Alaska Online Aquatic Temperature Site (AKOATS)
This website provides a comprehensive statewide inventory of current and historic continuous monitoring locations for stream and lake temperature in Alaska. The project is one component of the Western Alaska Landscape Conservation Cooperative's strategy to understand potential climate impacts to freshwater systems across Alaska. The AKOATS project compiled a statewide catalog of monitoring locations using a common set of attributes. The inventory is fully accessible via an online mapping interface or it can be viewed and queried directly within commercial GIS software.
Alaska’s collection of stream and lake temperature monitoring sensors is quite young and rather sparsely arrayed across the vast state. This inventory identified only 95 actively monitored stream sites with five or more years of continuous data, and only 18 actively monitored lakes with five or more years of continuous data. Many of these sites are concentrated in relatively small focal research areas. A little more than half (54 percent) of Alaska’s 157 sub-basins have any documented, continuous aquatic temperature data.
While Alaska’s size and access challenges have hampered past monitoring efforts, numerous ongoing projects offer promising opportunities to develop a robust temperature monitoring network. This inventory provides a statewide catalog of historic and ongoing monitoring, creating awareness across administrative and hydrographic boundaries. AKOATS also provides an easily accessible means for scientists to share new site locations.
In 2017, project leaders began working with the National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis (NCEAS) to link the AKOATS spatial metadata inventory to each location's standardized temperature data.