Multicriteria Spatial Decision Support for NOAA Environmental Real-Time Observation Network
This project supported NOAAs network modernization with the development of a multi-criterial site selection method and GIS. This project continued and enhanced the GIS studies that were performed in our previous projects: "GIS-based Selection of Potential National Weather Service COOP Sites: A Pilot Study in Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont" (April 2004 - June 2004), "Development of a Comprehensive GIS Model to Prototype a New National Weather Service COOP Network" (August 2004 - July 2005), and "Multicriteria Spatial Decision Support for NOAA Environmental Real-Time Observation Network (NERON) Phase I" (August 2005 - January 2006). Over the project period, the research team at the Center for Spatial Analysis (CSA) worked closely with the NWS leadership as well as climatologists across NWS offices and state climatological offices in establishing site criteria for long-term climate observations. Based on the national and regional needs, CSA researchers developed modeling methodologies and formulated decision support strategies, including effective communication means for distant collaboration for site assessment and selection using Geographic Information Systems (GIS) technology. Meta-data related to candidate sites for quality long-term climate observations are assembled and distributed to NWS leadership and regional climatologists for further site discussions. Per NWS leadership guidance, the siting strategy began with an open siting strategy but later was narrowed to HCN site characterization and local siting analysis.The dynamic nature of siting criteria and of candidate sites for consideration challenged the adaptability of GIS methodologies and decision making strategies developed by the CSA team. CSA researchers successfully revised GIS methodologies to support decision making processes for the assessment and selection of qualified HCN sites for national climate network modernization.