NCEI manages the world's largest archive of climate and paleoclimatology data. Our mission is to preserve and make this data and information available in order to understand and model environmental variability on an interannual to millenial time scale. The Paleoclimatology team operates the World Data Service for Paleoclimatology and an Applied Research Service for Paleoclimatology, and partners with national and international science initiatives around the world to expand the use of paleoclimatology data.
Paleoclimatology data are derived from natural sources such as tree rings, ice cores, corals, stalagmites, and ocean and lake sediments. These proxy climate data extend the weather and climate information archive by hundreds to millions of years. The data include geophysical or biological measurement time series and some reconstructed climate variables such as temperature and precipitation. Scientists use paleoclimatology data and information to understand natural climate variability and future climate change.