NOAA to establish climate center in Alaska


Alaska will become home to one of six federal climate science centers, a move that is expected to result in a greater emphasis on the state and the Arctic as the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration moves forward with plans to focus on the changing climate.

Alaska's new climate center -- part of a reorganization that creates the new NOAA Climate Service -- was announced Wednesday by Sen. Mark Begich, D-Alaska. The state has a "huge demand for climate information," Begich said, and the Alaska-based climate science center would give decision-makers a more complete picture about relocating eroding coastal villages, new utility corridors and even where to build roads on permafrost.

…The climate initiative, announced Monday by the White House, has drawn praise from both environmentalists and business interests. The CEO of one of the nation's largest energy companies, Duke Energy, called it a "welcome addition" to addressing "one of our most pressing environmental challenges."