A weather signal missing for almost a year from Matinicus Rock will be temporarily replaced in March, according to Jane Lubchenco, administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Rep. Chellie Pingree, D-Maine, wrote a letter to Lubchenco on Dec. 8, saying that accurate and reliable weather information is vital to those who work on the waters of Penobscot Bay and the Gulf of Maine.

In her letter, Pingree focused on the need to repair or replace the Matinicus Rock Coastal Marine Network station, which feeds data into the Gulf of Maine Ocean Observing System, providing real-time wind reports on the Web.

“Unfortunately, the Matinicus Rock C-MAN station has not been generating wind data for the past 10 months,” Pingree said. Citing safety concerns in regard to the lighthouse on Matinicus Rock and the loss of four GoMOOS buoys due to federal funding shortfalls, Pingree urged the NOAA administrator to “move forward with as much speed as possible,” in restoring the monitoring service.

In her response, Lubchenco said a temporary C-MAN station, recently authorized by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, will be installed by March of this year. She said her agency plans to service the permanent station after the Fish and Wildlife Service finishes repairs to the lighthouse, expected sometime before March 2011.