Young people participating in weather and climate

21-03-2014 Source:China Meteorological News Press

Barry Lee Myers  and Mike Smith from the AccuWeather


Cyclone Phailin struck the northeast coast of India on October 13, 2013.  The last time a storm as powerful as Phailin struck the eastern coast of India was 1999 and 10,000 people died. That 1999 cyclone carried winds of 155 mph at landfall. Phailin arrived with winds almost as strong, reaching 140 mph. Almost a million people were in its path.


We live in a world with an ever-changing climate and weather. 


The discussion about climate change and its control and responses will occupy the younger generations for decades to come.


The discussion about weather extremes will also occupy the thoughts, science and research in many fields both scientific and practical, on a daily basis.


The science of climatology – the study of causes and effects of climate change – is in its infancy, and is intertwined with political issues between nations at various stages of development.  But the science of climatology is free of political issues and is devoted to understanding the causes of climate change, the timeframes of that change, and the adaptation individuals and the national and the global communities.


The science of meteorology – the study of causes and effects of daily changes in the atmosphere – is well developed.  The science itself has exploded in the past 50 years with the success of research, computers, technology, engineering and remote platforms such as weather satellites and weather radars. 


The goal of this article is to discuss how meteorological science and organizations in the United States are meeting the challenge of better prediction of the weather and how this information is communicated to the people of the United States and also the world.  


A word about communication of weather information: without skillful and timely communication of the expected weather to come, the best weather forecast will be of no value as it would not reach the people.  And it is the people for whom weather forecasts are made.  These may be people in business, agriculture, industry, government, or just ordinary citizens going about their everyday lives.


In our grandparents and great-grandparents’ day weather forecasts were neither accurate nor well communicated. 


In the days of our elders, a storm might be predicted that never came.  Or a storm would come that was not predicted.   Lives and property would be needlessly lost.  Today the accuracy is good. And while the quality may vary from country to country, the major world countries generally have well developed forecast technology.   The United States and the People’s Republic of China (PRC) are among the best developed in the world.


And the communication of forecast information has changed dramatically.  In the days of our grandparents one might hear about bad weather coming by word of mouth, read stale information in a newspaper, or hear an outdated forecast on radio or television – if the forecast got to the people at all.  Today’s young people have access to faster delivery by these traditional sources and also instant delivery through mobile devices of all kinds.  And those presenting the information to today’s generation are able to upload in real time the latest weather forecast to the servers that populate the mobile device applications and web sites.


Forecast Technology in Today’s World


Weather may never be “conquered” (i.e., controlled).  Some countries have attempted to do so using cloud seeding and other techniques.  Meteorology is enabling us to “tame” the weather thought more accurate weather forecasts and fast distribution of this information using the latest communication tools that are in the hands of the younger generation.


The better a weather forecast is the more confidence the people have in relying on it and acting on its message.  The faster the forecast is communicated to the people who need to act upon it, the more lead time for taking action.  The more understandable the message and the action statement, when received in a timely way, the more life and property can be protected.


This “three legged stool” is the paradigm used in the United States to ensure a constantly growing enhancement of quality in weather action and mitigation – better forecasts, rapid communication, and actionable messages.


The tools needed to achieve these results are many.  They include:


• Global cooperation in the exchange of weather data.


• National and international cooperation and agreements between governments, academic and research institutions, and the weather industry that exists in the United States and is beginning to grow in other nations.


• Remote sensing platforms in space (weather satellites) and on land (weather radars).


• Massive computing power to ingest, digest, and model the atmospheric data.


• Major research into the numeric and statistical atmospheric models and related technology.


• Forecasting techniques and human-machine interfaces to engage the atmospheric diagnostic capability of meteorologists and other atmospheric scientists (see diagram below)


• Communications capabilities on a global basis including location based targeting of weather messages and displays on geography information system maps.


• Securing the latest distribution technology through patent licenses and other rights acquisition.


• Design professionals to develop the user interfaces and the action messaging that the youth of today and the leaders of tomorrow look at on their mobile devices and new communications media as they evolve.


• Pre-staged training to emergency management professionals in society to know what actions to take for their government units, businesses, industries and other activities.

Weather Information is Valuable in Everyday Life


The above information explains the general ways that the weather players and weather technology co-exist, but not what happens in real life in any detail.  To explain that would take many volumes.


For example, the global cooperation in the exchange of weather data is accomplished through an organ of the United Nations -  the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland.  Through the arrangements of WMO, for many decades, weather data has been and continues to be exchanged in real time by all the countries of the world.  So the PRC receives weather data in real time from the United States and the United States receives weather data in real time from the PRC.   Since weather and climate exist on a global basis, without international cooperation, all countries would suffer.  The weather and climate areas are examples of international cooperation at is finest.


In the United States the entire weather effort is carried out by three cooperating areas:  the government (mainly through the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration), academic and research organizations, and the American Weather Industry (a number of private companies large and small – of which AccuWeather is the global leader).  These three areas work together as another “three legged stool” to achieve what some have characterized as the best weather information source for any nation’s citizenry.


And lastly let us single out communications capabilities on a global basis including location based (LBS) targeting of weather messages and displays on geography information system (GIS) maps and securing the latest distribution technology through patent licenses and other rights acquisition. 


New mobile technology is in the hands of billions of people worldwide.  No single government or company has achieved total access to all mobile devices.  And no single country controls the global weather distribution network.


AccuWeather has become the global leader however, ahead of other major weather companies in the United States (such as The Weather Company and Earth Networks) and others such as K-Weather in Korea, WeatherNews in Japan, and Huafeng Group in the PRC.  The AccuWeather applications and web sites reach an estimated 1.5 to 2.0 billion people through several strategies – major global partnerships, accurate, understandable, and actionable weather information, and the distribution technology protected by patents in the United States, PRC, Europe and elsewhere around the world (see diagram below)


So when you touch an app on your mobile device, if it is an AccuWeather app, it is fueled by our global strategy and technology, it is available for your exact location and it originates from the global cooperation of governments in the WMO and the weather industry in the United States.


When Cyclone Phailin mentioned above was heading toward the Indian coast, fear mounted that what had happened 14 years earlier would repeat itself. That time, Cyclone Orissa killed over 10,000 people. So the sense of relief was strong in the state of Odisha, where Cyclone Phailin made landfall last October. Every death is tragic, but considering Phailin was the strongest storm to hit India in more than a decade, the toll could have been much higher. Over 900,000 Odisha residents evacuated to shelters in schools and government offices. Authorities also moved food and medicine close to affected areas before the storm. Those preparations are credited with the huge reduction in casualties from 1999's Cyclone Orissa. The Cyclone Phailin evacuation was the first weather-related mass evacuation in India’s history (nearly 800,000 people) and the death toll was less than 100.


This is testament to the progress weather science is making. Government agencies received the warnings and they were clear and understandable.  Actions needed were clear.  Citizens received warnings on their mobile devices and also through other media.  Emergency managers acted on the warnings and citizens, recognizing the danger and the warnings, cooperated.


This is a true success story, but there is more to do because not all of the stories yet work out so successfully.


This is evidenced by Typhoon Haiyan (known as Typhoon Yolanda in the Philippines due to a difference in naming conventions) which struck on November 8, 2013. The death toll was in the vicinity of 7,000 people – a very different result than in India the month before. Why?


The forecasts were less certain, less was known about the actual strength of the storm, and there was uncertainty about its effects on the land once it made landfall. What was known was not communicated by the government to the population at large in a way that created a sufficient sense of urgency to compel people to act.


Fortunately, new technology, new scientific theories, and well-educated young people will give the world opportunities to allow people to live safer, more prosperous and peaceful lives as we continue to “tame” the weather.   The ability is there and growing better every day.  This is a task for the young and growing generation.


Severe tropical-type storms like Pacific Cyclones and Atlantic Hurricanes are just one example of a weather danger – and a very dramatic one.  Other dramatic weather events include tornadoes (the United States has more such storms than any other nation), lightening, flash floods, snow storms, hail, etc.


Other types of weather may be just as dangerous but occur in a slower time scale and be less dramatic.  These might include air pollution, drought, heat waves, and cold waves.


For dramatic weather, time and quick notification count; for less dramatic weather there is more time to act and urgency may be less, but the danger from heat stroke or air pollution can be just as dangerous.


United States Experiences


Meteorological services in the United States are provided by the government’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Weather Service (NWS) and by the American Weather Industry.


The NWS provides the meteorological infrastructure (weather satellites, computer models, radars, rawinsondes, local observations and offices, and core data) and general forecasts and warnings for the public-at-large.


The American Weather Industry is in the private sector completely.  Unlike some other countries, like PRC, where the government may be a controlling or participating party in weather companies, this is not the case in the United States.


The Weather Industry contains private companies in which the government owns no interest and has no direct control. These companies – names like AccuWeather, The Weather Company, and Earth Networks – have a strong cooperative relationship with the government and are protected by law to operate side by side with the NWS.  These companies tailor weather information for specialized uses and users such as business, industry, and local units of government.  They communicate NWS forecast and warnings to these users and also make weather forecasts and warnings of their own.  In addition, the other major function is providing these public sector and private sector forecast to the public-at-large through traditional media and digital media platforms. The American Weather Industry, while free of government control has the same mission as the NWS – to save lives, protect property, and help people prosper.


The weather industry is where most of the new jobs for scientists, computer professionals, and other weather related occupations are being created in the weather field in the United States.  This is where young people coming out of college and interested in this kind of work are looking for their future.


Each company is in some way different.  For example Earth Networks tends to focus on selling measuring devices and systems to governments and other organizations globally; The Weather Company’s main property is The Weather Channel, a United States cable-based weather and entertainment channel; and AccuWeather, a complete weather service company, is the leading mobile and digital media weather distributor globally and the main player in special weather services for business and industry.


Tailored weather information for business and industry is generally sold for an annual subscription fee and the public-at-large information is usually free to the public, being supported by advertisers.  This is true not only in the United State, but frequently in the rest of the world’s nations.


Weather Information for the Public-at-Large


In addition to business customers in need of weather information, the American Weather Industry has created smartphone apps used by billions of people throughout the world.  Because weather is global and because firms like AccuWeather create forecasts for the entire world, the resources of the entire world need to be used.  So such companies have relationships with other companies and governments globally.  Some companies have a model of competing with others they have relationships with; other focus on a cooperation model – working hand in hand with other companies and government agencies.  AccuWeather is a leading example of the cooperation model.


The digital media area of weather distribution is the fastest growing area for weather information worldwide. Digital media is king!  It is the youth of the world driving this communication change and benefiting the entire global population in the process.


The world leader in the digital media field of weather distribution not only in the United States but on a global basis we are pleased to report is AccuWeather; delivering weather information in over 1000 languages and dialects and for over three million of unique locations on the face of the earth.


Special technology patented thought-out most of the world (shown in the diagram last above) helps to facilitate the access to weather information location-enabled from mobile devices. 


And new technologies like the new MinuteCast, minute by minute forecasts are unique to all the world. (See this amazing product in the photo below)


New people coming into the job market and also those using these new technologies face challenges as part of the youth culture of today – the main challenge is keeping up.


New digital devices (the introduction of tablets for example just a few years ago) and new models of existing devices are placed into the market channels of the global economy at a rapid pace.


The installed base at any time is a mix of older and newer devices.  Handsets are designed for a four-year service life but the average life in service is only 18 to 22 months and there are about 10,000 device models currently in use worldwide at any given time.


And the digital media revolution is spreading to other devices.  New digital enabled televisions (shown in the picture below) are now essentially a giant tablet in the home, oriented to the younger generation.


And various places in the community where people gather, like a shopping mall, a check-out counter at a store, an outdoor billboard sign, a small screen at a gasoline filling station or in an elevator, now have electronic displays that information may be placed on just like a tablet.  These are referred to a “Placed- Based” digital signage in the United States and there are millions of people viewing them every day.  And the spread is global.


Many new systems like the AccuWeather StoryTeller™ touchscreen bring weather, traffic, and news events to life in new and exciting ways.


The Needs of Businesses versus the Public at Large


In the United States, there are many sources of information about weather and storms that are of no direct cost for the public to access. For example, a website run by local NWS offices are free to all to access.


But the “charter” creating the NWS in the United States was originally written in 1898 and did not envision new applications for weather information that would develop.


Interestingly, movie producers in the 1930’s (including David O. Selznick, the producer of the famous American film Gone with the Wind) found they could not obtain the specific information they required to shoot scenes for the growing movie industry. For example, the famous “burning of Atlanta” scene in Gone with the Wind required the wind to be of a certain direction and, because they set fire to abandoned movie sets to create the scene, there was no chance to shoot the scene a second time. So the wind forecast had to be right the first time. Mr. Selznick hired meteorologist named Dr. Irving P. Krick to consult with him so the scene could be successfully shot (Dr. Krick was also one of the meteorologists who provided forecasts for the Normandy Landing for the Allies invasion of Europe in 1944 and was a controversial pioneer of long-term forecasting and cloud seeding for weather modification). The resulting movie won eleven Academy Awards. There were several other movie-related private sector engagements in California during the late 1930’s.


After the War, Krick and other returning military meteorologists created pioneering but very small weather companies such as Weather Corporation of America, Weather Services Corporation, and Murray & Trettle.


AccuWeather was formed in 1962 by Joel N. Myers, then a 23 year old graduate student in meteorology at The Pennsylvania State University.  Dr. Myers would go on to get his Ph.D. in meteorology and in 1997 be declared one of the greatest entrepreneurs in American history alongside people like Steve Jobs of Apple, Bill Gates of Microsoft and Thomas Edison of General Electric.


It is now the leading world weather brand and its unique state of the art facility illustrates what the future of weather companies looks like.


Marketing and selling weather services was a challenge in the United States because of the free forecasts and warnings provided by the NWS. “Why should I pay for something that is free?” is a question often heard by the sales people employed by weather companies, especially during their first few decades of existence. 


AccuWeather was really the first to overcome that barrier in a significant way through focusing intense effort on the operational needs of every individual customer.


As with any success in service to others, it is vital to learn how each customer or potential customer uses or may use weather information in their business. In fact, there are times when businesses are unaware of all of the ways in which weather affects them. For that reason, success in the weather industry requires a highly trained staff of sales consultants who genuinely help customers use products and services in ways that save lives, protect property, and makes their business prosper.


It is interesting that AccuWeather and other new businesses in the weather industry seek and employ younger people of all trades, skills, and professions in order to be on the latest edge of new thought about how to employ new technology and new emerging ideas, to be a success in this rapidly changing field.


The range of businesses served by companies in the weather industry is vast and includes, but is not limited to the following:


• Manufacturing.

• Traditional Media (radio, television, newspapers, cable).

• Media equipment and systems.

• Internet companies.

• Mobile device makers.

• Telecommunications companies.
• Forensic services (reconstructing weather for insurance claims).
• Climatological consulting.
• Outdoor amusement parks, sports stadia, entertainment venues.
• Corporate headquarters.
• Retail stores and shopping malls.
• Data centers.
• Railroads.
• Trucking companies.
• Smartphone apps.
• Construction companies.


Each customer and each industry has distinct requirements.  For example, AccuWeather clients Boeing Aircraft and BNSF Railway occupy the same physical space at one plant but have completely different requirements.  BNSF Railway ships raw materials to the Boeing facility and Boeing ships aircraft fuselages by rail on BNSF Railway via a spur track into their manufacturing plant.  Because aircraft can be damaged by hail, Boeing wants warnings in advance of hail of certain sizes so they can move aircraft and aircraft parts into hangers to prevent damage. BNSF Railway is not bother by hail at all,  so they do not receive hail warnings from AccuWeather at that location . However, flash floods affect BNSF Railway and accurate flash flood warnings are of great interest to the railroad. Boeing’s facility is on high ground is not affected by flash floods, so they do not receive flash flood warnings.


Why is it important not to receive certain types of warnings? Because business operations are busy places and non-pertinent messages are a time-wasting distraction. Worse, a new or poorly-trained individual might take inappropriate action upon receiving a non-pertinent storm warning. 


That is why the model, which is an AccuWeather trademark, works closely with each client to provide exactly the information required; no more and no less.  It is a concept the younger generation, used to being able to select only the music, videos, and other programming they want, inherently understand.


Tailored Weather Information for Business and Industry


How do commercial weather service companies generate sufficient value so that business and industry and local, state, and even federal government agencies are willing to pay for services when NWS offers services to the public-at-large for free?


Below are a few examples of services a business, industry, or government agency might want and are only available from the American Weather Industry in the United States.  People of the younger generation in any country in the world may find this of interest because even if not interested in the weather field as a profession, everyone moving into government service or business or industry, is likely to find weather information services available in their country or available from the well-developed American Weather Industry, to be extremely valuable in performing their duties in up and coming job roles.


We will use a few examples from the AccuWeather experience as we are most familiar with them.


SkyGuard is AccuWeather’s proprietary storm warning service. It has three components.


1. Specially trained meteorologists. Even though we hire only professional meteorologists, AccuWeather puts them through months of training. The training is followed by a rigorous written examination. No meteorologist is allowed to issue a storm warning for AccuWeather customers until the training and examination are successfully completed.


2. Precise Information. Whether it is a microburst, a flash flood, or a blizzard AccuWeather’s meteorologists are trained to issue warnings for all types of hazardous conditions. However, the customers receive only the information they need to run their business or enterprise; nothing more and nothing less. 


3. SmartWarn Technology. In order to create the forecasts, warnings, and other services in a cost-effective manner, AccuWeather created a patented technology known as SmartWarn. This technology allows a single meteorologist to provide customized service simultaneously to dozens of specialized customers.


Other commercial weather companies in the United States largely repackage storm warnings from the NWS as this is easy and expedient and they do not have the technological capabilities described above. But, since the NWS does not provide business-specific storm warnings, this weather information is often ill-suited to making operational decisions. So, the system above is unique in issuing an entire suite of storm warnings for tornadoes, lightning, and other storms that are independent of other sources.


As other countries develop growing weather companies, like in the PRC, the AccuWeather technology is available for use in cooperation with organizations in those other countries through joint venture opportunities and other arrangements.  This approach will allow development that has occurred in the United States over several decades to be transferable into other lands and languages shortcutting the development cycles for the young professionals of those countries, who can benefit through their professional careers by access to best-in-class weather decision making tools.


How might the SkyGuard service be of value in various situations?


On July 20, 2013, at Wrigley Field in Chicago, Illinois, USA the popular musical group, Pearl Jam planned an outdoor concert. There were tens of thousands of young people in attendance, some on the grassy area in front of the stage and others in the exposed lower level of the stadium.


The concert organizers had the forethought to hire AccuWeather to provide weather information and warnings, if necessary, to protect the crowd and the performers. As storms began to approach, AccuWeather issued a lightning warning to the concert organizers so that people could be moved to safe areas before the lightning arrived.


You can hear Pearl Jam’s legendary Eddie Vedder make the announcement mentioning AccuWeather’s storm warning on a YouTube video recorded at the time. A photo shows lightning hitting the ground behind the stage after everyone had been moved to safety. Had the warnings and safety evacuation not occurred, someone might have been killed or seriously injured by the lightning strike.


At the same time the concert was in progress, AccuWeather was also monitoring intense thunderstorms far away in the nation of Mexico for Ferromex, the largest railroad in Mexico.  Ferromex has track located in the area where thunderstorms were the most intense. About two hours after AccuWeather issued the lightning warning for Chicago, it also issued a flash flood warning for Ferromex for specific mileposts along their tracks. Such specificity was not available from any other source.


Ferromex sent a “high railer,” (a pickup truck with metal railroad wheels), with a safety crew, out to inspect the track. Upon arrival at the specific milepost mentioned in the warning, the safety crew found the track washed out by the heavy rains. Had the warning not been issued, a train traveling through the area would have derailed imperiling the lives of the train’s crew and costing the railroad tens of millions of pesos.  As Mr. Al Cisneros of Ferromex put it,


“Your folks [AccuWeather] gave us the tools we needed to prevent a major mishap. Please give my thanks for a job well done.”


The difference between being prepared and being unprepared for weather events can be seen in many other situations.


For example, sports television around the world played a moment from a Texas Rangers – Minnesota Twins baseball game of the evening of July 8, 2013, when an “unexpected” bolt of lightning struck a light pole in the parking lot creating a deafening peal of thunder. It can be viewed on YouTube.  The lightning could have as easily stuck one of the players on the field or a fan in the stands. But it was only “unexpected” to those who were unprepared.  We know the ballpark venue could have been prepared for the lightening because on the other side of the park is “Six Flags” amusement park.  It is a park not unlike those operated by the Disney Company.  Six Flags had AccuWeather’s SkyGuard service and had nearly one hour of warning about the impending lightening danger before the lightning occurred. Six Flags warned its guests and moved people indoors to lessen the risk of death or injury.


On May 31, 2013, a rare tornado struck the city of St. Louis, Missouri, USA.


KMOX Radio is known as “The Voice of St. Louis” and is the most listened to news station in the city. It is one of AccuWeather’s radio weather customers. Even though others were downplaying the tornado risk, AccuWeather did special reports on the KMOX morning “drive time” newscasts stressing that the risk of a tornado in their listening area was high later that afternoon. One of their newscasters expressed surprise that AccuWeather was forecasting a higher risk of tornadoes than the other radio stations in the city.


As the afternoon unfolded, towering cumulus clouds began to gather near Sedalia, Missouri. AccuWeather’s lightning system began picking up cloud-to-ground lightning as the weather system passed the University of Missouri at Columbia on its way to St. Louis. AccuWeather began providing notifications to its business clientele that violent storms were likely to move into the St. Louis area during the mid-evening hours.


As the line of thunderstorms moved through St. Charles County, a “claw”-shaped feature appeared on the leading edge of the line of thunderstorms. Based in the latest research, just since 2011, the forecasters were aware this indicates that a rare leading edge tornado (known as a “QLCS tornado”) might be forming. The velocity data from both the National Weather Service’s WSR-88D radar and the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration’s Terminal Doppler Weather Radar showed swirling winds rapidly gaining in speed.  AccuWeather is authorized to tap into that data because it is a vital supplement to National Weather Service radar in rapidly-changing conditions. AccuWeather issued timely tornado warnings for its clients. Wind speeds measured by the TDWR reached 69 meters per second; this was an F-3 tornado on the Fujita tornado damage scale. There were no deaths or serious injuries, thanks, in part to AccuWeather’s warning both the public, via radio reports, and SkyGuard reports to business customers.


On February 5, 2008, 80 employees were at work in the manufacturing facility of Caterpillar, Inc. in the town of Oxford, Mississippi, USA.  AccuWeather warned plant management that a tornado was approaching the facility. They were told the tornado was about 22 minutes away.  No other warnings were issued by any other source, no warning sirens sounded. The warning provided allowed the 80 employees to be safely secured in an underground shelter.  No people were injured.  The plant took a direct hit by the strong tornado and suffered $23 million dollars (US) in damage.(see photo below)

Communicating with Business Customers in the Age of Mobile


In the weather field communications are an evolving area.  Some companies are working with older methods of telephone and facsimile communications and some companies are all digital in their approach.


The wording of the warning messages is also tailored to the needs of each requirement. For example, Ford Motor Company has, for decades, used terminology to describe three levels of action to be taken in storms. That terminology is unique to Ford.  A SkyGuard warning message for Ford is designed to fit into Ford’s messaging system.


The specific wording of each client’s warning message is created and formatted by SmartWarn (mentioned above) for the unique needs of each customer.


SkyGuard Mobile in an application for smartphones, such as Apple’s iPhone, Samsung’s Android phones, and Microsoft based operating systems. It mergers a smartphone’s graphic, communications, location based technology, and geographic information system capabilities along with AccuWeather’s exclusive SkyGuard warnings. Each customer receives the warnings for his or her company (only) and, if appropriate, their geographic area of responsibility.


Fail-safe means assure that critical information is received. If acknowledgement is not promptly received and acknowledged, communications links are established to verify receipt.


In addition to SkyGuard Mobile, a new SkyGuard Portal is in testing so each customer can digitally customize services to their operations.
For example, Canadian National Railway, the largest railroad in North America, has multiple divisions in the United States and Canada. With the portal, each Division of the railroad can have a unique display with different areas of concentration as compared with the railroad’s operations in Quebec.

Opportunities for the Young Generation

There are opportunities in science, engineering, computers, graphics, creativity and business – in the weather field.  And it is a rapidly growing area.

One of the most exciting areas of forecasting improvements in the United States is “mesoscale modeling.” That is, computer models simulating the behavior of the atmosphere. At this fine scale, the behavior of small weather systems can be directly forecast for the first time.

Useful forecasts and future improvements are dependent on more powerful computing, truer simulations, and better model.

Young scientists can develop better ways to sample the atmosphere via aircraft, via satellites, and drones.

Once accurate, and less expensive measurement technology is developed, the communications technology to quickly get the information where needed for model ingestion will be urgently needed.

Beyond meteorologists, there is a need for weather company staff in business development, administration, sales and marketing, finance and executive management.

Talented young professionals are the most important asset in this field. 

The authors:

Barry Lee Myers is the Chief Executive Officer of AccuWeather, Inc.  He is a recognized expert in the area of the public and private relationships in the weather and weather-media industry worldwide.  He has been an invited speaker at the World Meteorological Organization; he serves as an advisor to the U.S National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and on the Steering Committee of the American Meteorological Society Commission on the Weather and Climate Enterprise, and has testified as an expert before the Congress of the United States.

Mike Smith is Senior Vice President of AccuWeather Enterprise Solutions and is a Fellow of the American Meteorological Society. His professional specialty is saving lives and mitigating the risks associated with violent storms and other natural phenomena. He is author of two books, Warnings: The True Story of How Science Tamed the Weather and When the Sirens Were Silent.

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