By Aspasia Celia Tsampas
The following article was featured in the February 2020 edition of The Campus.
The City College of New York based National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Center for Earth System Sciences and Remote Sensing Technologies (NOAA CESSRST) and the CUNY CREST Institute, a research facility for remote sensing earth systems, has established nineteen autonomous mini-meteorological stations scattered around various boroughs of New York City.
This achievement is part of City College’s response to the rising sea levels and increased extreme weather conditions in the city caused by climate change, as outlined by the NYC Governments report “Cool Neighborhoods NYC: A Comprehensive Approach to Keep Communities Safe in Extreme Heat.”
Led by students and faculty at CCNY, the project is referred to as New York Urban Hydrometeorological Testbed, or NY-uHMT. According to the New York City Mayor’s Office of Recovery and Resiliency, this system is a one of a kind high-density hydro-meteorological network.
The system will help answer many questions about the climate in the New York City area in terms of greenhouse gas emissions, heat-related health risks in neighborhoods, and more ways to make New York City resilient.
The NY-uHMT is designed to monitor basic meteorological and hydrological variables to assess the variability in the city’s microclimates and their response to extreme events. Some research objectives include mapping the ground and atmospheric conditions to detect and forecast severe weather events (such as wind, tornados, hail, ice, and flash floods), improve the accuracy and time measurement of these weather events to progress predictions and warnings in the boroughs, and develop models for federal/municipal/private partnerships for educational outreach to NYC schools with NOAA CESSRST and the CUNY CREST Institute.
Sites of the NY-uHMT include the Polo Grounds Towers in Harlem near the City College campus, as well as all around the boroughs at JHS High School in Brooklyn, the Queens Botanical Garden, the Brownsville Branch of the Brooklyn Public Library, and the Dyckman Houses.
All data produced by the stations will be available and open to the general public and researchers through the center’s website (which you can check out with the QR Code to the right).