NPS Proposes Climate Monitoring Program for Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve

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Date: May 12, 2015
Contact: Allison Banks, 907-697-2230

Why monitor climate in Glacier Bay?

The National Park Service Inventory & Monitoring program operates long-term ecological monitoring programs for parks including Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve. "Weather and Climate" is one of the park's 12 priority Vital Signs. Additional climate monitoring is being proposed to help managers understand future changes in key park resources and ecological processes that may result from climate change such as glacial ice mass wasting, shifts in marine salinity and nutrients, changing composition of plant communities, and the spread of invasive species.

What would monitoring stations do?

Remote Automated Weather Stations (RAWS) would record air and soil temperature, precipitation, relative humidity, wind speed and direction, solar radiation, and snow depth data. Stations would be powered by solar panel or methanol fuel cell. In addition to storing data, each station would also transmit hourly weather conditions and sensor condition by satellite. Hourly weather condition information would be available over the internet to help improve National Weather Service forecasts and to aid park visitor trip planning and safety.

Where would stations be located?

A grid of stations was designed to capture conditions along the west-east, north-south, and high-low elevation gradients in the park. Sites in Dry Bay, Deception Hills, Lituya Bay, Queen Inlet, Glacier Bay's Lower West Arm, upper Muir Inlet, and Brady Icefield are being considered for installation of new weather stations. Park resources that may be affected by such installations include wilderness value and character, wildlife, vegetation, natural soundscapes, visitor experience, and culturally-sensitive areas.

Where can I learn more about the NPS Climate and Weather monitoring program?

Follow the link below to read more about NPS climate monitoring projects in Southeast Alaska parks. 
https://www.nps.gov/im/sean/climate.htm

What's next?

There will be an informational public meeting at the Gustavus Public Library on May 19, 2015 at 7:00 PM. Please join us!

The NPS is asking for your review and comment on the Environmental Assessment (EA) including the range of alternatives, resources affected, and the potential impacts to these resources. The EA is now available at the following link. You may also submit comments using this link: https://parkplanning.nps.gov/document.cfm?parkID=12&projectID=44972&documentID=53961

You may also submit comments by email or by postal mail at:

Glacier Bay National Park
PO Box 140
Gustavus, AK 99826

If you have questions about the proposed climate station program please contact Allison Banks by phone at 907-697-2611, or by email.   

Please submit all comments by close of business on June 12, 2015.

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Last updated: March 8, 2018

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Glacier Bay National Park & Preserve
PO Box 140

Gustavus, AK 99826

Phone:

(907) 697-2230

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