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Northern Research Station
11 Campus Blvd., Suite 200
Newtown Square, PA 19073
(610) 557-4017
(610) 557-4132 TTY/TDD

You are here: NRS Home / Research Programs /Forest Disturbance Processes /Climate Change and Events / Atmospheric Disturbance Climatology System
Forest Disturbance Processes

Atmospheric Disturbance Climatology System

Research Issue

[photo:] An example of the effect of a freezing rain disturbance event on forest vegetation.The atmosphere plays a significant role in governing the natural processes that occur in terrestrial, riparian, and aquatic ecosystems.  Climatic variables such as monthly mean maximum and minimum temperatures, monthly precipitation amounts, spring freeze occurrences and intensity, fire-weather patterns, thaw-freeze events, and ozone pollution patterns all influence the health of ecosystems in the north central and northeastern U.S.  Understanding the spatial and temporal patterns of these and other climate variables throughout the region is important in developing effective land management strategies that can sustain our natural resources.

Our Research

In light of this need for relevant climate information to aid land managers in making land management decisions throughout the north central and northeastern U.S., we have developed a web-based Atmospheric Disturbance Climatology System that provides a limatology of variables known to influence ecosystems throughout this region.

Expected Outcomes

This science applications and product delivery effort is helping land managers to identify when and where climate and weather related disturbances typically occur in the north central and northeastern U.S. 

Research Outputs

Auclair, A. N. D., W. E. Heilman, and P. Busalacchi. 2002. Monitoring the effects of extreme climate disturbances on forest health in the northeastern U.S. 3rd Symposium on Environmental Applications: Facilitating the Use of Environmental Information, 13-17 January 2002, Orlando, FL. American Meteorological Society, Boston, MA. pp. 146-151.

Heilman, W. E., J. Hom, and B. E. Potter. 2000. Climate and atmospheric deposition patterns and trends. In: Mickler, R. A., R. A. Birdsey, and J. Hom, eds., Responses of Northern U.S. Forests to Environmental change. Spinger-Verlag Publishing, New York, NY. pp. 51-115.

Fast, J. D., W. E. Heilman, and X. Bian. 1998. Weather patterns associated with high ozone concentrations in the Great Lakes region. 23rd Conference on Agriculture and Forest Meteorology, 2-6 November 1998, Albuquerque, NM. American Meteorological Society, Boston, MA. pp. 333-336.

Heilman, W. E., B. E. Potter, and J. I. Zerbe. 1998. Regional climate change in the southern United States: The implications for wildfire occurrence. In: Mickler, R. A., and S. Fox, eds., The Productivity and Sustainability of Southern Forest Ecosystems in a Changing Environment. Springer-Verlag Publishing, New York, NY. pp. 683-699.

Heilman, W. E. 1998. Atmospheric disturbance climatology. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, North Central Research Station. [Online]. Available: <http://www.ncrs.fs.fed.us/4401/focus/climatology/>

Heilman, W. E. 1998. Short-term precipitation variability patterns in the north central and northeastern U.S. and their relation to forest ecosystems. 23rd Conference on Agricultural and Forest Meteorology, 2-6 November 1998, Albuquerque, NM. American Meteorological Society, Boston, MA. pp. 319-322.

Heilman, W. E. 1996. Synoptic circulation and temperature patterns during severe wildland fires. 9th Conference on Applied Climatology, 15-20 January 1995, Dallas, TX. American Meteorological Society, Boston, MA. pp. 54-57.

Heilman, W. E., J. E. Eenigenburg, and W. A. Main. 1993. Upper-air synoptic patterns associated with regional fire-weather episodes. Proceedings of the 12th Conference on Fire and Forest Meteorology, 26-28 October 1993, Jekyll Island, GA. Society of American Foresters, Bethesda, MD. pp. 38-45.

More Information

http://www.ncrs.fs.fed.us/4401/focus/climatology/

Research Participants

Principal Investigators

  • Warren E. Heilman, Research Meteorologist, USDA-Forest Service Northern Research Station
  • Allan Auclar, USDA Animal Plant and Health Inspection Service (APHIS)

Research Partners

  • USDA Animal Plant and Health Inspection Service (APHIS)

Last Reviewed: February 24, 2016

About this Research Area
Featured Product

[image:] publication cover pageHeilman, W. E., J. Hom, and B. E. Potter. 2000. Climate and atmospheric deposition patterns and trends. In: Mickler, R. A., R. A. Birdsey, and J. Hom, eds., Responses of Northern U.S. Forests to Environmental change. Spinger-Verlag Publishing, New York, NY. pp. 51-115.