Ronald Leeper

Ronald Leeper

Climate Reference Network operations and analysis Phone: +1 828.257.3185 Email: ronnieleeper@ncics.org Orcid: http://orcid.org/0000-0001-6821-8151

Biography

Ronald D. Leeper’s primary area of interest is in hydrological processes. He is particularly focused on land-atmosphere interactions and how these relationships will evolve in the context of climate change. Leeper is currently combining numerical methods and in-situ data sets to explore these complex topics from both modeling and observational perspectives.

Leeper is also working with NOAA scientists on the U.S. climate reference network (USCRN) to improve quality control (QC) methods and develop applications. The USCRN is a network of climate monitoring stations maintained and operated by NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI). Recently, he has advanced QC methods to improve the network’s capacity to monitor US precipitation and has partnered with colleagues from Atmospheric Turbulence and Diffusion Division (ATDD) in Oak Ridge, TN to evaluate sensor performance. These activities include studies for the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) Solid Precipitation Intercomparison Experiment (SPICE) project.

Publications

2020

Runkle, J. D., M. M. Sugg, R. D. Leeper, Y. Rao, J. L. Mathews, and J. J. Rennie, 2020: Short-term effects of weather parameters on COVID-19 morbidity in select US cities. Science of The Total Environment, 140093. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2020.140093

Sugg, M., J. Runkle, R. Leeper, H. Bagli, A. Golden, L.H. Handwerger, T. Magee, C. Moreno, R. Reed-Kelly, M. Taylor, and S. Woolard, 2020: A scoping review of drought impacts on health and society in North America. Climatic Change, 162, 1177-1195. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10584-020-02848-6

Wilson, T. B., H. J. Diamond, J. Kochendorfer, T. P. Meyers, M. Hall, N. W. Casey, C. B. Baker, R. Leeper, and M. A. Palecki, 2020: Evaluating time domain reflectometry and coaxial impedance sensors for soil observations by the U.S. Climate Reference Network. Vadose Zone Journal, 19, https://doi.org/10.1002/vzj2.20013.

2019

Leeper, R. D., J. E. Bell, and M. A. Palecki, 2019: A Description and Evaluation of U.S. Climate Reference Network Standardized Soil Moisture Dataset. Journal of Applied Meteorology and Climatology, 58, 1417–1428. http://dx.doi.org/10.1175/JAMC-D-18-0269.1

Leeper, R. D., J. Kochendorfer, T. Henderson, and M. A. Palecki, 2019: Impacts of small-scale urban encroachment on air temperature observations. Journal of Applied Meteorology and Climatology, 58,1369–1380. http://dx.doi.org/10.1175/JAMC-D-19-0002.1

2018

Lee, T. R., M. Buban, M. A. Palecki, R. D. Leeper, H. J. Diamond, E. Dumas, T. P. Meyers, and C. B. Baker, 2018: Great American Eclipse data may fine-tune weather forecasts, EOS, 99. http://dx.doi.org/10.1029/2018EO103931

Rogers, W., R. Mahmood, R. D. Leeper, and J. Yan, 2018: Land cover change, surface mining, and their impacts on a heavy rain event in the Appalachia. Annals of the American Association of Geographers, 108, 1187-1209. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/24694452.2018.1460249

2017

Kochendorfer, J., R. Rasmussen, M. Wolff, B. Baker, M. E. Hall, T. Meyers, S. Landolt, A. Jachcik, K. Isaksen, R. Brækkan, and R. Leeper, 2017: The quantification and correction of wind-induced precipitation measurement errors. Hydrology and Earth Systems Sciences, 21, 1973-1989. http://dx.doi.org/10.5194/hess-21-1973-2017

Leeper, R. D., J. E. Bell, C. Vines, and M. Palecki, 2017: An evaluation of the North American regional reanalysis simulated soil moisture conditions during the 2011 to 2013 drought period. Journal of Hydrometeorology, 18, 515-527. http://dx.doi.org/10.1175/JHM-D-16-0132.1

2016

Klotzbach, P. J., E. C. J. Oliver, R. D. Leeper, and C. J. Schreck, III, 2016: The relationship between the Madden–Julian Oscillation (MJO) and southeastern New England snowfall. Monthly Weather Review, 144, 1355-1362. http://dx.doi.org/doi:10.1175/MWR-D-15-0434.1

Kochendorfer, J., R. Rasmussen, M. Wolff, B. Baker, M. E. Hall, T. Meyers, S. Landolt, A. Jachcik, K. Isaksen, R. Brækkan, and R. Leeper, 2016: The Quantification and Correction of Wind-Induced Precipitation Measurement Errors. Hydrology Earth Systems Sciences Discussions, 2016, 1-24. http://dx.doi.org/10.5194/hess-2016-415

Quintanar, A.I., R Mahmood, A. Suarez, and R. Leeper, 2016: Atmospheric sensitivity to roughness length in a regional atmospheric model over the Ohio–Tennessee River Valley. Meteorology and Atmospheric Physics, 128, 315 – 330. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00703-015-0415-z

2015

Bell, J. E., R. D. Leeper, M. A. Palecki, E. Coopersmith, T. Wilson, R. Bilotta, and S. Embler, 2015: Evaluation of the 2012 Drought with a Newly Established National Soil Monitoring Network. Vadose Zone Journal, 14. http://dx.doi.org/10.2136/vzj2015.02.0023

Leeper, R. D., J. Rennie, and M. A. Palecki, 2015: Observational perspectives from U.S. Climate Reference Network (USCRN) and Cooperative Observer Program (COOP) Network: Temperature and precipitation comparison. Journal of Atmospheric and Oceanic Technology, 32, 703-721. http://dx.doi.org/10.1175/JTECH-D-14-00172.1

Leeper, R. D., M. A. Palecki, and E. Davis, 2015: Methods to calculate precipitation from weighing bucket gauges with redundant depth measurements. Journal of Atmospheric and Oceanic Technology, 32, 1179-1190. http://dx.doi.org/10.1175/JTECH-D-14-00185.1

Leeper, R. D., and J. Kochendorfer, 2015: Evaporation from weighing precipitation gauges: Impacts on automated gauge measurements and quality assurance methods. Atmospheric Measurement Techniques, 8, 2291-2300. http://dx.doi.org/10.5194/amt-8-2291-2015

2013

Bell, J. E., M. A. Palecki, C. B. Baker, W. G. Collins, J. H. Lawrimore, R. D. Leeper, M. E. Hall, J. Kochendorfer, T. P. Meyers, T. Wilson, and H. J. Diamond, 2013: U.S. Climate Reference Network soil moisture and temperature observations. Journal of Hydrometeorology, 14, 977-988. http://dx.doi.org/10.1175/JHM-D-12-0146.1

Diamond, H., T. R. Karl, M. A. Palecki, C. B. Baker, J. E. Bell, R. D. Leeper, D. R. Easterling, J. H. Lawrimore, T. P. Meyers, M. R. Helfert, G. Goodge, and P. W. Thorne, 2013: U.S. Climate Reference Network after a decade of operations. Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, 94, 485-498. http://doi.org/10.1175/BAMS-D-12-00170.1

2011

Leeper, R., R. Mahmood, and A.I. Quintanar, 2011: Influence of karst landscape on planetary boundary layer atmosphere: A Weather Research and Forecast (WRF) model-based investigation. Journal of Hydrometeorology, 12, 1512-1529. http://doi.org/10.1175/2011JHM1260.1

Mahmood, R., R. Leeper, and A. I. Quintanar, 2011: Sensitivity of planetary boundary layer atmosphere to historical and future changes of land use/land cover, vegetation fraction, and soil moisture in Western Kentucky, USA. Global and Planetary Change, 78, 36-53. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.gloplacha.2011.05.007

2010

Leeper, R. D., J. M. Walker, and G. B. Goodrich, 2010: Teleconnective relationships to the Kentucky Snowfall Impact Scale. Journal of the Kentucky Academy of Science, 71, 36-46. http://doi.org/10.3101/1098-7096-71.1.36

Mahmood, R., R. A. Pielke Sr., K. G. Hubbard, D. Niyogi, G. Bonan, P. Lawrence, B. Baker, R. McNider, C. McAlpine, A. Etter, S. Gameda, B. Qian, A. Carleton, A. Beltran-Przekurat, T. Chase, A. I. Quintanar, J. O. Adegoke, S. Vezhapparambu, G. Conner, S. Asefi, E. Sertel, D. R. Legates, Y. Wu, R. Hale, O. N. Frauenfeld, A. Watts, M. Shepherd, C. Mitra, V. G. Anantharaj, S. Fall, R. Lund, A. Nordfelt, P. Blanken, J. Du, H-I. Chang, R. Leeper, U. S. Nair, S. Dobler, R. Deo, J. Syktus, 2010: Impacts of land use land cover change on climate and future research priorities. Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, 91, 37-46. http://doi.org/10.1175/2009BAMS2769.1

2009

Leeper, R., R. Mahmood, and A. I. Quintanar, 2009: Near surface atmospheric response to simulated changes in land-cover, vegetation fraction, and soil moisture over Western Kentucky. Publications in Climatology, 62(2), 41pp. (peer-reviewed monograph)

2008

Mahmood, R., K. G. Hubbard, R. Leeper, and S.A. Foster, 2008: Increase in near surface atmospheric moisture content due to land use changes: Evidence from the observed dew point temperature data. Monthly Weather Review, 13, 1554-1561. http://doi.org/10.1175/2007MWR2040.1

Walker, J. M., R. D. Leeper, S. Petrina, M. L. Johns, B. M. Biache, N. William, K. J. Batson, and G. B. Goodrich, 2008: Development of a Kentucky Snowfall Impact Scale. Focus on Geography, 50, 15-21. http://doi.org/10.1111/j.1949-8535.2008.tb00207.x

2006

Mahmood R., S. A. Foster, T. Keeling, K. G. Hubbard, C. Carlson and R. Leeper, 2006: Impacts of irrigation on 20th century temperature in the Northern Great Plains. Global Planetary Change, 54, 1-18. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.gloplacha.2005.10.004

Presentations

2020

Leeper, R. D., 2020: Exploring the use of Standardized Soil Moisture Datasets as an Indicator of Drought. 2020 National Soil Moisture Workshop, Virtual, August 12-13, 2020.

2019

Inamdar, A., and R. D. Leeper, 2019: Extracting Surface Absorbed Solar Radiation in Near Real-time from GOES-R. American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, San Francisco, CA, December 13, 2019.

Leeper, R. D., M. A. Palecki, and B. Petersen, 2019: Efficacy of Drought Indices Derived from In Situ Soil Moisture Observations. U.S. Drought Monitor Forum, September 18, 2019.

Leeper, R. D. and M. A. Palecki, 2019: U.S. Climate Reference Network Soil Moisture Collection and Processing. National Soil Moisture Network Soil Moisture Working Group, Asheville, NC, June 12, 2019.

Leeper, R. D., 2019: Evaluating the Linkages between Soil Moisture and Drought. 2019 National Soil Moisture Network Workshop: Expanding the Frontiers of Soil Moisture Measurements and Applications, Manhattan, KS, May 22, 2019.

Inamdar, A., and R. Leeper, 2019: On the Inter-relationship Between Land Surface Air Temperature and Skin Temperature. American Meteorological Society Annual Meeting, Phoenix, AZ, January 9, 2019.

Prat, O. P., R. D. Leeper, J. L. Matthews, B. R. Nelson, J. Adams, and S. Ansari, 2019: Using Remotely Sensed Precipitation Information and Vegetation Observations for Early Drought Detection and Near-Real Time Monitoring on a Global Scale. AMS 99th Annual Meeting, Phoenix, AZ, January 9, 2019.

Leeper, R. D., J. Kochendorfer, T. Henderson, and A. M. Palecki, 2019: The Sensitivity of Temperature Measurements to Built-Up Environments; A Case Study In Oak Ridge, TN. American Meteorological Society Annual Meeting, Phoenix, AZ, January 8, 2019.

2018

Prat, O. P., R. Leeper, J. L. Matthews, B. R. Nelson, S. Ansari, and J. Adams, 2018: Toward Earlier Drought Detection Using Remotely Sensed Precipitation Information and Vegetation Observations from the Reference Environmental Data Record (REDR) Program. American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, Washington, DC, December 13, 2018.

Leeper, R. D., A. M. Palecki, and N. Casey 2018: Standardizing short-term satellite soil moisture datasets. Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) Cal/Val Workshop #9, Fairfax, VA, October 22, 2018.

Leeper, R. D., J. E. Bell, and M. A. Palecki, 2018: Standardizing USCRN Soil Moisture Observations for Near-Real Time Applications. MOISST Workshop, Lincoln, NE, June 5, 2018.

Prat, O. P., R. D. Leeper, J. E. Bell, B. R. Nelson, J. Adams, and S. Ansari, 2018: Toward earlier drought detection using remotely sensed precipitation data from the Reference Environmental Data Record (REDR) CMORPH. 2018 EGU General Assembly, Vienna, Austria, April 11, 2018.

Leeper, R. D., J. E. Bell, and M. Palecki, 2018: Standardizing USCRN Soil Moisture Observations. USCRN meeting with Drought.gov Partners, Asheville, NC, February 19, 2018.

Inamdar, A., and R. D. Leeper, 2018: 484: Reconstructing Diurnal Cycle of Land Surface Temperature from Daily Max/Min Temperatures. American Meteorological Society Annual Meeting, Austin, TX, January 9, 2018.

Leeper, R. D., 2018: 20: An Evaluation of Recent U.S. Drought Events Using a Newly Available Standardized Soil Moisture Dataset. American Meteorological Society 2018 Annual Meeting, Austin, TX, January 8, 2018.

2017

Lawrimore, J. H., D. Wuertz, M. A. Palecki, D. Kim, S. E. Stevens, R. Leeper, and B. Korzeniewski, 2017: H53Q-05: Improved Hourly and Sub-Hourly Gauge Data for Assessing Precipitation Extremes in the U.S. American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, New Orleans, LA, December 15, 2017.

Bell, J., and R. Leeper, 2017: CRN Manual Quality Control. USCRN meeting with NOAA Air Resources Lab Atmospheric Turbulence Diffusion Division (ATDD) Partners, Oak Ridge, TN, November 15, 2017.

Bell, J., and R. Leeper, 2017: Standardizing USCRN Soil Moisture. USCRN meeting with NOAA Air Resources Lab Atmospheric Turbulence Diffusion Division (ATDD) Partners, Oak Ridge, TN, November 15, 2017.

Leeper, R. D., 2017: Standardizing In-Situ Soil Moisture Observations to Improve Hydrological Monitoring. American Meteorological Society 23rd Conference on Applied Climatology, Asheville, NC, June 26, 2017.

Fulford, J., G. Hammer, R. D. Leeper, and J. Rennie, 2017: August Eclipse- A public engagement opportunity. NCEI Tuesday Seminar Series, Asheville, NC, June 20, 2017.

Leeper, R. D., 2017: Evaluation of In-Situ Soil Moisture Metrics to Monitoring Hydrological Extremes. American Meteorological Society Annual Meeting, Seattle, WA, January 23, 2017.

Scott, E., Leeper, R. D., Palecki, M. Evaluating Precipitation Extremes from a Sparse Network: the NOAA U.S. Climate Reference Network. American Meteorological Society Annual Meeting, Seattle, WA, January 23, 2017.

Leeper, R. D., 2017: Monitoring hydrological conditions using soil moisture observations at NCEI Science Council meeting, Asheville, NC, January 2017.

2016

Leeper, R. D., M. Palecki, and J. E. Bell, 2016: Analysis of Soil Moisture Metrics to Assess Societal Risks to Hydrological Extremes, Carolinas Climate Resilience Conference, Charlotte, NC, September 12-14, 2016.

Prat, O. P., R. D. Leeper, S. E. Stevens, B. R. Nelson, D. R. Easterling, and K. E. Kunkel, 2016. Long-term quantification of extreme precipitation in relation with tropical and extra-tropical cyclonic activity over the Carolinas. Carolinas Climate Resilience Conference. Charlotte, NC, September 12-14, 2016.

Leeper, R. D., 2016: An Exploratory Analysis of the 20th Century Reanalysis Extra-Tropical Cyclone Track Density. American Meteorological Society Annual Meeting, New Orleans, LA, January 13, 2016.

Leeper R. D., J. E. Bell, and M. Palecki, 2016: An investigation of soil moisture extremes over the 2012 drought, American Meteorological Society Annual Meeting, New Orleans, LA, January 11, 2016.

2015

Leeper, D. R., and J. Rennie, 2015: The Evolution of In Situ Climate Observations and Impacts on Observations and Climate Metrics. UNC Asheville Department of Atmospheric Sciences, Asheville, NC, February 2015.

Leeper, R. D. and J. E. Bell, 2015: Evaluating the Evolution of the California Drought and Monitoring Societal Risks with NOAA's U.S. Climate Reference Network. 95th American Meteorological Society Annual Meeting, Phoenix, AZ, January 5, 2015.

Rennie, J., A. Buddenberg, K. Gassert, R. Leeper, L. E. Stevens, and S. E. Stevens, 2015: Computation, Analysis and Visualization of In-Situ and Remote Sensing Data using Python. 95th American Meteorological Society Annual Meeting, Phoenix, AZ, January 5, 2015.

2014

Vines C., Leeper R., and Palecki M, 2014: Evaluating the 2012 Drought using Modeled and Observed Datasets. Annual Biomedical Research Conference for Minority Students, San Antonio, TX, November 2014.