781 NOAA's State Climate Summaries for the National Climate Assessment: A Resource for Decision Makers

Tuesday, 24 January 2017
Sarah M. Champion, CICS, Asheville, NC; and L. E. Stevens, K. E. Kunkel, B. C. Stewart, D. R. Easterling, R. Frankson, J. D. Runkle, L. Sun, J. Griffin, and S. Veasey

Handout (3.9 MB)

A set of State Climate Summaries have been produced for all 50 U.S. states. These summaries were created in response to a growing demand for state-level information as part of the National Climate Assessment Sustained Assessment and represent a NOAA contribution to this process. Each State Climate Summary aims to provide stakeholders, decision makers, and informed non-scientists with up-to-date state-based information on observed and projected climate change conditions and impacts associated with future greenhouse gas emissions pathways. The summaries focus on characteristics of the physical climate and coastal issues in accordance with NOAA's mission. As these are intended to be supplemental to major climate assessment development, the scope of the content remains true to a “summary” style document.

Each state’s Climate Summary encompasses its climatology as well as projections of future temperature and precipitation, which are presented in order to provide a context for the assessment of future impacts. The climatological component focuses on temperature, precipitation, and noteworthy historical weather events specific to each state and relevant to the climate change discussion. Future climate scenarios are also briefly discussed, using well-known and consistent sets of climate model simulations based on two possible futures of greenhouse gas emissions. These future scenarios present an internally consistent climate picture for every state and are intended to inform with regards to the potential impacts of climate change.

These 50 State Climate Summaries were produced by NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI) and the North Carolina State University Cooperative Institute for Climate and Satellites – NC (CICS–NC) with additional input provided by climate experts, including the NOAA Regional Climate Centers and State Climatologists. Each summary document also underwent a comprehensive and anonymous peer review prior to release.

Each State Climate Summary is comprised of text, figures, and an interactive web presentation. A full suite of the comprehensive analyses and metadata are also available for all states. This presentation will discuss the scientific development for the project, demonstrate the suite of information available, and provide examples of noteworthy figures from select states.

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