Vegetation Impact Program: Operational Decision Support Tools for Climate Extremes

Proposed by: Molly Woloszyn

Presenter: Woloszyn, M. , Extension Climatologist, Midwestern Regional Climate Center & Illinois-IndianaSea Grant, Champaign, IL 61821

In response to historical costly and damaging freeze events in the north-central United States, the Midwestern Regional Climate Center (MRCC) has teamed up with the National Weather Service (NWS), state climatologists, and local vegetation experts like Extension and growers to develop an operational online decision support tool to help monitor, assess, and mitigate these extreme weather phenomena. The MRCC began the nationwide Vegetation Impact Program (VIP) in spring 2013 to provide a partnership opportunity among these stakeholders to monitor and assess vegetation and climate. The VIP offers an online portal to operational climate assessment tools, a means of communicating status of vegetative growth and climate conditions in the region, and multiple methods of communicating between sectors and stakeholders. The Frost/Freeze Guidance (FFG) project is the first impact-monitoring project within VIP and was inspired by NWS forecasters requesting decision-making assistance and guidance tools relating to damaging freezing temperatures with both the NWS community and local vegetation experts. The FFG project is currently guiding NWS offices throughout the country in issuing frost/freeze headlines. However, greater participation and partnership from the community of vegetation experts is needed to provide guidance on the susceptibility of local vegetation to freezing temperatures.

All Accepted Proposals