Capital Weather Gang: Government


Posted at 04:44 PM ET, 03/15/2013

National Weather Service cutting back on hiring, spending

The National Weather Service, feeling the pressure of the challenging budget environment, is already cutting back on staffing and spending, a move that could compromise our nation’s preparedness for severe weather critics say.

By Jason Samenow  |  04:44 PM ET, 03/15/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government

Posted at 01:52 PM ET, 02/28/2013

Weather Service makes positive change: HPC to Weather Prediction Center

I’m all for simplicity. The National Weather Service (NWS) today announced it will change the alphabet-souped named “Hydrometeorological Prediction Center” (HPC) to the “Weather Prediction Center” (WPC) effective March 5.

By Jason Samenow  |  01:52 PM ET, 02/28/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government

Posted at 01:36 PM ET, 02/26/2013

Sequester threatens nation’s weather forecasting

Budget cuts set to take effect on March 1 could seriously compromise the ability of the National Weather Service to provide timely, reliable weather forecasts government officials and industry leaders warn. Programs and staffing to support weather forecasting are set to be slashed

By Jason Samenow  |  01:36 PM ET, 02/26/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government | Tags:  sequestration

Posted at 11:14 AM ET, 02/26/2013

Second rate U.S. numerical weather prediction: Why you should care

In this blog, I will take issue with arguments that U.S. inferior computer modeling doesn’t matter and will suggest that first-rate numerical weather prediction by the U.S. National Weather Service is crucial for the nation and of great benefit to the entire world

By Cliff Mass*  |  11:14 AM ET, 02/26/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government, Science

Posted at 04:02 PM ET, 02/15/2013

Report: Weather satellite gap, climate change among biggest threats facing Federal government

Every two years the Government Accountability Office highlights the top 30 challenges facing the Federal government in its “high risk list”. A looming gap in the coverage of weather satellites and climate change are the newest additions to this list says the GAO in a report released Thursday.

By Jason Samenow  |  04:02 PM ET, 02/15/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government, Climate Change

Posted at 11:46 AM ET, 02/12/2013

Riveting, terrifying chase video of violent Hattiesburg, MS tornado; no deaths a miracle

I’ve viewed a lot of tornado videos over the years, but the one shown in this post from Hattiesburg, Mississippi is the most dramatic and close-up I’ve seen.

By Jason Samenow  |  11:46 AM ET, 02/12/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, U.S. Weather, Government

Posted at 02:13 PM ET, 02/07/2013

National Weather Service names Louis Uccellini director

Reeling from recent controversies over its budget and an exodus in senior leadership, the National Weather Service looked from within to establish some stability. Today it appointed 24-year NWS veteran Dr. Louis Uccellini as its next director.

By Jason Samenow  |  02:13 PM ET, 02/07/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government

Posted at 01:41 PM ET, 02/05/2013

National Weather Service review finds faults with June derecho forecast

A review of the National Weather Service’s forecasts for the June 29, 2012 derecho finds it was unsuccessful in providing long-lead times for the thunderstorm complex that produced a trail of destruction from Indiana to the Mid-Atlantic coast. The report praised the NWS’ short-term issuance of warnings, but stressed they should contain stronger language for conveying the urgency in such violent storm events.

By Jason Samenow  |  01:41 PM ET, 02/05/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government, Thunderstorms

Posted at 08:55 PM ET, 01/20/2013

International Space Station captures Washington, D.C. from space for inauguration

Coinciding with Inauguration weekend, NASA’s International Space Station has been flying over Washington, D.C., grabbing stunning imagery in the process

By Jason Samenow  |  08:55 PM ET, 01/20/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Space, Photography, Government

Posted at 12:53 PM ET, 01/19/2013

National Weather Service official offers rationale for faulty storm watch

James Lee, the meteorologist in charge at the Sterling NWS office, sent me an email describing the rationale for the controversial watch storm watch issued Wednesday. I give him the last word...

By Jason Samenow  |  12:53 PM ET, 01/19/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government

Posted at 12:12 PM ET, 01/18/2013

National Weather Service’s head-scratching Winter Storm Watch for Thursday’s non-storm

The National Weather Service decision to issue the watch, in my view, was flawed. It misled and confused the public, and likley contributed to needless expenditures for salt/chemical treatment of roads.

By Jason Samenow  |  12:12 PM ET, 01/18/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Winter Storms, Government

Posted at 04:29 PM ET, 01/04/2013

World’s biggest weather conference to see huge drop in National Weather Service attendance

Starting this Sunday, January 6, more than 3,000 meteorology professionals will convene in Austin, Texas for the American Meteorological Society (AMS) annual meeting. But the National Weather Service (NWS) representation at the meeting will be its weakest in years.

By Jason Samenow  |  04:29 PM ET, 01/04/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government

Posted at 02:30 PM ET, 12/18/2012

The fiscal cliff and weather forecasts

Could falling off the fiscal cliff harm weather forecasts? The Aerospace Industries Association (AIA) projects related budget cuts at NOAA and NASA would lead to thousands of lost jobs and jeopardize satellite systems critical to weather prediction.

By Jason Samenow  |  02:30 PM ET, 12/18/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government

Posted at 10:30 AM ET, 12/14/2012

National Weather Service proposes revised language for simplifying winter weather statements

Watch. Warning. Advisory. To weather buffs who have long paid attention to winter weather statements issued by the National Weather Service, these words have a clear and specific meaning. But NWS has found many in the public don’t understand the distinctions between these terms and has developed an alternative approach for communicating winter weather hazards.

By Jason Samenow  |  10:30 AM ET, 12/14/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government, Winter Storms

Posted at 02:24 PM ET, 12/12/2012

The National Weather Service winter media workshop

The National Weather Service invited members of the local media to attend its annual Winter Media Workshop held Tuesday in their Sterling, Virginia office.

By Kevin Ambrose  |  02:24 PM ET, 12/12/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Capital Weather Gang, Latest, Government, Media

Posted at 11:23 AM ET, 12/12/2012

NOAA Administrator Jane Lubchenco stepping down in February

NOAA’s leader, Jane Lubchenco, announced this morning she is leaving the agency at the end of February (2013)

By Jason Samenow  |  11:23 AM ET, 12/12/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government

Posted at 01:22 PM ET, 12/11/2012

NOAA commissions Sandy assessment team to review NWS performance

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration released a statement today saying it has commissioned a team to assess National Weather Service performance leading up to and during “Hurricane/Post-Tropical Cyclone Sandy.”

By Dan Stillman  |  01:22 PM ET, 12/11/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Latest, Government, Tropical Weather

Posted at 04:48 PM ET, 12/07/2012

Reflections on the NWS Sandy assessment and hurricane warning controversies

Telling commentary in the wake of controversies over NWS’ handling of its hurricane warnings during Superstorm Sandy from various compelling sources,

By Jason Samenow  |  04:48 PM ET, 12/07/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Latest, Government, Tropical Weather

Posted at 06:20 PM ET, 12/05/2012

National Hurricane Center proposes looser criteria for issuing hurricane warnings

Facing criticism over the fact it did not issue hurricane warnings during Superstorm Sandy, the National Hurricane Center has proposed looser criteria for posting these advisories.

By Jason Samenow  |  06:20 PM ET, 12/05/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government, Tropical Weather

Posted at 04:33 PM ET, 12/05/2012

Satellites unveil Black Marble and spy on the moon

The Suomi NPP satellite from NOAA and NASA has released “unprecedented” nighttime views of the Earth the partner agencies revealed today.

By Jason Samenow  |  04:33 PM ET, 12/05/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government, Photography

Posted at 10:43 AM ET, 12/03/2012

The controversial National Weather Service Sandy assessment: inside the story

NWS had started an assessment process for Hurricane Sadny to be co-led by AccuWeather senior vice president Mike Smith but abruptly stopped it and decided instead to do an assessment led by only government officials. There is some material worth sharing.

By Jason Samenow  |  10:43 AM ET, 12/03/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government

Posted at 04:53 PM ET, 11/29/2012

NOAA to proceed with Superstorm Sandy review with other government agencies

After a false start, NOAA has issued a statement today indicating it is set to re-launch a process for evaluating its performance during Superstorm Sandy.

By Jason Samenow  |  04:53 PM ET, 11/29/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government, Tropical Weather

Posted at 10:30 AM ET, 11/29/2012

OPM updates inclement weather policy for federal employees

With winter fast approaching, the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) this week tweaked its inclement weather procedures for federal workers in the D.C. area. The changes – announced Tuesday at OPM’s annual briefing on weather-related dismissals and closures – include a new “delayed arrival” option, while also clarifying which employees must telework in the event of a full closure.

By Justin Grieser  |  10:30 AM ET, 11/29/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government

Posted at 03:58 PM ET, 11/28/2012

Department of Homeland Security may review Superstorm Sandy warnings

Two weeks ago, a routine National Weather Service (NWS) review of forecast and warning services provided during superstorm Sandy was halted. We have learned high-level conversations between NWS and the Department of Homeland Security motivated the stoppage.

By Eric Holthaus* and Jason Samenow  |  03:58 PM ET, 11/28/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government, Tropical Weather

Posted at 02:52 PM ET, 11/21/2012

Without polar satellites, forecast for Superstorm Sandy would have suffered European analysis finds

They scan the globe in pole-to-pole loops and feed important information into models for forecasting the most dangerous storms. But later this decade, a gap in these polar-orbiting satellites is foreseen. Could that prove costly for weather predictions?

By Jason Samenow  |  02:52 PM ET, 11/21/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government, Technology

Posted at 11:00 AM ET, 11/17/2012

Help wanted: National Weather Service seeks financial chief to institute “employee reductions”

The National Weather Service (NWS) has a key job opening: Chief Financial Officer (CFO). Buried in the announcement for this critical vacancy lies a surprising revelation: it seeks an applicant to carry out the task of reducing the NWS workforce.

By Jason Samenow  |  11:00 AM ET, 11/17/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government

Posted at 09:39 AM ET, 11/07/2012

National Weather Service: Just say no to Athena

The National Weather Service has officially rejected the Weather Channel’s new winter storm naming scheme asking employees not to use the terms in forecasts and statements.

By Jason Samenow  |  09:39 AM ET, 11/07/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Media, Government

Posted at 10:44 AM ET, 10/18/2012

NOAA participation in climate conference in limbo due to lack of travel approval

An annual NOAA-sponsored climate prediction conference that has existed for 36 years may be significantly disrupted as NOAA officials have yet to authorize travel to the meeting, which is supposed to begin Monday.

By Jason Samenow  |  10:44 AM ET, 10/18/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Government, Latest

Posted at 11:27 AM ET, 10/17/2012

Back from the dead: GOES-13 satellite returns to active duty

In late September, a key NOAA weather satellite for monitoring storms over the Eastern U.S. and western Atlantic ocean failed. But yesterday, NOAA announced its engineers had restored the satellite - known as GOES-13 - to full operation.

By Brian McNoldy  |  11:27 AM ET, 10/17/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government

Posted at 02:36 PM ET, 10/16/2012

Opening of NOAA’s Center for Weather and Climate Prediction: potential game changer in forecasting

The ribbon cutting ceremony on Monday (October 15) marked the official opening of the NOAA’s new world-class center dedicated to advancing the state of weather and climate science and transitioning research findings to improved weather forecasts and related information.

By Steve Tracton  |  02:36 PM ET, 10/16/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government

Posted at 03:46 PM ET, 10/09/2012

NWS employees barred from attending major weather conference at last minute

One day before one of the nation’s biggest annual weather conferences, approximately 80 National Weather Service employees were told they could not travel.

By Jason Samenow  |  03:46 PM ET, 10/09/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government, Media

Posted at 04:36 PM ET, 09/27/2012

Weather community seeks commission for communicating with Congress

A panel of experts asked Congress today to create the first-ever U.S. Weather Commission to confront the costs of weather on the U.S. economy and its toll on human lives.

By Jason Samenow  |  04:36 PM ET, 09/27/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Government, Latest

Posted at 11:17 AM ET, 09/25/2012

Weather-Ready Nation open house at the National Weather Service in Sterling

The weather was spectacular for the National Weather Service (NWS) Weather-Ready Nation open house event that occurred at the NWS Sterling office this past weekend.

By Kevin Ambrose  |  11:17 AM ET, 09/25/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Photography, Government, Capital Weather Gang

Posted at 02:06 PM ET, 09/24/2012

Key GOES-13 weather satellite goes dark

The NOAA weather satellite that tracks weather systems over eastern North America and the Atlantic ocean no longer has eyes on our skies.

By Jason Samenow  |  02:06 PM ET, 09/24/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government, Technology, U.S. Weather

Posted at 02:30 PM ET, 09/21/2012

National Weather Service open house this weekend; visit Capital Weather Gang booth

If you’re a weather enthusiast in the Washington, D.C. area, you’ll want to make time to attend our local National Weather Service office’s open house in Sterling, Va. this weekend.

By Jason Samenow  |  02:30 PM ET, 09/21/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Capital Weather Gang, Government

Posted at 10:09 AM ET, 09/06/2012

Weather: a hot topic for the next Administration

In the aftermath of Hurricane Isaac and its toll on New Orleans and the northern Gulf Coast, one thing is clear: weather has got to be on the national agenda.

By Nancy Colleton  |  10:09 AM ET, 09/06/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government, U.S. Weather

Posted at 11:43 AM ET, 08/16/2012

Should Reagan National Airport remain Washington, D.C.’s official weather station?

The debate has raged for decades: Does it make sense to observe D.C. weather at Reagan National?

By Jason Samenow  |  11:43 AM ET, 08/16/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Local Climate, Government

Posted at 12:45 PM ET, 08/14/2012

National Weather Service “ammunition” solicitation triggers confusion

Weather forecasting or preparing for war? The National Weather Service (NWS) seeks to buy 46,000 rounds of ammunition for semiautomatic pistols says the FedBizOpps website. But spokesman Chris Vaccaro said the ammunition is not for the National Weather Service.

By Jason Samenow  |  12:45 PM ET, 08/14/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Government, Latest

Posted at 10:20 AM ET, 07/16/2012

Solar storm sparks beautiful aurora (PHOTOS, VIDEO)

After predictions ranging from minor to severe, the geomagnetic storm that struck Earth this weekend fell smack in the middle - at moderate intensity. The storm produced beautiful aurora shown in this post.

By Jason Samenow  |  10:20 AM ET, 07/16/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Astronomy, Space, Government

Posted at 12:31 PM ET, 07/13/2012

Solar storm incoming: Federal agencies provide inconsistent, confusing information

A geomagnetic storm is likely on Earth this weekend. NOAA predicts it will be minor, maybe moderate. NASA says it will be moderate to severe.

By Jason Samenow  |  12:31 PM ET, 07/13/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Astronomy, Space, Government

Posted at 03:58 PM ET, 07/02/2012

Lightning gone wild during Washington D.C.’s derecho

The wind stole the show, but the second most striking feature of Friday night’s derecho was the vivid, almost continuous display of lightning.

By Jason Samenow  |  03:58 PM ET, 07/02/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Government, Thunderstorms, Latest

Posted at 03:58 PM ET, 07/02/2012

Lightning gone wild during Washington D.C.’s derecho

The wind stole the show, but the second most striking feature of Friday night’s derecho was the vivid, almost continuous display of lightning.

By Jason Samenow  |  03:58 PM ET, 07/02/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Government, Thunderstorms, Latest

Posted at 03:15 PM ET, 06/20/2012

Department of Labor urges heat safety for outdoor workers; heat advisory thru Thurs.

The heat advisory for the Washington D.C. and Baltimore regions has been extended to cover the overnight hours tonight and Thursday through 10 p.m. On Thursday, another scorcher is expected, with afternoon temperatures in the upper 90s to near 100 and heat indicates around 105. Hot day time temperatures represent a particular hazard for outdoor workers. In response, the Department of Labor has launched a campaign to confront the risks posed by extreme heat.

By Jason Samenow  |  03:15 PM ET, 06/20/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Extreme Heat, Government

Posted at 01:07 PM ET, 06/08/2012

NOAA working to avoid Weather Service furloughs

Scott Smullen, spokesman for NOAA, issued a statement today, emphasizing NOAA’s commitment to avoiding National Weather Service furloughs.

By Jason Samenow  |  01:07 PM ET, 06/08/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government

Posted at 08:41 PM ET, 06/07/2012

Weather Service proposes furloughs for up to 5,000 employees

The National Weather Service notified its union on Thursday that it may have to furlough up to 5,000 employees for 13 days this summer to cover its budget deficit.

By Lisa Rein and Jason Samenow  |  08:41 PM ET, 06/07/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Government, Latest

Posted at 04:18 PM ET, 05/18/2012

Richard Knabb, Weather Channel expert, named director of National Hurricane Center

NOAA has named Richard Knabb, the Weather Channel’s tropical weather expert, the next director of the National Hurricane Center. He will start work June 4.

By Jason Samenow  |  04:18 PM ET, 05/18/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Tropical Weather, Government, Media

Posted at 12:18 PM ET, 05/17/2012

Viewpoint: pitting climate change research against weather research is unproductive

Some feel the argument that resources for weather forecasting are more important than for climate change prediction is an affront on the importance of climate change modeling and not helpful in advancing broader goals in advancing atmospheric science

By Jason Samenow  |  12:18 PM ET, 05/17/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Climate Change, Government, Science

Posted at 02:16 PM ET, 05/10/2012

House slashes funding increase for NOAA climate website

Of a possible $1.4 billion dollars in proposed spending cuts in the Departments of Commerce and Justice for 2013, the U.S. House Representatives voted to approve none of them. None of them except a piddly $542,000 for a NOAA climate website.

By Jason Samenow  |  02:16 PM ET, 05/10/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government, Climate Change

Posted at 02:19 PM ET, 04/23/2012

NOAA, FEMA launch first ever National Severe Weather Preparedness Week

In the wake of violent tornado outbreaks in 2011 and this spring, NOAA and FEMA have joined together to arm Americans with information and strategies to make it through severe weather. In this incipient Severe Weather Preparedness Week, the agencies are placing special emphasis on motivating individuals to take on leadership roles in readying their communities for all types of severe weather.

By Jason Samenow  |  02:19 PM ET, 04/23/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government

Posted at 11:14 AM ET, 04/18/2012

Senate bill proposes moving satellite programs from NOAA to NASA

Science Magazine reportsreports a Senate subcommittee chaired by Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.) has approved a bill that would transfer responsibility of building four satellites from NOAA to NASA. The move would shift about $1.6 billion in funding from NOAA’s budget to NASA in fiscal year 2013.

By Jason Samenow  |  11:14 AM ET, 04/18/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government

Posted at 10:20 AM ET, 03/29/2012

National Weather Service budget cuts misguided, misplaced

President Obama’s 2013 budget for the National Weather Service (NWS) reduces funding by $36.4 million in operations and research while weather satellite programs are slated for an increase of $163 million. Is there something wrong with this picture of enormous investments for satellites at the expense justifiably valuable components of NWS’s operational mission? In the opinion of many, including myself, the answer is a confident yes.

By Steve Tracton  |  10:20 AM ET, 03/29/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government, Science

Posted at 11:21 AM ET, 02/15/2012

Major weather radar upgrade coming to Washington, D.C. area in next week

Starting this Friday, the National Weather Service (NWS) is upgrading the region’s radar, sited in Sterling, Va., to include dual polarization technology. This technology will allow meteorologists to see storms in a totally new dimension offering the potential to significantly improve forecasts, especially during flood events and severe weather.

By Jason Samenow  |  11:21 AM ET, 02/15/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Technology, Government

Posted at 12:02 PM ET, 02/09/2012

NOAA: La Nina to end this spring

The La Nina pattern, linked to one the most extreme weather years on record in 2011 in the U.S., is forecast to fade away this spring according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

By Jason Samenow  |  12:02 PM ET, 02/09/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government, Science, U.S. Weather

Posted at 03:54 PM ET, 01/27/2012

New USDA plant zones clearly show climate change

Planting zones are retreating north all over the country, but the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) won’t state the obvious: the shift is a rock solid indicator of climate change.

By Jason Samenow  |  03:54 PM ET, 01/27/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Climate Change, Government, Local Climate, Gardening

Posted at 01:47 PM ET, 01/26/2012

Commutageddon: a year later, would the same fiasco repeat?

Exactly one year ago, a powerful winter storm walloped the region at just the wrong time, leading to one of Washington, D.C.’s worst ever evening commutes. A thunderstorm of sleet and then snow overwhelmed the region between 4 and 10 p.m., paralyzing traffic everywhere. Chances are good either you or someone you know waited until it was too late to leave your/their job, and got stuck on area roads for hours.

By Jason Samenow  |  01:47 PM ET, 01/26/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, History, Winter Storms, Government

Posted at 11:05 AM ET, 01/26/2012

What a wonderful world, the Earth in high definition (Blue marble NASA image)

Feast your eyes on it: NASA released one of the sharpest, most stunning true-color images of our planet the world has seen Wednesday.

By Jason Samenow  |  11:05 AM ET, 01/26/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government, Science

Posted at 11:45 AM ET, 01/23/2012

Was OPM delay for freezing drizzle the right call? Vote, and voice your opinion

Many federal workers are just now settling into their offices after the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) decision made around 7 p.m. yesterday evening to open under an 11 a.m. delayed arrival today. Was the OPM delay the right call?... wrong call? Here’s your chance to vote.

By Dan Stillman  |  11:45 AM ET, 01/23/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government

Posted at 10:30 AM ET, 01/17/2012

Proposed NOAA move to Interior facing opposition

Count the National Weather Service Employees Union and the National Resource Defense Council amoung groups who want NOAA to stay put in the Department of Commerce.

By Jason Samenow  |  10:30 AM ET, 01/17/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government

Posted at 03:16 PM ET, 01/13/2012

White House proposes moving NOAA to Department of Interior

The National Atmospheric and Oceanic Administration (NOAA), may find itself in a new home in the Department of Interior (DOI).

By Jason Samenow  |  03:16 PM ET, 01/13/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government

Posted at 02:14 PM ET, 01/12/2012

2011 billion dollar weather disaster record: legit or bad economics?

Capital Weather Gangand many major media outlets, using information from NOAA, have reported 2011 set a record for most billion dollar weather disasters in the U.S. But a professor at the University of Colorado says NOAA’s information - the basis for the record - is “extremely misleading.”

By Jason Samenow  |  02:14 PM ET, 01/12/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government, U.S. Weather, Climate Change

Posted at 10:17 AM ET, 01/09/2012

National Weather Service hold on mobile apps stirs controversy

A new policy put in place by the National Weather Service prohibits the agency from developing apps for specific mobile devices, such as the iPhone or iPad. Weather Service employees oppose the move, saying it would privatize a key function of the agency - the communication of its forecasts, watches and warnings - to private companies like The Weather Channel, which have already developed such apps.

By Andrew Freedman  |  10:17 AM ET, 01/09/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government, Technology

Posted at 12:55 PM ET, 12/08/2011

NOAA satellite system funded, but at what cost? Other important programs may suffer

After an extraordinary outreach campaign, NOAA was ultimately successful in obtaining the majority of increased funding requested in its 2012 budget to keep the Joint Polar Satellite System (JPSS) program on track. But the Congressional authorization for increased funding of JPSS has some unpublicized consequences.

By Steve Tracton  |  12:55 PM ET, 12/08/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government

Posted at 01:01 PM ET, 12/07/2011

NOAA: 2011 sets record for billion dollar weather disasters in the U.S.

2011 has established a new benchmark for extreme weather in the U.S. NOAA reports that the U.S. has experienced the most billion dollar weather disasters on record this year.

By Jason Samenow  |  01:01 PM ET, 12/07/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, U.S. Weather, Government

Posted at 09:52 AM ET, 10/28/2011

State of the art NPP weather and climate satellite launched

At 2:48 a.m. Pacific time (5:48 a.m. EDT), NASA successfully launched what is considered the next generation satellite for monitoring weather and the Earth’s climate. The satellite was boosted into space by a Delta II rocket from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.

By Jason Samenow  |  09:52 AM ET, 10/28/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government, Science, Space

Posted at 04:10 PM ET, 10/26/2011

National Weather Service releases false tornado warnings for D.C. area

Three invalid severe weather warnings were inadvertently issued by the National Weather Service (NWS) Sterling, Va. office serving Washington, D.C. and Baltimore this afternoon. A system error was the source of the false warnings.

By Jason Samenow  |  04:10 PM ET, 10/26/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government

Posted at 12:50 PM ET, 10/14/2011

Would a Rick Perry administration censor climate science?

A climate scientist in Texas is accusing Governor Rick Perry’s administration of politically motivated editing of a scientific report. The report raises the question: would a President Perry be a repeat of George W. Bush when it comes to interfering with climate science research? The signals are mixed.

By Andrew Freedman  |  12:50 PM ET, 10/14/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Climate Change, Freedman, Government, Latest

Posted at 03:24 PM ET, 10/12/2011

NASA preparing for Earth-observing satellite launch

On October 27, NASA will launch the next generation weather and climate satellite. Known as the National Polar-orbiting Operational Environmental Satellite System (NPOESS) Preparatory Project (or, to save some syllables, NPP), the satellite spacecraft, roughly the size of mini-van, will orbit at an altitude of 512 miles above the Earth’s surface. The data it beams back to Earth will help improve understanding of both global change and weather prediction.

By Jason Samenow  |  03:24 PM ET, 10/12/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government, Climate Change, Media, Science, Space

Posted at 03:23 PM ET, 08/31/2011

Did NOAA peg Hurricane Irene’s track four days out? How good was its forecast?

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has been promoting the fact it “nailed” hurricane Irene’s track four days out. On both of its home page and Environmental Visualization Laboratory website, it shows an animation demonstrating Irene followed the National Hurricane Center (NHC) track issued at 11 p.m. ET on Tuesday, August 23. It’s true that NHC correctly predicted Irene’s track at that point in time. But what about subsequent times? What about previous times? And what about its intensity?

By Jason Samenow  |  03:23 PM ET, 08/31/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Tropical Weather, Government

Posted at 12:30 PM ET, 08/17/2011

With extreme weather off the charts, National Weather Service launches Weather-ready initiative

You’ve heard the saying a million times (and I almost cringe to repeat it): “everybody loves talking about the weather but nobody does anything about it.” The National Weather Service announced today, however, that it’s serious about preparing our nation for extreme weather. Its new “Weather-ready” nation intiative promises to “to make America safer by saving more lives and protecting livelihoods as communities across the country become increasingly vulnerable to severe weather events, such as tornado outbreaks, intense heat waves, flooding, active hurricane seasons, and solar storms that threaten electrical and communication systems.”

By Jason Samenow  |  12:30 PM ET, 08/17/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Latest, Government, U.S. Weather

Posted at 01:00 PM ET, 05/16/2011

In St. Louis, pilot was unaware of approaching tornado

This story is the second in a two-part series on the strong tornado that struck Lambert-St. Louis International Airport on April 22, 2011, causing extensive damage to airport facilities and numerous injuries. Part I detailed how people inside the airport terminal buildings never received the warning. This post details how at least one airline pilot, and passengers, were also unaware of the danger until it was swirling around them. It illustrates what some say is a fundamental problem with the way weather information is shared among the Weather Service, the Federal Aviation Administration and airline personnel, and then disseminated

By Andrew Freedman  |  01:00 PM ET, 05/16/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Freedman, Government, U.S. Weather, Latest

Posted at 02:45 PM ET, 04/29/2011

Greg Carbin: On call at NOAA’s storm center

Greg Carbin is the warning coordination meteorologist at the National Oceanic and Atmosphere Administration’s Storm Prediction Center (SPC) in Norman, Okla., which has 43 employees, including more than 20 meteorologists. This federal center issues forecasts and watches for severe thu nderstorms and tornadoes across the entire United States. I talked with Carbin about his experience during Wednesday’s devastating tornado outbreak in the South.

By Jason Samenow  |  02:45 PM ET, 04/29/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Thunderstorms, Government, Latest

Posted at 03:00 PM ET, 04/13/2011

NOAA Climate Service squashed in FY 2011

For an number of years, NOAA has been working toward the development of a Climate Service. The premise of the Climate Service is that it would make climate information and data available in “accessible and timely” formats to assist people in making decisions. But in their Continuing Resolution for Fiscal Year 2011, Congress and the White House have blocked any funding for the effort.

By Jason Samenow  |  03:00 PM ET, 04/13/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Climate Change, Government, Latest

Posted at 06:45 PM ET, 04/06/2011

Official: Government shutdown would not stop National Weather Service vital forecasts

As a potential shutdown of the Federal government draws closer, a looming question is: what would happen to products and services provided by the National Weather Service (NWS) ? Would NWS continue to issue forecasts, watches, warnings, and advisories? A NOAA official says yes.

By Jason Samenow  |  06:45 PM ET, 04/06/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Government, Latest

Posted at 05:39 PM ET, 04/01/2011

Senators call for supporting NOAA satellites

On Thursday we reported on NOAA’s warning to congressional appropriators that budget cuts to a major satellite program, known as the Joint Polar Satellite System or JPSS, would severely erode the accuracy of weather forecasts. Today, six Democratic Senators took up NOAA’s cause, sending a letter to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) as well as Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and the chair and ranking member of the Senate Appropriations Committee. The senators are seeking full funding for JPSS during the remainder of the 2011 fiscal year.

By Andrew Freedman  |  05:39 PM ET, 04/01/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Government, Latest, Freedman

Posted at 01:00 PM ET, 03/23/2011

It’s World Meteorological Day

Wednesday, March 23, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), its 189 National Meteorological and Hydrological Services Members, and the worldwide meteorological community at large, celebrate WMO Day. Each year the celebration centers around a selected theme. This year’s theme is the “Climate for you”

By Steve Tracton  |  01:00 PM ET, 03/23/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Tracton, Government, International Weather

Posted at 11:00 AM ET, 01/20/2011

NOAA-NWS begins Winter Weather Experiment

Despite major advances in scientific understanding and the development of computer-based weather models, there remains much room for improvement. Anyone who has followed this season's winter storm predictions has, no doubt, observed this. While there never will be perfect forecasts due to chaos (i.e. the butterfly effect), there is considerable opportunity for more accurate predictions and better estimates of associated levels of confidence in hazardous winter weather systems.

By Steve Tracton  |  11:00 AM ET, 01/20/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Government, Government, Government, Government, Government

Posted at 12:30 PM ET, 09/11/2009

New Tool for Hurricane Forecasting: WISDOM

A WISDOM balloon is launched during last year's testing phase in Miami, Fl. Photo courtesy NOAA. The accuracy in predicting the track of tropical storms and hurricanes has increased substantially over the past decades. For example, the average error of the official National Hurricane Center 3-day forecasts has decreased from...

By Steve Tracton  |  12:30 PM ET, 09/11/2009 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Government, Government, Government

Posted at 10:45 AM ET, 08/07/2009

NOAA Says No to DHS Hurricane Modification

* Major Heat by Sunday: Full Forecast | NatCast | July Recap * Graphic (courtesy NOAA) depicts NOAA hurricane-related activities before, during and after a storm. It appears that, for now at least, hurricane modification will not be one of them. As we reported in May, more than 25 years...

By Steve Tracton  |  10:45 AM ET, 08/07/2009 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Government, Government

Posted at 10:30 AM ET, 07/16/2009

Hearing Today on Controversial Flight Safety Plan

Proposal would consolidate aviation weather forecasters * Hello, Humidity: Full Forecast | NatCast | Wind Farms & Weather * * Federal Eye: More Storm Clouds for FAA-Weather Service Plan * Coverage area of the Washington D.C. Center Weather Service Unit. The House Science Subcommittee on Investigations & Oversight is holding...

By Andrew Freedman  |  10:30 AM ET, 07/16/2009 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Government, Government

Posted at 01:00 PM ET, 02/24/2009

Inside the National Weather Service

* Full Forecast | On the Verge of Drought? * In case you missed this video yesterday on the Federal Eye blog (and the mention about it in our PM Update), here's a great inside look at the National Weather Service (NWS) from Washington Post reporter Ed O'Keefe... In a...

By Jason Samenow  |  01:00 PM ET, 02/24/2009 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Government

Posted at 07:00 PM ET, 11/06/2008

New NOAA Administrator

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), home of the National Weather Service, announced Monday that William J. Brennan became acting under secretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere and acting administrator of NOAA on Nov. 1. Dr. Brennan replaces Navy Vice Admiral Conrad C. Lautenbacher Jr., who resigned last...

By Ann Posegate  |  07:00 PM ET, 11/06/2008 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Government, Government

Posted at 12:00 PM ET, 10/18/2008

This Weekend: Weather Service Open House

As I write this, the National Weather Service (NWS) Open House in Sterling, Va. is ongoing and will continue through 5 p.m. today, and noon to 5 p.m. tomorrow. All sorts of activities are planned along with tours, weather observing classes and a dedication ceremony for the newly constructed facility....

By Jason Samenow  |  12:00 PM ET, 10/18/2008 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Government

Posted at 10:45 AM ET, 07/18/2008

Who's Against Life-Saving Weather Radios?

Every once in a while, Congress is faced with the chance to do something simple, smart and practical that could immediately and positively impact society. A bill requiring emergency weather radios -- which broadcast an alarm in the case of a nearby tornado or other emergency -- in new mobile...

By Dan Stillman  |  10:45 AM ET, 07/18/2008 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Government

Posted at 11:00 AM ET, 07/15/2008

A Trigger-Happy Weather Service?

Two weeks ago I wrote about how our local National Weather Service (NWS) office in Sterling, Va. issued a staggering 205-210 severe weather warnings for the area (from central Va. to northern Maryland, not including the eastern shore) during June. And I showed that there were, in fact, a slew...

By Jason Samenow  |  11:00 AM ET, 07/15/2008 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Government, Government

Posted at 06:30 PM ET, 02/11/2008

Political Science: Debate 2008

With voters going to the polls for the presidential primaries in all three local jurisdictions tomorrow, some citizens might be concerned that very little attention has been given to where the candidates stand on scientific issues. Physics Today, the magazine of the College Park-based American Institute of Physics, has...

By Steve Scolnik  |  06:30 PM ET, 02/11/2008 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Government, Government