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Climate Services

In addition to being experts in their respective fields, Climate Central's staff have developed innovative programs that draw upon the use and translation of large climate datasets for our partners. 

Climate Matters

Research shows that meteorologists are trusted messengers on climate change. The majority understand that climate change is real and that the science of climate change needs to be communicated to the public. 

Unlike climate scientists, TV meteorologists have unparalleled access to their communities. Through Climate Matters, Climate Central provides regularly produced content on the relationship between weather and climate. Our team of data analysts, meteorologists, climate experts, graphic artists and journalists create graphics, text, animations, videos and research to aid TV weathercasters in presenting science-rooted climate information in clear, concise and relevant ways.

Each week, we create high-quality information and graphics for our partner meteorologists including:

  • Localized data and analyses that show the ways that the climate is changing in their markets
  • TV-ready graphics and multimedia content for use across all platforms – including maps, interactive tools, severe weather trackers, temperature trend charts – that convey climate change powerfully and accessibly to general audiences
  • Extreme weather analyses produced in the news cycle so that weathercasters have reliable climate data as storms are happening—and when millions of people are paying attention

Since 2012, Climate Central’s program has grown to include more than 500 local TV meteorologists who routinely reach millions of viewers.

**For more information on Climate Matters, please contact Bernadette Woods Placky, Meteorologist: (609.986.1998)


New Project: World Weather Attribution

Climate Central is pleased to announce a new initiative called World Weather Attribution that will seek to perform “extreme weather autopsies” immediately after an extreme weather event occurs, when the world’s media is still asking “was this event caused by climate change?” With our partner at Oxford University’s Environmental Change Institute, we are working on a tool that will look at the role of global warming in extreme weather events around the globe — not months later, as has been the case; but in real-time using the citizen science distributed infrastructure

The World Weather Attribution project aims to identify the human fingerprint in certain types of extreme weather events, including sea level rise and its contribution to storm surges, extreme heat events, heavy rainfall events/flooding, and drought. And it will do so using volunteers’ computing power. The simulations provided by volunteers around the world and designed by the team at the University of Oxford will be part of a tested communications and outreach effort led by Climate Central.

“We are now planning a more ambitious project using seasonal forecasts to compare extreme weather events as they happen with the very same weather events in a world that might have been without climate change,” said Heidi Cullen, Climate Central’s Chief Scientist. “The goal is to give a first, scientifically based answer to the question whether and to what extent climate change played a role in the probability of occurrence of the event in real time.”

The World Weather Attribution project aims to build the capacity to identify 1-in-50-year and 1-in-100-year events around the world and determine whether climate change increased the likelihood of that event. By adding this real-time capability, we hope to better answer pressing questions about the role of human activity in extreme weather. There are four possible outcomes of our attribution analysis. First, global warming increased the likelihood of the event. Second, global warming did not play a role in the event. Third, global warming reduced the likelihood of the event. And fourth, our model was unable to reproduce the event. Our goal is to objectively and transparently assess the event in question and equip journalists and scientists with the tools to provide the larger global warming context when it is available. 

**For more information on World Weather Attribution, please contact Heidi Cullen, Chief Climatologist: (609.986.1986)

Sea Level Rise

Two years in the making, our sea level rise project allows you to search or navigate interactive maps to see areas below different amounts of sea level rise and flooding — down to neighborhood scale — matched with area timelines of risk. The tool also provides statistics of population, homes and land affected by city, county and state, plus links to reportsfact sheetsaction plansembeddable widgets and more.

A Major Expansion

On the 1-year anniversary of Hurricane Sandy, Climate Central released a new and improved interactive map for New York and New Jersey, with Florida and eight other states coming online shortly after, showing areas vulnerable to flooding from combined sea level rise, storm surge, and tides, or to permanent submergence by long-term sea level rise. 

The new map incorporates the latest, high-resolution, high-accuracy lidar elevation data supplied by NOAA, displays points of interest, and contains layers displaying social vulnerability and population density. It provides the ability to search by location name or zip code. 

Climate Central will launch the web tool for all U.S. coastal states on a state-by-state basis, starting in 2014. 

Currently Available for:  California |Connecticut | Florida | Maine |Massachusetts | New Hampshire | New Jersey | New York | Oregon | Rhode Island | Washington

Surging Seas Risk Finder

In addition to the new map, Surging Seas' recent expansion includes an interactive searchable data toolkit that shows populations, infrastructure, and assets exposed to coastal flooding aggravated by sea level rise.

The Risk Finder incorporates the latest, high-resolution, high-accuracy lidar elevation data supplied by NOAA and assesses exposure of over 100 infrastructure and other elements — from airports to road miles, from schools to hospitals to wastewater treatment plants — in order to allow users to explore vulnerability from zip code through city, county and state levels. It provides the ability to compare risk across areas, as well as the ability to analyze the likelihood of coastal flood and sea level threats occurring in the future by decade.

Currently Available for: California | Connecticut | Florida | Maine | Massachusetts | New Hampshire | New Jersey | New York | Oregon | Rhode Island | Washington

**For more information on Sea Level Rise, please contact Ben Strauss, Vice President for Climate Impacts & Director of the Program on Sea Level Rise: (609.986.1984)