The Copernicus 2017 State of Climate

The EU-funded Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S) and Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service (CAMS), both implemented by ECMWF, have drawn up an overview of climate indicators in 2017 with a special emphasis on Europe. The DUACS altimeter sea level products have been used to contribute to this report.

Key findings include that:

  • During the last few months of 2017, some land areas of the North Atlantic Arctic experienced monthly temperatures more than 6°C above the 1981–2010 average
  • Spring was one of the warmest on record in southwestern Europe, at close to 1.7°C above the 1981–2010 average
  • Overall in 2017, the European average temperature was 0.8°C higher than the 1981–2010 average, making the year the fifth or sixth warmest on record, depending on the dataset considered
  • In the European sector of the Arctic, sea ice cover was much lower than average during the first three months of the year, and January showed the largest negative anomaly on record.

More information here.

CMEMS Ocean Monitoring Indicators

The Copernicus Marine Service (CMEMS) now proposes a catalogue of Ocean Monitoring Indicators (OMI) including some OMIs derived from the DUACS altimeter sea level products (see the DUACS products and Ocean Indicators).

Due to their processing focused on the stability and homogeneity of the sea level record (see here), the computation of the CMEMS sea level OMIs is based on the C3S climate sea level products.

A yearly status of the CMEMS OMIs is provided in the CMEMS Ocean State Report (OSR).

Temporal evolution of globally averaged daily mean sea level without annual and semi-annual signals (blue) and low-pass filtered mean sea level (red). Arbitrary offsets have been introduced for more clarity. The MSL curves have been corrected for the GIA using the ICE5G-VM2 GIA model (Peltier, 2004).
Spatial distribution of the altimeter sea level trends during 01/1993 – 05/2017 (in mm/yr) in the global ocean. No GIA correction is applied on the altimeter data.

Ocean State Report 2016: mean sea level monitoring

Temporal evolution of globally averaged daily MSL without annual and semi-annual signals (blue), 9-month low-pass filtered MSL (red) and annual mean thermosteric sea level (0–700 m) (green, uncertainty estimation method after von Schuckmann et al. 2009) anomalies relative to the 1993–2014 mean.

Global mean sea level (MSL) rise is one of the most adverse consequences of climate change.

The precise monitoring of sea level is crucial to comprehend the socio-economic consequences associated with its contemporary rapid rise and to understand rise due to climate change. Accurate monitoring of this variable is also required to understand the sea level variability and changes over a wide range of temporal and spatial scales, from seasonal to decadal periods and from regional to global scales. Since 1993, variations in sea level have been routinely measured by high-precision satellite altimetry.
The trend of global MSL during the 1993–2015 period amounts to 3.3 mm/yr±0.5 mm/yr.
The present-day global MSL rise primarily reflects ocean warming (“thermosteric” sea level, through thermal expansion of sea water) for about 1.0 mm/yr for the first 700 m of the ocean (about 1/3 of the current rise), and ocean mass increase in response to land ice melt.

See Ocean state report 2016 for details and more information.