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Hawai‘i’s Changing Climate

How is global warming influencing the climate in Hawai‘i? The purpose of this briefing sheet is to
describe what is known in answer to this question as published in peer-reviewed scientific journals and
in government reports and websites. Hawai‘i’s climate is changing in ways that are consistent with the
influence of global warming.

In Hawai‘i:

• Air temperature has risen;

• Rainfall and stream flow have decreased;

• Rain intensity has increased;

• Sea level and sea surface temperatures have increased; and,

• The ocean is acidifying.

Because these trends are likely to continue, scientists anticipate growing impacts to Hawai‘i’s water
resources and forests, coastal communities, and marine ecology. There is a significant need for sustained
and enhanced climate monitoring and assessment activities in Hawai‘i; and a compelling requirement
for focused research to produce models of future climate changes and impacts in Hawai‘i.

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