Wisconsin State Climatology Office
 John Young, Director & Professor Emeritus
Your climate information resource for Wisconsin
Wisconsin State Climatology Office

Wisconsin Climate Watch

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The Wisconsin State Climatology Office is affiliated  with the Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Our mission is to:

  • manage data for climate monitoring,
  • provide climate information to Wisconsin residents, climate scientists and government agencies,
  • develop "value-added" products for users and impact applications,
  • conduct applied climate research.

Detailed annual summaries are found on the AASC web site.

This office is a partner with Midwestern Regional Climate Center in providing climate services to the public.
Collaborations with Wisconsin Initiative on Climate Change Impacts (WICCI) research on climate impacts are now underway.

If you would like assistance finding the climate data you want, visit our Guide to Wisconsin Weather and Climate Data.
The office staff is currently an all-volunteer operation.
Short initial inquiries for data or staff assistance staff are free. More substantial efforts are covered by our Service Charge statement.


Southern Wisconsin experienced several extreme rain events in August 2018, extending a trend attributed to increased humidity and altered wind patterns associated with climate change.

August 17-27 Episode {https://www.weather.gov/mkx/August2018SevereandFlood}

The upper map shows the totals from several events of Episode 1, concentrated in the central and eastern portions of southern Wisconsin.

The lower map shows the most extreme event:

(1) Days August 20-21 Historic rainfall fell over Western Dane County, including the western part of metropolitan Madison, over 6 hours on the 20th. It far exceeded “100-year” amounts, and in some locations possibly set a new state record of nearly a foot of rain in 24 hours! The runoff led to destructive flooding in both rural and wide city areas. The large Lake Mendota and smaller lakes downstream reached record levels which will take weeks to resolve.

(2) Days August 26-27 Flooding rains in Washington and Ozaukee counties fell, with 24 hour amounts in some locations exceeding “100-year” return levels.

August 27-29 Episode {https://www.weather.gov/images/mkx/events/2018/aug2818/sundaythroughearlywed.png}

(1) Days 27-28 { https://www.weather.gov/arx/aug2818}

Significant to record flooding occurred across southwestern Wisconsin. Hardest hit areas included parts of La Crosse, Monroe, and Vernon counties. Anywhere from 5 to 12 inches of rain fell overnight, amounts exceeding previous “100-year” values. Record-breaking flooding occurred along the entire length of the Kickapoo River.

(2) Day 28 {https://www.weather.gov/mkx/aug2818}

Afternoon/evening storms rolled across central and eastern counties, with sixteen small damaging tornadoes and heavy rains. (Note: The Milwaukee/Sullivan Office of the National Weather Service confirmed fifteen tornadoes and the Green Bay Office reported one additional tornado.)

Wisconsin Climate Services Summit Meeting Held 6-7 June 2018

A first-time Wisconsin meeting of State, Federal, University, & Tribal providers and users.
An information & networking opportunity for 49 invited representatives from 21 organizations:

Five State of Wisconsin Governmental Departments:

Natural Resources Agriculture, Trade, & Consumer Protection
Health Services Emergency Management Administration

Six Federal Agencies:
National Weather Service National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration
U.S. Department of Agriculture U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
U.S. Geological Survey National Park Service

Three University of Wisconsin-Madison Groups:
State Climatology Office U.W. Extension Applied Climate Researchers

Three Tribal Groups
Lac du Flambeau Menominee Oneida

Two Regional Planning, Energy, Climate Representatives

Two Conservation Groups

Meeting Objectives
  • Identify climate services needs or gaps within the state
  • Build increased awareness of existing climate tools, data, individuals and expertise
  • Identify opportunities to seek out additional resources
  • Enable climate service providers to better coordinate and collaborate
Held at Pyle Center on Lake Mendota at University of Wisconsin-Madison

Local Co-Host: SCO Director Prof. John A. Young jayoung@wisc.edu
Local Co-Organizer: Rebecca Power, U.W. Extension, North Central Region Water Network

Climate Change

Global Climate Variability & Warming Trend: 2018 Update -- A set of slides from Jan 2018 NOAA/NASA briefing on "Annual Global Analysis for 2017"

The Fourth National Climate Assessment (NCA4) "Climate Science Special Report" , the most up to date and "final form" for Volume 1 of NCA4.
Report of the National Climate Assessment for the Midwest

IPCC Report: Climate Change 2013  - Six years of new observations and analyses in this most authoritative scientific report. Physical Science Conclusions released in September 2013.  

The American Meteorological Society (AMS) posted an Information Statement on Climate Change on 20 Aug 2012.

Climate Literacy -- Understanding the essential principles.

U.S. Global Change Research Program -- Impacts and regional issues

For additional climate-change information, see our Climate Change page.

To Contact Us: Wisconsin State Climatology Office
1225 W. Dayton St.
Madison, WI 53706
Phone: 608–263–2374
Fax: 608–262–0166
Email: STCLIM@aos.wisc.edu