Global Monitoring Division
  • Mauna Loa
    Mauna Loa, Hawaii
  • MLO CO2
    Mauna Loa CO2
  • Barrow, Alaska
    Barrow, Alaska
  • American Samoa
    American Samoa
  • Water Vapor Balloon Flight
    Picture from Water Vapor balloon flight, 20km altitude
  • Solar Transmisison
    Mauna Loa Apparent Solar Transmission
  • Hats data
    Global Means of various Halogenated compounds
  • Surface Radiation
    Surface Radiation Measurement Instruments near Penn State
  • Trinidad Head
    Trinidad Head, California
  • South Pole Ozone
    South Pole Ozone Hole Profile
  • South Pole
    The Atmospheric Research Observatory at South Pole
  • Summit
    Summit, Greenland
  • Carbontracker
    CO2 Weather computed by Carbontracker Model
Climate ESRL's Global Monitoring Division conducts sustained observations and research related to global distributions, trends, sources and sinks of atmospheric constituents that are capable of forcing change in the climate of the Earth. This research will advance climate projections and provide scientific policy-relevant, decision support information to enhance society's ability to plan and respond.
Ozone ESRL's Global Monitoring Division conducts research on the depletion of the global stratospheric ozone layer and Antarctic ozone hole through global surface-based monitoring of total-column ozone, ultraviolet radiation, and ozone-depleting gases, including those regulated by the Montreal Protocol. Continued surveillance is necessary in order to verify the expected recovery of the ozone layer.
Air Quality ESRL's Global Monitoring Division monitors levels of air quality elements such as tropospheric ozone, carbon monoxide and aerosol particles in non-source regions which may be affected by long range transport from distant sources of industrial pollution. This large-scale transport affects baseline air quality which must be monitored in order to determine the importance of regional sources that may impact the environment and public health.

2016 Global Monitoring Annual Conference

2016 Global Monitoring Annual Conference

June 9, 2015

NOAA's Earth System Research Laboratory (ESRL), Global Monitoring Division, held the 44th Global Monitoring Annual Conference on Tuesday and Wednesday, May 17th and 18th, 2016, in Boulder, Colorado.



News and Highlights

Atmospheric Tomography Mission (ATom)
July 8, 2016

Atmospheric Tomography Mission (ATom)

The Atmospheric Tomography Mission (ATom) is a NASA-funded multi-agency effort using the NASA DC-8 research aircraft to systematically sample trace gases and aerosols from sea level to the stratosphere on 10 pole-to-pole flights covering the Atlantic and Pacific oceans over the next 3 years. ATom will study the impact of human-produced air pollution on greenhouse gases and on chemically reactive gases in the atmosphere with a focus on ozone, methane, and black carbon, as well as atmospheric particulate matter.
As Alaska warms, methane emissions appear stable
June 22, 2016

As Alaska warms, methane emissions appear stable

Analysis of nearly three decades of air samples from Alaska’s North Slope shows little change in long-term methane emissions despite significant Arctic warming over that time period, according to new research published in Geophysical Research Letters.
MLO Science Fair Awards
June 21, 2016

MLO Science Fair Awards

Every year MLO contributes to the local Science Fair event. This year Samantha Yamamoto & Maile Birlhante won the junior research award with their project 'Light Dispersing'. Kendra Puleo won the second award with 'Ocean acidification effect on the food chain.' Kylan K. Sakata won the senior division award with 'Verifying special relativity over time dilation through moon decay at variable altitudes' and Moana Lily Pinner won the second award with 'Investigating the SPF, anti-oxidant and anti cancer potential of turmeric and ginger.'
South Pole is last place on Earth to pass global warming milestone
June 15, 2016

South Pole is last place on Earth to pass global warming milestone

The Earth passed another unfortunate milestone May 23 when carbon dioxide surpassed 400 parts per million (ppm) at the South Pole for the first time in 4 million years.
Arctic set for record-breaking melt this summer
May 20, 2016

Arctic set for record-breaking melt this summer

The record heat baking Alaska is poised to smash a host of climate records in 2016, including the earliest snowmelt date at NOAA’s Barrow Observatory, the northernmost point in the nation.
Warming due to carbon dioxide jumped by half in 25 years
May 18, 2016

Warming due to carbon dioxide jumped by half in 25 years

Human activity has increased the direct warming effect of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere by 50 percent above pre-industrial levels during the past 25 years, according to NOAA's 10th Annual Greenhouse Gas Index .
Last light: Sunset at the South Pole
March 20, 2016

Last light: Sunset at the South Pole

In the Northern Hemisphere, the spring equinox promises warmer days and green plants. But for researchers at NOAA's South Pole Atmospheric Baseline Observatory, Sunday March 20 marks the start of the austral autumn, the last time they see the sun for six months.
Record annual increase of carbon dioxide observed at Mauna Loa for 2015
March 10, 2016

Record annual increase of carbon dioxide observed at Mauna Loa for 2015

The annual growth rate of atmospheric carbon dioxide measured at NOAA’s Mauna Loa Observatory in Hawaii jumped by 3.05 parts per million during 2015, the largest year-to-year increase in 56 years of research.
When Less Is More
March 1, 2016

When Less Is More

Carbon tetrachloride (CCl4) was once commonly used as a cleaning agent and remains an important compound in the chemical industry. As a result, production across the globe has been banned for uses that result in CCl4 escaping to the atmosphere. A new study, led by CIRES scientist Lei Hu and NOAA scientist Stephen Montzka of NOAA ESRL's Global Monitoring Division, reports that release rates are still 30 to 100 times higher than amounts reported to emission inventories.
New Methane Global Trends Web Page
February 5, 2016

New Methane Global Trends Web Page

NOAA/ESRL's Global Monitoring Division has introduced a 'Trends in Atmospheric Methane' web page. Similar to the existing 'Trends in Carbon Dioxide' web page, it displays graphs and data for the most recent globally averaged CH4 data.
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Research Groups

Global Greenhouse Gas Reference Network

The GGGRN makes measurements of the spatial and temporal distributions of greenhouse gases and provides essential constraints to our understanding of the global carbon cycle.

Halocarbons and other Trace Species

The HATS group quantifies the distributions and magnitudes of the sources and sinks for important ozone-depleting and greenhouse gases.


The goals of this program are to characterize means, variability, and trends of climate-forcing properties of different types of aerosols.

Solar and Infrared Radiation

Activities involve empirical and theoretical research of the Earth's surface radiation budget.

Ozone and Water Vapor

Research on the nature and causes of the depletion of the stratospheric ozone layer and the role of ozone and water vapor in forcing climate change.

Observatory Operations

NOAA/ESRL operates staffed atmospheric baseline observatories from which numerous in situ and remote atmospheric and solar measurements are conducted.

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