S80 Improvements to the NCEI Climate Extremes Index

Sunday, 6 January 2019
Hall 4 (Phoenix Convention Center - West and North Buildings)
Emily L. Pauline, Univ. of Georgia, Athens, GA

The Climate Extremes Index (CEI) was developed by the National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI) in the 1990s as a way to quantify extreme weather conditions to educate policy makers and the general public about changes that they may experience in the future. This index combines values of maximum and minimum temperatures, moisture availability, daily precipitation, and multi-day precipitation to determine the percent of the country experiencing extremes. However, the statistical techniques used to analyze the data are not best suited to quantify extremes, and the CEI has only been minimally updated and used since its inception. This presentation focuses on the implementation of the Z-score method to analyze the variables used to develop the CEI to make it more robust and provide a more accurate analysis of the extreme patterns that are experienced every month. New maps displaying the information within the CEI will ensure that it is easy to interpret while also remaining scientifically accurate. These new updates will enable users, such as the general public and policy makers, to better understand the CEI and gain knowledge about how their lives will be affected by changing climate conditions.
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