Quantcast

Crucial Climate Data Archive Taken Offline Amid Shutdown

Climate
The website for the National Centers for Environmental Information redirects to this page.

A number of websites for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) are currently unavailable for public access due to a "lapse in appropriations" from the ongoing government shutdown, an agency spokesperson told The Hill.

For instance, the website for the National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI)—a vast and significant archive of historical climate, oceanic, atmospheric and geophysical data—redirects to https://governmentshutdown.noaa.gov/.


The online portal is a publicly available resource and is vital for studies on climate change and other earth sciences.

But the page now states: "NOAA.gov and specific NOAA websites necessary to protect lives and property are operational and will be maintained during this partial closure of the U.S. Government."

"See weather.gov for forecasts and critical weather information," it adds.

The NOAA spokesperson was "unable to comment on the number of pages across the agency that are currently redirected" and did not comment on why the sites were pulled entirely instead of allowing archived data to remain online, according to The Hill.

The National Centers for Environmental Information, headquartered in Asheville, North Carolina, hosts "the world's largest climate and weather data archive," according to a NASA blog post.

It holds a trove of environmental information, from Thomas Jefferson's weather observations to near-real time satellite remote sensing data, the post noted.

The NCEI is "the nation's leading authority for environmental information," a National Parks Service (NPS) blog post stated. NPS listed the website as one of the top online tools "to help people identify climate threats and vulnerabilities, as well as reduce their risks from the impacts of climate variability and change."

Screenshot of NOAA's National Centers for Environmental Information website before the shutdown

NCEI represents the merger of three former NOAA data centers: the National Climatic Data Center, the National Geophysical Data Center and the National Oceanographic Data Center. The website for each individual center redirects to the shutdown page.

That's not the only way the partial U.S. government shutdown has delayed or disrupted scientific research. Affected agencies such as the National Science Foundation have stopped awarding research grants.

Government scientists—as well as university researchers, nonprofits and private companies that collaborate with the government—have also seen their work jeopardized due to lack of federal funding, the Associated Press reported.

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

Individual standing in Hurricane Harvey flooding and damage. Jill Carlson / Flickr / CC BY 2.0

By Allegra Kirkland, Jeremy Deaton, Molly Taft, Mina Lee and Josh Landis

Climate change is already here. It's not something that can simply be ignored by cable news or dismissed by sitting U.S. senators in a Twitter joke. Nor is it a fantastical scenario like The Day After Tomorrow or 2012 that starts with a single crack in the Arctic ice shelf or earthquake tearing through Los Angeles, and results, a few weeks or years later, in the end of life on Earth as we know it.

Read More Show Less
A pregnant woman works out in front of the skyline of London. SHansche / iStock / Getty Images Plus

Air pollution particles that a pregnant woman inhales have the potential to travel through the lungs and breach the fetal side of the placenta, indicating that unborn babies are exposed to black carbon from motor vehicles and fuel burning, according to a study published in the journal Nature Communications.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored

Teen activist Greta Thunberg delivered a talking-to to members of Congress Tuesday during a meeting of the Senate Climate Change Task Force after politicians praised her and other youth activists for their efforts and asked their advice on how to fight climate change.

Read More Show Less
Ten feet of water flooded 20 percent of this Minot, North Dakota neighborhood in June 2011. DVIDSHUB / CC BY 2.0

By Jared Brey

When Hurricane Michael tore through the Florida panhandle last October, it killed at least 43 people, caused an estimated $25 billion in damage and destroyed thousands of homes.

Read More Show Less
A protestor holds up her hand covered with fake oil during a demonstration on the U.C. Berkeley campus in May 2010. Justin Sullivan / Getty Images

The University of California system will dump all of its investments from fossil fuels, as the Associated Press reported. The university system controls over $84 billion between its pension fund and its endowment. However, the announcement about its investments is not aimed to please activists.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
Forest fire continues to blaze in Indonesesia on Sept. 18. WAHYUDI / AFP / Getty Images

Nearly 200 people have been arrested in Indonesia over their possible connections to the massive wildfires raging in the nation's forest, officials said this week.

Read More Show Less

By Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala

World leaders have a formidable task: setting a course to save our future. The extreme weather made more frequent and severe by climate change is here. This spring, devastating cyclones impacted 3 million people in Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe. Record heatwaves are hitting Europe and other regions — this July was the hottest month in modern record globally. Much of India is again suffering severe drought.

Read More Show Less
Covering Climate Now / YouTube screenshot

By Mark Hertsgaard

The United Nations Secretary General says that he is counting on public pressure to compel governments to take much stronger action against what he calls the climate change "emergency."

Read More Show Less