Unique 'Climate One Stop' Web Site Unveiled in Copenhagen

Dec 15, 2009 by Dauna Coulter
A screen shot of the Climate One Stop web site.

There's a storm brewing -- a storm of information, that is, in climate and environmental research. People are wading through the turbulence, trying to make sense of it all.

At the eye of the storm is a unique new web site called Climate One-Stop (climateonestop.net).

"It's a 'calm spot' where scientists, decision-makers, nonprofit workers, and officials can find all the latest research," says Dan Irwin of NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center. "We unveiled the site at this week's United Nations Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen."

A group of US and international organizations, including , USAID, the National Science Foundation, the Institute for the Application of Geospatial Technology, the University of Alabama-Huntsville, and CATHALAC in Panama, developed the site as a "one-stop shop" for the low-down on Earth with a particular emphasis on international development applications.

"Right now, there's so much climate information scattered out there -- it’s a real challenge to find exactly what you're looking for by just Googling it," says IAGT's Jessica Coughlin. "Climate One-Stop is the place to go for all the information."

Orlando Altamirano of USAID in El Salvador is the kind of official the web site is designed to serve. "We're very vulnerable here in Central America," he says. "We have hurricanes, earthquakes, floods, drought, tropical diseases and other health problems, and poor water quality. We desperately need a tool like Climate One-Stop."

"USAID has developed tools to help our partners in ," adds John Furlow of USAID. "Every time I meet with colleagues from other organizations I hear about the great work they've been doing -- new tools, data, and case studies showing what does and doesn't work. It's hard for development workers to find all these things available to help them. Now the development workers in the field will have all this information right at their fingertips - at Climate One-Stop."

In developing countries in Central America, Africa, and elsewhere, 60% or more of the people earn their livelihoods from agriculture and other activities that can be affected -- even devastated -- by weather.

"The economies in these countries rely heavily not only on farming, but also on tourism and forestry," says Furlow. "Weather affects people's livelihoods much more than it does in the US. If, for example, agriculture is affected by drought and most people are farmers, suffering is widespread and the whole economy is affected."

Development workers need to know how climate and environmental changes could affect the communities they serve. They also need to know how to apply that knowledge locally so they can teach the people there how to adapt. For example, are the crops they plant suitable to the range of temperatures and precipitation expected in their region? Or might they need to select other crops?

One-Stop builds on NASA's SERVIR program, which has facilities in Central America and East Africa. SERVIR uses satellite imagery and other data to quickly map places where a flood, fire, hurricane, or earthquake has left destruction in its wake and help decision-makers find where aid is needed in a hurry. The SERVIR team also monitors and delivers information to help national leaders make informed decisions and policies for adapting to climate change and environmental threats. In Central America alone, since its debut there in March 2005, SERVIR has addressed over 11 environmental threats and 25 natural disasters.

The One-Stop will help users find SERVIR's many datasets and models. For example, the website includes downscaled models showing average temperature and precipitation and projected climate information for Central America.

The One-Stop's database actually stores all the information, which is then searchable via its web portal. So it immediately offers up direct links to the latest climate and environmental data, models, research, projects, and workshops.

The website's grand opening is set for the December United Nations in Copenhagen. With its ease of use and virtual shelves packed with information, as well as a section allowing users to contribute content, Climate One-Stop could help turn a brewing storm into a brainstorm.

"One-Stop's potential benefits are enormous," says Coughlin. "It could have dramatic effects within the climate change and decision-making communities."

"It's a great way for developed and developing countries to share their knowledge and information about ," adds Irwin. "From space, NASA's Apollo astronauts saw Earth as a unified whole with no boundaries. Climate One-Stop will help that become a reality, in a sense. We'll all be able to work together as a global community."

Explore further: Avoiding ecosystem collapse

Source: by Dauna Coulter, Science@NASA

2.9 /5 (9 votes)
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

NASA Develops Central American Monitoring System

Feb 05, 2005

A state-of-the-art environmental monitoring facility in Panama is the first to employ NASA Earth science research and space-based observations to provide Central American decision makers with early warning about a variety ...

New climate forceasting system to be created

Sep 04, 2009

(AP) -- The World Climate Conference has approved the creation of a new climate forecasting system to help countries adapt to climate change and enable them to better prepare for natural disasters, officials said Friday.

Web site explains how climate change affects New York City

May 20, 2005

With over half the world's people now living in cities, it's important for us to better understand how climate changes might affect urban areas. Now, a new highly-researched Web site provides scientific answers to basic que ...

EPA releases report on climate change and health

Jul 17, 2008

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has released a report that discusses the potential impacts of climate change on human health, human welfare, and communities in the U.S. The report, entitled "Analyses of the Effects ...

Recommended for you

Avoiding ecosystem collapse

1 hour ago

From coral reefs to prairie grasslands, some of the world's most iconic habitats are susceptible to sudden collapse due to seemingly minor events. A classic example: the decimation of kelp forests when a ...

Global warming cynics unmoved by extreme weather

2 hours ago

What will it take to convince skeptics of global warming that the phenomenon is real? Surely, many scientists believe, enough droughts, floods and heat waves will begin to change minds.

New tool displays West Coast ocean acidification data

2 hours ago

Increasing carbon dioxide in the air penetrates into the ocean and makes it more acidic, while robbing seawater of minerals that give shellfish their crunch. The West Coast is one of the first marine ecosystems ...

User comments : 6

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

omatumr
1.7 / 5 (11) Dec 16, 2009
Yes, indeed, there is a storm brewing!

Not a storm of information.

The storm is over the misinformation that that has been falsely presented to the public as science.

With kind regards,
Oliver K. Manuel
mikiwud
2.3 / 5 (9) Dec 16, 2009
"Cherry picking" do I hear? Welcome to the orchard.
Models and "corrected" data, Hockey Sticks!, buy one get one free.
RayCherry
1 / 5 (3) Dec 16, 2009
The sit is very important, but NASA should not have stepped up with it now. It should have been the attendees at Copenhagen who selected a group to construct and maintain the site, and committing to act appropriately to the results gathered and analysed there.

NASA may have a huge amount of resources, but credibility in the world, let alone in hyper-critical America, is lacking. NASA has too many agendas to push, and all require substancial funding - government, academic and comercial - which can only be seen as motivations that may introduce certain biases to their work.

Copenhagen needs to select, and establish close monitoring of, a centralised resource with as much public transparency as possible; with the scientists as much as their data being made available to governments and the public as frequently as possible.
defunctdiety
3 / 5 (6) Dec 16, 2009
It should have been the attendees at Copenhagen...
NASA has too many agendas to push...all require substancial funding

And Copenhagen doesn't have an agenda? I'm afraid everyone there has already drank the AGW kool-aid.

An independent, international coalition of scientists, dare I say not even climate scientists, perhaps physicists and chemists, needs to be assembled to scrutinize the data and methods (not interpret, just make sure the science is "good"), maybe with the responsible scientists explaining the how's and why's.

I agree transparency is key, but it's too late for transparency, the AGW "academics" are too invested now to ever back down, ever. I really don't see any of this making a difference no matter how it's handled.

It's only the People, the Citizens of any given nation, who can end the absurdity.

The People who feel the uncertainty and cost are too great to justify the proposed action.

They only need muster the will and courage to voice their concerns.
GrayMouser
5 / 5 (2) Dec 16, 2009
USAID? When I was doing Psychological Operations we knew that USAID is the US Government's official (overt) propaganda organ...
RayCherry
1 / 5 (1) Dec 17, 2009
This site is very important, but NASA should not have stepped up with it now. It should have been the attendees at Copenhagen who selected a group to construct and maintain the site, and committing to act appropriately to the results gathered and analysed there.

NASA may have a huge amount of resources, but credibility in the world, let alone in hyper-critical America, is lacking. NASA has too many agendas to push, and all require substancial funding - government, academic and comercial - which can only be seen as motivations that may introduce certain biases to their work.

Copenhagen needs to select, and establish close monitoring of, a centralised resource with as much public transparency as possible; with the scientists as much as their data being made available to governments and the public as frequently as possible.
And Copenhagen doesn't have an agenda?
Defunct comment, perhaps?

Their agenda is to agree an Anthropogenic response to Global Warming.

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.