Canada Tornado Watch Ontario 0

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We here at Canada Tornado Watch use Radar and other weather tools to track and forecast Tornadoes.

In the U.S., all of these forecast tools such as raw Radar data and custom Radar software are freely available to the public for personal or commercial use.

In Canada, many of these important tools are unavailable to the public.

This is a problem.

There are many elevations of Radar and special analysis software that are only made available to Environment Canada through the use of their custom Radar software and private servers.

We found this write-up:

It states:

"The Canadian forecaster’s primary analysis and display tool for Radar data is the Unified Radar Processing (URP) software. URP produces basic conventional and velocity-based products. Each Radar uses a 5-minute 24 elevation conventional scan strategy producing detailed volumetric data. This is followed by a 5-minute four elevation doppler scan.

A more sophisticated suite of products is produced by an MSC-designed system known internationally as CARDS (Canadian Radar Decision Support system). These products are designed detect and track thunderstorm cells, and to help assess their
severity (Joe, et al, 2002)."

All of the above, along with raw Radar data and any future or other software should be freely available to the public.

Only one elevation of the doppler, reflectivity scan is available on Environment Canada's website in a low-resolution, poorly coloured version.

The other 23 elevations, velocity Radar, storm tracking MSC software and URP software is only available to Environment Canada forecasters.

All of these tools would be incredibly useful to the weather community of Canada and yet, they're ridiculously expensive or unavailable.

Environment Canada does a great job and we have huge respect for their Meteorologists.

We simply feel it's every Canadian's right to freely access this data and software for personal and commercial use.

This would inevitably lead to the development of better Canadian weather apps and superior algorithms for tracking Tornadoes and severe weather.

At its cheapest, raw Canadian Radar data is $12,999 a year from the University of Oklahoma.

It should be free.

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