About the map [link here]
Global temperature in 1998 was the hottest in the historical record, and the temperature increase over the 20th century is likely to be the highest of the past millennium. Global average temperatures have warmed about one degree Fahrenheit (0.6 C) since 1900. The ten warmest years on record have occurred since 1987, seven of them since 1994.
This map illustrates the local consequences of global warming.
Events indicated on the map are divided into two categories:
- Fingerprints. Some of the events are direct manifestations of a widespread and long-term trend toward warmer global temperatures, as already documented and projected to continue by models of a changing climate. These "fingerprints" of climate change are indicated with yellow icons.
- Harbingers. The map also identifies events that foreshadow the types of impacts likely to become more frequent and widespread with continued warming. These "harbingers" of climate change are indicated with red icons. For these events, evidence for a direct link to long-term climate change cannot be confirmed or ruled out at this time.
Dr. Sharon Locke of the University of Southern Maine and Dr. Susanne Moser of the Union of Concerned Scientists researched, categorized, and described the events featured on this world map and completed a map update in January 2003 based on the latest scientific findings. This updated map builds on work originally undertaken by the Sierra Club and extended by Dr. Janine Bloomfield and Molly Smith of Environmental Defense and Dr. Sharon Locke for the first edition, published in 1999. The Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) has developed background materials on the map for scientists and map curriculum materials for high school teachers.
Dr. John Harte, Dr. Richard Moss, Dr. Stephen Schneider, Dr. Anthony Janetos, and Dr. Janine Bloomfield provided scientific peer review at various stages of compiling and updating the map.
The World Resources Institute oversaw the production of the printed version of the map and undertook the design and construction of this web site. In January 2003, the Union of Concerned Scientists updated the website to reflect the new map points.
Support for this project has been generously provided by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.
The printed version of the map and the graphic images used on this web site were designed by Cutting Edge Graphics, and modified by Kamenko Pajic at UCS.
|The following organizations produced GLOBAL WARMING: Early Warning Signs:|
| Environmental Defense |
Natural Resources Defense Council
Union of Concerned Scientists
| U.S. Public Interest Research Group|
World Resources Institute
World Wildlife Fund