Weather data

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Global coverage

  • NOAA's National Climatic Data Center is the "world's largest archive of weather and climate data". From here you can obtain virtually any type of weather data, including summaries, records, normals, maps, and predictions over land, sea, upper air, and space. There is also a wide range of reconstructed palaeoclimatic datasets available, obtained from natural sources such as tree rings, ice cores, pollen, corals, sdiment deposits and radiocarbon datings. The website focuses mostly on the USA, but some data from other locations are also available.The easiest way to search for data outside the USA is probably through their Integrated Map Application. You can also plot time series graphs for a range of climate indicators.
  • NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center's Global Change Master Directory provide links to a wide range of climate-related datasets (searchable by topic). I've managed to trace down some obscure sources from here, but it requires a little work.
  • NASA's (Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite) VIRRS satellite collects data that can be used to measure cloud and aerosol properties, ocean color, sea and land surface temperature, fire and albedo, which can be used in climate research.
  • World Climate is the "largest accessible collection of climate data on the web" that includes global climate maps, weather station data, summaries, and anomalies.
  • Rainfall and other atmospheric data can be obtained though NASA's Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) satellite. These include realtime rainfall summaries from 3 hours to 7 days, rainfall averages and anomalies, flood and landslide estimates, as well as hurricanes and typhoons tracking.
  • NASA's NEO repository offers access to a large amount of oceanic, atmospheric, energy, land, and life data. You can also view the data as a time series of maps.
  • A range of atmospheric data derived from NASA's MODIS satellites can be obtained through LAADS.
  • NASA Snow and Ice cover information can be obtained though the National Snow and Ice Data Center.
  • NASA's Orbiting Carbon Observatory collects global measurements of CO2 in earth's atmosphere.
  • NOAA's National Geophysical Data Center is a source for data on natural hazzards, space weather, solar events, and more. Some of the information on offer include geomagnetic data, marine geophysics and geology.
  • NOAA's Earth System Research Laboratory (ESRL) has a repository of gridded climate datasets, including monthly and seasonal composites. An interactive map of data availability can be seen here.
  • The European Space Agency (ESA)'s ERS satellites are used for monitoring of ocean surface temperature, ozone, and wind fields. More information on how to access ESA data here.
  • Near real-time maps of global fire events and summaries can be found at ISDR.
  • The UN FAO's Climpag archives a range of measured climate datasets (measured and interpolated).
  • The Atlas of the Biosphere provides users spatial maps on temperature, runoff, precipitation, evapotranspiration, soil moisture, snow depth, humidity, growing degree days, and soil Ph.
  • NASA's global precipitation measurements database.
  • NASA's global soil moisture database.



Local coverage

North America

  • NOAA's National Climatic Data Center is the "world's largest archive of weather and climate data". From here you can obtain virtually any type of weather data, including summaries, records, normals, and predictions over land, sea, upper air, and space. There is also a wide range of palaeoclimatic datasets available, obtained from natural sources such as tree rings, ice cores, pollen, corals, sdiment deposits and radiocarbon datings.
  • Daymet offers comprehensive daily climate data for North America at 1km resolution
  • PRISM provides up-to-date interpolated monthly, yearly, and event-based climate data for North America and Pacific Islands
  • The Yellowstone Ecological Research Center offers NOAA and NASA climate summaries (1980-2009) of the Lower 48 US states at 8km-resolution throught their COASTER server.
  • The North Carolina Forest Service monitor a number of weather stations over NC, and made the climate data they monitor available here.
  • Cornell University's Northeast Regional Climate Center offers data on a range of climate variables for the US' northeastern states.
  • The Western Regional Climate Center offers access to a range of historical and climate summaries.
  • The National Renewable Energy Laboratory holds a host of energy-related GIS resources for the United States, including data on wind, solar,biomass, geothermal, and other energy resources.



  • Detailed climate surface summaries for southwestern Asia are available through NOAA's National Climate Distribution Center



Climate change

  • The IRI/LDEO Climate Data Library has a nice introduction to climate change modeling.
  • A workshop report in approaches to climate modeling and downscaling can be accessed here.
  • Eric Salathe has downscaled a number of climate change simulations, and identified three models representative of the highest, average, and lowest warming scenarios. These three models were used as a basis for a number of climate change studies in the Pacific Northwest. It would be interesting to know whether this strategy is more widely applicable.
  • The IPCC Data Distribution Center offers access to an extensive dataset of climate change (socio-economic, environmental, and forecasts) data, past and present, and at a range of temporal and spatial scales. Here's a link to period averages.
  • CIAT's CCAFS's GCM data portal is another extensive archive of (downscaled) climate model results over a range of spatial and temporal scales, and institutions. There is a short online discussion about this dataset on the Maxent discussion group. I found this resource to be rather suitable for ecological mapping, specially because of the fine scale (0.5 arc-seconds) and consistency among the different datasets.
  • Worldclim used to be a one-stop shop for interpolated climate change data, providing access to current (1950-2000) and past (paleoclimate modelling) climate data (at 1km resolution). Downscaled data for IPCC 3 are still available, but Worldclim links to the CIAT CCAFS data portal (linked above) for IPCC 4 data.
  • The Nature Conservancy's Climate Wizard is a great climate change visualization product, offering users predicipation and temperature average and change maps. You can view these maps either globally, or zoomed to any country or US state, for a range of scenarios and models. There is also a link to download the data, offered at 12km (US) or 50km (global) resolution.
  • The IRI/LDEO Climate Data Library contains over 300 climate change datasets. The Maproom offers a visual guide to climate change, while the data can downloaded in a variety of formats. There is also a nice introduction to climate change modeling.
  • Oxford University's School of Geography and Environment archives a range of UNDP climate change country profiles. This includes reports, observed, and modeled climate summaries for the 52 countries considered, focussing on information gaps for developing countries.
  • An extensive list of links to institutes doing climate change research (many of them offering their results) can be found at the Program for Climate Model Diagnosis and Intercomparison (PCMDI)'s Links page.
  • The University of Wisconsin's Center for Climatic Research offers a wide range of global downscaled climate change products, including raw data for various models (10 arc-minute resolution), maps, seminars and other resources.
  • East Anglia University's Climatic Research Unit (CRU) offers access to a great number of historical and projected climate change datasets, including downscaled high-resolution data (at a range of scales, scopes, and periods) produced both by CRU and the Tyndall Center for Climate Change Research, also at East Anglia University.
  • The Climate Impacts LINK Project provides climate simulation results from a range of models by the Met Office Hadley Center (HadCM) in the UK. For a bigger scope you can also visit the British Atmospheric Data Center (DADC) data link.
  • The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change holds a sizeable greenhouse gas inventory.
  • The Community Earth System Model (CESM) is a coupled climate model for simulating earth's climate system, using four separate models simultaneously. CCSM GCM output is also available.
  • The WMO's Global Climate Observing System (CGOS) offers links to a variety of "essential climate variable" datasets.
  • The IPCC's Special Report on Emission Scenario's data is available here.
  • is "the world's largest climate forecasting experiment, and rely on outside sources to run their models. Raw data from their experiments are available for viewing and download.
  • The World Climate Research Programme (WCRP)'s Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP) was established "as a standard experimental protocol for studying the output of coupled atmosphere-ocean general circulation models". CMIP data is archived at the Program for Climate Model Diagnosis and Intercomparison (PCMDI).
  • The World Resources Institute's Climate Analysis Indicators Tool (CAIT) holds a comprehensive database of greenhouse gas inventories and climate-relevant indicators.
  • A link from Santa Clara University offers downscaled climate modeling data for the lower 48 US States at 12km resolution, and global data at 50km resolution.
  • The University of Washington's Climate Impacts Group (CIG) considers how climate change will affect the US' Pacific Northwest. While the focus falls on the Pacific Northwest, a range of gridded global datasets are also available.
  • The Northeast Climate Impacts Assessment (NECIA) offers an extensive downscaled climate change modeling dataset for northeast United States.
  • The USGS CASCaDE (Computational Assessments of Scenarios of Change for the Delta Ecosystem) project assesses how miltiple drivers affect rainfall and temperature. While the focus falls on California, downscaled climate data are available for much of the USA and Canada.
  • The North American Regional Climate Change Assessment Program (NARCCAP) offers data on a range of high-resolution climate change models for the North American continent. NARCCAP's Data tables can be accessed here.
  • A consortium of US-based institutes offers a range of bias corrected and downscaled climate projections for the USA. Fine scale data for the western USA are also available.
  • The US DOE's Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center (CDIAC) mainly holds records of atmospheric CO2 concentrations, but a range of other climage change data products are also available.
  • The EDENext Data Portal provides downloadable climate change layers for a number of different climatic datasets, including a range of current (baseline) and projected future climate variables. Access to the data in the data archive, under "Atmospheric Conditions and Meteorological Geographical Features".
  • EDENext also offers a downscaled water layer forecast (drinking water infrastructure quality indicators) for Europe in 2005, 2030, and 2050.
  • provides a primer on GCMs, as well as over 3000 datasets related to climate change at their Climate Center, including monthly fire and sea level rise forecasts for the USA. Registration required for data access.
  • Climate 1-Stop provides a single location to access proven climate change tools, resources, and information.



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