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Alaska RISA Team to Host Webinar Series to Share Climate Information with Stakeholders


In April, the Alaska Center for Climate Assessment and Policy (ACCAP), a CPO RISA team, will host a series of webinars to share climate-related information with Alaska stakeholders.

On Tuesday, April 13 at 10am AKDT / 2 PM EDT, ACCAP will host their 2021 Alaska River Break-up Preview featuring the NWS Alaska-Pacific River Forecast Center’s (APRFC) Crane Johnson, and ACCAP’s Rick Thoman. Winter and early spring 2020-21 featured significant fluctuations in the prevailing storm track, resulting in big swings in temperatures and snowfall around Alaska. Crane Johnson will review break-up basics and an overview of current conditions. Rick Thoman, Alaska Climate Specialist, will provide the latest subseasonal outlooks that help inform the APRFC’s official break-up outlook.

On Friday, April 16 at 12pm AKDT / 4pm EDT, ACCAP will host the 2021 NWS Alaska Climate Outlook Briefing featuring Thoman. He will review recent climate conditions around Alaska as well as some forecast tools, and finish up the Climate Prediction Center’s forecast for April and the late spring/early summer season.

On Tuesday, April 20 at 10am AKDT/2pm EDT, ACCAP will host a webinar on Future Projections of Precipitation for Alaska. Alaska is expected to experience major changes in extreme weather during the twenty-first century, invalidating old estimates of the likelihood of flood-inducing rain events. Thus, the State Department of Transportation funded a project—carried out by the Scenarios Network of Alaska and Arctic Planning (SNAP) at UAF’s International Arctic Research Center (IARC), with assistance from Neptune, inc.—aimed at updating precipitation data based on the latest climate change projections. Nancy Fresco (SNAP) will share a new online statewide tool designed for engineers, but accessible and interesting to everyone.

On Wednesday, April 21 at 11am AKDT/3pm EDT, ACCAP will host a webinar titled, “VAWS: Improvement of Satellite 3-D Cloud Structure Information for Aviation Users & Two CIMSS products for Decision Support in Aviation.” Dr. Yoo-Jeong (YJ) Noh, NOAA Cooperative Institute for Research in the Atmosphere (CIRA)/Colorado State University, will present on Cloud Vertical Cross-section products for aviation users recently introduced in support of the NOAA JPSS Aviation Initiative to provide satellite cloud information in a more user-friendly way. Dr. Scott Lindstrom, Cooperative Institute for Meteorological Satellite Studies (CIMSS)/University of Wisconsin Madison, will present two different products that CIMSS scientists created recently to provide aviation support. First, IFR Probability products combine satellite and model information into a 24-hour product that gives useful information on the likelihood of ceiling and visibility restrictions. Second, a turbulence probability product was developed using Machine Learning techniques operating on satellite data, GFS stability products, and in-plane observations of Eddy Dissipation Rate (EDR).

ACCAP hosts regular webinars for stakeholders across Alaska. Recurring topics include monthly climate recaps and outlooks, satellite-based presentations from the National Weather Service, and special climate-related presentations on sea/river ice, extreme precipitation, wildfire, and more.

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