Central America/Haiti Project Introduction
Estimates of accumulated precipitation for Central America and Haiti are prepared operationally at the Climate Prediction Center (CPC) for the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) as a part of the Mesoamerican Food Security Early Warning System (MFEWS). The essence of the work is to provide weather and climate related information to monitor the issues of food security and the needs for humanitarian assistance.
Station estimates of precipitation in Central America and Haiti are low in density and are erratic in their reporting and quality control of data. Therefore, statistical algorithms are necessary for precipitation estimation. These algorithms utilize available surface data with remotely sensed data to produce estimates of accumulated precipitation.
In addition to the daily, weekly, 10-day, and monthly precipitation estimates produced by the algorithms, the CPC monitors meteorological and climatic phenomenon such as dryness, drought, flooding, tropical cyclones, and other major events. A weekly weather hazards product is produced and disseminated to make users aware of such phenomenon that will help to make more accurate and relevant decisions.
High resolution gridded forecasts out to three days have been impolemented for Central America and the Caribbean to enable the monitoring of hydrological issues that are addressed in the weekly weather hazards product. Verification of these forecasts using southern Mexico Co-op stations is currently in progress.