CICS-MD Scientist Melissa Kenney (NWS/CPC & OAR/CPO) has a new article on ecological forecasting that was published in the February 2018 issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS). The article posits that ecological prediction models are not progressing fast enough to meet the needs of policymakers who require this information to make critical decisions. The authors note that most of the existing models have a hundred-year time resolution and this prevents sufficient validation by observations. Ecological forecasting models will improve, just like weather models did, if they forecast on daily to decadal timescales. The iterative process of forecast-validation-improvement is the best approach to increase progress in the ecological forecasting models. The flow chart below, from the article, demonstrates that how decision-makers will have their own cycle of improved adaptive management as they can incorporate the results of better forecasts.
Dietze, Michael C., Andrew Fox, Lindsay M. Beck-Johnson, Julio L. Betancourt, Mevin B. Hooten, Catherine S. Jarnevich, Timothy H. Keitt, Melissa A. Kenney et al., 2018: Iterative near-term ecological forecasting: Needs, opportunities, and challenges, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U. S. A., 115(7), 1424–1432, https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1710231115.
Importance: Ecological forecasting is one of NOAA strategic research priorities. POC: M. Kenney