EarthWorks Geospatial Catalog

SST Weekly Degree Heating Week, 2000-2013

Sea surface temperature (SST) plays an important role in a number of ecological processes and can vary over a wide range of time scales, from daily to decadal changes. SST influences primary production, species migration patterns, and coral health. If temperatures are anomalous warm for extended periods of time, drastic changes in the surrounding ecosystem can result, including harmful effects such as coral bleaching. Degree Heating Weeks is a metric of this thermal stress on corals. This layer represents maximum weekly Degree Heating Week (DHW) of sea surface temperature (SST) from 2000 – 2013. A continuous, 5km gap-filled weekly SST data set available from 1985 – 2013 was produced from a variety of sources. Please see Lineage Statement for more details. The Coral Reef Watch methodology was used to calculate Degree Heating Weeks (DHW) time-series. Please see the Coral Reef Watch website for details on how the DHW is product is calculated ( This layer was developed as part of a geospatial database of key anthropogenic pressures to coastal waters of the Main Hawaiian Islands for the Ocean Tipping Points project ( Ocean tipping points occur when shifts in human use or environmental conditions result in large, and sometimes abrupt, impacts to marine ecosystems. The ability to predict and understand ocean tipping points can enhance ecosystem management, including critical coral reef management and policies to protect ecosystem services produced by coral reefs. The goal of the Ocean Tipping Points Hawaii case study was to gather, process and map spatial information on environmental and human-based drivers of coral reef ecosystem conditions.
Ocean Tipping Points Project
Hawaii and Pacific Ocean
Ocean temperature, Marine ecology, Marine ecosystem management, Marine ecosystem health, Chlorophyll, Coral reefs and islands, Environmental impact analysis, Climatic changes, Coastal ecosystem health, and Oceans
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Use and reproduction
Please contact the Ocean Tipping Points project in advance of applying these data sets to project work so the PI can track and communicate data uses and ensure no duplicate efforts are underway. When applying these data for publication, please reference and cite the complete journal article, Wedding et al. 2017,
Copyright ownership resides with the originator.
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