WxTalk Webinar #40


Webinar #40 - Thursday, September 17, 2015

The history and uses of volunteer weather observations in the U.S.

Nolan Doesken
Colorado Climate Center, Colorado State Univ.,
Fort Collins, CO


Volunteer weather observations have played a large and important role in tracking, mapping and understanding our weather and climate for a long time -- much longer than most realize.  Organized weather observing networks data back many centuries in places like China and Korea.  Even here in the U.S., famous names like Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson were organizing weather observations already in the 1700s.  In this talk we'll look at the history of organized volunteer observing networks such as the Smithsonian Meteorological Network of the 1800s and the US Weather Bureau/National Weather Service Cooperative Observer Network that is celebrating its 125th anniversary this year.  The internet has enabled programs like ours, the Community Collaborative Rain, Hail and Snow network (CoCoRaHS), to grow and thrive.

We'll talk about what these networks have helped accomplish, and the remarkable importance of the data we (and many others before us) help collect.

View the Webinar by clicking here: https://youtu.be/JblgjXOec4A

View Nolan's presentation slides (32MB)


NOAA/NWS Cooperative Observer Program (COOP)

USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map