provide useful lessons for climate services design and on the role of climate information in adaptive management in general. This presentation will discuss what WWA is learning from these diverse projects and how this is influencing the ongoing development of WWA and our stakeholder network.

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Reading, Don
Consulting Economist for the Climate Impacts Group
Ben Johnson Associates
6070 Hill Road
Boise, ID 83703
USA
Phone: 208-342-1700
Email: dreading@mindspring.com

Presentation type: Oral

Water and Economic Effects of Climate Change in the Snake Basin

Richard Slaughter and Don Reading, Climate Impacts Group

The Snake Basin Impact Model has been developed to examine climate change impacts on water demand, irrigated agriculture, and local economies in the Snake Basin in Idaho. Irrigated agriculture and aquaculture together account for 98.6% of water withdrawals in southern Idaho (13.3 MAF in 2005), and approximately 95% of consumptive use (4 MAF in 2005). Total withdrawals are over 3 times annual flow above Milner Dam, the first irrigation dam built (privately) on the middle Snake, and some 65% greater than annual flow below the Thousand Springs (the major outlet from the Snake Plain Aquifer). Because irrigation rights at Milner exceed the total flow during the summer in most years, almost all surface water for all uses below Milner consists of return flows and outflow from the Aquifer.

The model is used to examine the effects of climate change on irrigation and other supply. These effects include changes in cropping patterns, changes in the seasonality of flow, and secondary impacts on employment and gross revenue in the seventeen counties bordering the Snake. Climate and hydrologic input is from the Variable Infiltration Capacity (VIC) model of the Climate Impacts Group.

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Redmond, Kelly
Regional Climatologist
DRI / WRCC
2215 Raggio Parkway
Reno, NV 89512-1095
USA
Phone: 775-674-7011
Email: kelly.redmond@dri.edu

Presentation type: Oral

Climate Monitoring Indices in Regions of Topographic Diversity

In anticipation of the potential consequences of climate change, California has undertaken an ambitious effort to better understand the physical behavior of climate and to proactively engage in mitigation and adaptation strategies. In spite of the extensive attention this issue has received, however, there is no definitive and regulated update on the status of state climate, and in particular on whether the predicted warming has begin to occur. The state encompasses a wide diversity of climatic provinces (Great Basin, temperate rain forest, interior valley, coastal, mountain, and desert) and there is no particular reason to expect that these will all vary through time in the same way, in response to either natural or anthropogenic forcings. Local and regional effects may contribute (upwelling, irrigation, urban heat islands, aerosol loading) to different rates of warming (or cooling). Temporal behavior may differ depending on geography, season, and element (max or min temperature, precipitation). Sharp climate gradients can produce very different time series from sites in close proximity. A set of about 200 stations were selected from the period 1949-2006. Inter-relationships among these stations were examined, and data gaps were filled within homogeneous data segments identified through several change detection techniques. Spatio-temporal patterns were identified via cluster analysis and principal component approaches. The techniques employed may also have considerable utility for quality control of climate data. Methods were developed to combine elements. These procedures were repeated with the time series version of monthly PRISM data from 1895-2005. From all of these, about a dozen regions were delineated. These form the basis for computing statewide and sub-state areal average values. The process was designed to function in an operational environment subject to disruption and data loss or corruption. Statewide temperature averages do have some meaning. The state is indeed warming, faster for minimums than maximums. A number of comparisons will be shown. These values will be henceforth updated each month, for use by the press, the political process, and policy makers, and by the research community.

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Roads, John
Experimental Climate Prediction Center, UCSD
9500 Gilman Dr
San Diego, CA 92093
USA
Phone: 858-534-2099
Email: jroads@ucsd.edu

Presentation type: Oral

Experimental Monthly to Seasonal Ensemble Fire Danger Forecasts

John Roads(1), Patrick Tripp(1), Henry Juang(2), Jun Wang(2), Shyh Chen(3), and Francis Fujioka(3)

Predicting the influence of weather on fire ignition and spread is an operational requirement for national and global fire planning by the US National Interagency Coordination Center (NICC), which is the nation's centralized support center for wildland firefighting. Current seasonal forecasts are made by considering standard National Weather Service (NWS) seasonal forecast products of temperature and precipitation along with other indicators, and carefully exercised human judgment. By contrast, nowcasts of fire danger potential at individual locations have been carried out for decades at individual station locations using the US Forest Service (USFS) National Fire Danger Rating System (NFDRS) indices, which describe the effects of local topography, fuels and weather on fire potential. Our long term goal, therefore, has been to show that a state of the art dynamical long-range global to regional prediction system could skillfully predict seasonal variations in the NFDRS indices in the hopes that weekly to seasonal dynamical forecasts could eventually be automatically provided by NCEP to NICC predictive services.

We are currently using the National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP's) Climate Forecast System (CFS) global forecasts along with the NCEP Regional Spectral Model (RSM) forecasts to construct these global to regional US fire danger forecasts. The specific objectives of our work are to: (1) augment and utilize CFS output to generate needed input variables for the NFDRS firedanger code; (2) subsequently transfer the firedanger code to NCEP for operational implementation; (3) and to continue on with our overall long- term goal to augment CFS forecasts with higher resolution regional forecasts, which may provide significantly increased skill in certain regions, and which may then eventually encourage NCEP to develop similar high resolution operational additions to the current large-scale CFS.

(1) Experimental Climate Prediction Center, UCSD, 0224, La Jolla, CA, jroads@ucsd.edu
(2) NCEP, Camp Springs, MD, Henry.Juang@noaa.gov,jun.wang@noaa.gov
(3) US Forest Service, Riverside, CA, schen@fs.fed.us, ffujioka@fs.fed.us

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Rosenberg, Eric
Research Assistant
University of Washington
173 Wilcox, Box 352700
Seattle, Washington 98195
USA
Phone: 206-543-6272
Email: ericrose@u.washington.edu

Presentation type: Poster

Improving Water Resources Management in the Western United States Through Use of Remote Sensing Data and Seasonal Climate Forecasts

Although recent technological advances in remote sensing have resulted in improvements to seasonal climate forecasting, many of the products and tools that have been developed are not as fully utilized by water managers as they might be. This study uses NASA remote sensing data and hydrologic/climate prediction modeling in a partnership with three operational water management agencies: the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, which provides seasonal streamflow forecasts over most of the west; the US Bureau of Reclamation, which has decision authority within the Klamath River basin; and the California Department of Water Resources, which has decision authority for much of the Sacramento River basin. NASA research results of two types are being investigated for adaptation and use by water management agencies. The first is Earth Observing System MODIS products, including those that characterize snow cover extent, evapotranspiration (from which crop water use is estimated), and reservoir surface temperature (a key variable for estimation of reservoir evaporation), and AMSR-E snow water equivalent tools. The second involves NASA’s experimental seasonal climate forecasts, which are produced by the GMAO model and already utilized in UW’s west wide seasonal hydrologic forecast system. A primary outcome of the study will be improved predictions of snowmelt runoff for more efficient reservoir operations.

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S
Schneider, Jeanne
Research Meteorologist
USDA ARS Grazinglands Research Laboratory
7207 West Cheyenne St.
El Reno, OK 73040
USA
Phone: 405-262-5291, ext. 251
Email: jeanne.schneider@ars.usda.gov

Presentation type: Oral

The Impact of Downscaling on Forecast Dependability: The Rest of the Story

The goal of this analysis was to provide guidance as to whether to proceed further or not along our path toward application of the NOAA/CPC climate forecasts to achieve risk reduction in agricultural management. It was a practical approach to answer a practical question: whether enough forecast signal survives our downscaling methodology to provide potentially useful information at the field and monthly scale to use in crop models to predict climate forecast impacts. Average correlations were computed between the sign of departures of 3-month forecast division values versus 1-month station values over a 10 year study period and 96 stations in six regions of the U.S. The resulting correlations did not display any consistent differences across regions or months. Average correlations over all 96 stations and months were 76% for average temperature, and 66% for total precipitation. These percentages are used as a multiplicative factor on 3-month forecast division reliability values to produce estimates of the net reliability for downscaled forecasts at locations. The resulting guidance is dependent on region and forecast variable, with the forecasts for above average temperature emerging as worthy of consideration over 76% of the contiguous U.S. The Northeast, the Great Lakes, parts of the Northern Great Plains, interior California and northwest Nevada are the only regions with insufficient net dependability to preclude immediate consideration. Conversely, forecasts for cooler than average temperature do not retain sufficient net dependability after downscaling to be an attractive option in any part of the contiguous U.S. Forecasts for wetter or drier than average conditions retained sufficient net dependability to encourage further development over only about 10% of the contiguous U.S., in regions well-known to experience the strongest ENSO impacts on precipitation. These lucky few forecast divisions are located in Florida, south Texas, southwest New Mexico, Arizona, central and southern California, and parts of Oregon, Washington, Idaho, and Montana.

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Schneider, Jeanne
Research Meteorologist
USDA ARS Grazinglands Research Laboratory
7207 West Cheyenne St.
El Reno, OK 73036
USA
Phone: 405-262-5291, ext. 251
Email: jeanne.schneider@ars.usda.gov

Presentation type: Oral

One Path from Climate Forecasts to Climate-Informed Decision Support for Agriculture

While it is clear that climate forecasts offer information that could potentially reduce risk in agricultural operations, those risk reductions will not be achieved by just handing off downscaled climate forecasts to agricultural extension agents. Much more is required to transform any reliable forecast signal into useful climate-informed guidance for agricultural producers in the U.S. A USDA/ARS research team has been developing an overarching approach to this problem since 1999, and are now testing the methodologies developed to effect this transformation of information. This paper will review their approach and plans, including an assessment of the roles that could be played by agriculture extension services, their associated research universities, and state and regional producer groups.

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Shafer, Mark
Director of Climate Information
Oklahoma Climatological Survey
120 David L. Boren Blvd, Suite 2900
Norman, OK 72072-7305
USA
Phone: 405-325-3044
Email: mshafer@ou.edu

Presentation type: Oral

Building Partnerships in Oklahoma

The Oklahoma Climatological Survey has long had strong relationships with several key stakeholders, but in recent years, efforts to expand partnerships to new groups and to more local levels have increased. This presentation will describe OCS use of both formal training programs, workshops, public venues and informal interactions that improve the flow of climate information to state decision-makers.

The presentation will focus on major initiatives in the past year:

  • Move to the National Weather Center - the new facilities place OCS directly across the hall from the NWS Forecast Office, increasing interaction and coordination of information. OCS also houses the Mesonet's agriculture outreach program, including two members of the Cooperative Extension Service.
  • Field Days - OCS planned and participated in ScienceFest, a one-day outdoor classroom at the Oklahoma City zoo, and WeatherFest, a demonstration of weather technology by NOAA and University organizations.
  • Insurance - OCS co-hosted a workshop with the state’s Insurance Department focused on climate and loss mitigation. OCS brought together experts in the field of climatology, hazards, climate change, and risk to educate insurance agents about climate-related hazards and how these may shift with climate change.
  • Public Safety - OCS continued its efforts to broaden its OK-FIRST program. New partnerships with North Carolina emerged, along with exchange visits with New Jersey and Kentucky that helped to share experiences and knowledge. Replication efforts were supported through the Innovations in American Government program.
  • Electric Cooperatives - During the January 12-14 ice storm, OCS personnel assured a direct conduit for information from the NWS Forecast Offices in Norman and Tulsa to the electric cooperatives, including NWS development of special graphics and information to meet the needs of utility crews.
  • Drought Monitoring - OCS continued to operate its real-time drought monitoring pages, which proved to be critical sources of information during a 2-year-long event, the most severe in fifty years. The information helped Oklahoma state agencies effectively manage the drought events and appeared frequently in the local media.

The process of making these types of linkages and barriers to interaction will be examined.

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Shukla, Shraddhanand
Graduate Student
University of Washington
173 Wilcox Hall, Box 352700
Seattle, WA 98195-2700
USA
Email: shrad@hydro.washington.edu

Presentation type: Poster

Applications of Medium Range to Seasonal/Interannual Climate Forecasts for Water Resources Management in the Yakima River Basin, Washington State

This project focuses on the uses and value of climate forecasts for the Yakima River Basin, whose irrigated crops represent the largest agricultural value in the state. The Yakima River system supplies the primary inflows for a multi-reservoir project that is managed to support irrigation, environmental flows, and hydropower production. The US Bureau of Reclamation (USBR) coordinates water allocations and reservoir operations based on evolving storage levels and forecasts of summer streamflow. Streamflow forecasts are currently taken from several sources, including regression-based predictions from the NWS and NRCS, and internally generated Ensemble Streamflow Prediction outputs from an MMS hydrology model. The University of Washington is collaborating with the USBR to evaluate the uses of experimental streamflow forecasts that are derived from medium to long lead climate forecasts from NCEP and CPC, and generated by a water and energy balance land surface model, VIC, that was developed as part of the NOAA/NASA NLDAS initiative. This presentation/poster summarizes two aspects of this project: (1) the hydrological monitoring and prediction system implemented for Washington State at 1/16 degree resolution using VIC, and (2) the perspectives expressed by water users on the application and potential value of climate forecasts.

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Ssemwanga, Francis
MSC-Researcher
Makerere University Institute of Environment and Natural Resources (MUIENR)
PO Box 7062
Kampala, East Africa 215
Uganda
Phone: -315.0003901
Email: swmngfrancis@yahoo.com

Presentation type: Poster

Community Predictions of Climate Change in Kabale Highlands, Southwestern Uganda

Ecosystem degradation is accelerating climate change in many parts of the world, leading to rapidly changing environmental conditions favouring the evolution of disasters and spread of disease. Studies conducted over the past century show an increase in global temperature by 5°C. Furthermore, the local media reported that L. Tanganyika in Tanzania, East Africa experienced an increase in temperature by 0.6°C, which caused some fish to disappear. It also reported that climate change has been associated with increased malaria and cholera in the East African highlands. Highly populated and fragmented, Kabale highlands have undergone ecosystem change over the past 100 years. I used focused group discussions to collect data and descriptive statistics for analysis. People reported increased prevalence of malaria, resulting from climate being much warmer than 100 years ago, during which natural vegetation covered the highlands. Currently all these have been reclaimed, by wetland degradation and deforestation, in a bid to establish the town centre and agricultural land in the peri-urban areas. People reported, that before the town centre was established and when agriculture was at such a small scale, there was no malaria, as temperatures were too cold for mosquito survival. Currently, malaria is endemic, and the Government has instituted control Programs to avert the situation. However, there is a need to employ more advanced climate change prediction measures to supplement the predictions by the local communities, in order to develop more effective mitigation measures.

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Steinemann, Anne
Professor
University of Washington
Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering
Seattle, WA 98195-2700
USA
Phone: 206-616-2661
Email: acstein@u.washington.edu

Presentation type: Oral

Using Climate Forecasts for Drought Management

Drought hazards, and the ability to mitigate them with advance warning, offer potentially valuable applications of climate forecast products. Yet the value is often untapped, owing to the gap between climate science and societal decisions. This study bridged that gap; it determined forecast needs among water managers, translated forecasts to meet those needs, and shaped drought decision making to take advantage of forecasts. NOAA Climate Prediction Center (CPC) seasonal precipitation outlooks were converted into a forecast precipitation index (FPI) tailored for water managers in the southeastern United States. The FPI expresses forecasts as a departure from the climatological normal and is consistent with other drought indicators. Evaluations of CPC seasonal forecasts issued during 1995-2000 demonstrated positive skill for drought seasons in the Southeast. In addition, using evaluation criteria of water managers, 88% of forecasts for drought seasons would have appropriately prompted drought responses. Encouraged by these evaluations, and the understandability of the FPI, state water managers started using the forecasts in 2001 for deciding whether to pay farmers to suspend irrigation. Economic benefits of this forecast information were estimated at $100-$350 million in a state-declared drought year (2001, 2002) and $5-$30 million in the other years (2003, 2004). This study provides four main contributions: 1) an investigation of the needs and potential benefits of seasonal forecast information for water management, 2) a method for translating the CPC forecasts into a format needed by water managers, 3) the integration of forecast information into agency decision making, and 4) the economic valuation of that forecast information.

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Svoboda, Mark
Climatologist
National Drought Mitigation Center
3310 Holdrege St./815 Hardin Hall
Lincoln, NE 68583-0988
USA
Phone: 402-472-8238
Email: msvoboda2@unl.edu

Presentation type: Oral

The High-Cost Hazard: Monitoring Drought and its Impacts

Despite its frequent occurrence and widespread effects, drought continues to be under-respected among natural hazards. To better understand and monitor drought, we need to improve our understanding of how, when, and where droughts leave their marks. Thus, a comprehensive, integrated drought monitoring system is an essential and fundamental part of any early warning system. In addition to monitoring the usual physical hydrological parameters (soil, atmosphere, water), such a system should also place an emphasis on monitoring and collecting impact information. By doing so, we can better target areas where we are vulnerable, or more at risk.

Such an effort will depend heavily on partnerships. In 2004, the Western Governors' Association in the United States endorsed the National Integrated Drought Information System (NIDIS), which has recently been passed into law as H.R.5136. The NIDIS Act of 2006 (under the direction of DOC/NOAA) calls for the development of better drought monitoring, assessment, and prediction and also refers specifically to a need for better drought impact reporting and documentation.

The past decade has seen tremendous growth (both spatially and temporally) in our capacity to monitor drought in the United States. Improved technology/tools through increased computing capabilities, satellite technology, automated data retrieval, finer resolution models, and Geographic Information Systems (GIS) have helped to improve our ability to provide early warning for drought in near real-time.

Although NIDIS is a newcomer to the scene, its concept is not new. The National Drought Mitigation Center (NDMC) has been working to enhance and develop several new tools through our partnerships with NOAA, USDA, USGS, the Regional Climate Centers, RISAs and many others. This paper will look at some of these tools/products and how they are integrated into our current drought monitoring, assessment, and early warning approach, and what leveraging role they may play in helping build NIDIS.

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T
Tanaka, Shotaro
Scientific Officer
Japan Meteorological Agency
1-3-4 Otemachi, Chiyoda-ku
Tokyo 100-8122
Japan
Email: jmayt720@yahoo.co.jp

Presentation type: Poster

Experimental service of early warning on extreme temperature events in Japan

In order to mitigate negative impacts of climate-related disasters on socio-economic activities, JMA is taking actions toward the issue of the climate early warning information on the possibility of the occurrence of significantly high or low temperature events with one to two week lead-time. The significant temperature is defined as an event whose probability of the occurrence in climatological normal is 10%. The official provision of the information is scheduled to start in March 2008 after one-year experimental issue.

In the experimental issue, it is planed that the early warning information is provided to specific organizations with the potential of utilizing probabilistic forecast information (hereafter, called “cooperative organizations” when the occurrence of the significant temperature event is predicted with 20% or more. The information is composed of briefly descriptive information and probabilistic forecast information. The probabilistic forecast is derived for climatological divisions and major observation points from JMA’s ensemble one-month prediction with 50 members and is presented with exceedance probability and/or probabilistic density function. The ensemble prediction is routinely updated two times a week for the experiment, not depending on the likelihood of the occurrence of the target events. It is expected that the early warning information is used for paddy rice production management, applied to wheat growth model and incorporated into the planning of electric supply through the participation of agricultural organizations and electric power companies.

Through the one-year experiment, the contents, suitability and provisional measures of the early warning information are evaluated in various aspects, in collaboration with the cooperative organizations. In official operation from March 2008, it is planed that the information is disseminated to the public and examples of the application obtained through the experiment are made open in order to expand and facilitate the application of the information.

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Timofeyeva, Marina
UCAR and NOAA National Weather Service
1325 Eastwest Hwy
Silver Spring, MD 20816
USA
Phone: 301-713-1970 ext 131
Email: Marina.Timofeyeva@noaa.gov

Presentation type: Oral

Incorporating Customer Feedback in NWS Local Climate Outlook Products

Marina Timofeyeva(1) and Michael Brewer(2)

NOAA National Weather Service (NWS) introduced a new experimental Local 3-Month Temperature Outlook (L3MTO) for the U.S. in 2006 July. The product utilizes multiple presentation formats, including four types of graphics, numeric text tables, definitions, and interpretation and navigation information. L3MTO also includes a customer evaluation and feedback form. The form consists of 8 questions including two questions on L3MTO identification and communication method; three questions identifying the user; and three questions related to improving the L3MTO. Feedback was collected for 31 days during which NWS received 91 responses. The majority of respondents (48%) were from western and northern states (all postal zip codes having the first digits 5, 8 and 9). Overall the collected feedback indicated that L3MTO made a positive impression on local NWS customers. Collected recommendations were itemized and appropriate actions to address each item were identified.

Important survey findings included the following facts:

  • The majority of L3MTO users (64%) identified their use as "Personal"; the second largest user category was "Business" (13%)
  • 81% of respondents intended to use L3MTO products again
  • 19% of respondents provided positive L3MTO evaluations
  • 24% provided suggestions to improve L3MTO
  • 33% provided suggestions on developing new NWS climate products and services.

The customer suggestions identified frequent requests for local monthly outlooks, precipitation outlook, trend information, observed data alternative for climate outlook information, and use of larger fonts. Six respondents identified barriers for L3MTO effective use as possible low skill of the product and difficulties to use it. L3MTO operational release (January 2007) addressed these comments.

(1) University Corporation for Atmospheric Research
(2) NOAA National Weather Service

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W
Weyman, James
Director/Meteorologist in Charge
Pacific ENSO Application Climate Center
2525 Correa Road Suite 250
Honolulu, HI 96822-2219
USA
Phone: 808-973-5272
Email: james.weyman@noaa.gov

Presentation type: Oral

The Pacific Climate Information System (PaCIS): A Programmatic Framework for Integrated, Comprehensive Climate Information to Decision Makers

The Pacific Climate Information System (PaCIS) provides a programmatic, comprehensive framework to integrate ongoing and future climate observations, operational climate forecasts, research, assessment, data management and outreach/education to address the needs of American Flag and U.S.-Affiliated Pacific Islands. Part of the plan is to have PaCIS serve as a United States contribution to the World Meteorological Organization's Regional Association V Regional Climate Centre.

The vision of PaCIS is resilient and sustainable Pacific communities using climate information to manage risks and support practical decision-making in the context of climate variability and change. The PaCIS mission includes: 1) clarifying climate information needs to guide climate education, outreach, user information needs, observations, products, services, research and assessment; 2) translating research and assessment results into useful climate information; 3) interpreting global and regional climate forecasts for local applications; and 4) enhancing regional and local capabilities to manage risks and support sustainable development. To address these mission objectives, PaCIS will implement three program elements: 1) Education, Outreach and User Information Needs; 2) Operational Climate Observations, Products and Services; and 3) Research and Assessment. Future planning for a number of U.S. Pacific climate programs, including observing systems, will be organized in the context of PaCIS.

Steering Committee membership includes representatives of institutions and programs working in climate observations, science, assessment and services in the Pacific as well as selected individuals in similar regional climate science and service programs in other regions. The PaCIS Steering Committee will provide a forum for sharing knowledge and experience and guiding the development and implementation of PaCIS. Working groups will design and guide activities and work plans to implement each of the three program element with representatives from relevant organizations, programs, and institutions.

The Steering Committee has met once to refine and clarify some of the ideas and direction associated with PaCIS. The first draft of the PaCIS Action Plan, the Steering Committee Terms of Reference (TOR), and the working groups TORs has been disseminated. A meeting of the Steering Group is planned for summer 2007 to finalize the PaCIS Action Plan, approve the TORs, and to prepare initial work plans for the working groups.

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Wiener, John
Research Associate, Environment and Society, Institute of Behavioral Science
University of Colorado
Campus Box 468
Boulder, CO 80309-0468
USA
Phone: 303-492-6746
Email: John.Wiener@Colorado.edu

Presentation type: Oral

Adaptation or Hazard Response? Concern with Narrow Applications in Water Management

In the field of Natural Hazards, "restoration to vulnerability" as a policy choice is lamented where the immediate impacts are addressed but not the whole causal sequence that created vulnerability. Drought response in the US West, in particular, has generally sought alleviation of economic injury, but has not been strongly linked to policy which would increase resilience. Some policies favoring resilience may be counteracted by drought responses. The new climate information applications have increased opportunity to inform responses, especially in preparedness and planning, but in the topical area of small-scale water management it appears that excellent responses to narrowly-defined problems may not promote adaptation to the full range of problems arising from change away from relatively stationary climate. In terms of human interests, water management for the benefit of some but not all affected interests may result in perpetuating or increasing problems with wetlands, riparian habitats and dependent species including locals and migratory species, problems with invasive species management, and with recreational and amenity interests. Resilience to extremes may be increased by fuller inclusion of interests in decision-making, and increased support for public interests. Disregard of the full set of expectations may also have price effects, because no current agricultural water use yields more than municipal users will pay, but the municipal demand exceeds agricultural use and potential supply, so water prices are not apparently affecting demand to transfer water. Instead, reliability and location of water rights determine desirability. The buyers likely pay less where supply is presumed to be much greater than demand, and where potential realization of demand is not encouraged by law or policy. This may influence preferences about acknowledging or anticipating thresholds or limits on transferability. In turn, the disregard of the full set of current expectations about climate change may be fostering narrow climate information applications such as those promoted by the presenter, to his chagrin.

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Wiley, Matthew
Research Hydrologist
3Tier
2001 Sixth Avenue, Suite 2100
Seattle, WA 98121
USA
Phone: 206.325.1573 x134
Email: mwwiley@3tiergroup.com

Presentation type: Oral

How Good are Those Forecasts Anyway? An Interactive Tool to Assess Seasonal Forecast Skill in the Columbia River Basin

Matthew Wiley and Bart Nijssen, 3TIER

Lack of time and place specific forecast verification information is a major barrier to more widespread use of seasonal stream flow forecasts. To increase the usefulness of our seasonal streamflow forecasts, we have developed a hindcast archive to assess past forecast performance in the Columbia River Basin. This information can then be presented alongside each forecast in a consistent and user-friendly format. Our vision for our long-range forecasting system is an interactive web application that will allow users in the water resource, energy and financial sectors to generate place and time specific forecasts as well as the associated verification information necessarily for evaluating the quality of the forecasts.

Development of the forecast verification interface is ongoing. The current interface allows users to select forecast location and target period as well as the ensemble members used in making the forecast. The hindcast database is then used to determine how this forecast would have performed in past years. A major difficulty in delivering this information to the user lies in presenting probabilistic information in an easy to understand format. By providing forecast verification information to users along with each forecast, we aim to reduce the skepticism associated with the use of seasonal forecasts and provide a straightforward assessment of their accuracy.

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Wolter, Klaus
Research Associate
University of Colorado
CIRES & NOAA-ESRL R/PSD1
325 Broadway
Boulder, CO 80305-3328
USA
Phone: 303-497-6340
Email: klaus.wolter@noaa.gov

Presentation type: Poster

Seasonal Temperature Trends in Colorado During the Last 25-100 Years

Prompted by Denver Water concerns about increasingly early runoff seasons, Western Water supported a detailed investigation into temperature trends in the Colorado climate record. This presentation describes the station selection and quality control measures, a surprisingly difficult process for our state, since there have been pervasive station moves and incomplete meta data. Within each newly developed climate division, several stations were identified that best represented regional temperature trends. Analyses were carried out with the collaboration of the Colorado State Climatologist Office, for the four cardinal seasons, and for the last 30, 50, 75, and (if possible) 100 years. While warming trends are pervasive, during spring in particular, there are highly variable warming rates depending on (1) season, (2) region, and (3) period of record chosen, much less homogenous than expected via GHG-increase explanations.

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Wood, Andrew
Assistant Research Professor
University of Washington
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
201 More Hall, Box 352700
Seattle, WA 98195
USA
Phone: 206-543-5856
Email: aww@u.washington.edu

Presentation type: Oral

A System for Real-time Prediction of Hydrological Drought Over the Continental U.S.

Over the last decade, great strides have been made in land surface modeling at regional to continental scales. The North American Land Data Assimilation System (N-LDAS) has developed new methods for predicting current land surface conditions (soil moisture and snow water equivalent, among many other variables) as well as retrospective reconstructions of the same variables. We have used N-LDAS models and methods as the basis for a method we term Severity-Area-Duration analysis to characterize drought over the continental U.S. using a long-term (1916-2003) reconstruction of land surface conditions. We have also used these data to evaluate trends in drought, which generally show that increased precipitation over much of the U.S. has led to wetter conditions, and hence less severe and lengthy droughts, but that over the western U.S., increased evaporative demand has tipped the balance toward more severe droughts. We focus here on recent work that has migrated our analysis approach to a real-time setting in the form of a UW Experimental Surface Water Monitor,which has become a soil moisture information source used by US Drought Monitor and CPC Drought Outlook authors. The Monitor is based on application of the Variable Infiltration Capacity (VIC) macroscale hydrology model using the real-time NOAA Applied Climate Information System (ACIS) precipitation and temperature data. We describe the Surface Water Monitor, including protocols we use to identify the onset of drought, and to predict drought recovery. We assess performance of the system during the southwestern U.S. drought during winter 2005-6, as well as recovery in summer 2006, and other selected drought events.

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Wu, Wanru
Atmospheric Scientist
CPC/NCEP/NOAA
5200 Auth Rd
Camp Springs MD 20746
USA
Phone: 301-763-8000 x 7755
Email: wanru.wu@noaa.gov

Presentation type: Poster

Evaluation of Week1 and Week2 NAEFS Forecasts of Drought Related Quantities

Wanru Wu, Muthuvel Chelliah, and Kingtse Mo, Climate Prediction Center, NCEP/NWS/NOAA

Abstract: The North American Ensemble Forecast System (NAEFS) week1 and week2 forecasts are evaluated to assess their ability to support the drought early warning system. Hydrologic variables such as soil moisture, soil temperature, evaporation and temperature and precipitation are archived. The ensemble forecasts will be evaluated against the North American Regional Reanalysis (NARR) and the ensemble means of the North American Land Data Assimilation system (NLDAS) products from four different land models. The spread among different members of the forecast ensemble indicates the uncertainties of the forecasts and will be compared with the spread among the NLDAS products. The different variables have different time and space scales. The systematic errors will be quantified and bias correction will be applied. Results from this evaluation along with their implication for drought monitoring and short term drought forecast over the continental United States will be presented.

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The Climate Impacts Group,
Center for Science in the Earth System
University of Washington