The mission of the Southern Regional Climate Center is to increase the use and availability of climate information in the Southern region that comprises the states of Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma, Tennessee, and Texas. SRCC personnel work closely with scientists from other regional and federal climate centers to enhance climate services and programs that provide a regional structure for climate applications. The long-term objectives of the SRCC are to collect, enhance and deliver climate data and products to the citizens and industries in its region, provide personalized service and outreach, and conduct applied climate research and development to enhance data quality, product utility, and promote a better understanding of the interaction between climate information and societal needs.
Climate information is used by a variety of private industries and public institutions to enhance planning and management decisions and to resolve incident related problems related to their business activities. The SRCC responds to climate information requests from lawyers, insurers, rate adjusters, construction contractors, agriculturalists, fishermen, policy planners and managers, shippers, soil and water conservationists, forensic meteorologists, natural resources and environmental managers, emergency managers, and private individuals. The SRCC provides its services through telephone consultation, automated subscriptions, freely available web-based information, and subsciption access to enhanced on-line climate data and products that include climate observations from national and regional networks. Data from regional automated weather networks, National Weather Service (NWS) daily and hourly reporting stations, weather forecasts and warnings, tropical advisories, and virtually any type of observation provided through NOAA data sources.
Data Collection and Dissemination
For more than a decade, the SRCC has been a tier-one relay for weather and climate data distributed via Unidata's Internet Data Distribution (IDD) system. The Unidata community is comprised of more than 150 universities building a system for disseminating near real-time earth observations via the Internet.
Applied Research and Development
Research projects are primarily aimed at producing new climate information used to enhance climate service activities. The SRCC staff works with developers at other Regional Climate Centers to develop internet-based data collection and distribution systems. Research objectives include the characterization of extreme climate events, relationships between atmospheric circulation patterns and regional climate, and response strategies for hurricanes and tropical storms. The SRCC has also developed a system (Datzilla) to report and track errors in national data archives and data delivery systems that contribute to the health of the national climate data network.
The SRCC has participated in workshops related to climate change and variability, tropical storms and hurricanes, extreme events, and the impact of climate within the region. SRCC personnel have visited area classrooms to assist K-12 science teachers in teaching weather and climate principles. We have aslo attended national Weather Service workshops and provided training on data and product delivery systems as well as data quality control systems. The SRCC employs and provides financial support to graduate and undergraduate students involved in the user services and research programs that has contributed to the training and education of students in several departments on the LSU campus.
The major source of SRCC funding comes from Congressional appropriations channelled through NOAA's National Climatic Data Center . State matching support is provided by Louisiana State University through salaries and operating funds. Research and development grants and contracts are leveraged on SRCC base funding to enhance overall operational capabilities.
Staff supported in whole or part by SRCC funding include: Director, Regional Climatologist, User service Climatologist, NWS Data Liaison, Software Development Specialist, Computer Systems Manager, student workers, and graduate students.