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ESA Lakes Climate Change Initiative (Lakes_cci): Lake products, Version 2.1

Update Frequency: Not Planned
Status: Completed
Online Status: ONLINE
Publication State: Citable
Publication Date: 2024-04-03
DOI Publication Date: 2024-04-04
Download Stats: last 12 months
Dataset Size: 11.06K Files | 768GB


This dataset contains the Lakes Essential Climate Variable, which is comprised of processed satellite observations at the global scale, over the period 1992-2022, for over 2000 inland water bodies. This dataset was produced by the European Space Agency (ESA) Lakes Climate Change Initiative (Lakes_cci) project. For more information about the Lakes_cci please visit the project website.

This is version 2.1 of the dataset.

The six thematic climate variables included in this dataset are:
• Lake Water Level (LWL), derived from satellite altimetry, is fundamental to understand the balance between water inputs and water loss and their connection with regional and global climate change.
• Lake Water Extent (LWE), modelled from the relation between LWL and high-resolution spatial extent observed at set time-points, describes the areal extent of the water body. This allows the observation of drought in arid environments, expansion in high Asia, or impact of large-scale atmospheric oscillations on lakes in tropical regions for example. .
• Lake Surface Water temperature (LSWT), derived from optical and thermal satellite observations, is correlated with regional air temperatures and is informative about vertical mixing regimes, driving biogeochemical cycling and seasonality.
• Lake Ice Cover (LIC), determined from optical observations, describes the freeze-up in autumn and break-up of ice in spring, which are proxies for gradually changing climate patterns and seasonality.
• Lake Water-Leaving Reflectance (LWLR), derived from optical satellite observations, is a direct indicator of biogeochemical processes and habitats in the visible part of the water column (e.g. seasonal phytoplankton biomass fluctuations), and an indicator of the frequency of extreme events (peak terrestrial run-off, changing mixing conditions).
• Lake Ice Thickness (LIT), containing LIT information over Great Slave lake from 2002-2022.

Data generated in the Lakes_cci are derived from multiple satellite sensors including: TOPEX/Poseidon, Jason, ENVISAT, SARAL, Sentinel 2-3, Landsat 4, 5, 7 and 8, ERS-1, ERS-2, Terra/Aqua and Metop-A/B.

Satellite sensors associated with the thematic climate variables are as follows:
LWL: TOPEX/Poseidon, Jason-1, Jason-2, Jason-3, Sentinel-6A, Envisat RA/RA-2, SARAL AltiKa, GFO, Sentinel-3A SRAL, Sentinel-3B SRAL, ERS-1 RA, ERS-2;
LWE: Landsat 4 TM, 5 TM, 7 ETM+, 8 OLI, Sentinel-1 C-band SAR, Sentinel-2 MSI, Sentinel-3A SRAL, Sentinel-3B SRAL, ERS-1 AMI, ERS-2 AMI;
LSWT: Envisat AATSR, Terra/Aqua MODIS, Sentinel-3A ATTSR-2, Sentinel-3B, ERS-2 AVHRR, Metop-A/B;
LIC: Terra/Aqua MODIS;
LWLR: Envisat MERIS, Sentinel-3A OLCI A/B, Aqua MODIS;
LIT: Jason1, Jason2, Jason3, POSEIDON-2, POSEIDON-3 and POSEIDON-3B.

Detailed information about the generation and validation of this dataset is available from the Lakes_cci documentation available on the project website and in Carrea, L., Crétaux, JF., Liu, X. et al. Satellite-derived multivariate world-wide lake physical variable timeseries for climate studies. Sci Data 10, 30 (2023).

Citable as:  Carrea, L.; Crétaux, J.-F.; Liu, X.; Wu, Y.; Bergé-Nguyen, M.; Calmettes, B.; Duguay, C.; Jiang, D.; Merchant, C.J.; Mueller, D.; Selmes, N.; Simis, S.; Spyrakos, E.; Stelzer, K.; Warren, M.; Yesou, H.; Zhang, D. (2024): ESA Lakes Climate Change Initiative (Lakes_cci): Lake products, Version 2.1. NERC EDS Centre for Environmental Data Analysis, 04 April 2024. doi:10.5285/7fc9df8070d34cacab8092e45ef276f1.
Abbreviation: Not defined
Keywords: ESA, CCI, Lakes, ECV


Previous Info:
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Previously used record identifiers:
No related previous identifiers.
Access rules:
Public data: access to these data is available to both registered and non-registered users.
Use of these data is covered by the following licence: When using these data you must cite them correctly using the citation given on the CEDA Data Catalogue record.
Data lineage:

This dataset was generated in the framework of the Lakes CCI+ project, funded by ESA. Data were produced by the project team and supplied for archiving at the Centre for Environmental Data Analysis (CEDA).

Data Quality:
Data are as given by the data provider, no quality control has been performed by the Centre for Environmental Data Analysis (CEDA)
File Format:

Process overview

This dataset was generated by the computation detailed below.

Derivation of the ESA Lakes Climate Change Initiative dataset


The data generated by the Lakes_cci project have been derived from data from multiple instruments and multiple satellites including; TOPEX/Poseidon, Jason, ENVISAT, SARAL, Sentinel, Landsat, ERS, Terra/Aqua, Suomi NPP, Metop and Orbview.

For information on the derivation of the lake products, please see the documentation at

Input Description


Output Description


Software Reference


No variables found.