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Mean Annual Precipitation 1950 - 2000 Print E-mail
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Global gridded fields of long-term average (1950-2000) precipitation (mm/yr).

Map description and dataset provided by: Water Systems Analysis Group, Complex System Research Center, Institute for the Study of Earth, Oceans and Space, University of New Hampshire, USA

DescriptionMean Annual Precipitation 1950 - 2000

This map shows average annual precipitation for the globe on a 0.5 X 0.5 degree global grid. Precipitation field represents a long term annual average (mm/yr) computed from monthly modeled precipitation for years 1950-2000.

Interpretation

This map illustrates the complexity of precipitation and atmospheric water cycle patterns across the globe. High precipitation levels are evident across the tropics driven by high radiant energy and moisture in these regions. Large scale land effects impacting precipitation are evident in the desertic areas of the globe including the Saharan region of Africa, central Asia and Australia and western regions of North America and southern regions of South America. Climate change associated with greenhouse gas warming could result in a potential acceleration of the hydrologic cycle leading to greater frequency and intensity of extreme events like floods and drought. Of critical importance are the transitional zones between humid and arid zones such as the Sahelian region of Africa. Areas affected by seasonally precipitation patterns such as the monsoon region of India also represent climatically sensitive regions. A monthly climatology of the dataset is also available.

Source

The dataset for this map was provided by: Charles J. Vörösmarty, Water Systems Analysis Group, Complex System Research Center, Institute for the Study of Earth, Oceans and Space, University of New Hampshire, USA

Background

Modeled precipitation data is derived from Mitchell et al., 2004 and used for input to the UNH Water Systems Analysis Group Water Balance Model (WBM) (Fekete et al., 2002) as well as ongoing analysis.

Citation

Please cite this map as: "GWSP Digital Water Atlas (2008). Map 36: Mean Annual Precipitation 1950 - 2000 (V1.0). Available online at http://atlas.gwsp.org."

Contact Information

Charles J. Vörösmarty, Water Systems Analysis Group, Complex System Research Center, Institute for the Study of Earth, Oceans and Space, University of New Hampshire, Durham, NH USA 03824, This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it , Phone: +01.603.862.0850, Fax: +01.603.8

 
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