Climate Data App Challenge

The U.S. Geological Survey and NASA have partnered to offer a challenge to citizen scientists to develop applications that could help us cope with climate change. This challenge comes with prizes of more than $35,000. The challenge kicks off December 15, 2014 and runs through March, 2015.

Posted in Citizen science, Climate change, Tools, Weather and Climate | Leave a comment

RFP: Great Lakes Water Levels

The Integrated Assessment Center and Water Center at the Graham Sustainability Institute are proposing an Integrated Assessment on Great Lakes Water Levels.  The purpose of the assessment is to develop information, tools, and partnerships to help decision makers address the challenges and opportunities posed by water level variability. With a focus on Lakes Michigan-Huron and Erie, including the Lake Huron to Lake Erie corridor, the assessment will identify and evaluate environmentally, politically, socially, and economically feasible adaptive actions and policy options.

Refer to the Water Levels IA plan for background information and additional details about the project and approach.

Planning Grant Request for Proposals

To support this work, the Graham Institute will fund up to ten planning grants at a level up to $10,000 each. The planning grant work should focus on the feasibility of conducting an interdisciplinary, place-based analysis of options to respond to water level variability that will contribute to the IA. Planning grants will last for six months and run concurrently between March and August 2015. The schedule is as follows:

  • RFP Release: December 1, 2015
  • Informational Webinar: December 17, 2015
  • Deadline for Letters of Intent: January 6, 2015
  • Deadline for Planning Grant Proposals: February 2, 2015
  • Announcement of Awards: March 2, 2015

For complete details, review the Request for Proposals.

A webinar to explain the purpose of this initiative as well as to answer questions regarding the RFP will be held on Wednesday, December 17, 2014 from 1 to 2 p.m. EST. Click on the Webinar Registration button to register.

For more information, please contact John Callewaert, IA Center Director at (734) 615-3752 or

[Via the University of Michigan Graham Sustainability Institute]

Posted in Funding opportunities, Great Lakes region, ISWS, Water | Leave a comment

Troll-Proofed Defensive Patent License Launches With 23 Patents From EFF Cofounder

Read the full post from the Electronic Frontier Foundation.

In the movement toward patent reform, the Patent Office, Congress, and the courts aren’t the only targets for change. Individual and corporate patent owners have steps they can take to reduce the harmful effects of software patents and disempower patent trolls, largely through alternative licensing schemes.

We’re excited to announce the first set of patents released under one such scheme, the Defensive Patent License (DPL). The 23 patents, owned by EFF cofounder John Gilmore, were created by Pixel Qi, a startup that aimed to advance low-power LCD screens. With these patents under the DPL, anyone can license them royalty-free as long as they license their own patents (and commit to licensing future patents) under the same terms—even if they don’t have any patents at all.

The Defensive Patent License, pioneered by a team at NYU and Berkeley law schools with support from EFF, sets out to create an environment where patents aren’t bludgeons for offensive litigation campaigns, abused by companies to engage in expensive lawsuits and by trolls to threaten true innovators. Inspired by free software and free cultural license, the DPL allows for patent-owners and developers to benefit from openly sharing their portfolio.

Posted in Open access, Patents | Leave a comment from AGU is official! From Mary Warner, Assistant Director, Business Management, at the American Geophysical Union, is a fully interactive Earth and space science news website whose mission is to inform and engage the worldwide community of scientists and those in allied and applied disciplines. It is open to all and free of charge. I invite you to check out now.

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USGS Launches California Drought Visualization Site

Read the full post in CivSource.

The record drought in California has prompted the US Geological Survey to launch a new data visualization website that gives the public more detailed information about the scope of drought in the state. The website is part of the federal government’s Open Water Data Initiative. That project is designed to improve access to data and open exchange of water information in order to get a better picture of existing water resource issues and develop sustainable solutions through open data.

Posted in Downloadable Data, Government information, INHS, ISGS, ISTC, ISWS, Open access, Water, Weather and Climate | Leave a comment

New website is rich in Great Lakes data

Via Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant.

Environmental data from across the Great Lakes region is now just a click away with a new web application created by Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant (IISG) and the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA). Great Lakes Monitoring makes it easy to view and analyze decades of nutrient, contaminant, and water characteristic data collected by universities and government agencies, including the U.S. EPA Great Lakes National Program Office…

The first stop for users is an interactive map that provides a quick glance at monitoring locations and the parameters measured at each site. From the Explore Trends view, users can also see basin-wide patterns for environmental characteristics like phosphorus, chlorophyll a, nitrogen, and mercury.

Researchers can delve deeper by examining the detailed data profile for each monitoring site or comparing results across multiple sites. Menus and slider bars at the top of each page make it possible to quickly hone in on specific parameters, monitoring seasons, and years…

The cutting-edge tool also allows researchers to create and download their own data sets for the locations, sources, environmental characteristics, and dates that most interest them. And a variety of available file types make offline use easy.

In addition to improving data access, Great Lakes Monitoring also makes it easier for researchers, universities, and agencies to share data with the public.

Posted in Downloadable Data, Great Lakes region, Water, Web sites | Leave a comment

2014 Report on Climate Change Indicators

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, in conjunction with many other organizations, collects and communicates data about climate change. With the help of these partners, the EPA has compiled the data into the 3rd edition of the report titled Climate Change Indicators in the United States. This report is available as a downloadable file or a print copy can be requested from the EPA

Posted in Climate change | Leave a comment

AGU 2014 Fall Meeting

Attend the American Geophysical Union 2014 Fall Meeting virtually. From Mary Warner, Associate Director,  Business Management at AGU,

AGU will offer a variety of Virtual Options to interact with authors, attendees, and content during our upcoming 2014 Fall Meeting, 15-19 December.  Live-streaming and on-demand recorded content have been expanded to capture more than600 individual presentations –  most of which will be streamed live, and then made available as on-demand  record­ings within 24 hours of the live presentation. ePosters are also available, and both ePosters and the live-streaming and recorded content include a commenting feature to facilitate conversations between viewers and authors.

Please take advantage of this wealth of content, and share the information with your patrons and community.  To replicate the collaboration and scien­tific discourse that takes place at the Fall Meeting, we are encouraging organizations to set up remote viewing sites at their institu­tions for those who are not attending the Fall Meeting in person.  Register as a point of contact for your institution at and AGU staff will send tips and materials to maximize your remote site experience.

An initial registration will be required to view ePosters and the live and recorded ses­sions. The virtual content will be available free of charge.  The full list of sessions is available as a PDF ( in the online program session viewer ( )

Visit for more information.  Please direct questions to

Posted in Conferences, Events, Meetings and seminars | Leave a comment

RFP – Algorithms in the Field (AitF)



The National Science Foundation’s Directorate for Computer & Information Science & Engineering has announced funding for collaboration between theoretical computer scientists and applied researchers through its Algorithms in the Field (AitF) program.

“Algorithms in the Field encourages closer collaboration between two groups of researchers: (i) theoretical computer science researchers, who focus on the design and analysis of provably efficient and provably accurate algorithms for various computational models; and (ii) applied researchers including a combination of systems and domain experts (very broadly construed – including but not limited to researchers in computer architecture, programming languages and systems, computer networks, cyber-physical systems, cyber-human systems, machine learning, database and data analytics, etc.) who focus on the particular design constraints of applications and/or computing devices. Each proposal must have at least one co-PI interested in theoretical computer science and one interested in any of the other areas typically supported by CISE. Proposals are expected to address the dissemination of the algorithmic contributions and resulting applications, tools, languages, compilers, libraries, architectures, systems, data, etc.”

Full proposals are due February 9, no letter of intent required.  Awards of up to $800,000 are possible.

Posted in Funding opportunities, INHS, ISAS, ISGS, ISTC, ISWS, Prairie Research Institute | Leave a comment

RFP – USDA Solid Waste Management Grant Program

USDALogoApplications are being accepted through December 31 for the USDA’s Solid Waste Management Grant Program.    The purpose of this program is:

“To evaluate current landfill conditions to determine threats to water resources. Provide technical assistance and/or training to enhance operator skills in the operation and maintenance of active landfills. Provide technical assistance and/or training to help communities reduce the solid waste stream. Provide technical assistance and/or training for operators of landfills which are closed or will be closed in the near future with the development and implementation of closure plans, future land use plans, safety and maintenance planning, and closure scheduling within permit requirements.”

Past awards have ranged from $20,000 to $185,000.  Academic institutions and private nonprofit organizations are eligible.

Posted in Funding opportunities, ISGS, ISTC, ISWS, Prairie Research Institute | Leave a comment