Maine Climate Science Dashboard

Maine, like much of the northeast, is warming faster than the global average. This dashboard lets you explore historical observations and future scenarios for three climate change indicators: land temperatures, ocean surface temperatures, and sea level rise.

By tracking these indicators, reconstructing past climate changes, and using advanced modeling to understand potential future climate changes, climate scientists have assembled a picture of Maine’s possible climate future under different greenhouse gas emissions scenarios.

Thank you to the Maine Climate Council’s Scientific and Technical Subcommittee, Maine Geological Survey, Maine Climate Office, Gulf of Maine Research Institute, Andrew Pershing of Climate Central, and the U.S. Climate Alliance for advising, data, technical, and financial assistance for this project.


How to use these dashboards

  • Use the dropdown bar at the upper right to select and explore long-term temperatures and projections or seasonal temperature trends (Land and Ocean Temperature Trends) or time ranges through today, mid-century, and end-of-century (Sea Level Rise Trend).
  • Hover over the time series, maps, or bar graphs to see more details about the data.
  • How to use the maps:
    • Land temperature: click on one of three climate zones on the map to highlight that zone in the bar graphs on the right.
    • Ocean temperature: dots show ocean temperatures at different locations in the Gulf of Maine.
    • Sea Level Rise: use the map to select a specific tide gauge (Portland, Bar Harbor, or Eastport), which will update the historical sea level data in the graph.
  • Use your cursor to drag and select a comparison period of historical data or projections of future conditions for three different emissions scenarios (Representative Concentration Pathways (link)/RCPs 2.6 -low emissions, 4.5 -intermediate emissions, and 8.5 -high emissions; see Land and Ocean Temperature Trends) or projections of future sea level rise (intermediate and high sea level rise scenarios).
  • The horizontal dashed line will move with your historical data selection, and colors in the historic data time series will update accordingly relative to the selected year(s).
  • Click away to reset the selection.

Land Temperature Trend

The dashboard defaults to show the current 12-month rolling temperature average against the 1901-2000 baseline average, and against three future projections up to the year 2100. Future increasing high heat index days (days above 90°F heat index) are shown with red horizontal dashed lines.

Learn more:


Ocean Temperature Trend

The dashboard defaults to show the current 12-month rolling average annual ocean (sea surface) temperatures for the Gulf of Maine against a 1901-2000 baseline average, and against three future projections up to the year 2100. Future ocean temperature comparisons with present ocean temperatures in southern New England are shown with red horizontal dashed lines.

Learn more:


Sea Level Rise Trend

The dashboard defaults to show the current 12-month rolling average against a 2000 baseline year, and against two future projections (intermediate and high scenarios) up to the years 2050 and 2100. Future increases in nuisance flooding frequency and amounts of inundated dry beach width on Maine’s coast are shown with gray horizontal dashed lines.

Read our factsheet on sea level rise here (link).

Learn more:


Data sources:

Land Temperature Trend: Historical/observed data on this dashboard updates monthly. Historical temperature data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Climatic Data Center (link). Temperature projections from the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (link); Maine-specific data courtesy of the Maine Climate office (link). High heat index day indicators based on references in the Scientific Assessment of Climate Change and Its Effects in Maine (link).

Ocean Temperature Trend: Historical/observed data on this dashboard updates monthly. Historical temperature data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Extended Reconstructed Sea Surface Temperature (ERSST) v5 (link). Temperature projections from the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (link); Maine-specific data courtesy of the Maine Climate office (link). Future ocean temperature comparisons with southern New England based on references in the Scientific Assessment of Climate Change and Its Effects in Maine (link). 

Sea Level Rise Trend: Historical/observed data on this dashboard updates monthly. Historical monthly tide gauge readings (link) from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Sea level rise projections from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Sea-Level Change Calculator (link), NOAA et al., 2017. Nuisance flooding and inundation indicators based on references in the Scientific Assessment of Climate Change and Its Effects in Maine (link).