White House Creates Climate Data Warehouse With Google's Support

The White House on Wednesday announced the creation of climate.data.gov, a Web site that aggregates the enormous amount of climate data housed at different federal agencies.

Google will donate one petabyte of cloud storage for climate data, as well as 50 million hours of computing time with the Google Earth platform. "The company is challenging the global innovation community to build a high-resolution global terrain model to help communities build resilience to anticipated climate impacts in decades to come," explains John Podesta, a counselor to the president, and John P. Holdren, director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, in a joint statement.

The data will become more accessible to companies, communities, and researchers that are making decisions based on climate change. Aside from the data being used to address global warming, a White House initiative made by President Barack Obama last June, it will support projects launched in the private sector to provide data about climate change through applications, cloud computing, and Web tools.

"By taking the enormous data sets regularly collected by NASA, NOAA, and other agencies and applying the ingenuity, creativity, and expertise of technologists and entrepreneurs, the Climate Data Initiative will help create easy-to-use tools for regional planners, farmers, hospitals, and businesses across the country -- and empower America's communities to prepare themselves for the future," Podesta and Holdren wrote.

Weather and climate have helped search marketers target ads for at least two years since PM Digital President Suzy Sandberg spoke about using weather conditions to optimize paid-search campaigns. The Weather Channel has been talking about it, too. The company offers a data feed to brands wanting to provide better real-time display targeting and paid-search options.

It's not clear whether the government site will offer an API to access the information allowing brands to use the data for online ad targeting. Calls to media relations were not returned.

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