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Temperature Sentinels NENA: In Depth Study of Lake Thermal Responses to climate change in northeastern North America

In the first phase of the Temperature Sentinels Project of the Climate Sentinels Working Group, two small lakes with different transparencies were examined to identify which aspects of subsurface temperature profiles were most responsive to climate forcing (temperature, precipitation, solar radiation, wind, and others, Pilla et al. in review).  In the northeastern North American (NENA) lakes project, we are examining subsurface temperature profiles across the NENA region to determine how lake temperature profiles respond to regionally consistent climatic changes. We have chosen a set of NENA lakes with long-term temperature profile data and have chosen a single annual temperature profile representative of peak stratification. We are in the process of writing a manuscript that addresses the following research questions: 1) Has the lake thermal structure (LTS) in NENA changed in recent decades? 2) Is the change in below surface temperature as great as surface temperature changes through time? 3) Have certain types of lakes or lakes in different regions (geography, morphology, trophic state, mixing) of lakes changed more than others, and if so, what types of lakes have shown the strongest changes or trends in lake thermal structure? 4) In this region, are lake temperatures changing more rapidly than air temperature or than surface temperature in lakes around the world? This project intimately links to the Global Lakes Temperature Sentinels project headed by Rachel Pilla and Craig Williamson (

Our extended list of data and project collaborators include: Matt Albright, Charles Boylen, Meghan Brown, Denise Bruesewitz, Mike Clancy, Lawrence Eichler, Bruce Gilman, Terry Gronwall, Nelson Hairston, John Halfman, Elizabeth Herron, Randy Jackson, Dean Jeffries, Daniel Josephson, Jen Klug, Ben Kraemer, Clifford Kraft, Corey Laxson, Elizabeth Long, Karen Moore, Sandra Nierzwicki-Bauer, Lars Rudstam, James Rusak, Jasmine Saros, Seth Schweitzer, Sapna Sharma, Robyn Smyth, Kristin Strock, Holly Waterfield, Kathie Weathers, Courtney Wigdahl-Perry.

2014-10-30 to 2016-12-31
Project Working Group: 

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