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.
131 years of temperature data in 26 seconds.
Data source: NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies
Visualization credit: NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Scientific Visualization Studio
NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) in New York, which monitors global surface temperatures on an ongoing basis, released an updated analysis that shows temperatures around the globe in 2011 compared to the average global temperature from the mid-20th century.
The comparison shows how Earth continues to experience warmer temperatures than several decades ago. The average temperature around the globe in 2011 was 0.92 degrees F (0.51 C) warmer than the mid-20th century baseline.
As greenhouse gas emissions from energy production, industry and vehicles have increased, temperatures have climbed, most notably since the late 1970s. In this animation, reds indicate temperatures higher than the average during a baseline period of 1951-1980, while blues indicate lower temperatures than the baseline average.