TJ13.2 The U.S. Air Force's Climate Monitoring, Analysis, and Prediction (CMAP) Capability—Fusing Global Climate-scale Intelligence with Long-term Risk Analysis and Military Decision-making

Tuesday, 12 January 2016: 1:45 PM
Room 245 ( New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center)
Ryan J. Harris, United States Air Force, Asheville, NC

Nations and civilizations since the dawn of mankind have thrived, adapted, and sometimes succumbed to the realities that the Earth system presents for its inhabitants. A changing climate – whether on the sub-seasonal to seasonal timescales or perhaps the decadal or beyond – presents both opportunities and challenges for humans to adapt to longer-term environmental anomalies. However, climate variability in some parts of the world exacerbates existing conflict and can act as a threat-multiplier for geo-political instability. The Department of Defense's (DoD's) Climate Change Adaptation Roadmap released in October 2014 calls for robust climate-scale situational awareness to both inform and help the DoD respond to, mitigate, or adapt to climate anomalies over time. In January 2014, the U.S. Air Force's 14th Weather Squadron – co-located with the National Centers for Environmental Information or NCEI in Asheville, NC – established the Climate Monitoring, Analysis, and Prediction (CMAP) capability to answer the DoD and Intelligence Community call for global climate-scale intelligence in order to optimize long-term risk analysis and military decision-making. CMAP provides climate monitoring visualizations such as a global drought monitor and qualitative situational awareness reports on weather and climate anomalies around the world that could impact military and political concerns such as water security. Analyzing the current state of the climate and various teleconnections such as El Nino help enhance the predictive component of CMAP, which incorporates both statistical and dynamical model guidance. Furthermore, the unit's climate prediction efforts leverages the North-American Multi-Model Ensemble (NMME) datasets and products to enhance its CMAP capability. In addition to a brief background on the U.S. Air Force's CMAP capability, we will provide specific examples of how the capability has enhanced military and National leaders' risk and decision assessments for various events throughout the past year such as timing of the Nepal monsoon following the April 2015 earthquake, humanitarian challenges brought about by the 2015 El Nino, and drought analyses around the world such as severe drought occurring in Sao Paolo, Brazil.
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