UCAR hosted a congressional briefing on water issues in Washington, D.C. this Tuesday afternoon. The meeting included representatives from academia, the government and private sector, and focused on advancing drought and flood predicting capabilities. At the center of this discussion was NOAA’s new National Water Model, an advanced system for forecasting water resources that was launched by the organization last month. The event was also live tweeted by AtmosNews, NCAR & UCAR’s twitter account.
A new climate model created at NCAR is able to capture and predict the behavior of jet streams. This new technology will help researchers better understand how these atmospheric rivers may change course as the temperature of Earth rises. One critical influence an altered jet stream can have is increasing the amount of rainfall in a given area which can help mitigate droughts in some locations but also cause flooding in others.
Hundreds gathered last Thursday in Denver to support the protests of the Standing Rock Sioux tribe who were attempting to halt the building of an oil pipeline. The pipeline would cross the Missouri River, and individuals fear that leaks will cause the contamination of local water sources. The federal government has since temporarily halted the pipeline development in response to protests.