Caption: Changes in Earth's albedo between 2001 and 2013. Annotated animation showing a global map (elliptical projection) of satellite-recorded variations in the Earth's albedo over a 12-year period (2001-2013). The years are indicated at bottom. Albedo is the degree to which sunlight reflects from a surface, an important consideration in studies of climate change. The white areas (key at lower right) reflect more sunlight, mostly due to changes in ice, snow and cloud cover. The monthly data was recorded by the CERES (Clouds and the Earth's Radiant Energy System) instrument on the NOAA/NASA Suomi NPP (National Polar-orbiting Partnership) satellite. The natural variability of the Earth's albedo, shown here (mostly due to winter increases in snow and ice), may limit the possibility of detecting proposed climate engineering activities designed to change the Earth's albedo. The equatorial Pacific is highlighted in the annotations as an example of an area with very low albedo.

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Keywords: 12 years, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 21st century, albedo, annotated, annotations, antarctica, arctic, atlantic, ceres, changes, climate change, climatological, climatology, clouds, clouds and the earth's radiant energy system, data, earth, earth observation, elliptical projection, environment, environmental science, equatorial pacific, global map, global warming, ice, map, model, nasa, national polar-orbiting partnership, no-one, noaa, nobody, npp, pacific, planetary, satellite data, seasonal, seasons, snow, summer, suomi npp, tropical, tropics, variation, variations, winter, worldwide

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Changes in Earth's albedo, 2001-2013

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