Office of Coast Survey’s nowCOAST™ is a GIS-based web mapping portal providing situational awareness of present and future environmental conditions for coastal users and maritime communities by integrating oceanographic, weather, and hydrologic data, warnings, forecast guidance and forecasts from across NOAA, other federal agencies, and regional ocean and weather observing systems. Some of the data and information available from nowCOAST includes:
Users can consume this information using nowCOAST’s interactive map viewer or by connecting to its web mapping services directly from their own applications. The nowCOAST map viewer allows users to zoom and pan, choose different map backgrounds and overlays, animate time-enabled data layers, click on mapped hyperlinks to obtain more detailed information, and even click at a point to obtain the latest weather or marine weather forecast for that specific location. Alternately, by integrating with nowCOAST’s time-enabled map services (using ArcGIS/GeoServices REST or OGC Web Map Service protocols), users can retrieve raw data, visualizations, or imagery directly from nowCOAST and display them in their own applications alongside other map layers of interest.
nowCOAST is used daily by recreational and commercial mariners and fishermen, coastal and emergency managers, risk managers, offshore oil rig operations, first responders, homeland security, U.S. Dept. of Defense, and search and rescue operations. On average, nowCOAST receives more than 400,000 hits/month and even higher web traffic during landfalling hurricanes, large wildfires, and tornado outbreaks. During the very active 2020 Hurricane Season and extensive wildfires in the western U.S., nowCOAST experienced between 600,000 and 800,000 hits/month.
The NHC track forecast and cone of uncertainty for Hurricane Laura along with weather satellite imagery, weather radar reflectivity and surface weather observations displayed on the nowCOAST map viewer on August 25, 2020.
NWS Potential Storm Surge Flooding Map for Hurricane Dorian for the SE coast of the U.S. displayed on nowCOAST on Sept. 2, 2019.
NHC track forecast for Hurricane Sally along with forecast guidance of surface water currents from NOS Northern Gulf of Mexico Operational Forecast System depicted on the nowCOAST map viewer on Sept. 15, 2020.