“In this new and pilot-stage of Climate.Data.gov, you will find resources to help companies, communities, and citizens understand and prepare for the impacts of coastal flooding and sea level rise. Over time, this community will expand to include more datasets, web services, and tools; it will also cover other themes such as the vulnerability of the food supply and the threats to human health from climate change,” a post on the new website said.
Climate change is real
The president’s science adviser John P. Holdren and White House counselor John D. Podesta collaborated on a blog post today to explain that the effort “will help create easy-to-use tools for regional planners, farmers, hospitals, and businesses across the country—and empower America’s communities to prepare themselves for the future.”
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“Every citizen will be affected by climate change—and all of us must work together to make our communities stronger and more resilient to its impacts,” they continued.
This is not the first time that the administration has tried to make this information available. In 2010, Jane Lubchenco, the administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration at the time, created a site modeled on the National Weather Service that she called the National Climate Service. Prior to that, and near the end of the Bush administration, NOAA looked into the idea of providing farmers with the information they needed to make long-term decisions based on available data but was met, somewhat unsurprisingly, by resistance from congressional Republicans and members of the Tea Party.
“The essence of dealing with climate change is not so much about identifying specific impacts at a specific time in the future. It’s about managing risk,” Prof. Chris Field, the director of the department of global ecology at Stanford University, said in February.
According to the announcement, Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG), Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT), Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC) and Esri have teamed up with the government to create new mapping software, applications and other technological tools for use on the portal. Additionally, Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) will donate 1,000 terabytes of cloud storage for climate data, along with 50 million hours of high-performance computing with the Google Earth Engine platform to the effort.