SUMMARY

The public, private, and academic sectors collect data, run models, generate forecasts, and disseminate weather products to support their respective missions. NOAA operates the national observing system and is responsible for the U.S. contribution to the global observing system. State and local governments, academia, and the private sector supplement the national network with denser arrays of instruments. Integrating these local data into national databases will help fill data gaps, once the issues of standards, formats, data quality, and data policy have been resolved. Models are developed primarily by the NWS and academia, although the private sector is becoming more sophisticated in customizing existing models and developing its own. Weather and climate products produced by the NWS tend to be general, except for products aimed at industries specified in the NWS mission, such as aviation and emergency management. NWS and state agency products are also used preferentially by user groups that require official and/or unbiased information, such as the weather derivatives and legal industries. Other industries and user groups employ a combination of government, academic, and commercial products. Weather products created by the private sector (including meteorologists working in industries affected by weather) tend to be much more specialized than NWS products to meet the needs of particular user groups. Climate products fall mainly in the domain of NOAA, state climatologists, and regional climate centers, but the private sector will be an increasing player as the accuracy of seasonal to interannual forecasts improves and climate products become more useful to industries such as insurance, energy, health, and agriculture.



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