Hourly wind velocity data from a dynamically downscaled projection of past and future microclimates covering North America from 1980-1999 and 2080-2099

  • Ofir Levy (Contributor)
  • Lauren B. Buckley (Contributor)
  • Timothy Keitt (Contributor)
  • Michael J. Angilletta Jr (Contributor)



Ecological forecasting requires information about the climatic conditions experienced by organisms. Despite impressive methodological and computational advances, ecological forecasting still suffers from poor resolutions of environmental data. Published data comprise relatively few layers of surface climate and suffer from coarse temporal resolution. Hence, models using these data might underestimate heterogeneity of microclimates and miss biological consequences of climatic extremes. Moreover, we currently lack predictions about vegetation cover in future environments, a key factor for estimating the spatial heterogeneity of microclimates and hence the capacity for behavioral thermoregulation. Here, we describe microclimates and vegetation for the past and the future at spatial and temporal resolutions of 36 km (approximately 0.3°) and 1 h, respectively. We used the Weather Research and Forecasting model to downscale published, bias-corrected predictions of a global-circulation model from a resolution of 0.9° latitude and 1.25° longitude (approximately 100 km in latitude and 130 km in longitude). Output from this model was used as input for a microclimate model, which generated predictions for 19 variables for 1980-1999 and 2080-2099 at various heights, depths, sun angle and shade intensities. The data was evaluated using several criteria, each of which shed light on a different aspect of value to researchers. The metadata describe the modeling protocol, microclimate calculations, computer programs, and the evaluation process. The 19 predicted variables include albedo, snow layers, microclimate temperatures and pressures, among others. For a list of all variables please see the 'Model variables table' below. The dataset is structured as follows: (1) Main package: 19 monthly summaries, one for each microclimate variable (listed above) are available in this packagePackage structure schema/infographicR-script to extract and save NetCDF filesLocations table with latitude and longitude points covered in this data (csv)19 sub-packages (externally hosted, linked below) are available for this project, one for each microclimate variable.(2) Sub-packages: Within each sub-package are 44 tar files representing: 2 scenarios (past; future) across 22 geographical regions (see CoverageMap_Levy.png for distribution of regions)..tar file name template is [region]_[variable code]_[scenario]; i.e. B3_ISNOW_future.(3) .tar file: Each .tar file contains projection data in NetCDF format binary files for one region, one variable and for either past or future climates (1980-1999 and 2080- 2099).(4) NetCDF files : Each NetCDF file is a time-series of data for a particular variable in one location (indexed by the longitudinal-latitudinal coordinates) for either past or future climates (1980-1999 and 2080-2099).Resolutions are of 36 km and 1 hour. This sub-package contains past and future predictions of wind velocity at different layers above the ground (at 3-cm intervals from 3 to 30cm, 18-cm intervals from 30 to 174 cm, and at 198 cm) in North America. In the microclimate model, wind velocity (unit: m/s) was assumed to logarithmically decrease with height from 10m above the ground to the ground level. Predictions of wind velocity at 10m above the ground from the Weather Research and Forecasting model simulation were used to drive calculations. For more details, see Levy et al. (2016). There are 18 other sub-packages containing predictions for other variables, please see the main data package (doi:10.5072/FK2FX78N9G) for details and access.
Date made availableJan 1 2016
PublisherUC Santa Barbara

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