The Earth globe viewed from space and showing land masses in different colours according to temperature, from blue to red.

Climate observations

The Met Office Hadley Centre is one of a number of leading research centres around the world which monitors changes in the climate. Click on the links below for up to date information about global surface temperature, the state of our Arctic and Antarctic sea ice, trends in greenhouse gas and ozone-depleting gases in the atmosphere, and for UK climate. 

Published by the Met Office

  • State of the UK Climate report published annually.
  • Arctic and Antarctic Sea Ice Brief published monthly between June - October. The briefing contains details of the sea ice ‘extent' - the total area of ocean for which at least 15% of the surface in the immediate vicinity is ice-covered. Arctic sea ice normally reaches a maximum extent around March and a minimum extent in September. Antarctic sea ice normally reaches its maximum extent in September and minimum in February. 
  • Climate dashboard provides data on the the key indicators of climate change. There are many data sets out there providing useful information. As well as the data sets produced by the Met Office Hadley Centre, we have brought together data from respected institutes and research groups around the world to provide a more complete picture of what's happening in the climate. 
  • Global climate extremes dashboard presents the global indices of moderate temperature and precipitation extremes calculated  from historical observations of temperature and rainfall. The HadEX3 indices were developed in collaboration between the Met Office, ARC Centre of Excellence for Climate Extremes at the University of New South Wales Environment and Climate Change Canada and Barcelona Supercomputing Center.
  • Sea Level dashboard monitors the individual components which contribute to sea level rise.
  • HadObs provides global and UK climate data for climate monitoring and climate research.

External publications 

  • State of the Global Climate report published annually by the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO). The report focuses on key climate indicators including greenhouse gases, temperatures, sea level rise, ocean heat and acidification,  sea ice and glaciers. It also highlights the impacts of climate change and extreme weather.
  • The State of the Climate published annually as a supplement to the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society is an annual summary of the global climate.
  • United in science report is published annually by the WMO and is a multi-organization high-level compilation of the most recent science related to climate change, impacts and responses.

Essential Climate Variables

The WMO identified 54 elements of the global atmosphere, oceans, ice cover and biodiversity that need monitoring because they provide essential evidence for understanding, predicting and adapting to climate change. These are known as Essential Climate Variables and here are eight examples including greenhouse gases, surface temperatures, lightning, phenology, glacier mass balance, lakes, surface water vapour and ozone.