Combining SST data from buoys and climate models to predict climate thresholds for the past, present, and future of the Pacific Northwest
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Sea surface temperature (SST) of water is widely used to gauge the effects of climate change on the world’s oceans. By focusing on the Pacific Northwest, I examined the ramifications of increased likelihood for extreme warm anomalies for a particular region as opposed to a global scale and see when this should be expected to happen. Data from observations, climate models and projections were used to create a picture of the region’s SST history. The highest temperature reached in the historical data was averaged at 17.5oC, so I used this historical maximum as a threshold marker for the observational and projection data. I concluded that the advent of climate change can be viewed through the combination of past, present, and future data as the climate threshold of 17.5oC is passed more frequently as the CO2 concentration increases in the atmosphere. As we move forward, anthropogenic sources will cause the global effects of climate change to only get worse.