NOAA 2004-R304
Contact: John Leslie
NOAA News Releases 2004
NOAA Home Page
NOAA Public Affairs


The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced that an additional $678,000 would be included in a multi-year $9.7million agreement it signed with the Cooperative Institute for Climate Studies (CICS) based at the University of Maryland (UMD) in College Park. NOAA is an agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce.

The extra funding will support research to determine how satellite data can be used to analyze climate variability, and how the data can be incorporated into computer models to better understand weather and climate impacts.

The five-year agreement, which began September 1, 2001, underscores a commitment between UMD and NOAA’s Satellites and Information Service to use satellite data from the agency’s two geostationary and polar-orbiting spacecraft to research climate variability and climate change.

“The University of Maryland plays host to a number of highly-respected institutions, including the Cooperative Institute for Climate Studies,” said Governor Robert L. Ehrlich, Jr. “This worthwhile partnership between the University of Maryland and the Bush Administration yields invaluable insights into climate-related events. I am pleased to see additional funding being dedicated to this important endeavor.”

“With this cooperative agreement, we maximize satellite data to help us better understand what is happening in the climate system and why it’s happening,” said retired Navy Vice Adm. Conrad C. Lautenbacher, Ph.D., undersecretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere, and NOAA administrator. “NOAA and the Bush Administration are committed to working with academic institutions to improve our awareness, appreciation and understanding of the environment.”

CICS is developing a science and implementation plan for a national program to analyze the climate system. CICS is also studying the seasonal cycle of temperature and salinity of the tropical Atlantic Ocean.

“We gain through partnerships like the one between NOAA and the University of Maryland. Their studies of NOAA’s satellite data will help us in our research to better understand the dynamics behind our changing climate,” said Gregory W. Withee, assistant administrator for NOAA’s Satellites and Information Service.

NOAA’s Satellites and Information Service is the nation’s primary source of space-based oceanographic, meteorological, and climate data. It operates the nation’s environmental satellites, which are used for ocean and weather observation and forecasting, climate monitoring, and other environmental applications. Some of the oceanographic applications include sea-surface temperature for hurricane and weather forecasting and sea-surface heights for El Niño prediction.

The agency also operates three data centers, which house global databases in oceanography, climatology, solid Earth geophysics, marine geology and geophysics, solar-terrestrial physics and paleoclimatology.

NOAA is dedicated to enhancing economic security and national safety through the prediction and research of weather and climate-related events and providing environmental stewardship of the nation’s coastal and marine resources. As part of NOAA’s Strategic Plan, NOAA’s Satellites and Information Service is committed to seeking valuable input to build and sustain strategic national and international NOAA partnerships through this program.

On the Web:


NOAA Satellites and Information Service: