Seasonal Forecasting

Promoting economic and societal preparedness for next season’s weather

Seasonal forecasting lies at the boundary of most typical forecasting efforts – beyond the typical 7-10 day forecast, but less than prognostications for climate change planning. Yet, a better understanding of seasonal forecasting can influence the nation’s economy in a variety of ways. For example, improved forecasts of sea ice conditions allows marine transportation agencies to plan whether to send carriers through the Arctic Ocean, or via the Panama Canal; the Northern Sea Route or Northwest Passage are much shorter, if they are navigable. Better seasonal forecasts are also valuable for commodity trading. Corporations can better plan where to source critical ingredients, such as chocolate and coffee. Finally, seasonal forecasts are also critical for community managers, such as water resource managers. Snow forecasts can be used to better manage and control fall water storage and release, as well as plan for the possibility of spring floods.


Sue Ellen Haupt

Senior Scientist, Deputy Director Research Applications Laboratory