This graph features a history of global surface temperatures that combine measurements from as far back as 800,000 years up to the present. Select a greenhouse gas from the graph menu to compare temperature to historical carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide levels. The graph is customizable and can be resized, printed, or pasted into your website. This is a free service, but we do ask for a donation if you find this useful. This is a project of the 2 Degrees Institute, a non-profit organization.
A paleoclimatic temperature record for researchers and educators
Current and Historical data
This global temperature chart is automatically updated every month with data directly from NASA's GLOBAL Land-Ocean Temperature Index. The graphs incorporates monthly temperature values since 1880 when Modern record keeping began. Prior to 1880, global temperature was reconstructed from ice cores and sea sediment data. To view greenhouse gas data, select a gas from the graph menu. Learn more about the data sources.
Free Temperature Record Graph
This interactive graph is free to use on your website. Simply choose your color theme and then copy and paste 2 lines of code. Data and source code is hosted on our servers so you do not have to worry about using up your server's bandwidth. New global temperature data is updated automatically, every month. Greenhouse gases (accessible from the graph menu - top right of graph) are also updated automatically.
Zoomable and Printable
View surface temperature data over a span of thousands of years or zoom to specific time periods. Use your fingers to pinch and zoom on a handheld device or use a mouse with a computer. Export the chart to PNG, JPG, PDF or SVG format with the click of a button or print the chart directly from the web page.
Customizable and Responsive
Choose from 4 color themes to match your website's look and feel. Customize the width and height of your graph or have it fill your entire screen. The temperature graph is responsive and can automatically resize to fit whatever device or screen size it is being viewed on.
Modern and paleoclimatic temperature data combined.
800,000 years ago - 20,000 years ago
Global temperatures reconstructed by taking a spatially-weighted average of 59 proxy sea surface
temperature records from around the global oceans. All records span the last 150,000 years, but the
dataset degrades to approximately 10 records by 800,000 years ago. The reconstruction has been scaled
to have a glacial-interglacial range of 4°C based on more comprehensive datasets suggesting that this
was the likely magnitude of ice age cooling (Annan and Hargreaves, 2013, Climate of the Past).
Snyder, C.W. 2016. Evolution of global temperature over the past two million years. Nature, Vol. 538,
20,000 years ago - 2,000 years ago
Global temperatures reconstructed by averaging well-dated, calibrated proxy temperature records from around the world, mostly from ocean margin sediment cores, in addition to lake and ice cores on land. 80 records span the last deglaciation and 73 records cover the Holocene. This reconstruction smooths out shorter-term variability due to the relatively low resolution of the records and chronological uncertainties, but reliably captures centennial and millennial-scale features. The reconstruction has been scaled to have a glacial-interglacial range of 4°C based on more comprehensive datasets suggesting that this was the likely magnitude of ice age cooling (Annan and Hargreaves, 2013, Climate of the Past).
Marcott, S.A., J.D. Shakun, P.U. Clark, and A.C. Mix. 2013. A reconstruction of regional and global temperature for the past 11,300 years. Science, Vol. 339. pp. 1198-1201. doi:10.1126/science.1228026.
Shakun, J.D., P.U. Clark, F. He, S.A. Marcott, A.C. Mix, Z. Liu, B.L. Otto-Bliesner, A. Schmittner, A., and
E. Bard. 2012. Global warming preceded by increasing carbon dioxide concentrations during the last
deglaciation. Nature, Vol. 484, pp. 49-54. doi:10.1038/nature10915.
2,000 years ago - 1880
Northern Hemisphere temperatures reconstructed by statistically combining long-term fluctuations
recorded by 11 low-resolution proxy series (lake and ocean sediments, ice cores, stalagmites) and short-
term variations recorded by 7 tree-rings series. The reconstruction was calibrated by matching its mean
and variance to the instrumental record of Northern Hemisphere annual mean temperature over the
period of overlap (CE 1856-1979).
Moberg, A., D.M. Sonechkin, K. Holmgren, N.M. Datsenko, and W. Karlén. 2005. Highly variable Northern
Hemisphere temperatures reconstructed from low- and high-resolution proxy data. Nature, Vol. 433, pp.
1880 - Present Day
GISS Surface Temperature Analysis:
The basic GISS temperature analysis scheme was defined in the late 1970s by James Hansen when a method of estimating global temperature change was needed for comparison with one-dimensional global climate models. The scheme was based on the finding that the correlation of temperature change was reasonably strong for stations separated by up to 1200 km, especially at middle and high latitudes. This fact proved sufficient to obtain useful estimates for global mean temperature changes.
Combined land-surface air and sea-surface water temperature anomalies data is updated around the middle of every month and combines data files from NOAA GHCN v3 (meteorological stations), ERSST v4 (ocean areas), and SCAR (Antarctic stations). The GLOBAL Land-Ocean Temperature Index is used.
Getting the Data Right.
Our Team of Scientific Advisors
Dr. Pieter Tans NOAA's Earth System Research Laboratory
Dr. James Hansen Columbia University
Dr. Geoff Dutton NOAA's Earth System Research Laboratory
Dr. Jeremy Shakun Boston College
Watch this educational video.
Climate data in the ice core record
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Making climate data accessible and user-friendly like this global atmospheric temperature graph is a campaign of the 2° Institute (2 Degrees Institute). Its mission is to develop and support strategies that empower people to make the behavioural and lifestyle changes needed to keep our planet from warming by 2° Celsius above pre-industrial levels.