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Updated 12 October, 2003

US National Assessment of
the Potential Consequences
of Climate Variability and Change
Summary Tables of Scenarios Products
Table 1: Historical Climate Data Products

 

 

 

Table 1: Historical
Climate Data Products


 
Table 1a: VEMAP2 Gridded Record (Vegetation/Ecosystem Modeling and Analysis Project)
Description The VEMAP Phase 2 historical gridded record (1895-1993) provides the most spatially comprehensive information about minimum and maximum temperature, precipitation, solar radiation (and irradiance), and vapor pressure (relative humidity). The VEMAP record is based on data from NOAA's National Climatic Data Center's U.S. Historical Climate Network (HCN) and other cooperative network stations, plus the USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) SnoTel stations for high elevation precipitation. Data from 8000 stations were statistically in-filled to create continuous records. These were then spatially interpolated to a 0.5 deg lat/log grid, accounting for elevation and rainshadow effects, using the PRISM model (Chris Daly, OSU and Tim Kittel, NCAR). There are both monthly and daily versions. Daily fields are generated from monthly fields using a stochastic weather generator. Grid point daily data are not spatially auto-correlated at the daily timestep (i.e. daily events are not synchronous in adjacent grid cells), but are resolved on the VEMAP 0.5 x 0.5 grid, a finer resolution than the GCM data.
Function Spatially comprehensive information about temperature, precipitation, solar radiation, and vapor pressures for the contiguous United States.
Availability Regional data currently available; watershed data in progress. 

Restrictions on use: The HADCM2 data may only be used for purposes related to VEMAP or the U. S. National Assessment. For any other purposes you must get permission directly from David Viner at LINK.

References and URLs [Kittel et al., 1997; Kittel et al., 1995; VEMAP members, 1995]

VEMAP2 home page: 
http://www.cgd.ucar.edu/vemap/

overview for the National Assessment:
http://www.cgd.ucar.edu/vemap/V2.html

VEMAP2 dataset description:
http://www.cgd.ucar.edu/vemap/ve298.html

Technical Assistance 1. Time series of the monthly means (Coverage for the entire contiguous U.S. is available by request in NetCDF Format; contact  USGCRP Office ). 
  1. each grid point within each region and watershed
  2. averaged over each region and watershed
2. Time averages of the monthly means for each grid point within each region and watershed (Coverage for the entire contiguous U.S. is available by request in NetCDF format; contact  USGCRP Office ).
  • 1961-1990 (historical baseline) 
Daily data are available by request only from  USGCRP Office

Guidance on when to use the VEMAP data.

Direct Link to Data VEMAP2 Data Access.

Regional Data Access


 
Table 1b: HCN Network
Description The HCN data sets provide the best data for analysis of trends over the twentieth century, especially when averaged across climatic divisions (see next entry). For monthly mean temperatures, the adjusted data are preferred, but for precipitation, unadjusted climate division data are preferred and have been used with success. These data will be available on the NCDC home page. Trends of daily temperature and precipitation can be evaluated by using a subset of the US HCN monthly data, which is based on 1221 stations across the conterminous U.S. and 46 stations in Alaska. The daily HCN data set has 188 stations across the U.S. with daily maximum and minimum temperatures as well as total precipitation. They have been used for trend analyses. These data will be available via NCDC's home page.
Function Continuous records of temperature and precipitation at meteorological stations across the U.S..
Availability Now
References and URLs Monthly: 

http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/ol/climate/
research/ushcn/ushcn.html

Daily: 

http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/ol/climate/
research/ushcn/daily.html

Technical Assistance  
Direct Link to Data  None

 
Table 1c:  National Snow and Ice Data Center
Description Full range of Arctic observations (especially of the cryosphere), including satellite and station data.
Function To supplement the HCN data in Alaska.
Availability Now
References and URLs http://www-nsidc.colorado.edu
Technical Assistance  
Direct Link to Data http://www-nsidc.colorado.edu

 
Table 1d: Climate Epochs Data Set
Description This data set, developed by NCDC, is used to identify adjacent periods with significant changes of temperature, precipitation, or both. The data set is useful for examining the effects of climate change using observed data. Periods are 10 year, 15 year, and 20 year epochs, done for each season and annual.
Function  
Availability Now
References and URLs  
Technical Assistance  
Direct Link to Data  
Table 1e: Temperature Extremes CD-ROM
Description A CD-ROM is available to provide probabilities of having, 1, 2, ..., 31 days over or under a given threshold at a given station for a given month. Probabilities can be based on: the current (observed) climate, a user-selected climate change factor, or results from models can be used to suggest how much the change may be. This is available on CD-ROM from NOAA's National Climatic Data Center.
Function  
Availability Now
References and URLs Available on CD-ROM through NCDC
Technical Assistance  
Direct Link to Data  None

 
Table 1f: Parameterized Weather Generator
Description A parameterized version of a weather generator can be used to simulate daily max and min temperatures, precipitation, humidity and radiation. Monthly data are available now. Daily observations are in a beta test phase and will be available from NCAR's home page.
Function  
Availability Monthly: Now 

Daily: TBD

References and URLs NCAR home page
Technical Assistance  
Direct Link to Data  None

 
 
Table 1g:  Nineteenth Century US Climate Data Set Project
Description Monthly temperature and precipitation data from the 19th century, from published data that have been digitized by the Forts project.
Function  
Availability Now
References and URLs http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/
onlinedata/forts/forts.html
Technical Assistance  
Direct Link to Data  None

 
Table 1h:  NOAA Paleoclimatology Program
Description Paleoclimate data from the last several centuries includes a wide variety of paleo-data.
Function To understand the longer time-scale climate picture.
Availability Now
References and URLs http://www.ngdc.noaa.gov/paleo/data.html
Technical Assistance  
Direct Link to Data http://www.ngdc.noaa.gov/paleo/data.html

 
Table 1i:  Water and Climate Services
Description Internet access to climate data (UCAN) and spatial climate modeling (PRISM), as well as other climate and hydrologic tools
Function To provided easy access to data and modeling tools for climate analysis
Availability Now
References and URLs  
Technical Assistance  
Direct Link to Data  

 
Table 1j:  Global Soil Moisture Data Bank
Description Data bank of observed, in situ soil moisture from around the world prepared by Alan Robock, Konstantin Vinnikov, and Govindarajalu Srinivasan.
Function To provided soil moisture data for Iowa and Illinois within North America
Availability Now
References and URLs http://climate.envsci.rutgers.edu/
soil_moisture/robock_smpapers.html

Hollinger, S. E. and S. A. Isard. 1994. 'A soil moisture climatology of Illinois'. J. Climate, 7: 822-833.

Technical Assistance Govindarajalu Srinivasan
Direct Link to Data http://climate.envsci.rutgers.edu/
soil_moisture/index.html

 
Table 1k:  Air Stagnation Climatology for the U.S.
Description Air Stagnation Climatology for the United States (1948-1998), produced by the Air Resources Lab./NOAA
Function Air stagnation is a measure of the meteorological potential for air pollution episodes.
Availability Now
References and URLs http://www.arl.noaa.gov/
pubs/online/index.html
Technical Assistance  
Direct Link to Data http://www.arl.noaa.gov/
pubs/online/index.html


 
 References:
 
Boer, G.J., McFarlane, N.A., Laprise, R., Henderson, J.D., and J.-P. Blanchet. 1984. The Canadian Climate Centre spectral atmospheric general circulation model. Atmosphere-Ocean 22(4): 397-429.

Boer, G.J.; Flato, G.M.; Reader, M.C.; Ramsden, D. 1999a. "A transient climate change simulation with historical and projected greenhouse gas and aerosol forcing: experimental design and comparison with the instrumental record for the 20th century", in press Climate Dynamics.

Boer, GJ., Flato, G.M., and Ramsden, D. 1999b. "A transient climate change simulation with historical and projected greenhouse gas and aerosol forcing: projected climate for the 21st century", in press Climate Dynamics.

Felzer, B. and Heard, P. 1999. "Precipitation differences amongst GCMs used for the U.S. National Assessment", Journal of the American Water Resources Association 35(6): 1327-1339.

Felzer, B. 1999. "Hydrological implications of GCM results for the U.S> National Assessment". Proceedings of the Specialty Conference on Potential Consequences of Climate Variability and CHange to Water Resources of the United States, 69-72.

Flato, G.M.; Boer, G.J.; Lee, W.G.; McFarlane, N.A.; Ramsden, D.; Reader, M.C.; Weaver, A.J. 1999. "The Canadian Centre for Climate Modelling and Analysis Global Coupled Model and its Climate", in press Climate Dynamics.

Johns T.C., Carnell R.E., Crossley J.F., Gregory J.M., Mitchell J.F.B., Senior C.A., Tett S.F.B. and Wood R.A. 1997 The Second Hadley Centre coupled ocean-atmosphere GCM: Model description, spinup and validation. Climate Dynamics 13:103-134.

Karl, T.R., C.N. Williams, Jr., F.T. Quinlan, and T.A. Boden, 1990: United States Historical Climatology Network (HCN) Serial Temperature and Precipitation Data, Environmental Science Division, Publication No. 3404, Carbon Dioxide Information and Analysis Center, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, TN, 389 pp.

Kittel, T.G.F., N.A. Rosenbloom, T.H. Painter, D.S. Schimel, and VEMAP Modeling Participants. 1995. The VEMAP integrated database for modeling United States ecosystem/vegetation sensitivity to climate change. Journal of Biogeography 22:857-862.

Kittel, T.G.F., J.A. Royle, C. Daly, N.A. Rosenbloom, W.P. Gibson, H.H. Fisher, D.S. Schimel, L.M. Berliner, and VEMAP2 Participants. 1997. A gridded historical (1895-1993) bioclimate dataset for the conterminous United States. Pages 219-222, in: Proceedings of the 10th Conference on Applied Climatology, 20-24 October 1997, Reno, NV. American Meteorological Society, Boston.

McFarlane, N.A., Boer, G.J., Blanchet, J.P., and M. Lazare. 1992. The Canadian Cliamte Centre second-generation general circulation model and its equilibrium climate. Journal of Climate 5: 1013-1044.

Mitchell J.F.B., Johns T.C., Gregory J.M. and Tett S. 1995 Climate response to increasing levels of greenhouse gases and sulphate aerosols. Nature 376:501-504.

Mitchell J.F.B. and T.C. Johns. 1997. On modification of global warming by sulfate aerosols. Journal of Climate 10(2): 245-267.

Sousounis, P.J. 1999. "A synoptic assessment of climate change model output: explaining the differences and similarities between the Canadian and Hadley climate models".  To be presented at the Eleventh Symposium on Global Change Studies, 80th American Meteorological Society Annual Meeting, Jan. 10-14, 2000, Long Beach, CA.

VEMAP Members. 1995. Vegetation/Ecosystem Modeling and Analysis Project (VEMAP): Comparing biogeography and biogeochemistry models in a continental-scale study of terrestrial ecosystem responses to climate change and CO2 doubling. Global Biogeochemical Cycles 9:407-437.


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