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NOAA Boulder Labs: Meet our team

Thu, 2022-01-13 12:44
NOAA Boulder Labs: Meet our team January 13, 2022 A view looking west at the David Skaggs Research Center (DSRC), a NOAA office in Boulder, Colorado. (NOAA) Download Image

Learn about the different types of career paths that are available at the NOAA Boulder campus. Many NOAA employees are scientists, but there are also administrative staff, tech workers, science communicators, and more!


NOAA names Long Island Sound estuary as a protected place

Thu, 2022-01-13 11:12
NOAA names Long Island Sound estuary as a protected place Connecticut National Estuarine Research Reserve becomes the 30th in the system January 14, 2022 An osprey sits on the nest in Connecticut. This location is a new addition to the National Estuarine Research Reserve System. Many reserves are home to migratory bird flyways, making them highly sought-out destinations for birders. (CTNERR/NOAA)

Today, NOAA and the State of Connecticut designated a new national estuarine research reserve in Long Island Sound. Research reserves are designated to protect a section of an estuary and provide a living laboratory to explore and understand important areas where rivers meet the sea, thus promoting understanding and informed management of coastal habitats.

The Connecticut National Estuarine Research Reserve spans 52,160 acres in the southeastern part of the Constitution State. It is the 30th reserve in the national estuarine research reserve system, and the first in the state.

This new research reserve is consistent with the Biden-Harris Administration’s America the Beautiful initiative, which commits to conserving at least 30% of U.S. lands and waters by the year 2030, including by expanding the national estuarine research system.

“NOAA is doing all we can to advance the President’s conservation goals to help address nature loss, mitigate climate change, and create equitable access to the outdoors,” said NOAA Administrator Rick Spinrad, Ph.D. “Protecting special places along our coast and making them accessible for future generations benefits our planet, our people, and our economy, and helps build a climate ready nation.”

The Connecticut National Estuarine Research Reserve will be managed as a partnership between NOAA and the State of Connecticut. The research reserve will facilitate new partnerships and collaborative research to improve coastal management, local community sustainability, and ecosystem resilience.

“The designation of the nation’s 30th National Estuarine Research Reserve in Connecticut represents a win for science-based decision making and helping to enhance environmental education at all levels for the people of Connecticut,” Governor Ned Lamont said. “We’re excited that some of the amazing natural resources of Long Island Sound, the Connecticut River, and some of our state parks and natural area preserves will be utilized as a living laboratory that can help advance national efforts in addressing issues such as climate change and environmental stewardship now and in the future.”

“Partnerships are key to the success of our research reserves, and support from the Connecticut congressional delegation, state officials, and local leaders was critical to this designation,” said Nicole LeBoeuf, director of NOAA’s National Ocean Service. “Each reserve brings together stakeholders, scientists, land management professionals, and educators to understand coastal management issues and generate local, integrated solutions, while leveraging the science generated within the nationwide network of reserves to make our coasts more resilient.”

Within the boundaries of a research reserve, communities and scientists work together to address natural resource management issues on a local scale. These issues include nonpoint source pollution, habitat restoration, and invasive species. Reserves also help make the nation climate ready by contributing to efforts to make the U.S. coasts more resilient to natural and human-made changes. The most recent addition to the research reserve system occurred in January 2017, when the state of Hawaii designated the only reserve in the Pacific Islands

A public event to mark the Connecticut National Estuarine Research Reserve designation is being planned for this spring. Additional details about the upcoming event will be posted on the research reserve website.


Media contact

Jennie Lyons,, (202) 603-9372


Ocean & Coasts National Estuarine Research Reserves 0

¡Hola!, aqui NOAA: Join the NOAA Live! 4 Kids webinar on January 18 in Spanish

Thu, 2022-01-13 08:11
¡Hola!, aqui NOAA: Join the NOAA Live! 4 Kids webinar on January 18 in Spanish NOAA collects and archives environmental data from the depths of the ocean to the surface of the sun to understand and predict our weather. (NOAA) Download Image January 13, 2022

Join us on Tuesday, January 18, 2022, at 4 pm Eastern for our first NOAA Live! 4 Kids Webinar in Spanish offsite link!

Together with Juan Pablo Hurtado Padilla, NOAA's Science on a Sphere manager, and Rafael de Ameller, NOAA’s National Environmental Satellite Data and Information Services Environmental Visualization Laboratory Lead, we will explore all the places where we can find NOAA employees and how this federal agency allows us to observe and understand from the surface of the sun to the depths of the ocean. Finally, we will make a NOAA field notebook with paper and a pencil to record our journey. Do not miss it! Register on the webinar home page offsite link or watch the event on Facebook Live.

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2021 was world’s 6th-warmest year on record

Wed, 2022-01-12 11:21
2021 was world’s 6th-warmest year on record A man (lower right) taking in an expansive view of the dry landscape in the vicinity of the Debre Libanos Gorge in Ethiopia, April 2021. Africa logged its third-warmest year on record in 2021, a tie with 2019. (istock) January 13, 2022

After two consecutive years (2019 and 2020) that ranked among the top three warmest on record, Earth was a slightly cooler planet in 2021. But not by much.

According to an analysis by scientists at NOAA's National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI), 2021 ranked sixth on the list of warmest years on record, dating back to 1880. 

A world map plotted with color blocks depicting percentiles of global average land and ocean temperatures for the full year 2021. Color blocks depict increasing warmth, from dark blue (record-coldest area) to dark red (record-warmest area) and spanning areas in between that were "much cooler than average" through "much warmer than average." (NOAA NCEI)Download Image

Earth’s average land and ocean surface temperature in 2021 was 1.51 degrees F (0.84 of a degree C) above the 20th-century average. 

It also marked the 45th consecutive year (since 1977) with global temperatures rising above the 20th-century average. The years 2013-2021 all rank among the ten-warmest years on record.

The Northern Hemisphere’s land and ocean surface temperature was also sixth highest on record, at 1.96 degrees F (1.09 degrees C) above average. Looking at the Northern Hemisphere’s land areas only, the temperature was third warmest on record, behind 2016 (second warmest) and 2020 (the warmest).

Ocean heat content (OHC), which describes the amount of heat stored in the upper-levels of the ocean, was record high in 2021, surpassing the previous record high set in 2020. The seven highest OHCs have occurred in the last seven years (2015-2021). High ocean-heat content can contribute to sea-level rise.

Map of global average surface temperature in 2021 compared to the 1981-2010 average, with places that were warmer than average colored red, and places that were cooler than average colored blue. The graph shows global temperatures compared to the 20th-century average each year from 2021 (right) back to 1976 (left)–the last year the world was cooler than average. NOAA image, based on data from NOAA NCEI. (NOAA, using NOAA NCEI data)Download Image

2021 as ranked by other scientific organizations

NASA scientists, who conducted a separate but similar analysis, also determined that 2021 was the sixth-warmest year on record, tied with 2018.

Scientists from Europe’s Copernicus offsite link, however, ranked 2021 as the globe’s fifth warmest on record.

An annotated map of the world plotted with the year's most significant climate events. Please see the story below as well as the report summary from NOAA NCEI at (NOAA NCEI)Download Image

Additional NOAA findings

  • Polar sea ice: The average annual sea ice cover in the Arctic was approximately 4.08 million square miles — the ninth-smallest annual average cover in the 1979-2021 record. The last seven years (2015-2021) had an annual sea ice extent that ranked among the 10 smallest on record, according to data from the National Snow and Ice Data Center offsite link. In the Antarctic, annual sea ice cover was slightly below average at 4.42 million square miles, the 18th smallest on record. 
  • Global tropical cyclones: There was an above-average number of tropical cyclones around the world in 2021, with a total of 94 named storms. This value ties with 1994 as the tenth-highest number of named storms in the 41-year record. However, there were only 37 hurricane-strength tropical cyclones worldwide — the lowest number on record, just surpassing the now second-lowest record of 38 set in 2009. 
  • December 2021 warmth: December’s average temperature across global land and ocean surfaces was 1.49 degrees F (0.83 of a degree C) above the 20th-century average. This value was tied with 2016 as Earth’s fifth-warmest December in 142 years. Regionally, South America saw its third-warmest December on record, while Africa and Oceania ranked among the eight warmest on record. Both North America and Europe had an above-average December temperature, but it was their coolest December since 2016.

More: Access NOAA NCEI's year-end 2021 global climate report and images.



Media contact

John, (202) 424-0929

Climate Satellites temperature rankings global average temperatures State of the Climate 0

NOAA and BOEM announce interagency collaboration to advance offshore wind energy

Mon, 2022-01-10 17:53
NOAA and BOEM announce interagency collaboration to advance offshore wind energy January 12, 2022 Offshore wind turbines in Block Island Sound off Southern New England. (Ionna22)

Today, NOAA and the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) signed an interagency memorandum in support of the Biden-Harris Administration’s ambitious offshore wind energy goals to advance wind energy responsibly while protecting biodiversity and promoting cooperative ocean use. Offshore wind energy development plays an important role in how the U.S. is leading the charge to combat the climate crisis, and build a clean energy economy and climate-ready nation.

The Administration set a goal of significantly increasing the nation’s offshore wind energy capacity. This new agreement underscores NOAA’s and BOEM’s commitment to responsibly deploy 30 gigawatts of wind energy production capacity in Federal waters by 2030. The memorandum will help leverage the responsibilities, expertise, and relationships of both NOAA and BOEM in support of the goal by outlining areas of cooperation, and creating a framework to develop future, more detailed agreements related to specific program areas.

“This agreement is powerful and timely as we face climate change head on. It will help ensure coordination, collaboration, and alignment by NOAA and BOEM at key decision points in support of the Administration’s offshore wind energy goal,” said NOAA Administrator Rick Spinrad, Ph.D. “It will also provide specific pathways for NOAA data and services while protecting our ecosystems and marine resources.” 

“We are already seeing the impacts of climate change on communities across the country and the ocean resources that we manage. Now is the time to act. Working together, we will further advance offshore wind, which can play a critical role in meeting our country’s energy needs while combating climate change and creating new family supporting jobs," said BOEM Director Amanda Lefton. “This agreement and the collaboration between NOAA and BOEM shows that fighting climate change and responsible resource management go hand-in-hand.”

The research, planning, and regulatory mechanisms in the offshore wind and clean energy industry will provide for new, good paying jobs while also advancing the scientific understanding of the potential impacts of offshore wind development. Surveying, spatial modeling, mapping, oceanographic assessments, and characterization of ocean regions and jurisdictional boundaries are all critical elements to the successful development of this growing industry.

Read today’s full memorandum and learn more about BOEM and NOAA Fisheries’ Federal Survey Mitigation Program launched in 2021 in support of Biden-Harris Administration wind energy goals. 

Media contact

Lauren Gaches,, cell: 202-740-8314

Fisheries Ocean & Coasts alternative energy 0

Love your national marine sanctuaries? Download our 50th anniversary posters today

Mon, 2022-01-10 14:25
Love your national marine sanctuaries? Download our 50th anniversary posters today Greater Farallones National Marine Sanctuary 50th anniversary commemorative poster. (Greater Farallones National Marine Sanctuary 50th anniversary commemorative poster.) Download Image January 10, 2022




Sanctuaries sanctuaries ocean 0

What factors contributed to Colorado's deadly Marshall fire?

Mon, 2022-01-10 13:29
What factors contributed to Colorado's deadly Marshall fire? The Marshall Fire left smoldering ruins in a Louisville, Colorado, neighborhood, at the end of December 2021. (WXChasing: January 10, 2022




Climate wildfires climate 0

NOAA, NASA to announce 2021 global temperature, climate conditions

Mon, 2022-01-10 13:12
NOAA, NASA to announce 2021 global temperature, climate conditions January 11, 2022 A collage of typical climate and weather-related events: floods, heatwaves, drought, hurricanes, wildfires and loss of glacial ice. (NOAA)

Climate experts from NOAA and NASA will provide the updated analysis of the global temperatures for 2021 and the most important climate trends of the year during a media teleconference on Thursday, January 13, 2022. Topics will include a recap and ranking of 2021 from both NOAA and NASA, the significant global weather and climate events from last year, and a review of the ocean heat content and Arctic sea ice from 2021. Immediately after the briefing, NOAA and NASA experts will be available for questions from the media.


Thursday, January 13, 11:00 a.m. - Noon ET (USA)


  • Russell Vose, chief of climate monitoring, NOAA National Centers for Environmental Information
  • Gavin Schmidt, director, NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies


  • Conference Call (slides will accompany call, see below)
  • Presentations
  • Questions and Answers


1. Dial into the teleconference call:

  • 800-369-1910 U.S./Canada (toll-free)
  • 1-312-470-7405 International (toll)
  • Verbal passcode: CLIMATE

2. Slides for this presentation will be available for download approximately 30 minutes before the teleconference at:

NASA will also provide a stream of the media telecon audio here:

NOAA and NASA collect and analyze the world's temperature data and independently produce a record of Earth's surface temperatures, as well as changes based on historical observations. Consistency between the two independent analyses, and analyses produced by other countries, increases confidence in the accuracy and assessment of the data and resulting conclusions. These analyses provide government and business leaders with critical decision-making information.


NOAA 2021 U.S. climate report & U.S. billion-dollar weather disaster update:

NASA press release on 2021 temperature analysis:


Media contact

John Bateman,, (202) 424-0929

Climate climate outlooks media teleconference 0

A lucky guess? Learn the science of ozone depletion with NOAA and NASA

Mon, 2022-01-10 10:01
A lucky guess? Learn the science of ozone depletion with NOAA and NASA Teaching 8th graders about Antarctic ozone hole in two and a half weeks Ozone diagrams created by students in grades 8 and 9 at Lafayette Junior/Senior High School. (David Amidon, Lafayette Junior/Senior High School) Download Image January 10, 2022 Education ozone hole 0