Tuesday, 24 January 2012: 3:45 PM
An Overview of the US Regional Climate Reference Network
Room 355 (New Orleans Convention Center )
The US Regional Climate Reference Network (USRCRN) will be a network of 538 stations deployed in the contiguous United States. The purpose of the network is to monitor regional climate change by providing sustainable high-quality climate observations. The foremost product resulting from the USRCRN observations will be a highly accurate time series of temperature and precipitation for each of the nine climate regions of the conterminous U.S. The USRCRN will, however, provide many more beneficial products and services for everyday use beyond the primary climate mission. The five-minute measurements of temperature and precipitation will be useful for weather applications, including understanding extreme hydrological events like floods and droughts. The energy sector will be able to use the temperature data to accurately calculate heating and cooling loads and manage electricity supplies. The agricultural sector will benefit from improved inputs to soil moisture and crop growth models. Finally, the USRCRN will act as a reference that will enable a network-of-networks observation framework to succeed. Transfer functions based on the relationships of each network to USRCRN will bring public and private temperature and precipitation observations together on a comparable basis, increasing the accuracy and utility of the varied measurements by removing biases where possible, and removing poor data where necessary. The USRCRN will greatly add value to the entire climate observing enterprise in the U.S., and benefit climate dependent sectors of the U.S. economy.