American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers



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HIGH-QUALITY SPATIAL CLIMATE DATA SETS FOR THE UNITED STATES AND BEYOND

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan www.asabe.org

Citation:  Transactions of the ASABE.  VOL. 43(6): 1957-1962 . (doi: 10.13031/2013.3101) @2000
Authors:   C. Daly, G. H. Taylor, W. P. Gibson, T. W. Parzybok, G. L. Johnson, P. A. Pasteris
Keywords:   Climate maps, Spatial climate, Precipitation, Temperature, GIS, PRISM

A number of peer-reviewed, spatial climate data sets of excellent quality and detail for the United States are now available. The data sets are suitable for a variety of modeling, analysis, and decision-making activities. These products are the result of collaboration between Oregon State University’s Spatial Climate Analysis Service and USDA NRCS, NOAA Office of Global Programs, NOAA National Climatic Data Center, NASA, Environment Canada, and other agencies. The development of these high-quality maps was made possible through the development and use of PRISM, a knowledge-based climate analysis system that uses point climate data, a digital elevation model, and other spatial data sets to generate gridded, GIS-compatible estimates of annual, monthly and event-based climatic elements. Mapped elements currently available for the United States include 1961-1990 mean monthly and annual precipitation, maximum and minimum temperature, dew point temperature, relative humidity, snowfall, heating and cooling degree days, growing degree days, median last spring and first fall frost dates, median freeze-free season length, and others. In addition, century-long gridded time series of monthly precipitation and minimum and maximum temperature for the lower 48 states will be available in 2001. Map products for other countries, including China and Canada, are nearing completion.