Table of contents
  1. Story
  2. Slides
    1. Slide 1 Data Science for the NOAA Chief Data Officer
    2. Slide 2 Data Science for NOAA Big Data
    3. Slide 3 NOAA Big Data Industry Day
    4. Slide 4 NOAA Site Map
    5. Slide 5 NOAA Publication Sources
    6. Slide 6 NOAA Climate.gov: Site Map
    7. Slide 7 NOAA Climate.gov: Maps & Data
    8. Slide 8 NOAA Climate.gov: Global Climate Dashboard
    9. Slide 9 NOAA Climate.gov: Integrated Map Application
    10. Slide 10 NOAA Climate.gov: Data Catalog
    11. Slide 11 NOAA Climate.gov: Data Catalog Application
    12. Slide 12 NOAA Climate.gov: Data Catalog Application Metadata
    13. Slide 13 NOAA Climate.gov: Great Lakes Water Level Dashboard
    14. Slide 14 NOAA Climate.gov: Great Lakes Water Level Dashboard Data
    15. Slide 15 NOAA Climate.gov: Great Lakes Water Level Dashboard Data Ecosystem
    16. Slide 16 Data Science Data Publications for the NOAA Chief Data Officer: Knowledge Base and Spreadsheet
    17. Slide 17 Data Science Data Publications for the NOAA Chief Data Officer: Spotfire Cover Page
    18. Slide 18 Data Science Data Publications for the NOAA Chief Data Officer: Spotfire Great Lakes
    19. Slide 19 Data Science Data Publications for the NOAA Chief Data Officer: Some Observations
    20. Slide 20 Some Conclusions and Next Steps
  3. Spotfire Dashboard
  4. Research Notes
  5. Climate.gov
    1. About NOAA Climate.gov
      1. Mission
      2. Staff
        1. Executive Board
        2. Governance Team
        3. IT System Engineering
        4. News & Features
        5. News & Features contributors
        6. Maps & Data
        7. Maps & Data contributors
        8. Teaching Climate
        9. Teaching Climate contributors
        10. Supporting Decisions
        11. Supporting Decisions contributors
      3. Background
      4. Science Panel
        1. Science Panel Members
      5. Data Panel
        1. Data Panel Members
      6. NOAA Climate.gov Editorial Policies and Procedures
        1. News & Features
        2. Maps & Data
        3. Teaching Climate
        4. Supporting Decisions
      7. NOAA Climate.gov Portal Team Structure
        1. Figure 1 – NOAA Climate.gov Organization Chart
    2. Contact
      1. General mailbox (home page issues, general comments)
      2. Specific sections
    3. FAQs
      1. ​Global Warming FAQs
      2. About Climate.gov
        1. How can I submit questions, comments, or suggestions about Climate.gov?
        2. If I submit a question about the portal, when can I expect a reply?
      3. Content
        1. Can I re-use this data/product/image/video?
        2. How can I publish my content on NOAA Climate.gov?
        3. How do I interpret this data set/product/article/image; this dataset/product/page looks wrong or out of date; can I get this data/image/product in a different format?
        4. Who decides which content is added to the portal?
        5. Who is allowed to post content on the Portal?
      4. Site Functionality
        1. How do I report a broken link?
        2. Why is this page taking so long to load?
        3. Which browser should I be using, and what plug-ins do I need?
    4. Sitemap
    5. What's New?
      1. Where's ClimateWatch Magazine?
        1. What else is new?
        2. Can't find an old article?
        3. What do you think?
      2. Where's the Education section?
        1. What else is new?
        2. Feedback you'd like to offer? A resource you'd like to share?
      3. Where's the Understanding Climate section?
        1. Feedback you'd like to offer? A resource you'd like to share?
      4. What's new with the Data section?
        1. Feedback you'd like to offer? A resource you'd like to share?
    6. Global Warming Frequently Asked Questions
      1. Section 1: Changes
        1. What is global warming, and how is it different from climate change and climate variability?
        2. Is the globe still warming today?
        3. If the globe is still warming, then why are some locations not warming while others have experienced cooling?
        4. Can historical temperature data records be trusted? Haven't they been skewed by non-climate factors like instrument changes and "urban heat islands"?
        5. A global warming of 1.5°F (0.85°C) seems small, given that some locations experience temperature swings of 30°F or more in a single day. Why is this change in global temperature a concern?
      2. Section 2: Causes
        1. Are humans causing or contributing to global warming?
        2. How strong is the scientific evidence that Earth is warming and that humans are the main cause?
        3. Do humans also exert a cooling influence on Earth's climate?
        4. Couldn't the sun be the cause of the recent global warming?
        5. Didn't the globe stop warming after 1998, a period when human activities emitted more carbon dioxide than in any other period in human history? And, if so, doesn't this mean climate is not as sensitive to carbon dioxide as previously thought?
        6. What role does the ocean play in global warming?
        7. Doesn't carbon dioxide in the atmosphere come from natural sources?
        8. Don't volcanoes emit more carbon dioxide than humans?
        9. What is the 'greenhouse effect'?
        10. Hasn't Earth warmed and cooled naturally throughout history?
        11. Why is the current global warming trend any different than previous warming periods in Earth's history?
        12. Isn't there a lot of debate and disagreement among climate scientists about the causes and effects of global warming?
      3. Section 3: Impacts
        1. What harm will global warming cause?
        2. Is global warming a threat to humans? If so, how?
        3. Is global warming a threat to land and marine ecosystems?
        4. Are there positive benefits from global warming?
        5. What is an "extreme event"? Is there evidence that global warming has caused or contributed to any particular extreme event?
        6. How can Earth's climate be accurately predicted years or decades in the future when weather cannot be accurately predicted more than 2 weeks from now? What's the difference between weather and climate?
      4. Section 4: Choices
        1. Can we slow or even reverse global warming?
        2. What can I do to help reduce global warming?
        3. What can businesses and business leaders do about global warming?
        4. What can people do about the expected impacts caused by global warming?
        5. What is NOAA's climate mission?
      5. References
  6. Maps & Data
    1. Global Data
      1. Climate at a Glance - Global Temperature Anomalies
      2. Climate at a Glance - Time Series Graphs for Global Temperature Anomalies
      3. Climate Data Records (CDR) - GIS Viewer
      4. Climate Prediction Center GIS Portal – Precipitation, Sea Surface Temperature & Forecasts
      5. Daily Observational Data: GHCN Daily Summary – GIS Data Locator
      6. Daily Observational Data: Global Summary of the Day (GSOD) – GIS Data Locator
      7. GHCN Daily Observations - GIS Data Locator
      8. Global Glacier Change Observations
      9. Global Hourly Summary – GIS Data Locator
      10. Historical Hurricane Tracks
      11. Hourly/Sub-Hourly Observational Data: Hourly Global – GIS Data Locator
      12. Marine Data - Grid-cell Selection Tool
      13. Monthly Observational Data: GHCN–D Monthly Summaries – GIS Data Locator
      14. NOAA View Data Exploration Tool
    2. U.S. Data
      1. Annual Observational Data: Annual Climate Summaries – GIS Data Locator
      2. Climate at a Glance - U.S. Mapping Interface
      3. Climate Indices – GIS Viewer
      4. Climate Reference Network (CRN)
      5. Daily Observational Data: GHCN Daily Summary – GIS Data Locator
      6. Hourly/Sub-Hourly Observational Data: 15 minute Precipitation – GIS Data Locator
      7. Hourly/Sub-Hourly Observational Data: Hourly Precipitation – GIS Data Locator
      8. Hourly/Sub-Hourly Observational Data: Local Climatological Data – GIS Data Locator
      9. Monthly Extremes – GIS Data Locator
      10. Monthly Observational Data: GHCN–D Monthly Summaries – GIS Data Locator
      11. NIDIS North American Drought Monitor
      12. Radar Data: NEXRAD - GIS Data Locator
      13. Snow Monitoring Snowfall Maps: Daily – GIS Data Locator
      14. Snow Monitoring Snowfall Maps: Monthly – GIS Data Locator
      15. US Normals Data 1981-2010
    3. Regional Data
      1. Climate at a Glance - Time Series Graphs for Contiguous U.S, Regions, States, and Selected Cities
      2. Climatological Rankings
      3. Sea Level Rise and Coastal Flooding Impacts – GIS Viewer
      4. Snow Monitoring Snowfall Maps: Regional Snowfall Index – GIS Data Locator
    4. NOAA Partners
      1. NOAA
      2. Partners
    5. Integrated Map Application
      1. Map Themes
      2. Time-Related Maps
      3. Program Maps
      4. All Maps
    6. Data Catalog
      1. Content Types
  7. Global Climate Dashboard
    1. Climate Change
      1. Global Average Temperature (˚C)
      2. Spring Snow Cover (million km2)
      3. Carbon Dioxide (ppm)
      4. Ocean Heat (1022 Joules)
      5. September Arctic Sea Ice (1000 km2)
      6. Global Average Sea Level (mm)
      7. Heat-Trapping Gases
      8. Glaciers (meters of water equivalent)
      9. Sun's Energy (W/m2)
    2. Climate Variability
      1. El Niño / La Niña (Oceanic Niño Index)
      2. North Atlantic Oscillation Index
      3. Arctic Oscillation Index
      4. Pacific North American Pattern
      5. Southern Oscillation Index
    3. Climate Projections
      1. Simulation of Global Temperature
        1. Climate Change: Global Temperature Projections
        2. References
  8. Great Lakes Dashboard
    1. Operational Data
      1. Operational vs. research data sets
      2. Channel flows and diversions
        1. Great Lakes Connecting Channel Flows
        2. Great Lakes Diversions
      3. Hydrologic input/output
        1. Precipitation data from NOAA CO-OPS (Center for Operational Oceanographic Products and Services)
        2. Precipitation data from the USACE Detroit Office
        3. Residual Net Basin Supplies from the USACE Detroit Office
      4. Water level forecasts - monthly
        1. Current Forecast
        2. Archived Coordinated Forecasts
      5. Water level observations
        1. Monthly lake-wide average water levels (1918 - Present)
        2. Current month provisional averages from Coordinated Gauges
        3. Earlier monthly water levels: 1860-1917
        4. Master Gauge Station History
        5. Per Month Records
        6. Low Water Datum
        7. What is the IGLD85?
    2. Research Data
      1. Climate variables
      2. Hydrologic input/output
      3. Precipitation
      4. Simulated Evaporation
        1. NOAA-GLERL Great Lakes Evaporation Model
        2. 3D Ice-Hydrodynamic Coupled Model (ICEPOM)
      5. Runoff
      6. Net Basin Supplies (NBS)
      7. Ice cover observations
      8. Paleoclimate reconstructions
      9. Water level forecasts - monthly
    3. Current NOAA-GLERL AHPS Forecasts
    4. Archived AHPS Forecasts
    5. About the NOAA-GLERL AHPS seasonal forecast model
      1. Water level forecasts - multi-decadal
        1. Lofgren
        2. Hayhoe
        3. Angel and Kunkel
        4. MacKay and Seglenieks
      2. Water level observations
      3. Water temperatures
        1. Modelled Water Temperatures
        2. GLSEA Water Temperatures
    6. Data Download
  9. NEXT

Data Science for the NOAA Chief Data Officer

Last modified
Table of contents
  1. Story
  2. Slides
    1. Slide 1 Data Science for the NOAA Chief Data Officer
    2. Slide 2 Data Science for NOAA Big Data
    3. Slide 3 NOAA Big Data Industry Day
    4. Slide 4 NOAA Site Map
    5. Slide 5 NOAA Publication Sources
    6. Slide 6 NOAA Climate.gov: Site Map
    7. Slide 7 NOAA Climate.gov: Maps & Data
    8. Slide 8 NOAA Climate.gov: Global Climate Dashboard
    9. Slide 9 NOAA Climate.gov: Integrated Map Application
    10. Slide 10 NOAA Climate.gov: Data Catalog
    11. Slide 11 NOAA Climate.gov: Data Catalog Application
    12. Slide 12 NOAA Climate.gov: Data Catalog Application Metadata
    13. Slide 13 NOAA Climate.gov: Great Lakes Water Level Dashboard
    14. Slide 14 NOAA Climate.gov: Great Lakes Water Level Dashboard Data
    15. Slide 15 NOAA Climate.gov: Great Lakes Water Level Dashboard Data Ecosystem
    16. Slide 16 Data Science Data Publications for the NOAA Chief Data Officer: Knowledge Base and Spreadsheet
    17. Slide 17 Data Science Data Publications for the NOAA Chief Data Officer: Spotfire Cover Page
    18. Slide 18 Data Science Data Publications for the NOAA Chief Data Officer: Spotfire Great Lakes
    19. Slide 19 Data Science Data Publications for the NOAA Chief Data Officer: Some Observations
    20. Slide 20 Some Conclusions and Next Steps
  3. Spotfire Dashboard
  4. Research Notes
  5. Climate.gov
    1. About NOAA Climate.gov
      1. Mission
      2. Staff
        1. Executive Board
        2. Governance Team
        3. IT System Engineering
        4. News & Features
        5. News & Features contributors
        6. Maps & Data
        7. Maps & Data contributors
        8. Teaching Climate
        9. Teaching Climate contributors
        10. Supporting Decisions
        11. Supporting Decisions contributors
      3. Background
      4. Science Panel
        1. Science Panel Members
      5. Data Panel
        1. Data Panel Members
      6. NOAA Climate.gov Editorial Policies and Procedures
        1. News & Features
        2. Maps & Data
        3. Teaching Climate
        4. Supporting Decisions
      7. NOAA Climate.gov Portal Team Structure
        1. Figure 1 – NOAA Climate.gov Organization Chart
    2. Contact
      1. General mailbox (home page issues, general comments)
      2. Specific sections
    3. FAQs
      1. ​Global Warming FAQs
      2. About Climate.gov
        1. How can I submit questions, comments, or suggestions about Climate.gov?
        2. If I submit a question about the portal, when can I expect a reply?
      3. Content
        1. Can I re-use this data/product/image/video?
        2. How can I publish my content on NOAA Climate.gov?
        3. How do I interpret this data set/product/article/image; this dataset/product/page looks wrong or out of date; can I get this data/image/product in a different format?
        4. Who decides which content is added to the portal?
        5. Who is allowed to post content on the Portal?
      4. Site Functionality
        1. How do I report a broken link?
        2. Why is this page taking so long to load?
        3. Which browser should I be using, and what plug-ins do I need?
    4. Sitemap
    5. What's New?
      1. Where's ClimateWatch Magazine?
        1. What else is new?
        2. Can't find an old article?
        3. What do you think?
      2. Where's the Education section?
        1. What else is new?
        2. Feedback you'd like to offer? A resource you'd like to share?
      3. Where's the Understanding Climate section?
        1. Feedback you'd like to offer? A resource you'd like to share?
      4. What's new with the Data section?
        1. Feedback you'd like to offer? A resource you'd like to share?
    6. Global Warming Frequently Asked Questions
      1. Section 1: Changes
        1. What is global warming, and how is it different from climate change and climate variability?
        2. Is the globe still warming today?
        3. If the globe is still warming, then why are some locations not warming while others have experienced cooling?
        4. Can historical temperature data records be trusted? Haven't they been skewed by non-climate factors like instrument changes and "urban heat islands"?
        5. A global warming of 1.5°F (0.85°C) seems small, given that some locations experience temperature swings of 30°F or more in a single day. Why is this change in global temperature a concern?
      2. Section 2: Causes
        1. Are humans causing or contributing to global warming?
        2. How strong is the scientific evidence that Earth is warming and that humans are the main cause?
        3. Do humans also exert a cooling influence on Earth's climate?
        4. Couldn't the sun be the cause of the recent global warming?
        5. Didn't the globe stop warming after 1998, a period when human activities emitted more carbon dioxide than in any other period in human history? And, if so, doesn't this mean climate is not as sensitive to carbon dioxide as previously thought?
        6. What role does the ocean play in global warming?
        7. Doesn't carbon dioxide in the atmosphere come from natural sources?
        8. Don't volcanoes emit more carbon dioxide than humans?
        9. What is the 'greenhouse effect'?
        10. Hasn't Earth warmed and cooled naturally throughout history?
        11. Why is the current global warming trend any different than previous warming periods in Earth's history?
        12. Isn't there a lot of debate and disagreement among climate scientists about the causes and effects of global warming?
      3. Section 3: Impacts
        1. What harm will global warming cause?
        2. Is global warming a threat to humans? If so, how?
        3. Is global warming a threat to land and marine ecosystems?
        4. Are there positive benefits from global warming?
        5. What is an "extreme event"? Is there evidence that global warming has caused or contributed to any particular extreme event?
        6. How can Earth's climate be accurately predicted years or decades in the future when weather cannot be accurately predicted more than 2 weeks from now? What's the difference between weather and climate?
      4. Section 4: Choices
        1. Can we slow or even reverse global warming?
        2. What can I do to help reduce global warming?
        3. What can businesses and business leaders do about global warming?
        4. What can people do about the expected impacts caused by global warming?
        5. What is NOAA's climate mission?
      5. References
  6. Maps & Data
    1. Global Data
      1. Climate at a Glance - Global Temperature Anomalies
      2. Climate at a Glance - Time Series Graphs for Global Temperature Anomalies
      3. Climate Data Records (CDR) - GIS Viewer
      4. Climate Prediction Center GIS Portal – Precipitation, Sea Surface Temperature & Forecasts
      5. Daily Observational Data: GHCN Daily Summary – GIS Data Locator
      6. Daily Observational Data: Global Summary of the Day (GSOD) – GIS Data Locator
      7. GHCN Daily Observations - GIS Data Locator
      8. Global Glacier Change Observations
      9. Global Hourly Summary – GIS Data Locator
      10. Historical Hurricane Tracks
      11. Hourly/Sub-Hourly Observational Data: Hourly Global – GIS Data Locator
      12. Marine Data - Grid-cell Selection Tool
      13. Monthly Observational Data: GHCN–D Monthly Summaries – GIS Data Locator
      14. NOAA View Data Exploration Tool
    2. U.S. Data
      1. Annual Observational Data: Annual Climate Summaries – GIS Data Locator
      2. Climate at a Glance - U.S. Mapping Interface
      3. Climate Indices – GIS Viewer
      4. Climate Reference Network (CRN)
      5. Daily Observational Data: GHCN Daily Summary – GIS Data Locator
      6. Hourly/Sub-Hourly Observational Data: 15 minute Precipitation – GIS Data Locator
      7. Hourly/Sub-Hourly Observational Data: Hourly Precipitation – GIS Data Locator
      8. Hourly/Sub-Hourly Observational Data: Local Climatological Data – GIS Data Locator
      9. Monthly Extremes – GIS Data Locator
      10. Monthly Observational Data: GHCN–D Monthly Summaries – GIS Data Locator
      11. NIDIS North American Drought Monitor
      12. Radar Data: NEXRAD - GIS Data Locator
      13. Snow Monitoring Snowfall Maps: Daily – GIS Data Locator
      14. Snow Monitoring Snowfall Maps: Monthly – GIS Data Locator
      15. US Normals Data 1981-2010
    3. Regional Data
      1. Climate at a Glance - Time Series Graphs for Contiguous U.S, Regions, States, and Selected Cities
      2. Climatological Rankings
      3. Sea Level Rise and Coastal Flooding Impacts – GIS Viewer
      4. Snow Monitoring Snowfall Maps: Regional Snowfall Index – GIS Data Locator
    4. NOAA Partners
      1. NOAA
      2. Partners
    5. Integrated Map Application
      1. Map Themes
      2. Time-Related Maps
      3. Program Maps
      4. All Maps
    6. Data Catalog
      1. Content Types
  7. Global Climate Dashboard
    1. Climate Change
      1. Global Average Temperature (˚C)
      2. Spring Snow Cover (million km2)
      3. Carbon Dioxide (ppm)
      4. Ocean Heat (1022 Joules)
      5. September Arctic Sea Ice (1000 km2)
      6. Global Average Sea Level (mm)
      7. Heat-Trapping Gases
      8. Glaciers (meters of water equivalent)
      9. Sun's Energy (W/m2)
    2. Climate Variability
      1. El Niño / La Niña (Oceanic Niño Index)
      2. North Atlantic Oscillation Index
      3. Arctic Oscillation Index
      4. Pacific North American Pattern
      5. Southern Oscillation Index
    3. Climate Projections
      1. Simulation of Global Temperature
        1. Climate Change: Global Temperature Projections
        2. References
  8. Great Lakes Dashboard
    1. Operational Data
      1. Operational vs. research data sets
      2. Channel flows and diversions
        1. Great Lakes Connecting Channel Flows
        2. Great Lakes Diversions
      3. Hydrologic input/output
        1. Precipitation data from NOAA CO-OPS (Center for Operational Oceanographic Products and Services)
        2. Precipitation data from the USACE Detroit Office
        3. Residual Net Basin Supplies from the USACE Detroit Office
      4. Water level forecasts - monthly
        1. Current Forecast
        2. Archived Coordinated Forecasts
      5. Water level observations
        1. Monthly lake-wide average water levels (1918 - Present)
        2. Current month provisional averages from Coordinated Gauges
        3. Earlier monthly water levels: 1860-1917
        4. Master Gauge Station History
        5. Per Month Records
        6. Low Water Datum
        7. What is the IGLD85?
    2. Research Data
      1. Climate variables
      2. Hydrologic input/output
      3. Precipitation
      4. Simulated Evaporation
        1. NOAA-GLERL Great Lakes Evaporation Model
        2. 3D Ice-Hydrodynamic Coupled Model (ICEPOM)
      5. Runoff
      6. Net Basin Supplies (NBS)
      7. Ice cover observations
      8. Paleoclimate reconstructions
      9. Water level forecasts - monthly
    3. Current NOAA-GLERL AHPS Forecasts
    4. Archived AHPS Forecasts
    5. About the NOAA-GLERL AHPS seasonal forecast model
      1. Water level forecasts - multi-decadal
        1. Lofgren
        2. Hayhoe
        3. Angel and Kunkel
        4. MacKay and Seglenieks
      2. Water level observations
      3. Water temperatures
        1. Modelled Water Temperatures
        2. GLSEA Water Temperatures
    6. Data Download
  9. NEXT

  1. Story
  2. Slides
    1. Slide 1 Data Science for the NOAA Chief Data Officer
    2. Slide 2 Data Science for NOAA Big Data
    3. Slide 3 NOAA Big Data Industry Day
    4. Slide 4 NOAA Site Map
    5. Slide 5 NOAA Publication Sources
    6. Slide 6 NOAA Climate.gov: Site Map
    7. Slide 7 NOAA Climate.gov: Maps & Data
    8. Slide 8 NOAA Climate.gov: Global Climate Dashboard
    9. Slide 9 NOAA Climate.gov: Integrated Map Application
    10. Slide 10 NOAA Climate.gov: Data Catalog
    11. Slide 11 NOAA Climate.gov: Data Catalog Application
    12. Slide 12 NOAA Climate.gov: Data Catalog Application Metadata
    13. Slide 13 NOAA Climate.gov: Great Lakes Water Level Dashboard
    14. Slide 14 NOAA Climate.gov: Great Lakes Water Level Dashboard Data
    15. Slide 15 NOAA Climate.gov: Great Lakes Water Level Dashboard Data Ecosystem
    16. Slide 16 Data Science Data Publications for the NOAA Chief Data Officer: Knowledge Base and Spreadsheet
    17. Slide 17 Data Science Data Publications for the NOAA Chief Data Officer: Spotfire Cover Page
    18. Slide 18 Data Science Data Publications for the NOAA Chief Data Officer: Spotfire Great Lakes
    19. Slide 19 Data Science Data Publications for the NOAA Chief Data Officer: Some Observations
    20. Slide 20 Some Conclusions and Next Steps
  3. Spotfire Dashboard
  4. Research Notes
  5. Climate.gov
    1. About NOAA Climate.gov
      1. Mission
      2. Staff
        1. Executive Board
        2. Governance Team
        3. IT System Engineering
        4. News & Features
        5. News & Features contributors
        6. Maps & Data
        7. Maps & Data contributors
        8. Teaching Climate
        9. Teaching Climate contributors
        10. Supporting Decisions
        11. Supporting Decisions contributors
      3. Background
      4. Science Panel
        1. Science Panel Members
      5. Data Panel
        1. Data Panel Members
      6. NOAA Climate.gov Editorial Policies and Procedures
        1. News & Features
        2. Maps & Data
        3. Teaching Climate
        4. Supporting Decisions
      7. NOAA Climate.gov Portal Team Structure
        1. Figure 1 – NOAA Climate.gov Organization Chart
    2. Contact
      1. General mailbox (home page issues, general comments)
      2. Specific sections
    3. FAQs
      1. ​Global Warming FAQs
      2. About Climate.gov
        1. How can I submit questions, comments, or suggestions about Climate.gov?
        2. If I submit a question about the portal, when can I expect a reply?
      3. Content
        1. Can I re-use this data/product/image/video?
        2. How can I publish my content on NOAA Climate.gov?
        3. How do I interpret this data set/product/article/image; this dataset/product/page looks wrong or out of date; can I get this data/image/product in a different format?
        4. Who decides which content is added to the portal?
        5. Who is allowed to post content on the Portal?
      4. Site Functionality
        1. How do I report a broken link?
        2. Why is this page taking so long to load?
        3. Which browser should I be using, and what plug-ins do I need?
    4. Sitemap
    5. What's New?
      1. Where's ClimateWatch Magazine?
        1. What else is new?
        2. Can't find an old article?
        3. What do you think?
      2. Where's the Education section?
        1. What else is new?
        2. Feedback you'd like to offer? A resource you'd like to share?
      3. Where's the Understanding Climate section?
        1. Feedback you'd like to offer? A resource you'd like to share?
      4. What's new with the Data section?
        1. Feedback you'd like to offer? A resource you'd like to share?
    6. Global Warming Frequently Asked Questions
      1. Section 1: Changes
        1. What is global warming, and how is it different from climate change and climate variability?
        2. Is the globe still warming today?
        3. If the globe is still warming, then why are some locations not warming while others have experienced cooling?
        4. Can historical temperature data records be trusted? Haven't they been skewed by non-climate factors like instrument changes and "urban heat islands"?
        5. A global warming of 1.5°F (0.85°C) seems small, given that some locations experience temperature swings of 30°F or more in a single day. Why is this change in global temperature a concern?
      2. Section 2: Causes
        1. Are humans causing or contributing to global warming?
        2. How strong is the scientific evidence that Earth is warming and that humans are the main cause?
        3. Do humans also exert a cooling influence on Earth's climate?
        4. Couldn't the sun be the cause of the recent global warming?
        5. Didn't the globe stop warming after 1998, a period when human activities emitted more carbon dioxide than in any other period in human history? And, if so, doesn't this mean climate is not as sensitive to carbon dioxide as previously thought?
        6. What role does the ocean play in global warming?
        7. Doesn't carbon dioxide in the atmosphere come from natural sources?
        8. Don't volcanoes emit more carbon dioxide than humans?
        9. What is the 'greenhouse effect'?
        10. Hasn't Earth warmed and cooled naturally throughout history?
        11. Why is the current global warming trend any different than previous warming periods in Earth's history?
        12. Isn't there a lot of debate and disagreement among climate scientists about the causes and effects of global warming?
      3. Section 3: Impacts
        1. What harm will global warming cause?
        2. Is global warming a threat to humans? If so, how?
        3. Is global warming a threat to land and marine ecosystems?
        4. Are there positive benefits from global warming?
        5. What is an "extreme event"? Is there evidence that global warming has caused or contributed to any particular extreme event?
        6. How can Earth's climate be accurately predicted years or decades in the future when weather cannot be accurately predicted more than 2 weeks from now? What's the difference between weather and climate?
      4. Section 4: Choices
        1. Can we slow or even reverse global warming?
        2. What can I do to help reduce global warming?
        3. What can businesses and business leaders do about global warming?
        4. What can people do about the expected impacts caused by global warming?
        5. What is NOAA's climate mission?
      5. References
  6. Maps & Data
    1. Global Data
      1. Climate at a Glance - Global Temperature Anomalies
      2. Climate at a Glance - Time Series Graphs for Global Temperature Anomalies
      3. Climate Data Records (CDR) - GIS Viewer
      4. Climate Prediction Center GIS Portal – Precipitation, Sea Surface Temperature & Forecasts
      5. Daily Observational Data: GHCN Daily Summary – GIS Data Locator
      6. Daily Observational Data: Global Summary of the Day (GSOD) – GIS Data Locator
      7. GHCN Daily Observations - GIS Data Locator
      8. Global Glacier Change Observations
      9. Global Hourly Summary – GIS Data Locator
      10. Historical Hurricane Tracks
      11. Hourly/Sub-Hourly Observational Data: Hourly Global – GIS Data Locator
      12. Marine Data - Grid-cell Selection Tool
      13. Monthly Observational Data: GHCN–D Monthly Summaries – GIS Data Locator
      14. NOAA View Data Exploration Tool
    2. U.S. Data
      1. Annual Observational Data: Annual Climate Summaries – GIS Data Locator
      2. Climate at a Glance - U.S. Mapping Interface
      3. Climate Indices – GIS Viewer
      4. Climate Reference Network (CRN)
      5. Daily Observational Data: GHCN Daily Summary – GIS Data Locator
      6. Hourly/Sub-Hourly Observational Data: 15 minute Precipitation – GIS Data Locator
      7. Hourly/Sub-Hourly Observational Data: Hourly Precipitation – GIS Data Locator
      8. Hourly/Sub-Hourly Observational Data: Local Climatological Data – GIS Data Locator
      9. Monthly Extremes – GIS Data Locator
      10. Monthly Observational Data: GHCN–D Monthly Summaries – GIS Data Locator
      11. NIDIS North American Drought Monitor
      12. Radar Data: NEXRAD - GIS Data Locator
      13. Snow Monitoring Snowfall Maps: Daily – GIS Data Locator
      14. Snow Monitoring Snowfall Maps: Monthly – GIS Data Locator
      15. US Normals Data 1981-2010
    3. Regional Data
      1. Climate at a Glance - Time Series Graphs for Contiguous U.S, Regions, States, and Selected Cities
      2. Climatological Rankings
      3. Sea Level Rise and Coastal Flooding Impacts – GIS Viewer
      4. Snow Monitoring Snowfall Maps: Regional Snowfall Index – GIS Data Locator
    4. NOAA Partners
      1. NOAA
      2. Partners
    5. Integrated Map Application
      1. Map Themes
      2. Time-Related Maps
      3. Program Maps
      4. All Maps
    6. Data Catalog
      1. Content Types
  7. Global Climate Dashboard
    1. Climate Change
      1. Global Average Temperature (˚C)
      2. Spring Snow Cover (million km2)
      3. Carbon Dioxide (ppm)
      4. Ocean Heat (1022 Joules)
      5. September Arctic Sea Ice (1000 km2)
      6. Global Average Sea Level (mm)
      7. Heat-Trapping Gases
      8. Glaciers (meters of water equivalent)
      9. Sun's Energy (W/m2)
    2. Climate Variability
      1. El Niño / La Niña (Oceanic Niño Index)
      2. North Atlantic Oscillation Index
      3. Arctic Oscillation Index
      4. Pacific North American Pattern
      5. Southern Oscillation Index
    3. Climate Projections
      1. Simulation of Global Temperature
        1. Climate Change: Global Temperature Projections
        2. References
  8. Great Lakes Dashboard
    1. Operational Data
      1. Operational vs. research data sets
      2. Channel flows and diversions
        1. Great Lakes Connecting Channel Flows
        2. Great Lakes Diversions
      3. Hydrologic input/output
        1. Precipitation data from NOAA CO-OPS (Center for Operational Oceanographic Products and Services)
        2. Precipitation data from the USACE Detroit Office
        3. Residual Net Basin Supplies from the USACE Detroit Office
      4. Water level forecasts - monthly
        1. Current Forecast
        2. Archived Coordinated Forecasts
      5. Water level observations
        1. Monthly lake-wide average water levels (1918 - Present)
        2. Current month provisional averages from Coordinated Gauges
        3. Earlier monthly water levels: 1860-1917
        4. Master Gauge Station History
        5. Per Month Records
        6. Low Water Datum
        7. What is the IGLD85?
    2. Research Data
      1. Climate variables
      2. Hydrologic input/output
      3. Precipitation
      4. Simulated Evaporation
        1. NOAA-GLERL Great Lakes Evaporation Model
        2. 3D Ice-Hydrodynamic Coupled Model (ICEPOM)
      5. Runoff
      6. Net Basin Supplies (NBS)
      7. Ice cover observations
      8. Paleoclimate reconstructions
      9. Water level forecasts - monthly
    3. Current NOAA-GLERL AHPS Forecasts
    4. Archived AHPS Forecasts
    5. About the NOAA-GLERL AHPS seasonal forecast model
      1. Water level forecasts - multi-decadal
        1. Lofgren
        2. Hayhoe
        3. Angel and Kunkel
        4. MacKay and Seglenieks
      2. Water level observations
      3. Water temperatures
        1. Modelled Water Temperatures
        2. GLSEA Water Temperatures
    6. Data Download
  9. NEXT

Story

Data Science for the NOAA Chief Data Officer

After the recent NOAA Big Data RFI Industry Day, I provided my suggestions to David McClure, Lead Analyst, Open Government Data Services, Office of the Chief Information Officer, NOAA.

That experience led me to think, what would I do if I were the NOAA Chief Data Officer? What questions would I ask and want answered?:

  • What are NOAA's data assets?;
  • How can NOAA content be made big data by treating all of its content as data?;
  • How can data science help NOAA's Big Data effort and the Chief Data Officer?;
  • What has/will the NOAA RFIs accomplished that I could use in my work going forward?

As a NOAA outsider, but Ph.D. in Meteorology (Atmospheric Science), I would start with the Site Map, the Publication Sources, the authoritative data assets (Prototype NOAA Data Catalog with 55,641 data sets as of October 19, 2014), and the authoritative scientific publications for the public and decision makers (NOAA Climate.gov which has its own data catalog with 532 data sets).

I would organize all of that diverse content into a MindTouch Knowledge Base and Excel Spreadsheet for use in Spotfire visualizations to implement what I learned at the NOAA BIG Data Industry Day as follows:

  • My Comment: Maybe this is more complicated than it needs to be:
    • Just appoint a Chief Data Officer like I advised a senior Commerce official to do recently and then there was the announcement soon after This was also my recommendation to Congress in 2012; and/or
    • Just form a partnership like we did at EPA when I was their data architect/data standards person: http://www.exchangenetwork.net/about/why-we-exist/
  • My Questions: Focused on the role of data science and data scientists in the NOAA Big Data Program as follows:
    • Looking at your data assets, I see about 22,00 data sets at Data.gov, about 55,000 in your pilot data catalog, and 3 data hubs at the Open Data Policy GitHub site, which raises four questions:
      • Which is most authoritative?
      • Do you want help with building more data hubs?
      • Who will do the work to make the many different data formats interoperable so data integration is possible?
      • Who will produce the data science data publications called for by OSTP as the “new data currency”?
  • My Comment: The latter is what we are doing for the OSTP NITRD NSF RFI

Finally, I had three followup questions:

  • In essence, why would NOAA want to award a “no-cost solicitation” that excluded anyone that currently has a data-related contract/grant with NOAA or would like one?
  • While there are "lots of NOAA scientific publications" (NOAA Panel Member), do they publish the data per the OSTP Holdren memo?
  • Did I understand the statement I thought I heard from the NOAA Panel Member correctly:  Big Data is the metadata and the catalogs? Only?
  • Is there a spreadsheet version of the 55,000 or so data sets in the pilot NOAA Catalog? I got Data.gov Evangelist< Jeanne Holm, to provide this for Data.gov for those that want their own catalog in their own software like me to build apps.

The Data Science Publications for the NOAA Chief Data Officer are documented in the Slides below. Some observations on NOAA's data assets and scientific publications are:

  • Finding NOAA Data and Scientific Publications from the NOAA Web Site Map is not obvious;
  • Most of NOAA's data assets are very large files to be downloaded and are embedded in application tools;
  • NOAA Publication Sources that distribute data and publications are maintain by the Library who are probably not data scientists;
  • The new NOAA Climate.gov site has the best content for Data Science Publications, but there were some difficulties in doing that;
  • The NOAA Climate.gov Data Catalog with 532 data sets is not available as a data set itself and contains only one application (Great Lakes Dashboard) and 35 data sets, with the rest being uncategorized;
  • The Great Lakes Dashboard complete data set can be downloaded as a ZIP file, but contains about 500 individual files that need to be inventoried and matched to their metadata to be used;
  • The NOAA Climate.gov Dashboard is difficult to understand and use with 15 separate indicators of climate change and variability whose data is mostly in text files, except for four that are in spreadsheets.

Some Conclusions and Next Steps

  • After the recent NOAA Big Data RFI Industry Day, I provided my suggestions to David McClure, Lead Analyst, Open Government Data Services, Office of the Chief Information Officer, NOAA.
  • That experience led me to think, what would I do if I were the NOAA Chief Data Officer? What questions would I ask and want answered?:
    • What are NOAA's data assets?;
    • How can NOAA content be made big data by treating all of its content as data?;
    • How can data science help NOAA's Big Data effort and the Chief Data Officer?;
    • What has/will the NOAA RFIs accomplished that I could use in my work going forward?
  • I have answered the four questions by building Data Science Data Publications for the NOAA Chief Data Officer to help him when he is appointed :)
  • There is still more that I can and will do to help support a NOAA Chief Data Officer.

Slides

Slides

Slide 1 Data Science for the NOAA Chief Data Officer

http://semanticommunity.info/
http://www.meetup.com/Federal-Big-Data-Working-Group/
http://semanticommunity.info/Data_Science/Federal_Big_Data_Working_Group_Meetup

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Slide 2 Data Science for NOAA Big Data

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Slide 4 NOAA Site Map

http://www.noaa.gov/sitemap.html

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Slide 5 NOAA Publication Sources

http://www.lib.noaa.gov/noaainfo/pubsource.html

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Slide 6 NOAA Climate.gov: Site Map

http://www.climate.gov/sitemap

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Slide 7 NOAA Climate.gov: Maps & Data

http://www.climate.gov/maps-data

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Slide 8 NOAA Climate.gov: Global Climate Dashboard

http://www.climate.gov/maps-data

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Slide 9 NOAA Climate.gov: Integrated Map Application

http://gis.ncdc.noaa.gov/map/viewer/...ices&layers=01

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Slide 10 NOAA Climate.gov: Data Catalog

http://www.climate.gov/datasearch/

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Slide 11 NOAA Climate.gov: Data Catalog Application

http://www.climate.gov/datasearch/?f...%3Aapplication

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Slide 12 NOAA Climate.gov: Data Catalog Application Metadata

Metadata

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Slide 13 NOAA Climate.gov: Great Lakes Water Level Dashboard

http://www.glerl.noaa.gov/data/dashboard/GLWLD.html

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Slide 14 NOAA Climate.gov: Great Lakes Water Level Dashboard Data

http://www.glerl.noaa.gov/data/dashboard/data/

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Slide 15 NOAA Climate.gov: Great Lakes Water Level Dashboard Data Ecosystem

http://www.glerl.noaa.gov/data/dashboard/GLDData.zip

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Slide 16 Data Science Data Publications for the NOAA Chief Data Officer: Knowledge Base and Spreadsheet

Data Science Data Publications for the NOAA Chief Data Officer and Spreadsheet

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Slide 17 Data Science Data Publications for the NOAA Chief Data Officer: Spotfire Cover Page

Web Player

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Slide 18 Data Science Data Publications for the NOAA Chief Data Officer: Spotfire Great Lakes

Web Player

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Slide 19 Data Science Data Publications for the NOAA Chief Data Officer: Some Observations

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Slide 20 Some Conclusions and Next Steps

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Spotfire Dashboard

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Research Notes

Data Science for NOAA Big Data: http://semanticommunity.info/Data_Science/Data_Science_for_NOAA_Big_Data

Followup Emails: Research NOAA Publications and Do Data Science for NOAA Publications

Site Map: http://www.noaa.gov/sitemap.html

NOAA Publication Source: http://www.lib.noaa.gov/noaainfo/pubsource.html

Climate.gov Reports and Resources: http://www.climate.gov/decision-supp...-and-resources

Peer-reviewed resources for managing climate-related risks and opportunities

Site Map: http://www.climate.gov/sitemap

Global Climate Dashboard: http://www.climate.gov/

ftp://ftp.ncdc.noaa.gov/pub/data/

http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/ghcnm/v3.php

ftp://ftp.ncdc.noaa.gov/pub/data/ghcn/v3/

Data Access
http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/data-access
NCDC is the world’s largest provider of weather and climate data. Land-based, marine, model, radar, weather balloon, satellite, and paleoclimatic are just a few of the types of datasets available. Detailed descriptions of the available products and platforms are below. 

Climate.gov

Source: http://www.climate.gov/

Science & Information for a Climate-Smart Nation

About NOAA Climate.gov

Source: http://www.climate.gov/about

Mission

Source: http://www.climate.gov/about

NOAA Climate.gov provides science and information for a climate-smart nation.  Americans’ health, security, and economic well-being are closely linked to climate and weather.  People want and need information to help them make decisions on how to manage climate-related risks and opportunities they face.

NOAA Climate.gov is a source of timely and authoritative scientific data and information about climate.  Our goals are to promote public understanding of climate science and climate-related events, to make our data products and services easy to access and use, to provide climate-related support to the private sector and the Nation’s economy, and to serve people making climate-related decisions with tools and resources that help them answer specific questions.

Each of the tabs in NOAA Climate.gov is designed to serve a different audience: 

  1. News & Features is a popular-style magazine for the science-interested public covering topics in climate science, adaptation, and mitigation. Visit the section…
  2. Maps & Data is a gateway for scientists and specialists to find and use climate maps and data for research and analysis. Visit the section…
  3. Teaching Climate offers learning activities and curriculum materials, multi-media resources, and professional development opportunities for formal and informal educators who want to incorporate climate science into their work. Visit the section…
  4. Supporting Decisions is a clearinghouse of reports, resources, and decision-support tools for planners and policy leaders who want authoritative climate science information to help them understand and manage climate-related risks and opportunities.  Visit the section…

Staff

Source: http://www.climate.gov/about

Executive Board

Thomas Karl (NESDIS/NCDC), Rick Rosen (OAR/CPO), Margaret Davidson (NOS/OCRM), Wayne Higgins (NWS/CPC), Eileen Shea (NESDIS/NCDC), Ko Barrett (OAR/CPO), and Louisa Koch (NOAA Office of Education).

Governance Team

David Herring (OAR/CPO), program manager
James Boyd (NOS/CSC), project manager
Mike Halpert (NWS/CPC), project manager
Neal Lott (NESDIS/NCDC), project manager

IT System Engineering

Jon Burroughs (NESDIS/NCDC), IT security specialist
Charlie Roberts (NESDIS/NCDC), system administrator and programmer
Jack Roche (NOS/CSC), IT requirements coordinator
Rich Baldwin (NESDIS/NCDC), GIS specialist
Glen Reid (NESDIS/NCDC), programmer
Mark Phillips (UNC-Asheville), programmer
Kristin Chader-Bostick (NOS/CSC), web programmer

News & Features

Rebecca Lindsey (2020, LLC: an Acentia company; contractor to OAR/CPO), managing editor & senior science writer
Ned Gardiner (2020, LLC: an Acentia company; contractor to OAR/CPO), video director
Hunter Allen (2020, LLC: an Acentia company; contractor to OAR/CPO), GIS and data visualization specialist
Richard A. Rivera (2020, LLC: an Acentia company; contractor to OAR/CPO), graphic artist and designer
Caitlyn Kennedy (2020, LLC: an Acentia company; contractor to OAR/CPO), science writer
Emily Greenhalgh(2020, LLC: an Acentia company; contractor to OAR/CPO), science writer
Mary Lindsey (2020, LLC: an Acentia company; contractor to OAR/CPO), GIS and data visualization coordinator

News & Features contributors

Michon Scott (NSIDC), LuAnn Dahlman (2020, LLC: an Acentia company; contractor to OAR/CPO), Katy Human (OAR/ESRL), Barb Deluisi (OAR/ESRL), Brady Phillips (Office of Communications), Katy Vincent (NESDIS/NCDC), Susan Osborne (NESDIC/NCDC), Zack Guido (Climate Assessment for the Southwest), Dan Pisut (NESDIC/EVL), and Kurt Mann (OAR/CPO)

Maps & Data

John Keck (NESDIS/NCDC), team leader
Sam McCown (NESDIS/NCDC), team co-lead
LuAnn Dahlman (2020, LLC: an Acentia company; contractor to OAR/CPO), Climate Conditions group leader
Viviane Silva (NWS/CSD), Dashboard group leader
Sudhir Shrestha (NWS/CPC), Interoperability group leader
Gabe Sataloff (NOS/CSC), Metadata group leader

Maps & Data contributors

Steve Ansari (NESDIS/NCDC), Matt Austin (NOAA WOC), Dave Eslinger (NOS/CSC), Christina Lief (NESDIS/NCDC), Jason Marshall (NOS/CSC), Kevin O’Brien (OAR/PMEL), and Jebb Stewart (OAR/ESRL)

Teaching Climate

Frank Niepold (OAR/CPO), team leader
LuAnn Dahlman (2020, LLC: an Acentia company; contractor to OAR/CPO), product development
Peg Steffen (NOS/CED), professional development & product development
Bruce Moravchik (NOS/CED), professional development & product development
John Baek (HQ/OEd), monitoring and evaluation

Teaching Climate contributors

Tamara Shapiro Ledley (TERC), Marian Grogan (TERC), Elisabeth Sylvan (TERC), Susan Buhr (CIRES, University of Colorado, Boulder), Anne Gold (CIRES, University of Colorado, Boulder), Susan Lynds, (CIRES, University of Colorado, Boulder), Cathy Manduca (SERC, Carleton College), and Sean Fox (SERC, Carleton College).

Supporting Decisions

David Herring (OAR/CPO), team leader
Emily Greenhalgh (2020, LLC: an Acentia company; contractor to OAR/CPO), contributing writer & editor
Tamara Houston (NESDIS/NCDC), contributing writer & editor
Lindy Betzhold (NOS/CSC), contributing writer & editor
Ned Gardiner (2020, LLC: an Acentia company; contractor to OAR/CPO), video director

Supporting Decisions contributors

Roger Griffis (NMFS), Nell Codner (NOS), Chad McNutt (OAR), Stephanie Herring (NESDIS), Juli Trtanj (NOS),  Caitlyn Kennedy (OAR/CPO), Matt Chasse (NERRS), Emily Wallace (NOS), and Murielle Gamache-Morris (NOS),

Background

Source: http://www.climate.gov/about

The NOAA Climate.gov project began as a rapid prototyping collaboration among staff from four NOAA offices: the Climate Program Office, the National Climatic Data Center, the Coastal Services Center, and the Climate Prediction Center.  A prototype was first published in February 2010 so we could gather feedback to help us develop and evolve Climate.gov in user-driven ways. 

Our first round of evaluations was completed in 2011 and we incorporated the information into a redesign of the entire site.  In late 2012, we began transitioning to an operational status, which we completed in early 2013. Each section has refined its design, enhanced its functionality, and expanded its scope of contents in response to user feedback:

  • News & Features (formerly “ClimateWatch Magazine”) implemented a new content tagging system and topic-driven navigation that should make articles and images easier for users to find and share. Videos are now available through our YouTube channel to make it easier for users to share via social media outlets.
  • Maps and Data (formerly “Data & Services”) produces updated, interpreted maps showing where and how climate conditions are changing; the Global Climate Dashboard has been redesigned to improve usability and make it accessible through mobile devices; and we increased the number of climate datasets accessible via our geoportal server.
  • Teaching Climate (formerly “Education”) now provides more than 500 ready-to-use climate education resources that education and subject-matter experts have screened for scientific accuracy, pedagogical soundness, and usability.  These resources are tagged according to grade ranges, science education standards, and climate concepts.
  • Supporting Decisions (formerly “Understanding Climate”) provides a clearinghouse of reports, decision support tools, datasets, and professional development opportunities—all sortable by sectors, topics, and regions.

Going forward, NOAA Climate.gov will continue to evolve in ways that are driven by user feedback.  Particular emphasis through 2013 and beyond will be on evolving the design and functionality of the “Maps & Data” section to expand and improve users’ ability to locate, preview, interact with, analyze, and access climate data from all across NOAA’s and its partners’ data centers.  We will also begin suggesting ways in which the public can use our data products and services to help them understand and manage climate-related risks and opportunities they face in their regions and in their professions. 

While we have ambitious plans for NOAA Climate.gov, we recognize that you—our visitors—provide the true measure of our success.  We hope you’re able to find and use what you came to the site for.  If so, or if not, we would like to hear about it.  You can write to the relevant section team leaders at the addresses below to ask questions, make recommendations, or to let them know what you think:

Science Panel

Source: http://www.climate.gov/about

The NOAA Climate.gov Science Panel is comprised of senior climate scientists & experts from across NOAA and academic institutions and climate science organizations outside of NOAA.  The Science Panel provides a good representation of a wide range of relevant climate science disciplines.  The Science Panel provides guidance, recommendations and editorial feedback in the following ways:

  • Recommends additions and adjustments to the scope and functionality of NOAA Climate.gov;
  • Engages on an as-needed basis in response to climate-related current events for public interpretation;
  • Identifies significant forthcoming climate-related journal articles that are likely to be of interest to the public, thus helping to set the Portal’s editorial priorities;
  • Advises NOAA Climate.gov managers and editors regarding presentation of climate science information;
  • Reviews / approves articles, images, presentations, videos and captions prior to publication, as needed. 
  • Helps answer reader-submitted questions, or NOAA outreach personnel questions, as needed.
Science Panel Members

Jessica Blunden (NOAA NCDC), Tim Boyer (NOAA NODC), Chris Burt (Weather Underground), Leo Donner (NOAA GFDL), David Fahey (NOAA ESRL), Katherine Hayhoe (Texas Tech U.), Wayne Higgins (NOAA CPC), Rick Lumpkin (NOAA AOML), Jeff Masters (Weather Underground), John Nielson-Gammon (Texas State Climatologist), James Partain (Alaska Regional Climate Services), Richard Rood (U. of Michigan), LaDon Swann (Auburn U.), Scott Weaver (NOAA CPC), and Kandis Wyatt (NOAA NESDIS).

Data Panel

Source: http://www.climate.gov/about

The NOAA Climate.gov Data Panel is comprised of senior data managers at major Earth system science and climate science data archive centers, or their delegates, plus some at-large members from academia and other sectors.  The Data Panel provides guidance, recommendations and feedback in the following ways:

  • Helping to establish a transparent climate data review process for NOAA Climate.gov, to include refinement of metadata and data quality criteria.
  • Recommends additions and adjustments for improving data discoverability, accessibility, interoperability, interpretation, and application.
  • Reviews & discusses data sets proposed for inclusion in the Portal, and to recommend those which should be highlighted as good climatological baseline datasets.
  • Helps resolve questions pertaining to which are the “best available” data products of a given parameter for default display in the Portal’s more prominent interfaces section, such as the Dashboard.
Data Panel Members

Emily Fort (USGS), Gustavo Goni (NOAA AOML), Ann Keane (NOAA ESRL), Ed Kearns (NOAA NCDC), James Partain (Alaska Regional Climate Services), Mark Parsons (NSIDC), and Wei Shi (NOAA NCEP).

NOAA Climate.gov Editorial Policies and Procedures

Source: http://www.climate.gov/about

Everything NOAA Climate.gov publishes is reviewed and approved by relevant subject experts prior to publication.  Each of the Portal’s four sections targets different segments of the public for different objectives and so each section operates under different editorial policies and procedures, which are summarized below.

News & Features

This section publishes agency news releases, original web feature articles developed in house, and articles submitted from partner agencies and organizations. News & Features is an online magazine that is written and designed to inform, inspire, educate, and entertain the science-interested public on topics in climate science, adaptation, and mitigation.

This section’s content is based on the best available science, and all content is produced in consultation with and reviewed by one or more scientific subject matter experts prior to publication. When necessary to ensure accuracy and completeness, or to resolve conflicting opinions among reviewers, authors, and/or editors, the News & Features managing editor solicits additional reviews from NOAA Climate.gov’s Science Panel members, or other subject matter experts whom they recommend.

For submissions from other agencies or organizations, the News & Features managing editor verifies that a similarly rigorous editorial procedure was applied. If the contributor’s review process is adequate, an article or other content does not undergo additional subject matter expert review prior to publication in News & Features. If the editorial procedures of the submitted article did not include a rigorous scientific review, the managing editor identifies an appropriate expert(s) to conduct a review prior to publication in News & Features.

If necessary, submitters may be asked to revise their articles, have them re-reviewed by their sources, and resubmit them. The News & Features editor does not make any revisions to submitted articles without the approval of contributors and, when necessary, their original subject matter expert reviewers.

For more information, please contact the News & Features editors. <climate-climatewatchmagazine@noaa.gov>

Maps & Data

The NOAA Climate.gov Maps & Data section contains more than 280 descriptions of datasets and services spanning a wide range of climate-related subjects.  This collection was assembled in an effort to add value by simplifying and enhancing the discoverability, accessibility, and utility of the data.  This section aims to serve researchers, scientists, resource managers, business personnel, and other citizens who want to find and use climate data. 

Only those data products and services that comply with Federal Geographic Data Committee (FGDC) and/or International Standards Organization (ISO-9001) metadata standards are accessible through Maps & Data.  FGDC metadata is a long-standing federal requirement that was adopted by NOAA Climate.gov to allow distributed datasets and products to be accessible and searchable from a central location.  We have built upon this standard to ensure that key fields in the metadata record for each available dataset is populated with required information.

Anyone interested in datasets that are not accessible via NOAA Climate.gov are encouraged to visit one or more of the following NOAA’s data centers and various centers of data:
• National Climatic Data Center - http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov
• National Ocean Data Center - http://www.nodc.noaa.gov
• National Data Buoy Center – http://www.ndbc.noaa.gov
• National Geophysical Data Center - http://www.ngdc.noaa.gov
• NOAA Climate Prediction Center - http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov
• NOAA National Ocean Service - http://oceanservice.noaa.gov
• NOAA Coastal Services Center - http://csc.noaa.gov
• NOAA National Coastal Data Development Center - http://www.ncddc.noaa.gov
• NOAA Regional Climate Centers - http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/oa/climate/regionalclimatecenters.html

For more information, please contact the Maps & Data section editors. <climate-dataandservices@noaa.gov>

Teaching Climate

The Teaching Climate section provides learning activities and curriculum materials, multimedia resources, and professional development opportunities for formal and informal educators who want to incorporate climate science into their work.  The Teaching Climate section is dovetailing its content review process and procedures with those of Climate Literacy and Energy Awareness Network (or CLEAN, at cleanet.org) project.  CLEAN is 3-year National Science Data Library (NSDL) Pathway project, begun in 2010 and funded by the National Science Foundation, established to build a small digital collection of teaching resources that are aligned with the Essential Principles of Climate Literacy and Energy Awareness.  A summary of the review process is given below; a detailed description of the CLEAN Review Process is available here. 

In summary, the CLEAN review team consists of experienced middle school and high school teachers and college-level instructors as well as PhD-level scientists of relevant fields (climate and energy science, social sciences, etc.) and other climate literacy practitioners.  The CLEAN review process was informed by review guidelines and criteria from other collections, such as the National Science Digital Library (NSDL), the Science Education Research Center (SERC) Guidelines, the Merlot criteria, and the Climate Change Collection. The CLEAN review criteria were tested and refined in multiple test review rounds and through review comparisons among different reviewers.

At the core of the CLEAN review is a set of review questions to assess educational materials in three categories: (1) scientific accuracy, (2) pedagogic effectiveness, and (3) technical quality /ease of use.  Reviewers answer questions about each resource, give an overall rating for each of the three categories mentioned above, and note any strengths and concerns.  An overall qualitative recommendation (low, medium, or high priority) decides which path a resource takes through the review process.

All teaching resources that pass through the CLEAN review process are subsequently presented to a panel of four reviewers (educators and scientists) during a review camp.  This team of four specialists discusses each resource, and the reviewers’ notes from the previous review round, and makes the final decision about whether to include a resource in the CLEAN collection. All comments of the reviewers are compiled into annotations (notes to the user) on the science, the pedagogy, and the usability of a teaching activity.

Supporting Decisions

The NOAA Climate.gov Supporting Decisions section contains descriptions of authoritative, peer-reviewed reports, documents, decision support tools, datasets, and professional development opportunities—all aggregated by sector, topic, and region.  This section’s purpose is to serve planners, policy leaders, decision makers, resource managers, and citizens who seek authoritative climate science information to help them understand and manage climate-related risks and opportunities.

The peer review processes for the synthesis and assessment reports available in this section are conducted by the relevant publishing agency or organization identified.  (For example, editorial review of the “America’s Climate Choices” series of reports was conducted by the U.S. National Academy of Science.)  While the editorial processes for these information resources happens “upstream” of NOAA Climate.gov, the Supporting Decisions editors vet these resources carefully and include only those resources that we consider to be scientifically accurate, credible, and that maintain established standards of scientific scholarship (i.e., transparent editorial processes conducted by credible subject matter experts and traceable citations to relevant peer-reviewed literature). 

NOAA Climate.gov Portal Team Structure

Source: http://www.climate.gov/about

Recognizing that not everyone in the public has the same interests and needs for climate data and information, we adopted different strategies for serving four different segments of the public:

  1. News & Features, for the climate-interested public, provides magazine-quality images, professional videos, and in-depth stories about how scientists are advancing understanding of Earth’s climate system, and how businesses, planners and communities are reducing their vulnerability to climate variability and change.
  2. Maps & Data  for scientists, specialists, and other members of the public, serves maps and data for understanding climate-related changes in the past and present, and possible future changes.
  3. Teaching Climate, for formal and informal educators, provides a ready-to-use collection of educator- and scientist-reviewed teaching resources that they can bring straight into the classroom or other learning situation.
  4. Supporting Decisions, for planners and policy leaders, provides authoritative, "state of the science" resources to help those making decisions to understand and manage climate-related risks and opportunities.

In taking this audience-driven approach, we assembled our data, information resources, and expertise from across our distributed climate science and services community (including NOAA and its partners) into a well-integrated online point-of-access for the four segments of the public described above.  Our needs for a balanced and scalable approach drove the design of our Climate.gov organization structure (illustrated below). 

Figure 1 – NOAA Climate.gov Organization Chart
Climate.gov Org Chart

Behind each tab section of the portal is a cross-agency virtual team that plans and executes the day-to-day development and editorial processes of their respective sections. These teams are coordinated by an overarching Governance Team, comprised of the Climate.gov Program Manager and three Project Managers.  The Governance Team establishes the priorities, scope, and objectives of Climate.gov; manages and executes the portal’s annual budget; convenes and coordinates the external review bodies (the Data Review Board, the Science Panel, and the External Evaluator); and reports quarterly to the Executive Board.

The Executive Board is comprised of Senior Executive Staff from within the Climate Program Office (OAR/CPO), the National Climatic Data Center (NESDIS/NCDC), the Coastal Services Center (NOS/OCRM), and the Climate Prediction Center (NWS/CPC).  This Board ensures Climate.gov is appropriately balanced in its overall presentation of NOAA’s and its partners’ climate science information and data products.  The Executive Board recommends additions and adjustments to the priorities and scope of Climate.gov, as needed.

Contact

Source: http://www.climate.gov/contact

We'd love to hear from you: 

General mailbox (home page issues, general comments)

Climate Portal: climate-portal@noaa.gov

Specific sections

News & Features: climate-climatewatchmagazine@noaa.gov

Maps & Data: climate-dataandservices@noaa.gov

Teaching Climate: climate-education@noaa.gov

Supporting Decisions: climate-understandingclimate@noaa.gov

FAQs

Source: http://www.climate.gov/faqs

About Climate.gov

How can I submit questions, comments, or suggestions about Climate.gov?

General comments on the Home page, including the Global Climate Dashboard and the Past Weather widget:

Section-specific feedback:

News & Features: climate-climatewatchmagazine@noaa.gov

Maps & Data: climate-dataandservices@noaa.gov

Teaching Climate: climate-education@noaa.gov

Understanding Climate: climate-understandingclimate@noaa.gov

If I submit a question about the portal, when can I expect a reply?

Response time depends on how much email we get in any given week, but in general, we respond within one week, if not sooner.

Content

Can I re-use this data/product/image/video?

Yes! Anything credited to NOAA Climate.gov can be freely re-used with proper attribution. If an image or other asset has a specific copyright or credit to an individual or group other than NOAA, you should obtain permission directly from the source. As with all NOAA materials, the re-use of Climate.gov content should not imply NOAA endorsement of a product, service, or organization. We cannot grant you exclusive rights to use any of our content.

How can I publish my content on NOAA Climate.gov?

We primarily publish NOAA climate data and information, but we are interested in developing content-sharing relationships with other agencies, institutions, and groups who share our goals, objectives, and communication strategy. If you'd like to see your content published on Climate.gov, please contact the relevant editorial team:

How do I interpret this data set/product/article/image; this dataset/product/page looks wrong or out of date; can I get this data/image/product in a different format?

You'll get the quickest response if you provide the specific URL and contact the editorial team of the section it came from:

If you aren't sure where on Climate.gov an item came from, provide as much detail as you can and use the general mailbox: climate-portal@noaa.gov

Who decides which content is added to the portal?

Each section has an editorial team that produces content or evaluates and recommends content for publication on Climate.gov based on strict criteria (e.g., FGDC compliant metadata must be available for data sets; News & Features articles must be based on best available science and have been reviewed by a subject matter expert). We will continue to expand the data and information available through the portal in coming months.

Who is allowed to post content on the Portal?

Primarily, NOAA Climate.gov publishes NOAA data and information, but any agency, institution, or group serving the same audiences as Climate.gov may submit content to be considered for publication. NOAA staff and contractors from across the agency are responsible for the actual posting of content to the portal.

Site Functionality

How do I report a broken link?

Please contact the webmaster at ncdc.webmaster@noaa.gov.

Why is this page taking so long to load?

Please contact the webmaster at ncdc.webmaster@noaa.gov.

Which browser should I be using, and what plug-ins do I need?

NOAA Climate.gov strives to be widely accessible to the public and is therefore compatible with multiple browsers on multiple platforms. Compatibility is periodically tested against the browsers listed below, which we recommend using when browsing this Portal. Other browsers may work, but have not been tested.

For Windows:

For Macintosh:

Portions of NOAA Climate.gov use Adobe Flash. Your browser should be equipped with the Adobe Flash 10 plug-in to view Flash content. This plug-in is free and typically takes less than 2 minutes to download and install. Click to download the Adobe Flash plugin.

Sitemap

Source: http://www.climate.gov/sitemap

See Spreadsheet

What's New?

Source: http://www.climate.gov/whats-new

Where's ClimateWatch Magazine?

It's still here! ClimateWatch Magazine is now News & Features, which is where you can find all the images, stories, and videos previously published in the magazine.

What else is new?

We have a new topic-driven navigation menu across the top of the News & Features landing page. All articles in the News & Features section are tagged with one or more of the navigation categories. Click one of the navigation categories to see all articles tagged with that term.

We have organized articles with similar styles and themes into editorial departments—such as "Climate Q&A" for questions and answers and "Understanding Climate" for factsheets and "explainers." Click a department name to see a list of recently published articles, or click "See all" for a department's whole collection.

Can't find an old article?

Please see our "404" page for suggestions on how to find old articles on the new site, or ask us if you need help.

What do you think?

NOAA Climate.gov has been redesigned in response to user feedback and external assessment. If you have comments or suggestions about the new News & Features design, please let us know.

Where's the Education section?

We expanded its scope, redesigned it, and renamed it "Teaching Climate."

What else is new?

The Teaching Climate section now leverages tens of millions of dollars in NOAA, NASA, and NSF federal education grant projects by providing more than 514 of the best of the best climate education resources that have been produced over the last 10 years or so. Through a partnership with the Climate Literacy and Energy Awareness Network (CLEAN), these resources were selected from over 15,000 resources that were rigorously reviewed by teams of subject experts for scientific accuracy, pedagogical soundness, and usability.

We now support the implementation of the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) through an integrated Earth system science approach in K-12 education.  The CLEAN framework for vetting, reviewing, and assuring scientific quality of climate and global change education materials on climate, energy and related topics will be useful to teachers and educational systems across the nation.

Also, all the pages in Teaching Climate are tagged according to the climate keywords as well as by the essential principles of climate literacy, national science education standards, and grade level.  This new tagging system was developed in partnership with TERCCIRESNOAA, and SERC.  The system allows educators and other users to easily search the CLEAN collection for activities in specific areas of interest.

Feedback you'd like to offer? A resource you'd like to share?

Please let us know.

Where's the Understanding Climate section?

It's still here, but the section has been renamed Supporting Decisions. We still offer authoritative factual information for planners, decision makers, and policy leaders. But we've expanded the section’s scope and redesigned it in ways that help you more quickly access the information you need.

Supporting Decisions is a clearinghouse of climate science and policy reports, decision support tools, datasets, and professional development opportunities. You can access this content directly from the landing page or click one of the navigation categories at the top of the page to see all of these content types aggregated by societal and environmental sectors, topics, and regions. There are now also interviews with decision makers talking about how they use climate information and short video tutorials on handy tools to help people make climate-related decisions.

Feedback you'd like to offer? A resource you'd like to share?

Please let us know.

What's new with the Data section?

We expanded its scope, redesigned it, and renamed it Maps & Data.  Check out our new map collections showing the latest climate conditions.  GIS-savvy users will want to explore our Integrated Map Application, where we've added more datasets.  Also, our Global Climate Dashboard is now accessible via mobile devices. 

Can't find what you're seeking? Try typing in a keyword of interest to search our entire collection.

Feedback you'd like to offer? A resource you'd like to share?

Please let us know.

Global Warming Frequently Asked Questions

Source: http://www.climate.gov/news-features...sked-questions (PDF)

Author: David Herring

Updated Jan. 23, 2014

Section 1: Changes

What is global warming, and how is it different from climate change and climate variability?

"Global warming" refers to an increase in Earth's annually averaged air temperature near the surface. Thermometer readings are collected from many thousands of weather stations around the world—over land and ocean—and then used to produce a global average temperature for each year. The resulting series of annual averages of global temperature from 1880 to 2012 show that Earth has warmed by 1.5°F (0.85°C).[1] Most of that warming has occurred since 1976.

"Climate change" is a broadly inclusive term that refers to a long-term (decades to centuries) change in any of a number of environmental conditions for a given place and time—such as temperature, rainfall, humidity, cloudiness, wind and air circulation patterns, etc. These oscillations and other similar phenomena can influence weather and climate patterns around the globe.

"Climate variability" refers to short-term (weeks to decades) changes in some of these same environmental conditions for a given place and time. Climate variability is often the result of natural oscillations in Earth's climate system — such as the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO), the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO), the Pacific-North American Teleconnection Pattern, etc. These oscillations and other similar phenomena can influence weather and climate patterns around the globe.

Is the globe still warming today?

Yes. Earth has warmed by 1.5°F (0.85°C) since 1880 and most of that warming has occurred since 1976.[1] Each of the last three decades has been warmer than the one prior—the 1990s were warmer than the 1980s and the 2000s were the warmest decade on record.[12] Such a dramatic rise in temperature in three consecutive decades is a clear indicator that the globe is warming.

However, the most definitive warming has been happening in the ocean, which has absorbed more than 80% of the additional energy in the climate system.[2,3] Measurements show that while the rate of air temperature warming slowed in the early part of the 21st century, the ocean continued to warm at an unusually rapid rate.

If the globe is still warming, then why are some locations not warming while others have experienced cooling?

The 1.5°F (0.85°C) warming is a change in the annual average temperature of the whole world.[1] This warming is not uniform over the entire globe; nor are temperature increases expected to occur continuously. Differences in exposure to sunlight, cloud cover, atmospheric circulation patterns, aerosol concentrations, atmospheric humidity, land surface cover, etc., vary from place to place. These differences influence whether and how much a location is warming or cooling.

Can historical temperature data records be trusted? Haven't they been skewed by non-climate factors like instrument changes and "urban heat islands"?

Our global historical temperature records can be trusted to represent changes in Earth's temperature over long time periods. Different scientific and technical teams in the United States and other countries have assessed weather stations' historical temperature data and concluded that the data are of high quality and are well suited for studies of global temperature changes from 1880 to 2012.[4,5,6,7]

If ignored, non-climate factors can skew individual stations' data records by sometimes introducing an "artificial" cooling trend and sometimes introducing an "artificial" warming trend.[8] Important examples are changes in the type of measuring instrument used in the record and the effect of buildings and pavement in the vicinity of temperature measuring stations (i.e., the "urban heat island effect"). But these and other known problems have not been ignored; rather, steps have been taken to remove or minimize non-climate impacts on the long-term records. These steps are well documented and have been undertaken in a transparent way.[9] The non-climate artifacts have been identified and removed from station data records in cases where there is high confidence that it can be accomplished without harming the data quality. In cases where there is reason to believe that station data contain significant errors that cannot be corrected, those data are removed from national and global averages.

Although the possibility of unknown or uncorrected errors in the land surface temperature data cannot be completely excluded, many other lines of evidence confirm that our world has warmed over multiple decades:

A global warming of 1.5°F (0.85°C) seems small, given that some locations experience temperature swings of 30°F or more in a single day. Why is this change in global temperature a concern?

It's important to recognize that weather and climate are related but they are different things. Daily temperature swings of tens of degrees at a given location are common weather-driven events. But when measurements of the daily high and low temperatures in many thousands of locations all over the world—on land and ocean—are examined for an entire year and then averaged together, the Earth'sannual average temperatures from year to year are found to be very stable when the climate isn't changing. In a geological context, a 1.5°F (0.85°C) warming over a span of 100 years is an unusually large temperature change in a relatively short span of time and indicates that the climate is changing. This warming is important because it increases the probabilities of extreme weather and climate events.[12]

If global warming were to stop now, its most potentially serious problems would be prevented. However, global warming is expected to continue at an increasing rate. In several decades our world is likely to become warmer than it's been for over a million years, with unpredictable consequences. It's also important to recognize that Earth is not warming uniformly, nor is it expected to. Middle and high latitudes in general change more than the tropics, and land surface temperatures change more than ocean temperatures. Over the long term, land masses at the latitude of the United States are expected to warm much more than the global average.

Section 2: Causes

Are humans causing or contributing to global warming?

Yes, human activities have increased the abundance of heat-trapping gases in the atmosphere, which a large majority of climate scientists agree is the main reason for the 1.5°F (0.85°C) rise in average global temperature since 1880.[13,14] Carbon dioxide is the heat-trapping gas primarily responsible for the rise but methane, nitrous oxide, ozone, and various other very long-lived heat-trapping gases also contribute. Carbon dioxide is of greatest concern because its rate of increase is exerting a larger overall warming influence than all of those other gases combined, and because carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere will remain elevated for centuries unless we implement a way to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere effectively and economically. Most carbon dioxide from human activities is released from burning coal and other fossil fuels. Other human activities, including deforestation, biomass burning, and cement production also produce carbon dioxide.

How strong is the scientific evidence that Earth is warming and that humans are the main cause?

There is overwhelming scientific evidence that Earth is warming and a preponderance of scientific evidence that human activities are the main cause. Thousands of weather stations worldwide—over land and ocean—have been recording daily high and low temperatures for many decades and, in some locations, for more than a century. When different scientific and technical teams in different U.S. agencies (e.g., NOAA and NASA) and in other countries (e.g., the U.K.'s Hadley Centre) average these data together, essentially the same results are found: Earth's average surface temperature has risen by about 1.5°F (0.85°C) since 1880.[15]

The primary cause is that, over the last 200 years, human activities have added about 500 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide to the atmosphere, increasing the abundance of this heat-trapping gas by about 40 percent. Today, humans add about 70 million metric tons of carbon dioxide to the atmosphere every day. The amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere has increased from about 278 parts per million (ppm) in 1800 to about 398 ppm today.[19] Today's carbon dioxide levels are unusually high; much higher than at any other time in the last 800,000 years. The warming influence of heat-trapping gases was recognized in the mid-1800s.[14]

Additionally, many other lines of evidence confirm that our world has warmed over multiple decades:

Do humans also exert a cooling influence on Earth's climate?

Yes, human activities exert a cooling influence on Earth in several ways. Overall, this cooling influence is smaller than the warming influence of the heat-trapping gases humans put into the air.[14]

Particulate pollution (aerosols) is humanity's greatest cooling influence.[14] Plumes of aerosols are produced by: power plants and large-scale industrial processes; smoke and gases from biomass burning; windblown dust from deforested areas, dried wetlands, and crop fields; and exhaust from ships, cars, trucks, buses, and trains. Most aerosol particles scatter the sun's rays back to space, thereby directly exerting a cooling influence by reducing the amount of sunlight reaching the surface. Aerosols also have an indirect cooling influence by producing brighter white (more reflective) and longer-lived clouds that reduce the amount of sunlight reaching the surface. Aerosols' indirect cooling influence via clouds contributes twice as much cooling as their direct cooling influence outside of clouds. But to keep aerosols' cooling influence in proper perspective, their cooling influence is only about one-third as large as the current warming effect of human-produced heat-trapping gases.[32]

Whereas aerosols linger in the atmosphere from days to a few weeks, heat-trapping gases that humans release to the atmosphere linger from decades to centuries. Plus, when it was recognized that human particle pollution causes other undesired harmful side effects—such as acid rain and human respiratory diseases and deaths—the United States and other nations adopted regulations to reduce emissions of some aerosols.

Another measurable way in which humans exert a cooling influence is by changing land cover over large areas in ways that increase the land's reflectance, thereby reducing the amount of sunlight absorbed. By comparison, the cooling influence of humanity's land cover changes only offsets about 5% of the warming caused by human-emitted heat-trapping gases.[32]

Couldn't the sun be the cause of the recent global warming?

No, there has been no significant net change in the sun's energy output from the late 1970s to the present, which is the period of the most rapid warming.[16] If the sun had intensified its energy output then all layers of Earth's atmosphere would warm. But such warming hasn't been observed. Rather, warming has occurred in the lower atmosphere (troposphere) and cooling in the upper atmosphere (stratosphere)—which is exactly what would be expected if the warming was due to an increase in heat-trapping gases near the surface. This evidence from temperature records is regarded as a "smoking gun" linking today's global warming to the increase in heat-trapping gases in the lower atmosphere.

Didn't the globe stop warming after 1998, a period when human activities emitted more carbon dioxide than in any other period in human history? And, if so, doesn't this mean climate is not as sensitive to carbon dioxide as previously thought?

No, the globe did not stop warming after 1998. While 1998 was one of the ten warmest years on record,the other nine warmest years have all occurred after 1998.[2]

It's important to remember that, even during global warming periods, every year won't be warmer than the year before, and there may even be several years in a row of cooler average temperatures. That's why it's more reliable to look at changes between 5-year and 10-year blocks of time over a span ofdecades before drawing conclusions about climate sensitivity.

It's true that humans have released more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere from 1998 to 2012 than in any other 15-year period in history, and it's true there was a slowdown in the rate of global warming during that time. Most of the excess heat (>80%) from global warming has been going into the ocean.[17] The point is global warming didn't stop over the last decade; most of the warming happened in the ocean rather than in the lower atmosphere.

Scientists are always reassessing their estimates of climate sensitivity based on observed changes in temperature and ocean heat content. It's too early to conclude that the climate system isn't as sensitive to carbon dioxide as scientists thought, though that possibility is being actively researched. Stay tuned...!

What role does the ocean play in global warming?

The ocean helps to reduce both the causes and effects of global warming. The ocean absorbs about 30% of all human-produced carbon dioxide, thereby keeping large amounts of this heat-trapping gas out of the atmosphere.[14] The ocean also absorbs more than 80% of all excess heat in the Earth's system, where excess heat is the difference between the sun's total incoming energy and the total energy leaving Earth's system.[17,18] Ocean absorption of excess heat is currently helping to slow the rate of global warming.

Carbon dioxide is absorbed in the ocean at a rate that depends on temperature. Under natural conditions the ocean serves as a carbon dioxide source during warming periods and a carbon dioxide sink during cooling periods. The warmer the ocean grows, the more it will become a source of carbon dioxide, thereby contributing to global warming.

Also, the ocean serves as a massive source of water vapor. As Earth's temperature rises, the rate of evaporation increases too. Since water vapor is also a heat-trapping gas, changes in the amount of water vapor in the atmosphere serve to amplify temperature changes caused by other factors such as carbon dioxide.

Doesn't carbon dioxide in the atmosphere come from natural sources?

There are natural sources of carbon dioxide, such as decomposing biomass, venting volcanoes, naturally occurring wildfires, human and animal respiration, etc. Over geological time spans before the industrial revolution, these natural sources of carbon dioxide were in balance with natural "sinks"—such as the ocean, phytoplankton, and plants on land that absorb carbon dioxide. The only new process on Earth that has been identified that can account for the significant tipping of Earth's carbon balance is humans burning ever increasing amounts of fossil fuels together with other large-scale activities like deforestation, biomass burning, and cement production.[14] Since the industrial revolution, human activities have increased the abundance of carbon dioxide in the lower atmosphere by about 40%.[19]

Don't volcanoes emit more carbon dioxide than humans?

No, human activities emit about 135 times more carbon dioxide than volcanoes do in a typical year.[21]Volcanoes emit between 0.2 and 0.3 billion tons of carbon dioxide per year whereas human activities emit about 29 billion tons of carbon dioxide per year.[21]

What is the 'greenhouse effect'?

While it's not a perfect analogy, some say the atmosphere works like a greenhouse. The sun's rays (shortwave energy) enter a greenhouse through its glass ceiling and walls to warm the interior. The glass makes it hard for the heat (longwave energy) to escape, and heat builds up inside the greenhouse until the heat can escape fast enough.

Certain naturally occurring gases in Earth's atmosphere have a similar warming effect on the surface. This warming is referred to as the "greenhouse effect," and the gases that trap heat are called "greenhouse gases." The most important greenhouse gases in Earth's atmosphere are water vapor, carbon dioxide, methane, and ozone. Earth's surface must warm to an average of about 59°F (with present-day concentrations) until enough energy can be emitted by greenhouse gases and escape to space to balance the energy being absorbed from the Sun.

Though these important greenhouse gases occur naturally in the atmosphere in varying concentrations, human activities are directly and indirectly increasing their abundance. In addition, other greenhouse gases not normally found in nature are being added to the atmosphere. The net result is to intensify Earth's greenhouse effect, causing Earth's surface to warm.

Hasn't Earth warmed and cooled naturally throughout history?

Yes, Earth has warmed and cooled naturally throughout its history. For example, increases or decreases in the Sun's brightness would have caused short-term warming and cooling. Also, major volcanic eruptions can cause short-term cooling. For example, in 1991, Mt. Pinatubo erupted with such force it injected sulfate gases and particles into the stratosphere, above where rain clouds form. There, these reflective aerosol particles lingered for almost a year and spread around the globe. Pinatubo's volcanic particle plume scattered and reflected so much sunlight back to space that it actually caused Earth to cool by about 0.9°F (0.5°C) that year.

Additionally, Earth has experienced longer term cold periods ("ice ages") and warm periods ("interglacials") on 100,000-year cycles for at least the last million years. Going from an ice age to an interglacial and back again, Earth's average temperature changed anywhere from 7°F to 12.5°F (4-7°C). These fluctuations in global average temperature happened because gradual, ongoing changes in Earth's orbital mechanics changed our planet's tilt relative to the sun. The gradual shift in Earth's tilt changed where and how much sunlight fell on the Northern Hemisphere. Thus, there was a slight increase in the amount of sunlight shining where most of our planet's landmass is located, which was just enough to nudge our world in a warming direction. As Earth began to transition from an ice age to an interglacial, other factors (known as "climate feedbacks") in the climate system came into play and added to the warming.[20] For example:

  • the large ice sheets on North America, Europe, and Asia shrank, which changed the land cover from a mostly bright white reflector to a dark green or brown absorber of solar energy and added to the warming[20];
  • global cloudiness may have declined, which would have allowed more sunlight to reach the surface and add to the warming[20];
  • as the land and oceans warmed, they released more carbon dioxide and methane (heat-trapping gases) which added to the warming[20]; and
  • lightning-triggered wildfires probably grew more frequent, and burned over larger areas, thereby accelerating the conversion of forest biomass into carbon dioxide and methane gas, which added to the warming.[20]

As Earth's orbital mechanics tilted the Northern Hemisphere away from the sun, these processes slowed or reversed, leading to ice ages. These processes explain why Earth has warmed and cooled on roughly 100,000-year cycles for at least the last 1 million years.[20]

Why is the current global warming trend any different than previous warming periods in Earth's history?

Today's global warming is different from previous warming periods in two key ways: the reason and therate. Today, the reason Earth is warming is mainly due to the increase in heat-trapping gases that humans are adding to the atmosphere. And our world is warming at a much faster rate today than it did in the interglacial warm periods over the last million years. The transition from the last ice age to the current interglacial period is estimated to have spanned 5,000 years.[14] Humans could witness the same magnitude of global warming within a span of about 110 years. In other words, if our world warms by as much as 7°F (4.1°C) from 1990 to 2100, as some climate models project could happen, then that warming rate is about 45 times faster than the warming Earth experienced when it emerged from the last ice age.[22]

Isn't there a lot of debate and disagreement among climate scientists about the causes and effects of global warming?

No. By a large majority, climate scientists agree that average global temperature today is warmer than in pre-industrial times, and that human activity is a significant contributing factor.[23,24,25]

The United States' foremost scientific agencies and organizations have recognized global warming as a human-caused problem that should be addressed. The U.S. Global Change Research Program has published a series of scientific reports documenting the causes and impacts of global climate change.NOAANASA, the National Science Foundation, the National Research Council, and the Environmental Protection Agency have all published reports and fact sheets stating that Earth is warming mainly due to the increase in human-produced heat-trapping gases.

The American Meteorological Society (AMS) issued this position statement: "Warming of the climate system now is unequivocal, according to many different kinds of evidence. ... many of the observed changes noted above are beyond what can be explained by the natural variability of the climate. It is clear from extensive scientific evidence that the dominant cause of the rapid change in climate of the past half century is human-induced increases in the amount of atmospheric greenhouse gases,..." (Adopted Aug. 20, 2012)

The American Geophysical Union (AGU) issued this position statement: "Human-induced climate change requires urgent action. Humanity is the major influence on the global climate observed over the last 50 years. Rapid societal responses can significantly lessen negative outcomes." (Published Aug. 2013)

In 2009, the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) reaffirmed the position of its Board of Directors and the leaders of 18 respected organizations, who concluded based on multiple lines of scientific evidence that global climate change caused by human activities is now underway, and it is a growing threat to society.

Section 3: Impacts

What harm will global warming cause?

Harmful climate-related impacts are being observed in the United States and around the world.[13,14]The combination of warming temperatures and melting ice sheets and glaciers is causing global sea level to rise, which presents a growing threat to vital coastal ecosystems and millions of people around the world who live in coastal regions. This threat includes both the gradual upward creep of sea level and periodic, catastrophic ocean surges associated with land-falling cyclones.

An overall shift toward more extreme and longer-lasting heat waves has been observed.[12] The year 2012 saw thousands of temperature records broken all over the United States, and it was by far the U.S.'s warmest year on record. But it's not just the daily high temperatures that are a concern. The average daily low temperatures have been rising at an even faster rate than the average daily highs. Doctors and farmers alike have observed that heat stress occurs in people, livestock, and crops when the temperature doesn't cool down enough overnight. As a result, productivity in people, plants, and animals declines which, in turn, hurts our quality of life and economy.

A warmer atmosphere has a greater capacity to hold water vapor. Consequently, climate models project that global warming will tend to cause wet regions to get wetter and dry regions to get drier. In the east and northeastern United States, an increase has been observed in very heavy downpours of rain leading to flash flooding, loss of life, and damages to property and infrastructure. Climate models suggest floods and water quality problems are likely to be amplified by climate change in most "wet" regions.[13] According to the IPCC (SREX Report), "there is medium confidence (based on physical reasoning) that projected increases in heavy rainfall would contribute to increases in local flooding in some catchments or regions."

At the same time, "dry" regions are getting drier. Large areas in the west and southwest U.S. have experienced abnormally dry to exceptional drought conditions that stress water resources and present challenges to farmers, ranchers, water resource managers, and energy utilities.[13] These water deficits appear to be part of a long-term trend toward drier conditions in the west and southwest. Internationally, more intense and longer lasting droughts over wider areas could cause global food shortages and political unrest, contributing to mass starvation and armed conflicts.[12]

Is global warming a threat to humans? If so, how?

Yes, health care providers and insurers alike recognize that global warming is a threat to humans. The major public health organizations of the world have said that climate change is a critical public health problem. According to the U.S. National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, climate change makes many existing diseases and conditions worse, and it helps pests and pathogens spread into new regions. The most vulnerable people—children, the elderly, the poor, and those with health conditions—are at increased risk for climate-related health effects.[26]

Global warming is also a threat to the economy and national security in many developing nations. Because societies and their built environments have developed under a climate that has fluctuated within a relatively small range of conditions, most impacts of a rapidly changing climate will present challenges—particularly as extreme weather and climate conditions become more extreme, more frequent, and longer lasting. In developing nations, populations are much more vulnerable to weather and climate extremes and are less able to adapt. Any climate-related impacts on scarce natural resources, food, and water are more likely to trigger humanitarian crises or armed conflicts that can destabilize nations, or whole regions.[12]

In the United States, the most rapidly growing population is in the Mountain West. That region is projected to experience more frequent and more severe wildfires with less water availability, particularly during the high-demand period of summer. Because of high demand for irrigating agriculture, overuse of rivers and streams is common in the arid West, particularly along the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains in Colorado, in Southern California, and in the Central Valley of California. Rapid population and economic growth in these arid and semi-arid regions has dramatically increased people's vulnerability to water shortages.[13]

Is global warming a threat to land and marine ecosystems?

Yes, global warming is impacting species and habitats across America and around the world. According to the U.S.'s National Fish, Wildlife, and Plants Climate Adaptation Strategy, warmer temperatures, rising sea levels, and other climate-related changes are stressing countless species of plants, animals, and fish.[10] Adaptable species with wide geographic ranges—such as white-tailed deer and feral hogs—are likely to continue to thrive. But those species that depend on particular habitats—such as the southwestern willow flycatcher (bird) and coldwater fishes—are vulnerable.[10]

Here are some specific examples (selected from among many that are available)[10]:

  • Warmer temperatures and droughts are expected to put some of the 750 million acres of forests in the United States under greater stress, cause decreased productivity, and increase risk of fire.
  • Millions of acres of lodgepole pine and other conifer trees across the West have been killed by an epidemic outbreak of mountain pine beetles. Warmer temperatures have enabled more beetles to survive the winter and earlier arrivals of spring have allowed the insect to reproduce more generations per year while expanding their range.
  • Roughly 285 million acres of grasslands in the U.S. stretch from Canada to the Gulf Coast, and include tallgrass prairie, cattle pastures, and prairie pothole wetlands that serve as breeding grounds for ducks. Warmer, drier conditions expected from climate change will likely dry up wetlands, speed the invasion of non-native grasses and pests, contribute to more fires, and reduce the quality of forage for livestock and wildlife.
  • Many of the nation's lakes, rivers, and streams are expected to warm. Coldwater fish like trout and salmon will be adversely affected, while warmer water species like bass will expand their range. Falling water levels, especially in the Great Lakes, will lead to shoreline habitat loss, affecting nursery grounds and nesting areas.
  • Many commercial and recreational fish stocks along the East Coast have shifted their distributions northward from 25 to 200 miles over the past 40 years as ocean temperatures have increased.
  • As the ocean absorbs much of the additional carbon dioxide humans put into the atmosphere, its waters grow more acidic. In 2007-08, two major West Coast oyster hatcheries found that their oyster larvae were dying due to the higher acidity of the seawater being pumped into their facilities.
  • Small increases in ocean temperature severely stress corals and cause them to expel the symbiotic algae that nourish them and give them their vibrant colors. This process, known as "coral bleaching," changes their color to a dull white and leaves this vibrant ecosystem dead or dying.
Are there positive benefits from global warming?

Yes, there will probably be some short-term and long-term positive benefits from global warming. For example, the flip side of increased mortality from heat waves may be decreased mortality from cold waves.

In the short term, farmers in some regions may benefit from the earlier onset of spring and from a longer warm season that is suitable for growing crops. Also, studies show that, up to a certain point, crops and other plants grow better in the presence of higher carbon dioxide levels and seem to be more drought-tolerant.[13] But this benefit is a two-edged sword: weeds, many invasive plant species, and insect pests will also thrive in a warmer world. Water availability will be impacted in drier agricultural areas that need irrigation. At some point, the positive benefits to crops of increased carbon dioxide may be overwhelmed by the negative impacts of heat stress and drought.

In the long term, shipping commerce will benefit from the opening of the Northwest Passage for longer periods of the year due to the loss of Arctic sea ice. However, in the long run, if a "business as usual" approach to emitting heat-trapping gases is maintained at the present rate, or faster, then the negative costs and impacts of global warming are very likely to far outweigh the positive benefits over the course of this century, with increased potential for catastrophic impacts from more extreme events.[12] In part, this is because any substantial change, whether warmer or colder, would challenge the societal infrastructure that has developed under the current climate.

What is an "extreme event"? Is there evidence that global warming has caused or contributed to any particular extreme event?

An extreme event is a time and place in which weather, climate, or environmental conditions — such as temperature, precipitation, drought, or flooding — rank above a threshold value near the upper or lower ends of the range of historical measurements.[29] Though the threshold is arbitrary, some scientists define extreme events as those that occur in the highest or lowest 5% or 10% of historical measurements.[30]

Human-caused climate change is not the sole cause of any single extreme event. However, changes in the intensity or frequency of extremes may be influenced by human-caused climate change.[2728]Heat waves will tend to be a bit hotter— both the daily high and daily low temperatures. And, because a warmer atmosphere holds more water vapor, precipitation events will tend to be heavier (as measured by total rainfall or snowfall). These are just two examples of how extreme events are becoming more extreme.

Establishing causes of a specific extreme event can be difficult and requires case-specific methods. Scientists can assess whether a specific event (e.g., the 2012 U.S. drought, or the storm surge from Superstorm Sandy) has become more or less likely, or stronger or weaker, as a consequence of human-caused climate change. In nineteen recent analyses of twelve extreme events in 2012, scientists found that some events had direct ties to climate change, while others did not.[31] For more details, see Climate.gov's Q&A with Thomas Peterson, lead editor of the report.

How can Earth's climate be accurately predicted years or decades in the future when weather cannot be accurately predicted more than 2 weeks from now? What's the difference between weather and climate?

Weather and climate occur on different scales of time and space, and depend on different aspects of Earth's environment. Weather describes atmospheric conditions at a particular time and place. Climate is the overall statistical characteristics of weather and environmental conditions, such as long-term averages and ranges of variability, for a given place and season.

Weather forecasters look at initial conditions and then make short-term deterministic predictions about future events (from minutes to days, to less than 2 weeks). Due to the fluid and chaotic nature of the atmosphere, it is impossible to make accurate deterministic predictions about weather events more than 2 weeks in the future. Climate forecasters look at the state of the key controlling parameters of the climate system and then make long-term probabilistic predictions about future conditions (from more than 2 weeks to years, to decades). People do this all the time with high reliability. For example, while you don't know what the weather will be a like on a given day in Washington, D.C., in the year 2020, you can be confident that temperatures will be warmer in the summer than in the winter.

Another way to understand the differences between deterministic and probabilistic predictions is to consider how other types of experts use them. For example, a doctor may have a hard time determiningexactly when a particular overweight, middle-aged person who smokes cigarettes is going to die. But a life insurance agent can easily make a probabilistic prediction of the person's life expectancy based on the average life spans of millions of overweight, middle-aged people who smoked.

Section 4: Choices

Can we slow or even reverse global warming?

In principle, we can slow the rate of global warming by slowing the emission rates of heat-trapping gases—mainly carbon dioxide—and black carbon aerosol to the atmosphere. Some continued warming is inevitable. Stabilizing global temperature at its current level would be very difficult because it would require cutting the emission of heat-trapping gases all the way to zero. If and when zero emissions becomes possible, temperatures won't start to recover until heat-trapping gases are actually removed from the atmosphere. Such removal happens naturally on time scales ranging from less than a year (e.g., black carbon aerosol) to centuries (e.g., carbon dioxide). Additionally, technical means exist to remove some heat-trapping gases (including carbon dioxide) from the atmosphere.

Ultimately, global warming could be reversed by returning the abundance of heat-trapping gases in the atmosphere to pre-industrial levels (circa 1750). The challenge in slowing or reducing global warming is finding a way to make these changes on a global scale that is technically, economically, socially, and politically viable. Reducing our emission of carbon dioxide has the added benefit of slowing the rate at which humans are making the ocean's water more acidic, which is a threat to shell-forming organisms and the marine food chain.

In response to a request from the U.S. Congress, the U.S. National Academy of Sciences published a series of peer-reviewed reports, titled America's Climate Choices, to provide authoritative analyses to inform and guide responses to climate change across the nation. Relevant to this question, the NAS report titled Limiting the Magnitude of Future Climate Change explains policies that could be adopted to slow or even reverse global warming. The report says, "Meeting internationally discussed targets for limiting atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations and associated increases in global average temperatures will require a major departure from business as usual in how the world uses and produces energy."

Alternative methods to slow or reduce global warming have been proposed that are, collectively, known as "climate engineering" or "geo-engineering." Some geo-engineering proposals involve cooling Earth's surface by injecting reflective particles into the upper atmosphere to scatter and reflect sunlight back to space. Other proposals involve seeding the oceans with iron to stimulate large-scale phytoplankton blooms, thereby drawing down carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere through photosynthesis. Such methods could work, in principle, but many climate scientists oppose undertaking geo-engineering until we have a much better understanding of the possible side effects. Additionally, there are unresolved legal and ethical issues surrounding geo-engineering.

Given these concerns, the American Meteorological Society published a position paper (readopted in January 2013) in which it said: "...research to date has not determined whether there are large-scale geo-engineering approaches that would produce significant benefits, or whether those benefits would substantially outweigh the detriments. Indeed, geo-engineering must be viewed with caution because manipulating the Earth system has considerable potential to trigger adverse and unpredictable consequences."

What can I do to help reduce global warming?

Because most human-produced heat-trapping gases come from burning fossil fuels, there is great potential for the collective actions of many individuals worldwide to reduce global warming by making changes in their daily and annual activities that produce heat-trapping gases and aerosols. Specifically, people can consider making the following choices in their personal lives:

  • reduce household energy use through use of energy efficient appliances and heating and air conditioning systems;
  • increase investments in renewable energy sources such as solar and wind power systems;
  • avoid unnecessary household energy use through lighting and temperature control options as well as the use of power strips with switches enabling people to turn off always-on "vampire" appliances (i.e., computers and cable TV boxes); and
  • limit travel distances in conventional automobiles and aircraft while choosing energy-efficient mass transportation options, such as trains and buses, where possible.

Making the best choices to reduce emissions requires accurate and quantitative information about how our different lifestyles cause emissions. Examples of direct emissions are energy use in households, automobiles, and air travel. Indirect emissions result from production and distribution of goods used in household and businesses. More guidance on courses of action can be found in the National Academy of Sciences' 2010 report, titled Informing an Effective Response to Climate Change.

As addressed in previous questions, stabilizing global temperature at its current level requires eliminating all emissions of heat-trapping gases or, equivalently, achieving a carbon-neutral society in which people remove as much carbon from the atmosphere as they emit. Achieving this goal will require substantial societal changes in energy technologies and infrastructure that go far beyond the collective actions of individuals and households to reduce emissions.

What can businesses and business leaders do about global warming?

Business leaders can evolve their business models to pursue "win-win" strategies that allow them to stay profitable while improving their energy efficiency, reducing their carbon emissions, and reducing their, and their customers', risks to climate-related impacts. Businesses can offer low-carbon-emitting products and services to customers who are seeking them. They can consider making low-carbon products and services the default where consumers have a range of choices. Also, businesses that make "climate-smart" choices in their offices and operations can let their customers know about it. These and other climate choices are summarized in two 2010 reports by the National Academy of Sciences, titled Informing an Effective Response to Climate Change and Adapting to the Impacts of Climate Change.

What can people do about the expected impacts caused by global warming?

With continued increases in heat-trapping gas emissions, particularly that of carbon dioxide, climate change projections include changes in average temperatures, precipitation patterns, drought occurrences, and the frequency of extreme events. These changes can be a threat to humans as noted above in answers to previous questions. The distribution of these changes around the globe will not be uniform so some areas will experience more changes than others. Societies, governments, and individuals can take steps to reduce risks and vulnerabilities to shifting climate and weather events in their homes, communities, and businesses. From infrastructure upgrades to better management of natural resources (like lands, coastal ecosystems, and freshwater reservoirs), to better preparedness and communications when extreme events do occur — people can make human structures and systems more resilient to projected climate-related impacts. Over time, these and other adaptation measures will save lives, money, and valuable resources.

Additional climate choices are summarized in two 2010 reports by the National Academy of Sciences, titled Informing an Effective Response to Climate Change and Adapting to the Impacts of Climate Change.

What is NOAA's climate mission?

NOAA is an agency that enriches life through science. From the surface of the sun to the bottom of the ocean, NOAA advances scientific understanding of Earth's environment, climate, and weather. We provide foundational climate science, data, and information services that Americans want and need to make informed decisions. Without NOAA's climate monitoring, research, and modeling capabilities we couldn't quantify where and how climate conditions have changed, nor could we predict where and how they're likely to change.

NOAA is working to improve the nation's resilience to changes in climate and weather. Specifically, NOAA is working to...

  • help people prepare for drought and water resource challenges;
  • protect and preserve coasts and coastal infrastructure;
  • identify and manage risks to marine ecosystems and the valuable services they provide;
  • reduce communities' and businesses' vulnerability to extreme weather; and
  • help people to understand and evaluate options for mitigating and adapting to climate-related impacts.

References

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Maps & Data

Source: http://www.climate.gov/maps-data

Easy access to climate data, products, and services

See Global Climate Dashboard Below

Global Data

Source: http://www.climate.gov/data/maps-and...ta_maps_apps=0

My Note: All but one (Climate at a Glance) have the data embedded in the tool.

Global-scale maps of monthly and yearly temperature anomalies show where it was warmer or cooler than the long-term average from 1981 to 2010. Clicking any grid cell on the map produces a bar graph of annual temperature anomalies for that cell from the time data collection began at that location through the present.

The mapping tool shows temperature anomalies calculated from the National Climatic Distribution Center's merged surface temperature product, which combines land-based temperatures from the Global Historical Climatology Network-Monthly (GHCN-M) data set with sea-surface temperatures from the Extended Reconstructed Sea Surface Temperature data set (ERSST v3b). The monthly analysis begins January 1854, but due to very sparse data, no global averages are computed before 1880.

This tool generates time series graphs of temperature anomalies. Values are calculated from the National Climatic Distribution Center's merged surface temperature product, which combines land-based temperatures from the Global Historical Climatology Network-Monthly (GHCN-M) data set with sea-surface temperatures from the Extended Reconstructed Sea Surface Temperature dataset (ERSST v3b). Users select the entire globe, or the Northern or Southern Hemisphere and a time scale from 1 month to 60 months, or specific time periods such as Annual, Year to date, or Previous 12 months. The base period for calculating anomalies is 1901 to 2000. Users can overlay trend lines for any part of the record, and zoom and pan on the interactive graphs.

The National Research Council (NRC) defines a CDR as a time series of measurements of sufficient length, consistency, and continuity to determine climate variability and change. (National Research Council, 2004).

For the first time, NOAA is applying modern data analysis methods, which have advanced significantly in the last decade, to these historical global satellite data. This process will unravel the underlying climate trend and variability information and return new economic and scientific value from the records. In parallel, NCDC will maintain and extend these Climate Data Records by applying the same methods to present-day and future satellite measurements.

Climate Prediction Center Temperature, Precipitation, and GFS Forecast products that include operational predictions of climate variability, real-time global climate monitoring products, and assessments of the origins of climate anomalies. The retrospective analyses and forecast products span time scales from a week to a year and cover the land, ocean, and atmosphere, extending into the stratosphere.

GHCN (Global Historical Climatology Network)-Daily is a data set whose aim is to address the need for historical daily records over global land areas. Like its monthly counterpart (GHCN-Monthly), GHCN-Daily is a composite of climate records from numerous sources that were merged and then subjected to a suite of quality assurance reviews. The meteorological elements measured for the data set include, but are not limited to, daily maximum and minimum temperature, temperature at the time of observation, precipitation (i.e., rainfall and snow water equivalent), snowfall and snow depth. GHCN-Daily serves as the official archive for daily data from the Global Climate Observing System (GCOS) Surface Network (GSN) and is particularly well suited for monitoring and assessment activities related to the frequency and magnitude of extremes. Sources for the GHCN-Daily data set include, but are not limited, to U.S. Cooperative Summary of the Day, U.S. Fort data, U.S. Climate Reference Network, Community Collaborative Rain, Hail and Snow Network, and numerous international sources.

Global Surface Summary of the Day is a product produced by the National Climatic Data Center (NCDC), and is derived from the synoptic/hourly observations contained in the Integrated Surface Hourly (ISH) dataset (DSI-3505). The latest daily summary data are normally available 1-2 days after the date-time of the observations used in the daily summaries, and over 9000 worldwide stations' data are available. Daily elements (as available) include mean values of temperature, dew point, sea level and station pressures, visibility, and wind speed plus maximum sustained wind speed and/or wind gusts, maximum and minimum temperature, precipitation amounts, snow depth, and indicators for occurrences of various weather elements. Historical data are generally available for 1929 to the present, with data from 1973 to the present being the most complete. Daily extremes and totals--maximum wind gust, precipitation amount, and snow depth-- only appear if the station reports the data sufficiently to provide a valid value. Therefore, these three elements appear less frequently than other values. Since these elements are derived from the original synoptic/hourly data as are reported and based on Greenwich Mean Time (GMT, 0000Z-2359Z), they often comprise a 24-hour period which includes a portion of the previous day (i.e., offset from local standard times).

The Observations map displays current and historical weather observations for six primary variables (maximum temperature, minimum temperature, average temperature, precipitation, snowfall, and snow depth). The source of the data is GHCN-Daily.

This zoomable map interface presents metadata for glaciers in the World Glacier Monitoring Service database. Within political units, users can browse monitored glaciers for their name, WGMS ID, type of monitoring, first survey year, total number of surveys, and the last year surveyed. Links enable users to download minimal data series or request full data series via email for each glacier.

The Global Hourly Summaries are simple indicators of observational normals which include climatic data summarizations and frequency distributions. The available summaries (mean January, July or annual) include: Ceiling-Visibility, Dew Point Statistics, Relative Humidity, Sky Cover, Sea-Level Pressure, Station Pressure, Temperature Statistics, and Wind-Speed Summaries. These typically are statistical analyses of station data over 5-, 10-, 20- or 30-year time periods. This dataset totaling over 350 gigabytes is comprised of 40 different types of weather observations with 20,000 stations worldwide. The National Climatic Data Center and the U.S. Navy developed these value added products in the form of hourly summaries from many of these observations, and these data are a subset of the Integrated Surface Hourly dataset (DSI-3505).

International Best Track Archive for Climate Stewardship (IBTrACS) Project (DSI-9637). The major constraint in improving scientific understanding of the observed trends and variability of tropical cyclone activity has been a lack of accurate, quality controlled best track data for all tropical cyclone basins globally. NOAA's National Climatic Data Center developed the IBTrACS project, which took the initial step of synthesizing and merging best track data from all official Tropical Cyclone Warning Centers (TCWCs) and the WMO Regional Specialized Meteorological Centers (RSMCs) who are responsible for developing and archiving best track data worldwide. The dataset contains the position, maximum sustained winds, minimum central pressure, and storm nature for every tropical cyclone globally at 6-hour intervals in UTC. Statistics from the merge are also provided (such as number of centers tracking the storm, range in pressure, median wind speed, etc.). The dataset period is from 1848 to the present with dataset updates performed semi-annually.

<p>Integrated Surface Data (ISD) (DSI-3505). The Integrated Surface Data (ISD) database is composed of worldwide surface weather observations from about 20,000 stations, collected and stored from sources such as the Automated Weather Network (AWN), the Global Telecommunications System (GTS), the National Weather Service's Automated Surface Observing System (ASOS), and data keyed from paper forms. Most digital observations are decoded either at the US Air Force 14th Weather Squadron or at NOAA's National Climatic Data Center (NCDC) in Asheville, NC or at operational centers and forwarded there. Each agency is responsible for data ingest, quality control, and customer support for surface climatological data. All data are stored in a single ASCII format as an archive for hourly and synoptic (3-hourly) weather observations. The data are sorted by station-year-month-day-hour-minute.</p>

ICOADS is the world's largest collection of marine surface in situ observations with 400+ million records for 1662 through the present. ICOADS is developed and maintained as a cooperative effort between NSF's National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association (NOAA): specifically its Climate Diagnostics Center (CDC), in conjunction with the Cooperative Institute for Research Sciences (CIRES) of the University of Colorado, and NOAA's National Climatic Data Center (NCDC).

The GHCN-Daily was developed to meet the needs of climate analysis and monitoring studies that require data at a sub-monthly time resolution (e.g., assessments of the frequency of heavy rainfall, heat wave duration, etc.). It also serves as NCDCs sole source of U.S. Summary of the Day data, providing a diverse array of users in the public and private sector with weather and climate observations that meet needs from the local to national level. By bringing together contributions from dozens of national and international sources and combining historical with near real-time observations, this dataset helps users understand todays climate and how it impacts society while helping users prepare for weather and climate conditions in the future.

This easy-to-use exploration tool provides access to maps of over 100 environmental variables from NOAA's archive of satellite images, climate model results, and other observations. The site provides descriptions of what the maps show and links to the datasets from which they were produced. NOAA View has an excellent video tour and a clear Navigation Tips graphic to help users get started.

The tool shows one image at a time: users can zoom, pan, display lat/lon coordinates and data values, share links to specific scenes via URL or Web Mapping Service links, and download full resolution images or Google Earth files. Users can adjust sampling periods for many variables to view weekly, monthly, or yearly averages. Maps extend back in time to as early as 1880 and as recent as yesterday. Each day, NOAA View offers a True Color image of Earth from the previous day by 9:00 AM Eastern.

U.S. Data

Source: http://www.climate.gov/data/maps-and...ta_maps_apps=1

Annual Climatological Summary is a product derived from the Summary of the Month (DSI-3220) data set. This product contains monthly and annual summaries for over 8,000 U.S. locations. Major parameters include monthly mean maximum, minimum and average temperatures, monthly total precipitation and snowfall, heating and cooling degree days, number of days that temperatures and precipitation exceed thresholds, and extreme daily temperature and precipitation amounts.

Climate at a Glance offers a mapping interface to display data from the U.S. Climate Divisional Database. The tool offers near real-time analysis of monthly temperature and precipitation data across the contiguous U.S. Users can show monthly or yearly Values, Ranks, or Anomalies for Temperature, Precipitation, Heating days, Cooling days, and four drought indices. These records are available for National, Regional, Statewide, or Divisional extents.

Because these data are primarily intended for the study of climate variability and change, observations have been adjusted to account for the artificial effects introduced into the climate record by factors such as instrument changes, station relocation, observer practice changes and urbanization. Some of the more current data provided by the Climate at a Glance system are preliminary and may be modified after appropriate quality control has been performed. As a result, some values available on this site differ from the official observations.

U.S. Climate Indices are extracted from the National Climatic Data Center's (NCDC's) nClimDiv database. They provide access to current U.S. temperature, precipitation, and drought indices. Divisional indices are: Precipitation index, Palmer Drought Severity Index, Palmer Hydrological Drought Index, Modified Palmer Drought Severity Index, Temperature, Palmer Z Index, Cooling Degree Days, Heating Degree Days, and Standardized Precipitation Indices (SPI) for 1-month, 2-month, 3-month, 6-month, 12-month, and 24-month (SPI).

Climate Reference Network (CRN) (DSI-3286). The CRN data set containes hourly observations, made by an automated instrument package, of U.S. surface meteorological data at stations that are specifically included for their representation of the climate of the U.S. Each CRN station measures temperature and precipitation, wind speed at thermometer height, and solar radiation. Soil moisture and soil temperature are measured using sensors provided by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Data collection began in 2003.

GHCN (Global Historical Climatology Network)-Daily is a data set whose aim is to address the need for historical daily records over global land areas. Like its monthly counterpart (GHCN-Monthly), GHCN-Daily is a composite of climate records from numerous sources that were merged and then subjected to a suite of quality assurance reviews. The meteorological elements measured for the data set include, but are not limited to, daily maximum and minimum temperature, temperature at the time of observation, precipitation (i.e., rainfall and snow water equivalent), snowfall and snow depth. GHCN-Daily serves as the official archive for daily data from the Global Climate Observing System (GCOS) Surface Network (GSN) and is particularly well suited for monitoring and assessment activities related to the frequency and magnitude of extremes. Sources for the GHCN-Daily data set include, but are not limited, to U.S. Cooperative Summary of the Day, U.S. Fort data, U.S. Climate Reference Network, Community Collaborative Rain, Hail and Snow Network, and numerous international sources.

U.S. 15 Minute Precipitation Data (DSI-3260). Data source is approximately 2,000 monthly U.S. weather stations and selected non-U.S. stations with the capability to measure precipitation at 15 minute intervals. Detaily total precipitation also included. Data archived from most states as far back as 1970 or 1971, and continues to the present.

U.S. Hourly Precipitation Data (DSI-3240). Data source is approximately 5,500 U.S. National Weather Service (NWS), airport, and cooperative stations in the U.S. and U.S. territories which measure hourly or daily precipitation accumulations. Earliest data availability varies considerably by state and region, ranging from 1900 to 1978 and continues to the present.

U.S. Local Climatological Data (DSI-3715). The Local Climatological Data file is produced from National Weather Service (NWS) first and second order stations and data are contained in monthly and annual publications. Monthly summaries include maximum, minimum, and average temperature, dew point temperature, station pressure, visibility, weather type, degree days (heating and cooling), precipitation, average wind speeds and extremes, sky cover, snowfall and snow depth, and other variables. The annual summary contains monthly and annual averages of the above climatological data for the current year and a table of normals, means, and extremes of these same data.

GIS U.S. Monthly Extremes is a web based product extracted from the digital dataset U.S. COOP Summary of the Month (DSI-3220). In any given year there are about 8,000 stations operating and recording as little as one parameter (precipitation), or several parameters. The earliest data are from 1831 and are organized by month. Data are updated on a monthly basis. Attributes included for the GIS application are COOP ID, WBAN ID, Station Name, State, Yea, Latitude, Longitude, Stations elevation, Precipitation and Temperature Extremes, and Snowfall/Snow Depth Extremes.

The GHCN-Daily was developed to meet the needs of climate analysis and monitoring studies that require data at a sub-monthly time resolution (e.g., assessments of the frequency of heavy rainfall, heat wave duration, etc.). It also serves as NCDCs sole source of U.S. Summary of the Day data, providing a diverse array of users in the public and private sector with weather and climate observations that meet needs from the local to national level. By bringing together contributions from dozens of national and international sources and combining historical with near real-time observations, this dataset helps users understand todays climate and how it impacts society while helping users prepare for weather and climate conditions in the future.

The National Integrated Drought Information System's (NIDIS's) North American Drought Monitor (NADM) is a copperative effort between drought experts in Canada, Mexico, and the United States to monitor drought across the continent. Drought indices are used to detect and measure droughts, but different indices measure drought in different ways, and no single index works under all circumstances. The NADM program was designed to overcome past limitations with the objective of providing operational assessments of drought across the continent with monthly operational DM maps and discussions made available to the general public.

NWS Next Generation Radar (NEXRAD) Level II & III digital data sets (DSI-6500 and DSI-7000, respectively) archive data from over 150 Weather Surveillance Radar-1988 Doppler (WSR-88D0 sites throughout the U.S. and overseas locations. The NEXRAD Level II data contain three meteorological base data quantities: reflectivity, mean radial velocity, and spectrum width, and are recorded at all NWS and most AWS and FAA WSR 88-D sites. From the Level II quantities, computer processing generates numerous meteorological analysis products known as Level III data including baseline reflectivity and velocity, vertical integrated liquid, VAD wind profile, and precipitation products. Overlay products also give information on certain parameters including storm structure, hail, mesocyclone, tornadic vortex signature, and storm tracking information for identified storm cells. Data are available from June 1991 to 1 day from present.

U.S. Historical Daily Snowfall provides a dynamic map of stations-based daily snowfall amounts by day or accumulations of up to 15 days. Snowfall totals are obtained from the U.S. Daily Surface Data beginning winter season of 2006-2007.

U.S. Historical Monthly & Seasonal Snowfall provides a map of station-based monthly or seasonal snowfall amount obtained from the U.S. Monthly Summaries Data. Some data are available as early as 1886.

U.S. Station Normals (Annual, Monthly, Daily, Hourly) is digital data set archived at the National Climatic Data Center (NCDC). The climatological normals presented in this data set are based on the 30-year period 1981-2010.

Regional Data

Source: http://www.climate.gov/data/maps-and...ta_maps_apps=2

This tool generates time series graphs of Temperature, Precipitation, Heating Degree Days, Cooling Degree Days, and four drought indices from the U.S. Climate Divisional Database. Users select spatial extents as large as the entire contiguous United States and as small as a city within it (data are available for almost 200 selected cities). Time scales range from 1 month to 60 months, and include functions such as Year to date and Previous 12 months. Users can customize the time series graphs by selecting the base period, including a trend line showing change over a decade or a century, or showing a statistically smoothed version of the data. Users can zoom and pan on the interactive graphs.

This tool lets users check how conditions in the contiguous United States over a selected time period rank in the historical record. Rankings for Temperature, Precipitation, Degree Days, and Palmer (Drought) indices are available for the contiguous U.S., entire states, climate divisions, and selected regions for periods ranging from 1 to 60 months or for Year-to-Date. Data and statistics are available from January 1895 through the most recent monthly State of the Climate report.

Gulf Sea Level Rise and Coastal Flooding Impacts is composed of data from coastal managers and scientists with a preliminary look at sea level rise and coastal flooding imapcts in the United States. Data and maps provided are avilable at different scale levels in an effort to assist with gauging trends and prioritizing actions for different scenarios.

The National Climatic Data Center (NCDC) is producing a new regional snowfall index; the Regional Snowfall Index (ReSIS). Like the Northeast Snowfall Impact Scale (NESIS), ReSIS uses snowfall and population to create an index that puts snowstorms and their societal impacts into historical perspective. However, ReSIS only uses snowfall and population information within a particular region (a collection of states) to calculate an index. NESIS uses snowfall and population information from the eastern two thirds of the United States and is therefore a quasi-national index. It is called "Northeast" because some of the constants in the algorithm used to calculate NESIS are specifically calibrated to the northeast; a region with abundant snowfall and a large population. The constants in the ReSIS algorithms are specific to the region in which an index is being calculated. Therefore, ReSIS is a true regional index.

NOAA Partners

Source: http://www.climate.gov/data/maps-and...ta_maps_apps=3

NOAA

7 maps

Partners

6 maps

Integrated Map Application

Source: http://gis.ncdc.noaa.gov/map/viewer/#app=clim

Map Themes

6

Time-Related Maps

5

Program Maps

5

All Maps

24

Global Climate Dashboard

Source: http://www.climate.gov/maps-data

Climate Change

Global Average Temperature (˚C)

The temperature near Earth’s surface is rising: the bars show each year’s average temperature compared to the 20th century average.

learn more: http://www.climate.gov/news-features...al-temperature

Spring Snow Cover (million km2)

Snow is melting earlier: each bar shows spring snow cover in the Northern Hemisphere compared to the long-term average.

learn more: http://www.climate.gov/news-features...ing-snow-cover

Carbon Dioxide (ppm)

The amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere has risen by 25% since 1958, and by about 40% since the Industrial Revolution.

learn more: http://www.climate.gov/news-features...carbon-dioxide

Ocean Heat (1022 Joules)

Each bar shows heat energy in the top half-mile of the ocean compared to the average from 1955-2006.

learn more: http://www.climate.gov/news-features...n-heat-content

September Arctic Sea Ice (1000 km2)

The area covered by sea ice in the Arctic at the end of summer has shrunk by about 40% since 1979.

learn more: http://www.climate.gov/news-features...sea-ice-extent

Global Average Sea Level (mm)

The ocean’s surface is rising: water expands as it warms, and melting of ice sheets and glaciers on land adds water to the ocean.

learn more: http://www.climate.gov/news-features...obal-sea-level

Heat-Trapping Gases

The total warming effect of long-lived heat-trapping gases has gone up by 30% since 1990, the year many nations agreed to cut emissions.

learn more: http://www.climate.gov/news-features...ouse-gas-index

Glaciers (meters of water equivalent)

Glaciers are shrinking: average thickness of 30 well-studied glaciers has decreased more than 40 feet since 1980.

learn more: http://www.climate.gov/news-features...r-mass-balance

Sun's Energy (W/m2)

The sun’s energy rises and falls slightly on an 11-year cycle, with little net change over the last century.

learn more: http://www.climate.gov/news-features...oming-sunlight

Climate Variability

El Niño / La Niña (Oceanic Niño Index)

Average sea surface temperature in the Eastern Pacific Ocean indicates El Niño (yellow), La Niña (blue), or neutral (gray) conditions

learn more: http://www.climate.gov/news-features...i%C3%B1o-index

North Atlantic Oscillation Index

Air pressure patterns over the North Atlantic can steer winter weather: negative values are linked to storms in the eastern U.S.

learn more: http://www.climate.gov/news-features...ic-oscillation

Arctic Oscillation Index

When this index is negative, air pressure patterns are more likely to steer severe winter storms to the eastern U.S.

learn more: http://www.climate.gov/news-features...ic-oscillation

Pacific North American Pattern

Air pressure patterns over the Pacific Ocean and North America affect the type of weather that is delivered to North America.

learn more: http://www.climate.gov/news-features...teleconnection

Southern Oscillation Index

Air pressure patterns across the southern Pacific Ocean reflect El Niño (yellow), La Niña (blue), and neutral (gray) conditions.

learn more: http://www.climate.gov/news-features...illation-index

Climate Projections

learn more: http://www.climate.gov/news-features...re-projections

My Note: I have these data sets in Spotfire elsewhere.

Simulation of Global Temperature

Climate Model Data (CMIP3, 2007)
High Growth (A2)
Moderate Growth (A1B)
Low Growth (B1)
20th Century Climate
The black line shows the average of many different simulations of global temperature in the 20th century compared to average from 1971-1999, and the colored lines show projected temperature changes in the 21st century for three possible emissions scenarios. The shaded areas around each line indicate the statistical spread (one standard deviation) provided by individual model runs.
Climate Change: Global Temperature Projections

Author: David Herring

Monday, March 5, 2012

According to climate scientists, our world is highly likely to continue to warm over this century and beyond. This conclusion is based on scientists’ understanding of how the climate system works and on computer models designed to simulate Earth’s climate. Results from a wide range of climate model simulations suggest that our planet’s average temperature could be between 2 and 9.7°F (1.1 to 5.4°C) warmer in 2100 than it is today.

The main reason for this temperature increase is carbon dioxide and other heat-trapping “greenhouse” gases that human activities produce. The biggest source of added carbon dioxide is from people burning coal and other fossil fuels.

The exact amount of warming that will occur in the coming century depends largely on the energy choices that we make now and in the next few decades, particularly since those choices directly influence how fast we put heat-trapping gases into the atmosphere. In addition to uncertainty about what those choices will be, there are also details we don’t yet know about how the climate will respond to continued increases in heat-trapping gases, particularly over longer time scales.

Explore this interactive graph: Click and drag to display different parts of the graph. To squeeze or stretch the graph in either direction, hold your Shift key down, then click and drag. The graph shows the average of a set of temperature simulations for the 20th century (black line), followed by projected temperatures for the 21st century based on a range of emissions scenarios (colored lines). The shaded areas around each line indicate the statistical spread (one standard deviation) provided by individual model runs. (Data processing by Jay Hnilo, CICS-NC, using data courtesy the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project, or CMIP3.)

Climate scientists are continually improving their understanding of how Earth’s climate system works. They can generate global temperature projections because they have been painstakingly observing and measuring the main mechanisms that influence climate for more than a century. They have developed a good understanding of the key ways that energy and water flow through the planet’s climate system, and how the different parts of the climate system interact with one another. This understanding is translated into complex computer software known as “global climate models.”

The graph above demonstrates that people are a big wild card in the climate system. How fast will human population grow? How much energy will we choose to use? Will our primary sources of energy continue to be fossil fuels (such as coal, oil, and natural gas)? To what extent will we continue to slash and burn forested regions, and how fast will we reforest cleared areas? These are the types of choices that will determine our greenhouse gas emissions and ultimately drive the amount of warming Earth experiences.

The net impacts of these human actions and choices on future greenhouse gas concentrations are fed into models as different “scenarios.” For example, the scenario represented by the blue trend line above (IPCC Scenario B1) assumes that humans worldwide will make more sustainable development choices by using a greater range of, and more efficient, technologies for producing energy. In this scenario, carbon emissions are projected to increase from today’s rate of about 9 billion metric tons per year to about 12 billion tons per year in 2040, and then gradually decline again to 1990 levels—5 billion tons per year—by 2100.

The scenario represented by the red trend line (IPCC Scenario A2) assumes humans will continue to accelerate the rate at which we emit carbon dioxide. This is consistent with a global economy that continues to rely mainly on coal, oil, and natural gas to meet energy demands. In this scenario, our carbon emission increases steadily from today’s rate of about 9 billion tons per year to about 28 billion tons per year in 2100. The middle trend (green, IPCC Scenario A1b) assumes humans will roughly balance their use of fossil fuels with other, non-carbon emitting sources of energy.

Because temperature projections depend on the choices people make in the future, climate scientists can’t say which one of the scenarios is more likely to come to pass by the end of the century. These scenarios are estimates, and greenhouse gas concentrations may grow at rates that are higher or lower than the scenarios shown in the graph. If future carbon dioxide emissions follow the same trajectory as they have over the last decade, increasing at a rate of more than 3 percent per year, carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere would exceed the scenario represented by the red line (IPCC scenario A2) by the end of this century, if not before.

 

Global maps of projected temperatures

These maps show the average of a set of climate model experiments projecting changes in surface temperature for the period 2050-2059, relative to the period from 1971-1999. The top left map corresponds with the green trend line above (IPCC scenario A1B); the top right map matches the red trend line above (IPCC scenario A2); and the bottom left map matches the red trend line (IPCC scenario B1). All models project some warming for all regions, with land areas warming more than oceans. large versions: A1B | A2 | B1 (Maps by Ned Gardiner, Hunter Allen, and Jay Hnilo, CICS-NC, using data courtesy the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project, or CMIP3.)

While Earth’s average temperature has warmed and cooled throughout our planet’s history, it’s extremely rare for a single life form to drive significant climate change, and never before has a single species had the power to force Earth’s climate to change at the rate climate models project human activities will force our world to warm this century.

Though scientists expect Earth to be perceptibly warmer 100 years from now than it is today, there is still a wide range in how much warming Earth will experience. Our choices will make a big difference.

References

Solomon, S., D. Qin, M. Manning, Z. Chen, M. Marquis, K.B. Avery, M. Tignor, and H.L. Miller (eds.). (2007): Climate Change 2007: The Physical Science Basis. Contribution of Working Group I to the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, United Kingdom, and New York, NY, USA.

Friedlingstein, P., R.A. Houghton, G. Marland, J. Hackler, T.A. Boden, T.J. Conway, J.G. Canadell, M.R. Raupach, P. Ciais, and C. Le Quere (2010): “Update on CO2 emissions.” Nature Geoscience. Vol 3. Dec 2010. p811-810.

Science Reviewers: Keith Dixon, NOAA Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory; Katharine Hayhoe, Texas A&M; and Rick Rosen, NOAA Climate Program Office.

Great Lakes Dashboard

Source: http://www.glerl.noaa.gov/data/dashboard/data/

Operational Data

Operational vs. research data sets

In the context of Great Lakes water level and hydro-climate data, 'Operational' data sets are officially sanctioned by the Coordinating Committee on Great Lakes Basic Hydraulic and Hydrologic Data, an ad hoc advisory group consisting of science agencies from both countries. The operational seasonal forecast, for example, is the monthly coordinated forecast produced jointly by the Army Corps of Engineers and Environment Canada.

Channel flows and diversions

The following information (with minimal editing) is pulled from the source data spreadsheets publicly available on the GLERL website (see "GL Connecting Channel Flows, 1900-present.xlsx", and "GL Diversions, 1900-present.xlsx").

Great Lakes Connecting Channel Flows

They are considered the best available, but may be subject to change with future review. These data for the period 1900-2008 were agreed upon between the offices of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), Detroit and Environment Canada (EC), Cornwall in 2010.

  • St. Mary's River: The flows for the St. Marys River were obtained from the International Lake Superior Board of Control. Except for the most recent flows, these are not expected to change over time.
     
  • St. Clair River: Historically, the flows in the St. Clair River have been based on a combination of stage-fall-discharge equations and hydraulic models. The flows from 1900-1986 were coordinated under the auspices of the Coordinating Committee on Great Lakes Basic Hydraulic and Hydrologic Data (CCGLBH and HD), and are documented in the report "Lakes Michigan-Huron Outflows, St. Clair and Detroit Rivers 1900-1986", Oct 1988. Recently it became apparent that a change occurred in the conveyance capacity of this river sometime after the completion of the last major dredging project on this river (1962). It has been estimated that this was an event driven change ("Impacts on Upper Great Lakes Water Levels: St. Clair River", International Upper Great Lakes Study, Dec 2009), possibly caused by high water levels and flows in the 1980s. As a result, flows were revised for the period 1987-2008 using revised stage-fall-discharge equations*, hydraulic preformance graphs, and 1-D modeling all based on flow measurements made between 1996 and 2006. These revised flows were coordinated between the offices of USACE and EC under the aspices of the International Upper Great Lakes Study, and the process is documented in the report "Revision of Historical Monthly Mean Flow Estimates and Lake-to-Lake Stage-Fall-Discharge Equations for the St. Clair and Detroit Rivers, 1987-2008", by David Fay and Nanette Noorbakhsh, draft 7 July 2010. These flows may be subject to change.
    * The stage-fall-discharge equations used for the revision of St. Clair River flows are documented in the report "Development of New Stage-Fall-Discharge Equations for the St. Clair and Detroit Rivers", prepared by David Fay and Holly Kerslake for the International Upper Great Lakes Study, August 2009.
     
  • Detroit River: Historically, the flows in the Detroit River have been based on a combination of stage-fall-discharge equations, hydraulic models and consideration of the flow in the St. Clair River and local supply to Lake St. Clair. The flows from 1900-1986 were coordinated under the auspices of the Coordinating Committee on Great Lakes Basic Hydraulic and Hydrologic Data (CCGLBH and HD), and are documented in the report "Lakes Michigan-Huron Outflows, St. Clair and Detroit Rivers 1900-1986", Oct 1988. Recently it became apparent that a change occurred in the conveyance capacity of the St. Clair River, and possibly also the Detroit River, sometime after the completion of the last major dredging project on these rivers (1962) (see St. Clair River discussion above). As a result, flows were revised for the period 1987-2008 using the revised St. Clair River flows (1987-2008) and revised stage-fall-discharge equations (1994-2008). The revised equations are based on ADCP measurements made between 1996 and 2006. These flows were coordinated between the offices of USACE and EC (see reference in St. Clair River discussion), but may be subject to change. These revised stage-fall-discharge equations continue to be used to determine provisional estimates of St. Clair River flows (2009 to present).
     
  • Niagara River: The Niagara River flows in this spreadsheet are estimates of the flow out of Lake Erie at Buffalo. They are computed from the estimated flow over the Niagara Falls, the flow diverted upstream of the Falls to the hydropower plants, and estimates of local inflows and diversions below Buffalo, and above the Falls. Much of these data now come from the International Niagara Committee. Niagara River flows from 1900-1975 are from the report "Lake Erie Outflow, 1860-1964, with Addendum 1965-1975", CCGLBH and HD, June 1976. In 2009 Niagara River flows at Buffalo were revised for the period 1961-2008, to account for better estimates of the flow over the Falls. The Falls flow is related to the outflow from the Maid-of-the-Mist Pool downstream of the Falls, which is determined using a stage-discharge equation based on water levels at the Ashland Ave. gauge (NOAA). This rating equation was revised in 2009 to better estimate Falls flows since NYPA brought the Robert Moses plant on-line in 1961, which at times greatly reduced the flow over the Falls and out of the MOM Pool. Estimates of Niagara River flows continue to use the revised (2009) Ashland Avenue rating equation.
     
  • Lake Erie Outflow: The Lake Erie outflows for 1900-2009 provided in this spreadsheet were computed and coordinated as the sum of Niagara River flow at Buffalo (rounded to nearest 10 m^3/s), and Welland Canal Diversion (rounded to nearest 10 m^3/s). For 2010 onward what is shown are computed using un-rounded Niagara River and Welland Canal flows, and then rounded to nearest 10^3/s
     
  • St. Lawrence River: The flows for the St. Lawrence River were obtained from the International St. Lawrence River Board of Control. Except for perhaps the most recent flows, these are not expected to change over time.
Great Lakes Diversions

These data are considered the best available, but may be subject to change with future review. These data for the period 1900-2008 were agreed upon between the offices of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), Detroit and Environment Canada (EC), Cornwall in 2010.

  • Combined Long Lac and Ogoki Diversion: These are the combined estimates of flow diverted from the Hudson Bay watershed into Lake Superior via the Long Lac and Ogoki diversions. These data are obtained from Ontario Power Generation Inc, via Environment Canada, Cornwall
    14-Mar-12: Data were updated from September 2008 through December 2011
     
  • Long Lac Diversion: These are the estimates of flow diverted from the Hudson Bay watershed into Lake Superior via the Long Lac diversion. These data are obtained from Ontario Hydro, via Environment Canada, Cornwall.
     
  • Ogoki Diversion: These are the estimates of flow diverted from the Hudson Bay watershed into Lake Superior via the Ogoki diversion. These data are obtained from Ontario Hydro, via Environment Canada, Cornwall
     
  • Chicago Diversion: This is water diverted from Lake Michigan at Chicago. Data are obtained from Chicago District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
     
  • Welland Canal Diversion: This is the water diverted from Lake Erie via the Welland Canal. Data are obtained from the St. Lawrence Seaway Corporation.
     
  • New York State Barge Canal Diversion: This is the water diverted from the Niagara River near Tonawanda, NY. Data are obtained from the New York State Canal Corp., via USACE, Buffalo District.

Hydrologic input/output

Precipitation data from NOAA CO-OPS (Center for Operational Oceanographic Products and Services)

These data are the coordinated precipitation estimates as officially accepted by the Coordinating Committee on Great Lakes Basic Hydraulic and Hydrologic Data. They are updated annually, approximately in October, by the National Ocean Service (NOS) office in Silver Spring, Maryland.

Precipitation data from the USACE Detroit Office

From the source data spreadsheet: Precipitation data reported below represent over-basin averages. These data were coordinated in 2010 with Environment Canada using data from 1900 through 2008.

Residual Net Basin Supplies from the USACE Detroit Office

From the source data spreadsheet: These Residual Net Basin Supplies data are not regularly coordinated with Canada. They were coordinated through 2008 to support the International Upper Great Lakes Study. These computations used actual month lengths when working with the change in storage values. Data is in m3/s. Lake Ontario was not included in the 2008 coordination.

Water level forecasts - monthly

Official 'Coordinated' Forecast

Current Forecast

This forecast of lake-wide average water levels for the next 6 months is issued jointly by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Detroit District) and Environment Canada's Great Lakes - St. Lawrence Regulation Office. Checking the 'Current coordinated 0-6 month out forecasts' box displays the official water level forecast for the basin. The dark red bars indicate the 90% confidence interval for the forecasts. These agencies combine efforts each month to produce one 'Coordinated' common forecast for each of the Great Lakes. Their monthly forecast bulletins are available on their respective websites:

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Six-Month Forecast Bulletin

Canadian Hydrographic Service Forecast Bulletin

Archived Coordinated Forecasts

The archived water level forecasts produced by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Environment Canada start in 1994. Forecast probability bands for both 3-month (pink) and 6-month (brown) forecasts can be shown on the dashboard by checking the appropriate menu boxes. The colored bands show the 90% probability intervals for the month's mean water level. Projected levels are expected to be within these bands approximately 90% of the time, whereas levels both above or below the band can each be expected approximately 5% of the time. Forecasts are archived in order to analyze and improve model performance.

Water level observations

The water levels in the Great Lakes are monitored by NOAA - National Ocean Service in the U.S. (Center for Operational Oceanographic Products and Services) and by the Canadian Hydrographic Service in Canada.

Monthly lake-wide average water levels (1918 - Present)

Water levels are recorded at 53 monitoring stations in the U.S. and 33 stations in Canada. Data are available at a variety of timescales (6-minute average, hourly, daily, monthly). In 1992, the Coordinating Committee on Great Lakes Basic Hydraulic and Hydrologic Data approved a set of gauges (U.S. and Canadian) for each lake that water resource professionals believe give the most accurate reflection of the lake's overall water level when averaged. These lake-wide average levels are used by the Army Corps of Engineers and Environment Canada in their forecast bulletins. These data are available starting in 1918 because before that time there were too few gauges to calculate a realistic lake-wide average.

The gauge networks are listed below:

Lake Superior Lake Michigan-Huron Lake St. Clair Lake Erie Lake Ontario
Duluth, MN Ludington, Mackinaw City, Harbor Beach, MI St. Clair Shores, MI Toledo, Cleveland, Fairport, OH Rochester, Oswego, NY
Marquette C.G., Pt Iroquois, MI Milwaukee, WI Belle River, ON Port Stanley, Port Colborne, ON Port Weller, Toronto, Cobourg, Kingston, ON
Michipicoten, Thunder Bay, ON Thessalon, Tobermory, ON      
Current month provisional averages from Coordinated Gauges

These data are produced by an automated script twice daily. The script retrieves the current conditions water levels PDFs found here from the USACE Detroit District webpage.After retrieving, the script parses the text of the PDFs, finding the daily averages and current average for the month, and writing each lake's daily and monthly averages to text files for display on the dashboard. When the PDF has complete daily data, the average for the month is appended to the monthly data set automatically. As this is a provisional average for the month, the set of monthly water level averages will be checked annually after final coordination of the year's worth of data.

Earlier monthly water levels: 1860-1917

Before 1918, there were very few water level gauges in the Great Lakes. However, Superior, Michigan, Huron, Erie, and Ontario all have at least one water level gauge that has been in operation since 1860. Because of isostatic rebound (shifting of the land surface following the retreat of the glaciers), the levels at these gauges may not represent the lake-wide average level if they are far from the lake's outlet. These historical levels can be adjusted to represent the levels at the outlet. You may compare the adjusted levels (1860-1917) to the original measurement on Superior and Erie by viewing the master gauge and the adjusted monthly average time series (diamonds and triangles respectively). The equations used to adjust these early gauge records are:

 

Lake Gauge Correction
Superior Marquette To Pt Iroquois: PI = -.00108382*year+2.153 + Marquette
Michigan-Huron Harbor Beach None
St. Clair Gross Pointe Yacht Club None
Erie Cleveland To Buffalo: Buff = -.001008382*year+2.153 + Cleveland
Ontario Oswego None
Master Gauge Station History

In several cases the master gauge has changed since 1860, either due to a relocation or a change in conditions causing a gauge to lose stability. The table below summarizes the history of master gauge stations on the Great Lakes according to NOS/CO-OPS:

Lake Station Time Period
Superior Marquette, MI 1860 - Sep 1980
  Marquette C.G., MI Oct 1980 - Present
Michigan-Huron Harbor Beach, MI 1860 - Present
St. Clair Gross Pointe Yacht Club, MI 1898 - Feb 1968
  St. Clair Shores, MI March 1968 - Present
Erie Cleveland 1860 - Dec 1991
  Fairport Jan 1992 - Present
Ontario Oswego 1860 - Present
Per Month Records

Per month averages and record highs and lows for each month are available for the lake-wide average water levels (1918-2012). These values are coordinated by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Environment Canada. Data are here in meters, and here in feet.

Low Water Datum

The low water datum (or 'chart datum') is the reference plane accepted as the base elevation for each of the Great Lakes. Depths published on navigational charts are relative to low water datum. This plane is reestablished approximately every 30 years due to glacial isostatic adjustment, the 'bounce back' of the earth's crust in response to the weight of the glaciers.

Note: These values have been established in both meters and feet using specific rounding procedures. The dashboard is using the accepted values in both units.

What is the IGLD85?

IGLD85 refers to the International Great Lakes Datum, an elevation benchmark against which all water level gauging stations in the Great Lakes are compared. This reference point was last established in 1992.

Research Data

Climate variables

NOAA's National Climatic Data Center (NCDC) and Environment Canada both gather data on wind speed, air temp, cloud cover and other meteorological variables derived from hundreds of stations across the Great Lakes Basin. Statistical weighting procedures are implemented (i.e. Theissen Weighting) by GLERL to come up with the best possible measurement (or areal average) of targeted variables.

All these data are used in the computation of higher level hydroclimate variables, most critically evaporation (see this for more detail).

Click here to view the latest data from GLERL's Great Lakes Monthly Hydrologic Database (further info).

Hydrologic input/output

Accurate hydrologic data (precipitation, runoff, evaporation, net basin supplies, and more) are required for simulation, forecasting, and water resource studies on the Laurentian Great Lakes and their basins. These data are derived from quality controlled meteorological and hydrological input data. The raw data utilized were collected from several sources, so the periods of record for each lake vary. NOAA-GLERL has been compiling this data since the mid 1980s.

CROLEY, T.E., II, and T.S. HUNTER. Great Lakes monthly hydrologic data. NOAA Technical Memorandum ERL GLERL-83, Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory, Ann Arbor, MI (NTIS# PB95-173076/XAB) 83 pp. (1994).

View data spreadsheets.

Precipitation

Monthly estimates for over-land and over-lake precipitation are compiled for each of the Great Lakes. Data prior to 1930 (1918 for Lake Superior) were computed by the Lake Survey District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the National Ocean Survey. Data for 1930-1947 (1918-1947 for Lake Superior) were computed at the Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory (GLERL) from monthly station values. Data for 1948 to present were computed at GLERL using daily station data.

Relevant articles:

CROLEY, T.E., II, and H.C. HARTMANN. Resolving Thiessen Polygons. Journal of Hydrology, 76:363-379 (1985).

QUINN, F.H. and D.C. NORTON. Great Lakes Precipitation by Months, 1900-80. NOAA Data Report ERL GLERL-20, 29 pp. (1982).

National Climatic Data Center. Surface Land Daily Cooperative Summary of the Day TD-3200. National Climatic Data Center, Asheville, North Carolina (1987).

Atmospheric Environment Service. Climatological Station Data Catalogue, Ontario. Environment Canada, Downsview, Ontario (1981).

Simulated Evaporation

NOAA-GLERL Great Lakes Evaporation Model

Monthly evaporation estimates were derived from daily evaporation estimates generated by the NOAA-GLERL Great Lakes Evaporation Model. This is a lumped-parameter surface flux and heat-storage model. It uses air temperature, wind speed, humidity, precipitation and cloud cover averaged over area. These data are sufficiently available since 1950 (1953 for Georgian Bay). Over-land data are adjusted for over-water or over-ice conditions. Surface flux processes are represented for short-wave radiation and reflection, net long-wave radiation exchange, and advection. Atmospheric stability effects on the bulk transfer coefficients are formulated and used with the aerodynamic equation for sensible and latent heat surface fluxes.

Relevant articles:

CROLEY, T.E.II. Lumped modeling of Laurentian Great Lakes evaporation, heat storage, and energy fluxes for forecasting and simulation. NOAA Technical Memorandum ERL GLERL-70, Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory, Ann Arbor, MI (PB89-185540/XAB) 48 pp. (1989).

CROLEY, T.E.II. Verifiable evaporation modeling on the Laurentian Great Lakes. Water Resources Research25(5):781-792 (1989).

CROLEY, T.E., II, and R.A. ASSEL. A One-Dimensional Ice Thermodynamics Model for the Laurentian Great Lakes. Water Resources Research, 30(3):625-639 (1994).

3D Ice-Hydrodynamic Coupled Model (ICEPOM)

Modeled evaporation from a 3D ice-hydrodynamic coupled model, ICEPOM. The hydrodynamic part is based on the Princeton Ocean Model and the ice part includes 2D dymamic model with the Elastic-Viscous-Plastic rheology and 1D thermodynaimc model. The daily evaporation for 2003-2012 is calculated from the hourly outputs of the evaporation flux [kg/m2/s] at the water surface. When ice cover exists in a computational cell, the evaporation flux is weighted by an open water fraction.

The two sets of data currently available on the dashboard are simulating evaporation at two locations where sensors have been deployed to monitor evaporation as well as other hydro-climatic variables. These locations are PERMS1 at Toledo Light #2 Structure and PERMS2 at the City of Toledo Water Intake crib, both in Western Basin, Lake Erie.More information on those sensors can be found here.

Reference:
Fujisaki-Manome, A., J. Wang, X. Bai, G. Leshkevich, and B. Lofgren (2013), Model-simulated interannual variability of Lake Erie ice cover, circulation, and thermal structure in response to atmospheric forcing, 2003–2012, J. Geophys. Res. Oceans, 118, doi:10.1002/jgrc.20312.

Runoff

Runoff data is computed from watershed runoff estimates by using streamflow records from major rivers, available from the U.S. Geological Survey for U.S. streams and the Inland Waters Directorate of Environment Canada for Canadian streams. Daily runoff values provided by these agencies were summed for each watershed within a lake basin. The runoff was extrapolated over ungaged areas; between 22% and 43% of the Great Lakes basin remains ungaged (Lee, 1992) thus the potential for error exists in runoff estimation. Weights were assigned to each non-overlapping streamflow gage by dividing its drainage area by the watershed area. Daily watershed runoff estimates were computed by summing all daily station values in the watershed and then dividing by the sum of their weights, to extrapolate for ungaged areas.

The Ogoki diversion flow is indirectly included in the runoff estimate for Lake Superior. It cannot be separated from measured runoff at Lake Superior since it is added upstream, in Lake Nipigon, and its timing obscured by routing through Nipigon and connecting channels to Lake Superior. The Ogoki diversion is about 0.8% of Lake Superior runoff.

Relevant Articles:

Showen, C.R.. Data formats for U.S. Geological Survey computer files containing daily values for water parameters. U.S. Geological Survey, Reston, Virginia (1980).

Inland Waters Directorate. Supplying Hydrometric and Sediment Data to Users, Second Edition. Water Resources Branch, Environment Canada, Ottawa, Ontario (1980).

LEE, D.H. Computation of net basin supplies: a comparison of two methods. Final Report Subtask 19.1.2a (Scenarios Based Upon 1900-1989 Supplies), Task 19.1.2, Task Group 2, Working Committee 3, Phase II - International Joint Commission Levels Reference Study, Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory, Ann Arbor, Michigan (1992).

Net Basin Supplies (NBS)

The water supplies to a lake, referred to as the net basin supplies (NBS), are defined in terms of their components via the following forumula:

NBS = P + R - E

where P is over-lake precipitation, R is basin runoff to the lake, and E is lake evaporation. (Note: since Lake Superior runoff indirectly includes the Ogoki Diversion, NBS values reported here include the Ogoki diversion on Lake Superior.)

Lake evaporation is estimable from 1950 on (1955 on Lake Huron), since wind speed and humidity data exist only since 1948 (1953 on Georgian Bay) and 2 years are used for model initialization. Thus, NBS from the above equation from 1950 (1955 for Lake Huron) are reported here.

Ice cover observations

Ice cover is expressed as a percentage for each lake, using a virtual lattice, or grid, on maps of the Great Lakes as a guide. Grid cells with less than 10% ice were treated as open water and left out of the ice cover calculations. These data are from the Canadian Ice Service and National Ice Center and are based on various imagery sources with resolutions down to 50 meters per pixel. Imagery sources include but are not limited to ENVISAT, DMSP OLS, AVHRR, and RADARSAT. Ship reports and other observations are also included. From 1973 to 1988, only the Canadian Ice Service was producing ice maps for the Great Lakes. Since 2001, the National Ice Center has been issuing a joint Canadian/U.S. product for the Great Lakes. For more details on this data set, see the following:

WANG, J., X. BAI, H. HU, A.H. CLITES, M.C. COLTON, and B.M. LOFGREN Temporal and spatial variability of Great Lakes ice cover, 1973-2010. Journal of Climate 25(4):1318-1329 (DOI:10.1175/2011JCLI4066.1) (2012).

ASSEL, R. A. An Electronic Atlas of Great Lakes Ice Cover, Winters 1973-2002. NOAA Atlas. NOAA, Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory, Ann Arbor, MI, 2 CD-ROM Set or DVD (2003).

Also see the GLERL Great Lakes Ice Cover webpage

Paleoclimate reconstructions

Although the 150+ years of recorded water level data for the Great Lakes comprise one of the longest high quality hydrometeorological data sets in North America, it may not necessarily be representative of the last several thousand years during which the Great Lakes have been in their present hydraulic state. Records from paleo lake level analysis, using submerged tree stumps, tree ring data, and ancient shorelines to draw conclusions about past lake levels, climate, and glacial isostatic adjustment, can add context to both our understanding of current lake level fluctuations as well as our attempts to project how future climates and vertical ground movement will impact these levels.

These historical data are from the following journal articles:

"A Reconstruction of Lake Michigan-Huron Water Levels Derived from Tree Ring Chronologies for the Period 1600-1961", Frank H. Quinn and Cynthia E. Sellinger, Journal of Great Lakes Research 32:29-39, 2006

"A 265-year Reconstruction of Lake Erie Water Levels Based on North Pacific Tree Rings", Gregory C. Wiles, Anne C. Krawiec, and Rosanne D. D'Arrigo, Geophysical Research Letters, Volume 36, 2009

"A 4,700-year record of lake level and isostasy for Lake Michigan", Steve J. Baedke and Todd A. Thompson, Journal of Great Lakes Research, 26(4):416-426, 2000.

"A Sault-outlet-referenced mid-to-late Holocene paleohydrograph for Lake Superior constructed from strandplains of beach ridges", John W. Johnston, Erin P. Argyilan, Todd A. Thompson, Steve J. Baedke, Kenneth Lepper, Douglas A. Wilcox, and Steven L. Forman, Canadian Journal of Earth Sciences, 49:1-17, 2012

Current NOAA-GLERL AHPS Forecasts

These water level forecasts were produced by NOAA-GLERL's Advanced Hydrologic Prediction System (AHPS). Checking the 'Current Forecasts' box reveals the AHPS forecast for the next 10 months. The light blue bars indicate the 90% confidence interval for the forecasts. More information on the NOAA-GLERL AHPS model is below.
 

Archived AHPS Forecasts

The archived water level forecasts (produced by NOAA-GLERL's AHPS model) start in 1997. NOAA-GLERL's forecast probability bands for both 3-month (dark) and 6-month (light) forecasts can be shown on the dashboard by checking the appropriate menu boxes. The colored bands show the 90% probability intervals for the month's mean water level. If AHPS was always accurate, these bands would contain the observed water level 90% of the time. NOAA-GLERL recently started archiving AHPS's forecasts in order to assess its performance.
 

About the NOAA-GLERL AHPS seasonal forecast model

NOAA-GLERL's AHPS seasonal forecast model is a research tool, not associated with any operational decisions. However, it is relied on by many governmental agencies and others who need water level information for planning. The official seasonal water level forecast is a collaborative effort by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Environment Canada. (see the current 6-month forecast)

AHPS is a physically-based model that combines historical meteorological data with a series of mathematical models and climate forecasts from NOAA's Climate Prediction Center to simulate multiple hydrologic variables (precipitation, runoff, evaporation). The net "supply" of water to each basin is accounted for via virtual routing through the lakes and their connecting channels, leading to the predicted monthly levels. More information about NOAA-GLERL's water level forecasts and access to the daily updates can be found here. A recent study (Gronewold 2011) showed that the 90% probability band captures between 64 and 74% of the observed water levels, based on the years 1997 through 2009.

References:

Croley, T., Lee, D., 1993. Evaluation of Great Lakes net basin supply forecasts. J. Am. Water Resources Association 29(2), 267-282

Croley, T., 1992. Long-term heat storage in the Great Lakes. Water Resources Research 28(1), 69-81.

Croley, T., Hartmann, H., 1985. Resolving Thiessen polygons. J. Hydrology 76(3-4),363-378

Water level forecasts - multi-decadal

Many studies have been published in the past several decades that use models to assess the impact future climates will have on Great Lakes water levels. Although a thorough understanding of each study will require reading the source material, the dashboard allows us to put these different projections side by side for visual comparison.

The long term water level projections presented here are from four recent studies:

  • Lofgren, Hunter, and Wilbarger (2011) "Effects of using air temperature as a proxy for potential evapotranspiration in climate change scenarios of Great Lakes basin hydrology" Journal of Great Lakes Research Volume 37
  • Hayhoe, VanDorn, Croley, Schlegal, Wuebbles (2010) "Regional climate change projections for Chicago and the US Great Lakes" Journal of Great Lakes Research Volume 36
  • Angel, Kunkel (2010) "The response of Great Lakes water levels to future climate scenarios with an emphasis on Lake Michigan-Huron", Journal of Great Lakes Research, (36).
  • MacKay, Seglenieks (2012) "On the simulation of Laurentian Great Lakes water levels under projections of global climate change", Climatic Change.
Lofgren

Lofgren et al. developed a new approach for estimating potential evapotranspiration by using an energy budget-based approach instead of the more common method of using air temperature as a proxy for evapotranspiration. Lofgren's base case is 1958-2005. Using two different climate models and two methods (details below) for calculating potential evapotranspiration yielded 5 projections:

  • Base
  • CGCM3 / Delta method
  • CGCM3 / Alternate Energy Adjustment Formulation
  • GFDL20 / Delta method
  • GFDL20 / Alternate Energy Adjustment Formulation

Climate Models Used:

  • Canadian Centre for Climate Modeling and Analysis' Coupled General Circulation Model Version 3 (CGCM3)
  • Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Lab Climate Model Version 2.0 (GFDL20)

Methods used:

  • Delta method (using air temperature as ET proxy)
  • Alternative Energy Adjustment Formulation (energy-budget based approach)

Both methods employ the GLERL Large Basin Runoff Model and were transformed to lake levels using the Coordinated Great Lakes Regulation and Routing Model.

Hayhoe

Hayhoe et al. used both high (Special Report on Emissions Scenarios - SRES - A1fi) and low (B1) emissions scenarios to project future climate. Only the high emission scenario was used to plot change in lake levels (Fig 10 in the reference). Since the data was not available in digital form, values were carefully estimated from this graph. GLERL's Large Basin Runoff Model (LBRM, details here) and Advanced Hydrologic Prediction System were used to generate runoff and resulting lake levels. The base period for these projections is 1961-1990. Hayhoe et al developed projections for 3 time periods: 2010-2039, 2040-2069, and 2070-2099.

Angel and Kunkel

This study used global climate model results from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Fourth Assessment Report, AR4. Three emission scenarios (high, intermediate, and low) were chosen and many runs were completed for each scenario; 565 in all. Between 18 and 23 general circulation models was used for each scenario. GLERL's AHPS was used to determine final lake levels. The base period for this study was 1970-1999. Projected lake levels were reported relative to the average lake level from the base period. Only the extreme emissions scenario projections are reported. The range shown is from 25th (bottom) to 75th (top) percentile.

MacKay and Seglenieks

This paper proposes a new method for estimating future net basin supplies and lake levels based on a bias-correction method that enables the direct use of general circulation model output to run evaporation and runoff models, preserving the land surface-atmosphere feedback loop. The general circulation model used here is the Canadian Regional Climate Model (GLRCM). The base period for this study is 1962-1990. Projections are made for the period 2021-2050. Results for the upper lakes are given in terms of lake level change relative to the base period.

Water level observations

QUINN, F.H., and C.E. SELLINGER. Note. Lake Michigan record levels of 1838, a present perspective. Journal of Great Lakes Research 16(1):133-138 (1990).

Additional perspective on Lake Michigan-Huron water levels is provided by this pre-1860 monthly water level data set recorded in Milwaukee, Wisconsin between 1815 and 1859, encompassing a period of high water levels in 1838. These data were adjusted to the outlet at Harbor Beach to account for isostatic rebound and translated from the Lake Survey Datum of 1877 to IGLD 1955. The data set was updated to IGLD 1985 using a Harbor Beach correction of 0.214 meters.

Water temperatures

GLSEA Water Temperatures

From CoastWatch at GLERL:

The Great Lakes Surface Environmental Analysis (GLSEA2) is a digital map of the Great Lakes surface water temperature and ice cover which is produced daily at the NOAA Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory (GLERL) in Ann Arbor, Michigan through the NOAA CoastWatch program. The GLSEA is stored as a 1024x1024 pixel map in PNG format, suitable for viewing on PCs and workstations with readily available software.

The lake surface temperatures are derived from NOAA polar-orbiting satellite imagery obtained through the Great Lakes CoastWatch program. The addition of ice cover information was implemented in early 1999, using data provided by the National Ice Center (NIC). Lake surface temperatures are updated daily with information from the cloud-free portions of the previous day's satellite imagery. If no imagery is available, a smoothing algorithm is applied to the previous day's map. Ice information will then be added, using the most recent Great Lakes Ice Analysis produced by NIC, daily during the ice season.

Sources:

Leshkevich, G.A., D.J. Schwab, and G.C. Muhr. Satellite environmental monitoring of the Great Lakes: Great Lakes CoastWatch Program update. Marine Technology Society Journal 30(4):28-35 (1997).

Schwab, D.J., G.A. Leshkevich, and G.C. Muhr. Satellite measurements of surface water temperature in the Great Lakes: Great Lakes CoastWatch. Journal of Great Lakes Research 18(2):247-258 (1992).

Leshkevich, G. A. and S. Liu. Environmental monitoring of the Great Lakes using CoastWatch data and JAVA GIS. Backscatter Magazine, Spring 2003:13-16 (2003).

Data Download

For the data download portal, we provide access to the same source of data sets that the dashboard reads from to display. This is to provide a level of quality assurance. Additionally, we provide a link to the original source of data if possible.

While we attempt to keep all data here up to date, there may be discrepencies between the original source of data and what we have here. This is especially true of the research based hydrological input/output data, for example, as that data is updated manually, once a year, and intermittently throughout the year as technical issues are discovered. We will do our best to maintain the data here and keep it fresh, and appreciate your patience.

Each data file is named in a descriptive manner, which is described below:

[Lake abbreviation] = one of "superior", "miHuron", "clair", "erie", or "ontario" unless otherwise specified.

  • Download all available data in a ZIP folder ZIP
  • Water Levels
    • 1860-1917 Coordinated
      • [Lake abbreviation][Start Year].csv - Monthly Series in gridded format
      • [Lake abbreviation][Start Year]"Ann".csv - Annual Series
      • [Lake abbreviation][Start Year]"HLOC".csv - Annual Summary Data (HLOC - "H"igh "L"ow "O"pen "C"lose, like stocks, but for water levels)
    • 1918-Present Coordinated, same as 1860-1917 data with the addition of:
      • [Lake abbreviation][Start Year]"Avg".txt - contains the period of record average from the start year (i.e. 1918) to present. Start year is repeated in the second comma delimited item in the file.
      • [Lake abbreviation]"Dailies".csv - contains the aggregated daily averages from US Coordinated gauges for the current month. Updated daily.
      • [Lake abbreviation]"PrelimMo".csv - contains the aggregated monthly average from US Coordinated gauges for the current month. Updated daily.
      • [Lake abbreviation]"PrelimCDaily".csv - contains the provisional daily averages for the current month derived from all 'C'oordinated gauges. Read from the current conditions PDF here. Updated daily.
      • [Lake abbreviation]"PrelimCMo".csv - contains the provisional average for the current month derived from all 'C'oordinated gauges.
    • Master Gauge Levels
      • [Lake abbreviation]"Mog".csv - Monthly Master Gauge Data
      • [Lake abbreviation]"Anng".csv - Annual Master Gauge Data
      • [Lake abbreviation]"MogHL".csv - Annual summary data for master gauges (HLOC)
    • Miscellaneous Data
      • quinnObs.csv - Michigan-Huron 1819 - 1859 Observations from Quinn and Sellinger (1990)
    • Records
      • [Lake abbreviation]"LWD" - Low Water (Chart) Datum, with year telling the dashboard where to start drawing the line.
      • [Lake abbreviation]"LT"[Max, Mean, or Min] - The per month record maxes, mins, and per month means for each lake. 12 lines long, starting with January, ending with December (Original source numbers here in meters, and here in feet).
      • Files with "AT" in their names contain the 'A'll 'T'ime record high and low for the specified lake. The beginning of the relevant period of record, typically 1918, is the second item in the file.
  • Monthly Forecasts
    • "coordinated" folder contains coordinated forecasts. The word "Coordinated" follows the lake abbreviation; "3Mo", "6Mo", or "Fore" desginate archived 3, 6 month, and current 0-6 month out forecasts respectively.
    • [Lake abbreviation, no ontario]"AHPS"[3 or 6].csv - Archived 3 and 6 month out forecasts from AHPS from the beginning of the month; the first forecast to be released each month.
    • [Lake abbreviation, no ontario]"CurrAHPS".csv - The current 0-9 month forecast from AHPS, updated daily.

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