Climate Data at NACSE
The PRISM Climate Group, based at NACSE, is the primary source for quality data on historical weather patterns for the US government and many commercial and research organizations. Our automated systems collect real-time and recorded weather observations from tens of thousands of reporting stations managed by >50 different public and private groups around the country. Our climatologists then apply high-performance computing and a variety of modeling techniques to perform sophisticated quality control at several spatial/temporal resolutions. This results in spatial climate datasets that reveal both short- and long-term climate patterns. Whenever possible, NACSE offers these datasets and services free of charge to the public. If datasets are particularly large or complex, we charge a fee in order to help fund our continuing development efforts.
Among other things, the PRISM group developed and produced USDA's official Plant Hardiness Zones, the standard by which gardeners and growers can determine which plants are most likely to thrive at a particular location. The data and maps are used by agriculturalists, nurseries, and gardeners throughout the US and have been downloaded millions of times.
Some of our other popular weather and climate products include:
- Long-Term Climate Averages: download the monthly/yearly averages over the past 30 years - this data is used by virtually every commercial or research group involved in climate and weather prediction
- Drought Indicator Tool: explore how precipitation patterns over a particular time period deviated from long-term averages
- Interactive Weather Explorer: analyze and download historical weather data from a particular location and time period
- Weather Anomalies Tool: see how weather during a specific month or year deviated from long-term average