Natural Resources, School of


Toward Regional Climate Services: The Role of NOAA’s Regional Climate Centers

Arthur T. DeGaetano, Cornell University
Timothy J. Brown, Western Regional Climate Center, Desert Research Institute
Steven D. Hilberg, University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign
Kelly Redmond, Western Regional Climate Center, Desert Research Institute
Kevin Robbins, Louisiana State University
Peter Robinson, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Martha Shulski, University of Nebraska–Lincoln
Marjorie McGuirk, NOAA/National Climatic Data Center

Document Type Article

© 2010 American Meteorological Society


Over the 25-yr history of the Regional Climate Center (RCC) program, the central goals of the 1978 Climate Program Act that initiated the program have remained at the core of the centers’ mission. However, the methods, infrastructure, tools, and collaborations that define the program have evolved and the demand for and sophistication of climate service requests has increased. Unlike the program’s partners whose focus is on the collection and archival of climate data, integrated research, and addressing state-specific climate inquiries, the RCCs fill the following three operational niches in national climate services:

• provision and development of sector-specific and value-added data products and services;

• establishment of robust and efficient computer-based infrastructure for providing climate information; and

• seamless integration and storage of non–National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) climate data with traditional NOAA data sources.