The Washington Post: “In a month, the National Weather Service plans to launch its “next generation” weather prediction model with the aim of “better, more timely forecasts.” But many meteorologists familiar with the model fear it is unreliable. The introduction of a model that forecasters lack confidence in matters, considering the enormous impact that weather has on the economy, valued at around $485 billion annually. The Weather Service announced Wednesday that the new model, known as the FV3 (which stands for Finite Volume Cubed-Sphere dynamical core), is “tentatively” set to become the United States’ primary forecast model on March 20, pending tests. It will replace the current version of the GFS, popularly known as the American model, which has existed in various forms for more than 30 years. The introduction of the FV3 is intended as the Weather Service’s next step toward building the best weather prediction model in the world, a stated priority of the Trump administration. The current GFS model trails the European model in accuracy, and it has for many years, despite millions of dollars in congressional funding dating back to 2012, after Hurricane Sandy hit.
Numerous meteorologists who have experience using the FV3 worry it’s not ready for prime time and have been underwhelmed by its performance. For months, its predictions have been publicly available, on an experimental basis for forecasters to evaluate. When news broke about the Weather Service’s intention to make the FV3 the United States’ primary model, meteorologists unleashed a torrent of complaints and negative reviews on Twitter…”