The ocean waters surrounding New Zealand vary in temperature from north to south. They interact with heat and moisture in the atmosphere and affect our weather. Long-term changes and short-term variability in sea-surface temperatures can affect marine processes, habitats, and species. Some species may find it hard to survive in changing environmental conditions.
This layer shows annual sea-surface temperature difference from normal for 2012 as part of the data series for years 1993 to 2013. "Normal" is defined as the average sea-surface temperature for 1993–2013.
NIWA’s sea-surface temperature archive is derived from the Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) satellite data it receives from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The archive provides high spatial (approximately 1km) and high temporal (approximately 6-hourly in cloud-free locations) resolution estimates of sea-surface temperatures over the New Zealand region, dating from January 1993. Uddstrom and Oien (1999) and Uddstrom (2003) describe the methods used to derive and validate the data.
This dataset relates to the "Annual average sea-surface temperature" measure on the Environmental Indicators, Te taiao Aotearoa website.
Further information can be found in:
Uddstrom, MJ (2003). Lessons from high-resolution satellite SSTs. Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, 84(7), 896–897.
Uddstrom, MJ, & Oien, NA (1999). On the use of high resolution satellite data to describe the spatial and temporal variability of sea surface temperatures in the New Zealand region. Journal of Geophysical Research (Oceans) 104, chapter 9, 20729–20751.
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