Local Government Climate and Energy Strategy Series
December 27, 2012
The Local Government Climate and Energy Strategy Series, published by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, gives a straightforward overview of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reduction strategies that local governments can use to achieve economic, environmental, social, and human health benefits. The series covers energy efficiency, transportation, community planning and design, solid waste and materials management, and renewable energy.
Atmospheric pollution manifests itself in many ways, ranging from reduced visibility to dangerous respiratory problems and discomfort. Atmospheric pollution can be gaseous (e.g. ozone, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides) and/or particulate (e.g. soot, dust). The degree of pollution is dependent on a number of factors: source, transport from source, and build up over time through air stagnation. The stagnation index maps show where in the United States air has stagnated, leading to potential impacts on human and environmental health.
The National Weather Service provides weather, water, and climate data, forecasts and warnings for the protection of life and property and enhancement of the national economy. These products include forecast and warnings of environmental events that can impact human health, such as excessive heat, flooding, severe cold, and more.
A monthly summary from major airport weather stations that includes a daily account of temperature extremes, degree days, precipitation and winds. Also included are the hourly precipitation and abbreviated 3-hourly weather observations.
NOAA produces the Regional Snowfall Index (RSI) for significant snowstorms that impact the eastern two-thirds of the United States. The RSI ranks snowstorm impacts on a scale from 1 to 5, similar to the Fujita scale for tornadoes or the Saffir-Simpson scale for hurricanes.
Here you can access snowfall and snow depth statistics for several thousand non-airport stations in the National Weather Service (NWS) Cooperative (COOP) Network across the contiguous U.S. and Alaska. Data are available for daily, monthly, and seasonal snowfall and snow depth totals, which are useful in economic and engineering decision-making, and provide the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) with an objective basis for declaring federal snow disasters.
This online resource examines tornado activity across the United States across temporal and spatial scales. The contiguous United States is the most active tornado region in the world, with an average of 1,253 tornadoes occurring annually. The information and data provided here serves as a baseline for comparing current tornado activity to the past, providing a complete historical perspective.
When both temperature and humidity are high, humans can experience considerable heat stress. In the U.S., extreme heat may have greater impact on human health, especially among the elderly, than any other type of severe weather.
This online resource provides links to several NOAA online severe weather databases, including the Storm Events Database and the Severe Weather Data Inventory. These databases provide online access to files for storm and hurricane data in commonly used formats, such as shapefiles for GIS applications, KMZ for Google Earth, comma-separated values, and extensible markup language (XML).