C3S releases first part of ERA5-Land dataset

Joaquín Muñoz Sabater


The EU‑funded Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S) implemented by ECMWF has made the first subset of its new high-resolution ERA5‑Land dataset available through the Climate Data Store for the benefit of policymakers, businesses, scientists and land users, in particular.

Compared to the land component of the recently released ERA5 climate dataset, ERA5‑Land brings several improvements that will benefit applications in areas such as agriculture, water resources management and drought prediction. An important enhancement is that ERA5‑Land has a grid spacing of 9 km compared to 31 km for ERA5.

ERA5-Land soil moisture data. The chart shows mean soil moisture for May 2018 from ERA5-Land.

ERA5‑Land is the first of its kind, providing global, hourly, high-resolution information for a more accurate representation of the water and energy cycles than ERA5 can currently offer. Initially covering the period 2001–2018, ERA5‑Land makes it possible, for instance, to reveal much greater detail in the soil temperature structure, or to better resolve the lower temperatures of the peaks of alpine regions by providing more accurate data.

The new dataset is now available both in the Climate Data Store (CDS) and through the CDS Application Program Interface (CDS‑API). The next subset of ERA5‑Land will cover the period 1981–2000 and is expected to be released by early 2020. Production of the final instalment, extending back to 1950, will start later this year and its release is planned for the second quarter of 2020. For more details on ERA5-Land, see ECMWF Newsletter No. 159.