National Weather Service (NWS) - Alaska Region
Modernizing and Optimizing our Surface Observing Networks
This public comment period will be open for 30 days.
NWS has conducted an initial assessment of the surface observing networks currently supporting weather forecast operations in Alaska. The assessment gathered input from our partners in state and federal government, specific user communities like pilots and mariners, and the general public. Based on this assessment sites within the observational network were identified as either mission critical or as supplemental. In addition, the assessment identified critical observational gaps.
The NWS would like to solicit your feedback concerning the observation sites identified for closure (supplemental) and automation (mission critical), as well as the sites identified to potentially fill observational gaps. Your feedback will be most useful if it addresses the following areas; impact of closing sites, priority of new sites, new sites needed but not identified.
The following sites were deemed as mission-critical and are recommended to be replaced with automated sensors for 24x7 coverage:
- Big River Lakes (already closed, working to get automated station in area)
- Chulitna River
- Elfin Cove
- Port Alexander
- Port Alsworth
- Whittier (Automated station already installed)
The following sites were deemed as supplemental (non-mission-critical) and are recommended to be closed:
- Sheep Mountain
- Snowshoe Lake
The following locations were identified as priority gaps. The NWS plans to investigate the installation of automated observing systems near these locations:
- Trading Bay to fill gap on west side of Cook Inlet
- Clarence Strait - Grindall Island
- Chatham Strait - Pt. Gardner
- Sumner Strait - Pt. Baker/Sumner Island
- Nord Island (Barren Islands)
- Cooper Landing
- St. Matthew Island
- Glacier Bay - Lone Island
- Cape Sarichef
- Cape Chacon
- Relocate Point Bishop Station to Grand Island
Comments may be provided in the box below.