Please invest in Our Daily Planet today, by making a one time or monthly contribution.
We do not charge our readers a subscription fee for our content. We want to continue to grow our readership, particularly among millennials and public servants. Voluntary contributions from readers will help us employ interns and freelance journalists, expand our content, and reach a larger audience.
A team of researchers at the University of Michigan found that tracking windshield wiper activity can provide faster, more accurate rainfall data than radar and rain gauge systems currently in use. The researchers used a fleet of 70 cars and tracked when wipers were being used and matched it with video from onboard cameras to document rainfall and found that tracking windshield wiper activity can provide faster, more accurate rainfall data.
The nation’s largest private weather provider, AccuWeather, is going to begin to use a new “scale” for conveying the severity of hurricanes in the future, diverging from the current scale used by the National Weather Service (NWS) and followed by all private weather forecasters and meteorologists. AccuWeather’s CEO, Joel Myers, claims that the current scale only measures wind, but that recent hurricanes from Sandy to Florence have proved that storm surge and flooding can be quite dangerous or deadly even when a hurricane’s wind is not at the top level of severity.
A big snowstorm will barrel across the middle of the country over the weekend — following a 1500 mile pathway from Denver to Baltimore. The storm will begin on Friday and last through late Sunday before it blows out to sea. According to the National Weather Service, 20 million people are in the storm’s path, […]
Among the most consequential impacts of the government shutdown are the strain and diminution of capacity to the National Weather Service (NWS) operations, upon which all public and private daily weather forecasts are based.
Why This Matters: One-third of the U.S. economy is impacted by the weather. Indeed, as The Post points out, that means many sectors such as transportation, energy, national security, agriculture, the stock market, not to mention forecasts of extreme weather — are now operating on less than the highly accurate forecasts they usually can rely upon. And imagine if we have a “billion dollar” storm such as a “snowmaggedon” while the shutdown drags on, with lives and profits at risk, which seems increasingly probable as we are now squarely in winter snow season. Offices like the one that Saha works in are down to skeleton staff — only one or two rather than dozens. This weather forecasting degradation is much riskier to the general public than any risk we face from the lack of a feckless border wall segment.
Los Angeles City Attorney Michael Feuer sued the operator of a free, popular weather forecast app alleging that the company misled consumers by hiding the fact that it was selling their personal location data. The Associated Press reported that TWC Product and Technology LLC (which is owned by IBM Corp.) sold data to hedge funds that used the information to analyze consumer behavior and to more than a dozen websites for targeted ads.
Why This Matters: The Weather Channel App is the most popular weather forecasting app in the world, with 45 million downloads each month, according to the company. Facebook and Google are not the only companies taking advantage of their users. Weather apps have become a key way that the dangers of severe weather are communicated to the mass public. I (Monica) must check the weather for my location — not to mention my family’s — every day. This is not just impacting weather geeks like me. The public should not have to choose between their privacy rights and their safety from weather hazards.
Subscribe to the email that top lawmakers, renowned scientists, and thousands of concerned citizens turn to each morning for the latest environmental news and analysis.
Want the latest climate news in your inbox?
Our Daily Planet is your daily dose of the stories shaping our world and the ways that you can take action. From the climate crisis to the protection of biodiversity, if these issues matter to you then please subscribe & stay informed!
Your privacy is Important! We promise never to use your email address to send you spam or advertisements.