J4.6 Devils Lake climate, weather, and water decision support system

Wednesday, 26 January 2011: 1:30 PM
609 (Washington State Convention Center)
Fiona M. Horsfall, NOAA/NWS, Silver Spring, MD; and D. Kluck, M. J. Brewer, M. Timofeyeva, J. Symonds, S. Dummer, and M. Frazier

North Dakota's Devils Lake area represents an example of a community struggling with a serious climate-related problem. The Devils Lake water level elevation has been rising since 1993 due to a prolonged wet period, and it is now approaching the spill stage into the Cheyenne River and ultimately into the Red River of the North. The impacts of the rising water have already caused significant disruption to the surrounding communities, and even greater impacts will be seen if the lake reaches the spill elevation. These impacts include flooding, water quality issues, impacts to agriculture and ecosystems, and impacts to local and regional economies.

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), through the National Weather Service (NWS), the National Environmental Satellite, Data, and Information Service (NESDIS), and the Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research (OAR), provides the U.S. public with climate, water, and weather services, including meteorological, hydrological and climate data, warnings, and forecasts of weather and climate from near- to longer-term timescales. In support of the people of Devils Lake, the surrounding communities, the people of North Dakota, and the other Federal agencies with responsibilities in the area, NOAA launched the first ever climate-sensitive decision support web site (www.devilslake.noaa.gov) in July 2010. The website is providing integrated weather, water, and climate information for the area, and has links to information from other agencies, such as USGS, to help decision makers as they address this ongoing challenge.

This paper will describe the website and other ongoing activities by NOAA in support of this community.

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