Climate Change Web Portal

NOAA Ocean Climate Change Web Portal:  Detailed Overview

This is an experimental web-tool designed to explore changes projected in the oceans by coupled climate models' CMIP5 experiments (historical and RCP8.5).


Current variables available are sea surface temperature, sea surface salinity, sea surface pH, near-surface air temperature, and precipitation. Temperature, salinity and ocean currents at depth will be available in the near future.

Air temperature and precipitation are represented by 35 models. Sea surface temperature and salinity are represented by 25 models. pH is represented by 11 models.

All data has been interpolated to a 1 degree by 1 degree grid to facilitate inter-comparison. Atmospheric grids were interpolated bilinearly, while oceanic grids were interpolated by a natural neighbor method.

Basics Options

Users can select individual models or an average of all models. There are also choices to be made for season, 21st century time period, and region. Depending on what statistic is chosen, a 4-panel plot will be created. The upper left panel will show the climate from the historical experiment for the period 1956-2005. The upper right will show a measure (depending on statistic chosen) of the change in climate from the historical reference period to the 21st century time period (RCP8.5 experiment). The lower left panel will show some measure (depending on statistic chosen) of the variability in the historical reference period. Lastly, the lower right panel will show some measure of the change in variability of the 21st century period relative to the historical period.

Statistic Options

There are 4 different options for statistics: anomaly, standard anomaly (average of historical standard deviation), standard anomaly (ensemble standard deviation), and standard anomaly (pooled historical standard deviation).

The last two options for standardizing by the ensemble spread or the pooled standard deviation apply only when "average of all the models" is chosen. If a single model is chosen with these options, the plot will revert to the "Standard Anomaly" version above.


For more information or assistance, please contact Jamie Scott.