North Carolina has a complex climate due to its three distinct regions: the mountains, the piedmont, and the coastal plain. Climate affects many aspects of our daily lives - agriculture, environment, transportation, tourism, and natural disasters to name a few. The State Climate Office of North Carolina was established in 1976, originally at UNC-Chapel Hill, and moved to NC State University in 1980. The mission of the State Climate Office (SCO) is to provide climate related services to the state, local and federal agencies, businesses and the citizens of North Carolina. In 1998, the UNC Board of Governors formally approved it as a Public Service Center.
The State Climate Office is housed in the Research III Building on NC State University's Centennial Campus, where private industries, government agencies, and University researchers come together and create a unique environment for interaction and advancement.
The State Climate Office is actively involved in research that enhances its capabilities to provide public service. Examples include climate change and variability in North Carolina, El Niño/La Niña effects on North Carolina weather and climate, agriculturaland water resource management, air quality and environmental management, disaster mitigation, and land-falling hurricanes in North Carolina. The SCO derives its expertise from the Department of Marine, Earth, and Atmospheric Sciences, and various other departments within the College of Sciences and the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences at NC State University. Professor Peter Robinson of the Department of Geography, UNC-Chapel Hill, acts as coordinator of the North Carolina Climate Program and works closely with the State Climate Office. Undergraduate and graduate students from different universities participate in the research and extension activities at the SCO every year.
The SCO has developed strong partnerships with several state and federal agencies such as the NC Department of Agriculture, NC Department of Environmental and Natural Resources, NC Division of Emergency Management, NC Supercomputing Center, National Weather Service, the National Climatic Data Center, and the US Geological Survey. Interaction with these organizations enhance our outreach activities.