To help communities and individuals plan for the risks of sea level rise, heavy downpours, extreme heat, and other climate-change-related impacts, the U.S. Government is releasing today a collection of software tools, datasets and informational resources containing information useful for assessing the impacts of climate change on the transportation facilities, operations, and the transportation system.

Among the products, developed by the U.S. Department of Transportation and other agencies, are

  • Tools for assembling regional downscaled climate projections containing the variables most useful to transportation engineers and planners;
  • Tools for assessing relative sea-level rise, erosion risk, and flooding developed by FEMA, NOAA, USGS and USACE;
  • Geospatial data on the location of US transportation networks;
  • Datasets on passenger and freight movements;
  • Tools for assessing the vulnerability of transportation facilities to climate change;
  • Digital elevation and hydrologic datasets developed by USGS, NOAA, and other agencies;
  • Case studies, methodological guidance, and archived instructional webinars.

These resources will be helpful to State and local government agencies, urban and regional planners, architects and engineers, transportation system operators, and anyone with an interest in climate change impacts.

Expanding access to Arctic data and tools

(Sep 2, 2015) The Administration is expanding its Climate Data Initiative (CDI) and Climate Resilience Toolkit (CRT) to include a new “Arctic” theme. The Arctic theme will encompass more than 250 Arctic-related datasets (32 of which are being made available for the first time), and more than 40 maps, tools, and other resources designed to support climate-resilience efforts in Alaska and the Arctic, including seven “Taking Action” case studies in key areas of climate-change risks and vulnerability for Alaska and the Arctic. The Administration also recently expanded the CRT to include a new “Tribal Nations” theme, comprised of more than 40 resources—with more to be added in the future—to assist Tribal nations in climate-change planning, adaptation, and mitigation. Resources include a comprehensive Tribal Climate Change Adaptation Planning Toolkit, and a set of guidelines for considering traditional knowledge in climate change initiatives. These datasets and resources are now cataloged on, respectively,climate.data.gov and toolkit.climate.gov, making them easier for innovators, decision makers, and interested members of the public to find and use. In addition, the Administration is engaging the private sector around the CDI and CRT to help accelerate the development and deployment of products, tools, and applications powered by open Arctic data to help Alaskan and other northern communities better understand their vulnerability to, and prepare for, the impacts of climate change.

 

Microsoft Launches “Innovation Challenge” around Food Resilience

WASHINGTON, July 27, 2015 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture is partnering with Microsoft to launch the “Innovation Challenge,” a competition to develop software applications that help farmers, agriculture businesses, and consumers explore how climate change will affect their food systems.

The Innovation Challenge was formally launched on July 27th at a conference of the Agricultural & Applied Economics Association in San Francisco. Challenge participants have 3 months to create their applications, with a top prize of $25,000 going to the most creative application that best exploits USDA data sets that are now being hosted on Microsoft Azure, Microsoft’s cloud computing platform.

Entrants are invited to develop and publish new applications and tools that can help users analyze multiple sources of information, including key USDA data sets. In addition, Microsoft is granting cloud computing awards to aid university researchers and students that are looking to take part in the challenge.  Challenge winners will be announced in December 2015.

Full details of the challenge can be found at >http://usdaapps.challengepost.com<.

First International Conference on Surface Transportation System Resilience to Climate Change and Extreme Weather Events

September 16-18, 2015

The National Academy of Sciences Building
Washington, DC

The Transportation Research Board will host a conference September 16-18, 2015 to provide transportation professionals with information about emerging best practices and research results on how to adapt surface transportation networks to the potential impacts of climate change and extreme weather events. The conference will examine efforts to mainstream consideration of climate change and extreme weather resilience in all aspects of the transportation sector, including planning and programming, capital improvements, and operations and maintenance.

Launch of Energy & Infrastructure Resilience theme of Climate.Data.Gov

To help communities, governments, businesses, and research institutions better understand and plan for the risks of storms, floods, and other climate-change-related impacts, the U.S. Government is enhancing accessibility and releasing today a collection of datasets containing scientific and technical information that may help inform the current and potential future effects of climate change on energy and infrastructure.

These data are also being made available via mapping services on Geoplatform.gov. The resources provided here can be used to explore and develop insights for a number of relevant questions, such as:

1) How are fundamental energy resources impacted by climate?

2) How might changes in climate and natural resource availability impact energy conversion infrastructure and processes?

3) How might climate impact energy transmission and distribution systems?

4) How might energy demands be impacted by climate change, including heating and cooling but also energy losses and energy used for adaptation by other sectors?

5) What capacity do we currently have to adapt energy systems, and how might technology solutions, systems designs, and operational changes improve energy system resilience for climate change?

6) How might climate change impact energy infrastructure and its interactions with networked and interconnected infrastructure systems?

The Esri Human Health and Climate Change App Challenge

(June 1, 2015) Esri’s Climate Change and Human Health App Challenge is open to everyone – including developers, start-ups, governments, academics, and NGOs to name a few. Get creative for this important initiative by using the growing pool of open data and Esri apps, maps, services, and APIs. Judges will select the best of the best apps to be featured at Esri’s Health and Human Services GIS Conference. Esri will award prizes and share the winning apps on our Collaborative Resource Portal.