Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Global Climate Monitor: "Getting Knowledge from Data"

The Global Climate Monitor (GCM) was created by researchers at the University of Seville to "model and [g]eo-visualize global climate data and climate-environmental indicators." If you are familiar with NOAA's monthly climate reports, you will find many of the same types of information here.   Finding and accessing weather and climate data can be daunting.  So, any website that tackles the challenge of making spatiotemporal data more accessible gets kudos.

Users can query several different datasets.
Users can query the GCM database by monthly and annual values as well as normals and trend back to 1901.  Here values are displayed in a grid (with each cell representing roughly 34 x 34 miles)

Moreover, the website allows users to easily select and interact with data across the globe.  In addition, a data download tool has recently released.  It allows users to download the onscreen data as a square grid in many different commonly used formats (*.kml, tiff, jpeg, csv, xlsx, and shp).

In order to download data, look for the little gift/package button on the right-hand side toolbar--at the bottom.

The three goals of the project are: 1) Analysis and management of climate information, 2) spatio-temporal climate variability, and 3) Applied Climatology.

Lastly, the project uses open source web map development tools including GeoServer and OpenLayers.

For more information, visit the main GCM website at or the project page at

Above: Monthly temperature anomalies for February 2015.  The website allows users
 to choose a basemap, change transparency of layers, and identify values. 
The project leverages popular free and open source web map development tools.

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