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World Evapotranspiration Web Viewer

Evapotranspiration is one of the dominant forces driving our climate: 61% of rainfall is lost to evapotranspiration before reaching the ocean, and vaporizing that water uses half of all solar energy absorbed by the Earth’s surface.

This interactive map provides ETo anywhere in the world as measured by NASA's Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS).

Click on a point in the map, and a pop-up window shows evapotranspiration as a fraction of the evapotranspiration potential. For example, Scotland and Norway have a lower rate of evapotranspiration than the Congo, despite receiving just as much rain, because potential evapotranspiration is lower. The Sahara Desert has high potential evapotranspiration, but receives little rain, and the unused solar energy heats the sand to over 170 degrees Fahrenheit. In the Congo River Basin there is high potential evapotranspiration, but ample precipitation, so less of the potential goes unused. The result is a cooler, more humid climate with abundant plant life. Keep your eyes peeled for irrigation projects, which show up as bright red splotches in otherwise barren regions.

Knowing ETo helps you know how much irrigation plants and landscapes will need.