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European Seasonal and Annual Temperature Variability, Trends, and Extremes Since 1500


Fig. 3. Winter temperature trends (deg. C per decade) from 1684 to 1738.
Fig. 3. Winter temperature trends (°C per decade) from 1684 to 1738.

European Seasonal and Annual Temperature Variability, Trends, and Extremes Since 1500
Science
Vol. 303, Issue 5663, pp. 1499-1503, 5 March 2004.

Jürg Luterbacher1,2, Daniel Dietrich3, Elena Xoplaki2, Martin Grosjean1, and Heinz Wanner1,2

1 National Center of Competence in Research (NCCR) Climate, University of Bern, Bern, Switzerland.
2 Institute of Geography, Climatology, and Meteorology, University of Bern, Bern, Switzerland.
3 Department of Mathematical Statistics and Actuarial Science, University of Bern, Bern, Switzerland.
ABSTRACT:
Multiproxy reconstructions of monthly and seasonal surface temperature fields for Europe back to 1500 show that the late 20th- and early 21st-century European climate is very likely (>95% confidence level) warmer than that of any time during the past 500 years. This agrees with findings for the entire Northern Hemisphere. European winter average temperatures during the period 1500 to 1900 were reduced by ~0.5°C (0.25°C for annual mean temperatures) compared to the 20th century. Summer temperatures did not experience systematic century-scale cooling relative to present conditions. The coldest European winter was 1708/1709; 2003 was by far the hottest summer.
Download data from the WDC Paleo archive:
European Seasonal Temperature Reconstructions from Luterbacher et al. 2004 and Xoplaki et al. 2005.
Plot the reconstructions produced in this study using the
WDC Paleo Interactive Plotting tool

To read or view the full study, please visit the Science website.
It was published in Science, Vol. 303, Issue 5663, pp. 1499-1503, 5 March 2004.
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