The satellite image shown here is of the Mojave Desert transformed into principal components to highlight geologic formations, land use and vegetation cover.
Scientists at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) are using predictive tools to understand ecological changes driven by frequent fires due to invasive plant species in California’s Mojave Desert.
In collaboration with the U.S. Geological Survey, scientists are integrating recent advances in fire science and remote sensing tools to characterize the relationship between non-native invasive plant species and wildfire in the desert under current and changing climate conditions.
Over the last six months NOAA’s satellites have tracked 323,828 fire targets. Each tiny speck of this image represents one fire signature detected by a satellite’s thermal sensor.
The month in which each fire occurred is represented here in shades of yellow and orange – the later in the year, the deeper the orange color.
A seasonal shift can be seen in the location, and most likely the cause of the fires. Agricultural burning in the Southeast U.S., along with Cuba, in the early spring yields to agricultural and oil production fires in the Plains during the mid-summer. As the summer intensifies and drought conditions worsen, large wildfires are seen across the Rockies, Sierras, and even the boreal forests of Canada.
This visualization of computer model projections shows how precipitation patterns could change across the U.S. in the coming decades under two different carbon dioxide emissions scenarios.
The two climate scenarios, based on “low” and “high” levels of carbon dioxide emissions, highlight results from the draft National Climate Assessment.
Both scenarios project that dry regions get drier and regions that see more rain and snow would see that trend increase. The scenario with lower emissions, in which carbon dioxide reaches 550 parts per million by 2100, projects more subtle changes.
The scenario with higher carbon dioxide emissions projects changes in average annual precipitation of 10 percent or more in some regions.
This visualization highlights computer model projections from the draft National Climate Assessment, and shows how average temperatures could change across the U.S. in the coming decades under two different carbon dioxide emissions scenarios.
Both scenarios project significant warming. A scenario with lower emissions, in which carbon dioxide reaches 550 parts per million by 2100, still projects average warming across the continental U.S. of 4.5 degrees Fahrenheit.
Early in the month of August, 2012, storms in the Arctic affected the motion of the sea ice north of Siberia and Alaska.
This animation shows the motion of the winds over the Arctic in conjunction with seasonal melting of the Arctic sea ice from August 1 through September 13, 2012, when the NASA scientists determined that the sea ice reached its annual minimum extent.
The surface winds, shown my moving arrows, are colored by the velocity. Slower winds are shown in blue, medium in green and the fast winds are shown in red.
The high pressure system that allowed for this rare clear-sky image of Alaska by NASA also brought soaring, record-breaking temperatures in the upper 90s to many areas of the state. The unusual weather was highlighted by President Obama in his speech on climate change yesterday.
Green: Vegetation On Our Planet
This visualization from NOAA reveals new images of Earth (from the NOAA/NASA Suomi NPP satellite) and the transformation of vegetation around the world.
The NOAA/NASA Suomi NPP satellite collected a year’s worth of data through its onboard Visible-Infrared Imager/Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) instrument. VIIRS detects changes in the reflection of light hitting the Earth and produces images that measure the changes to vegetation over time.
The map above shows global temperature anomalies for 2000 to 2009. It depicts how much warmer or colder a region is compared to the norm for that region from 1951 to 1980. Global temperatures from 2000–2009 were on average about 0.6°C higher than they were from 1951–1980. The Arctic, however, was about 2°C warmer.
High speed imagery of the Oklahoma Tornadoes
The Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) collected this view of the storm system that spawned a deadly tornado over Moore, Oklahoma May 20, 2013.