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The Centennial Trends Greater Horn of Africa precipitation dataset.

Funk C, Nicholson SE, Landsfeld M, Klotter D, Peterson P, Harrison L - Sci Data (2015)

Bottom Line: East Africa is a drought prone, food and water insecure region with a highly variable climate.This complexity makes rainfall estimation challenging, and this challenge is compounded by low rain gauge densities and inhomogeneous monitoring networks.This paper documents the CenTrends methodology and data.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: US Geological Survey National Center for Earth Resource Observation & Science (EROS), Sioux Falls, South Dakota 57198-0001, USA ; UC Santa Barbara Climate Hazards Group, Geography Department, UCSB, Santa Barbara, California 93106-4060, USA.

ABSTRACT
East Africa is a drought prone, food and water insecure region with a highly variable climate. This complexity makes rainfall estimation challenging, and this challenge is compounded by low rain gauge densities and inhomogeneous monitoring networks. The dearth of observations is particularly problematic over the past decade, since the number of records in globally accessible archives has fallen precipitously. This lack of data coincides with an increasing scientific and humanitarian need to place recent seasonal and multi-annual East African precipitation extremes in a deep historic context. To serve this need, scientists from the UC Santa Barbara Climate Hazards Group and Florida State University have pooled their station archives and expertise to produce a high quality gridded 'Centennial Trends' precipitation dataset. Additional observations have been acquired from the national meteorological agencies and augmented with data provided by other universities. Extensive quality control of the data was carried out and seasonal anomalies interpolated using kriging. This paper documents the CenTrends methodology and data.

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Centennial Trend station locations and standard errors.(a–c) Centennial Trend (red circles) and GPCC (blue squares) station locations for 2006–2010, 2001–2005, 1996–2000. Symbols are plotted when the location reports for four out of five years. In 2006–2010 the CenTrends (GPCC) data set had 276 (50) observations. In 2001–2005 there were 333 (159) observations. In 1996–2000 there were 404 (187) observations. (d) Kriging variogram for March-June e. 1900–2014 average standard errors, expressed as percentages of the 1900–2014 seasonal CenTrends mean fields.
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f1: Centennial Trend station locations and standard errors.(a–c) Centennial Trend (red circles) and GPCC (blue squares) station locations for 2006–2010, 2001–2005, 1996–2000. Symbols are plotted when the location reports for four out of five years. In 2006–2010 the CenTrends (GPCC) data set had 276 (50) observations. In 2001–2005 there were 333 (159) observations. In 1996–2000 there were 404 (187) observations. (d) Kriging variogram for March-June e. 1900–2014 average standard errors, expressed as percentages of the 1900–2014 seasonal CenTrends mean fields.

Mentions: The data set presented here has been developed to support humanitarian relief agencies, East African climate adaptation efforts, and the climate science community’s need for high quality up-to-date rainfall estimates. Over the past 16 years, East Africa has been struck by 8 boreal spring droughts1. The 2011 drought resulted in 258,000 deaths2 and wide spread food insecurity3,4. Rainfall data helped anticipate5, monitor3 and contextualize6 the 2011 dry event. Today, climate scientists in Africa and abroad are working to support better climate prediction and adaptation. Limited station data, however, makes analyzing variability and change at regional scales7 difficult. Many products, like the Global Precipitation Climate Centre (GPCC) data set8,9 have seen the number of observations fall precipitously since the 1990s8. This has produced data gaps over Eastern Africa (Fig. 1a–c). To help overcome these limitations, researchers at Florida State University (FSU)10–12 and the US Geological Survey/UC Santa Barbara Climate Hazards Group (CHG)13–16 have combined and updated their station archives. The resulting Centennial Trends (CenTrends) data set has substantially better coverage than the GPCC (Fig. 1a–c). The CenTrends moniker does not imply centennial linear trends in African rainfall, but rather a dataset supporting the analysis of seasonal and decadal excursions within a centennial context.


The Centennial Trends Greater Horn of Africa precipitation dataset.

Funk C, Nicholson SE, Landsfeld M, Klotter D, Peterson P, Harrison L - Sci Data (2015)

Centennial Trend station locations and standard errors.(a–c) Centennial Trend (red circles) and GPCC (blue squares) station locations for 2006–2010, 2001–2005, 1996–2000. Symbols are plotted when the location reports for four out of five years. In 2006–2010 the CenTrends (GPCC) data set had 276 (50) observations. In 2001–2005 there were 333 (159) observations. In 1996–2000 there were 404 (187) observations. (d) Kriging variogram for March-June e. 1900–2014 average standard errors, expressed as percentages of the 1900–2014 seasonal CenTrends mean fields.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License 1 - License 2
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4587371&req=5

f1: Centennial Trend station locations and standard errors.(a–c) Centennial Trend (red circles) and GPCC (blue squares) station locations for 2006–2010, 2001–2005, 1996–2000. Symbols are plotted when the location reports for four out of five years. In 2006–2010 the CenTrends (GPCC) data set had 276 (50) observations. In 2001–2005 there were 333 (159) observations. In 1996–2000 there were 404 (187) observations. (d) Kriging variogram for March-June e. 1900–2014 average standard errors, expressed as percentages of the 1900–2014 seasonal CenTrends mean fields.
Mentions: The data set presented here has been developed to support humanitarian relief agencies, East African climate adaptation efforts, and the climate science community’s need for high quality up-to-date rainfall estimates. Over the past 16 years, East Africa has been struck by 8 boreal spring droughts1. The 2011 drought resulted in 258,000 deaths2 and wide spread food insecurity3,4. Rainfall data helped anticipate5, monitor3 and contextualize6 the 2011 dry event. Today, climate scientists in Africa and abroad are working to support better climate prediction and adaptation. Limited station data, however, makes analyzing variability and change at regional scales7 difficult. Many products, like the Global Precipitation Climate Centre (GPCC) data set8,9 have seen the number of observations fall precipitously since the 1990s8. This has produced data gaps over Eastern Africa (Fig. 1a–c). To help overcome these limitations, researchers at Florida State University (FSU)10–12 and the US Geological Survey/UC Santa Barbara Climate Hazards Group (CHG)13–16 have combined and updated their station archives. The resulting Centennial Trends (CenTrends) data set has substantially better coverage than the GPCC (Fig. 1a–c). The CenTrends moniker does not imply centennial linear trends in African rainfall, but rather a dataset supporting the analysis of seasonal and decadal excursions within a centennial context.

Bottom Line: East Africa is a drought prone, food and water insecure region with a highly variable climate.This complexity makes rainfall estimation challenging, and this challenge is compounded by low rain gauge densities and inhomogeneous monitoring networks.This paper documents the CenTrends methodology and data.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: US Geological Survey National Center for Earth Resource Observation & Science (EROS), Sioux Falls, South Dakota 57198-0001, USA ; UC Santa Barbara Climate Hazards Group, Geography Department, UCSB, Santa Barbara, California 93106-4060, USA.

ABSTRACT
East Africa is a drought prone, food and water insecure region with a highly variable climate. This complexity makes rainfall estimation challenging, and this challenge is compounded by low rain gauge densities and inhomogeneous monitoring networks. The dearth of observations is particularly problematic over the past decade, since the number of records in globally accessible archives has fallen precipitously. This lack of data coincides with an increasing scientific and humanitarian need to place recent seasonal and multi-annual East African precipitation extremes in a deep historic context. To serve this need, scientists from the UC Santa Barbara Climate Hazards Group and Florida State University have pooled their station archives and expertise to produce a high quality gridded 'Centennial Trends' precipitation dataset. Additional observations have been acquired from the national meteorological agencies and augmented with data provided by other universities. Extensive quality control of the data was carried out and seasonal anomalies interpolated using kriging. This paper documents the CenTrends methodology and data.

Show MeSH
Related in: MedlinePlus