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GCOS Land ECV - Snow Cover

Snowfall and snow cover play a part in feedback mechanisms in the climate system (albedo, runoff, soil moisture, and vegetation) and are important variables in monitoring climate change.

Product Requirements:

  • Area Covered by Snow:
    • Frequency:  Daily
    • Resolution:  1 km (100 m in complex terrain)
    • Required Measurement uncertainty:  5 % (maximum error of omission and commission in snow area); location accuracy better than 1/3 IFOV with target IFOV 100 m in areas of complex terrain, 1 km elsewhere
    • Stability (per decade unless otherwise specified):  4 % (maximum error of omission and commission in snow area); location accuracy better than 1/3 IFOV with target IFOV 100 m in areas of complex terrain, 1 km elsewhere
    • Standards/References:  
      • WMO (World Meteorological Organization). 2008c. Guidelines on Communicating Forecast Uncertainty. WMO/TD No. 1422. Geneva: WMO.
      • WMO (World Meteorological Organization). 2007. Guide to the Global Observing System. WMO-No. 488, Third Edition. Geneva: WMO
      • IACS/UNESCO (International Association of Cryospheric Sciences/United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization). 2009. The International Classification for Seasonal Snow on the Ground - Prepared by the ICSI-UCCS-IACS Working Group on Snow Classification. IHP-VII Technical Documents in Hydrology No. 83/IACS Contribution No. 1. Paris: UNESCO.
    • Entity (in situ):  WIGOS, GCW
  • Snow Depth:
    • Frequency:  Daily
    • Resolution:  1 km (100 m in complex terrain)
    • Required Measurement uncertainty:  10 mm
    • Stability (per decade unless otherwise specified):  10 mm
    • Standards/References:  
      • WMO (World Meteorological Organization). 2008c. Guidelines on Communicating Forecast Uncertainty. WMO/TD No. 1422. Geneva: WMO.
      • WMO (World Meteorological Organization). 2007. Guide to the Global Observing System. WMO-No. 488, Third Edition. Geneva: WMO
      • IACS/UNESCO (International Association of Cryospheric Sciences/United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization). 2009. The International Classification for Seasonal Snow on the Ground - Prepared by the ICSI-UCCS-IACS Working Group on Snow Classification. IHP-VII Technical Documents in Hydrology No. 83/IACS Contribution No. 1. Paris: UNESCO.
    • Entity (in situ):  WIGOS, GCW
  • Snow Water Equivalent:
    • Frequency:  Daily
    • Resolution:  1 km
    • Required Measurement uncertainty:  10 mm
    • Stability (per decade unless otherwise specified):  10 mm
    • Entity (in situ):  WIGOS, GCW

Networks:

Data Sources: