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Sample records for african climate variability

  1. Examining Intraseasonal Variability in the West African Monsoon Using the Superparameterized Community Climate System Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McCrary, Rachel; Randall, David; Stan, Cristiana

    2013-04-01

    In West Africa, the ability to predict intraseasonal variations in rainfall would have important social and economic impacts for local populations. In particular, such predictions might be useful for estimating the timing of the monsoon onset and break periods in monsoon rains. Current theory suggests that on 25-90 day timescales, the West African monsoon (WAM) is influenced by intraseasonal variations in the Indo-Pacific region, namely the Madden Julian Oscillation (MJO) and the Asian summer monsoon. Unfortunately, most general circulation models (GCMs) show weak skill in simulating the seasonal variations in the WAM as well as intraseasonal variability in the Indo-Pacific. These model limitations make it difficult to study the dynamical links in variability across the tropics. Unlike traditional GCMs, models that have implemented the superparameterization (where traditional convective parameterizations are replaced by embedding a two dimensional cloud resolving model in each grid box) have been shown to be able to represent the WAM, the MJO and the Asian Summer Monsoon with reasonable fidelity. These model advances may allow us to study the teleconnections between the Indo-Pacific and West Africa in more detail. This study examines the intraseasonal variability of the WAM in the Superparameterized Community Climate System model (SP-CCSM). Results from the SP-CCSM are consistent with observations where intraseasonal variability accounts for 15-20% of the total variability in rainfall over West Africa during the monsoon season. We also show that on 25-90 day timescales, increases in precipitation over West Africa correspond with a northward shift of the African easterly jet and an increase in African easterly wave activity. Lag-composite analysis indicates that intraseasonal variations in WAM precipitation correspond with the North-South propagation of the MJO during boreal summer as well as the active and breaking phases of the Asian summer monsoon. Preliminary

  2. Exploring Pacific Climate Variability and Its Impacts on East African Water Resources and Food Security

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Funk, C. C.; Hoerling, M. P.; Hoell, A.; Liebmann, B.; Verdin, J. P.; Eilerts, G.

    2014-12-01

    In 8 out the past 15 boreal springs (1999, 2000, 2004, 2008, 2009, 2011, 2012, and 2013), substantial parts of eastern East Africa experienced very low boreal spring rains. These rainfall deficits have triggered widespread food insecurity, and even contributed to the outbreak of famine conditions in Somalia in 2011. At both seasonal and decadal time scales, new science supported by the USAID Famine Early Warning Systems Network seeks to understand the mechanisms producing these droughts. We present research suggesting that the ultimate and proximate causes of these increases in aridity are i) stronger equatorial Pacific SST gradients and ii) associated increases in the strength of the Indo-Pacific Walker circulation. Using observations and new modeling ensembles, we explore the relative contributions of Pacific Decadal Variability (PDV) and global warming under warm and cold east Pacific Ocean states. This question is addressed in two ways: by using atmospheric GCMs forced with full and ENSO-only SSTs, and ii) by decomposing coupled ocean-atmosphere climate simulations into PDV and non-PDV components. These analyses allow us to explore the Walker circulation's sensitivity to climate change under various PDV states, and inform a tentative bracketing of 2030 climate conditions. We conclude by discussing links to East African development. Regions of high rainfall sensitivity are delineated and intersected with recent changes in population and land cover/land use. The interaction of elevation and climate is shown to create climatically secure regions that are likely to remain viable even under drier and warmer conditions; such regions may be logical targets for agricultural intensification. Conversely, arid low elevation regions are likely to experience substantial temperature impacts. Continued expansion into these areas may effectively create more 'drought' even if rainfall increases.

  3. The Freshwater Oyster Etheria elliptica as a Tool to Reconstruct Climate Variability across the African Continent

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vanhove, D.; Gillikin, D. P.; Kelemen, Z.; Bouillon, S.

    2015-12-01

    The bivalve Etheria elliptica occurs abundantly in (sub)tropical African river basins. We investigate its potential use for the reconstruction of ambient water chemistry and climate by means of stable oxygen isotope ratios in specimens from the Congo river (Kisangani), the Oubangui river (Bangui) and the Victoria Nile (Jinja). Unlike other common African bivalve species, E. elliptica contains distinct organic-rich growth increments, previously suggested to correlate with lunar periodicity. However, cavities in the shell complicate age reading and little is known about the exact timing and continuity of these growth increments. We set up a comparative study between different techniques to visualize and enhance growth features, and find that staining with Mutvei's solution and confocal fluorescence microscopy perform equally well. Despite the presence of cavities, growth lines can generally be followed from umbo to shell margin. Moreover, preliminary δ18O results of two micro-sampled specimens from the Oubangui river show that 12-13 growth lines occur within one year of growth. This corroborates that these increments can be used as temporal anchor points, providing a moon-monthly time frame for sequential microchemistry. In two Congo river specimens, δ18Oshell values vary between -1.9 and -3.8 ‰ (VPDB), in line with a predicted range of -2.1 to -4.1 ‰ based on fortnightly δ18Owater and T monitoring. Reconstructed intra-annual δ18Owater variability from δ18Oshell values and observed T correlates with discharge, reflecting rainfall and runoff variability in the upstream catchment area. In two Victoria Nile specimens, collected 20 km downstream from Lake Victoria, δ18Oshell values are high and relatively constant, varying between +1.8 and +3.2 ‰. Enrichment of 18Oshell is consistent with isotopically heavy rainfall signatures and elevated surface evaporation in Lake Victoria. These first results suggest that E. elliptica is well-suited for the reconstruction

  4. Plio-pleistocene African climate

    SciTech Connect

    deMenocal, P.B.

    1995-10-06

    Marine records of African climate variability document a shift toward more arid conditions after 2.8 million years ago (Ma), evidently resulting from remote forcing by cold North Atlantic sea-surface temperatures associated with the onset of Northern Hemisphere glacial cycles. African climate before 2.8 Ma was regulated by low-latitude insolation forcing of monsoonal climate due to Earth orbital precession. Major steps in the evolution of African hominids and other vertebrates are coincident with shifts to more arid, open conditions near 2.8 Ma, 1.7 Ma, and 1.0 Ma, suggesting that some Pliocene (Plio)-Pleistocene speciation events may have been climatically mediated. 65 refs., 6 figs.

  5. Plio-Pleistocene African Climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Demenocal, Peter B.

    1995-10-01

    Marine records of African climate variability document a shift toward more arid conditions after 2.8 million years ago (Ma), evidently resulting from remote forcing by cold North Atlantic sea-surface temperatures associated with the onset of Northern Hemisphere glacial cycles. African climate before 2.8 Ma was regulated by low-latitude insolation forcing of monsoonal climate due to Earth orbital precession. Major steps in the evolution of African hominids and other vertebrates are coincident with shifts to more arid, open conditions near 2.8 Ma, 1.7 Ma, and 1.0 Ma, suggesting that some Pliocene (Plio)-Pleistocene speciation events may have been climatically mediated.

  6. Comparing the effect of modeled climatic variables on the distribution of African horse sickness in South Africa and Namibia.

    PubMed

    Liebenberg, Danica; van Hamburg, Huib; Piketh, Stuart; Burger, Roelof

    2015-12-01

    Africa horse sickness (AHS) is a lethal disease of horses with a seasonal occurrence that is influenced by environmental conditions that favor the development of Culicoides midges (Diptera: Ceratopogonidae). This study compared and evaluated the relationship of various modeled climatic variables with the distribution and abundance of AHS in South Africa and Namibia. A comprehensive literature review of the historical AHS reported data collected from the Windhoek archives as well as annual reports from the Directorate of Veterinary services in Namibia were conducted. South African AHS reported data were collected from the South African Department of Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries. Daily climatic data were extracted for the time period 1993-2011 from the ERA-interim re-analysis dataset. The principal component analysis of the complete dataset indicated a significant statistical difference between Namibia and South Africa for the various climate variables and the outbreaks of AHS. The most influential parameters in the distribution of AHS included humidity, precipitation, evaporation, and minimum temperature. In South Africa, temperature had the most significant effect on the outbreaks of AHS, whereas in Namibia, humidity and precipitation were the main drivers. The maximum AHS cases in South Africa occurred at temperatures of 20-22° C and relative humidity between 50-70%. Furthermore, anthropogenic effects must be taken into account when trying to understand the distribution of AHS.

  7. Water level changes for Lake Turkana and climate variability during the African Humid Period

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bloszies, C.; Forman, S. L.; Wright, D. K.

    2013-12-01

    The chronology of East African paleoclimate suggests the transition through the African Humid Period (AHP) at ca. 15 to 5 ka was a binary shift from wet conditions in the Late Pleistocene to current aridity. Previous studies indicate that water levels for Lake Turkana for the AHP were stable at ~88 to 98 m above current level with outflow into the White Nile Basin. This study of relict beaches around Lake Turkana indicates surprisingly >50 m variability in water level between 14 and 4 ka. The elevation of past water level is constrained by barometric and GPS-based altimetry of relict beaches and age control by 14C dating of associated mollusks and OSL dating of quartz grains from surrounding littoral and sublittoral deposits. We also include well provenanced lake level data from prior studies to constrain more fully the timing and height of water level fluctuations in the Late Quaternary. Additionally, previous studies indicate that peak water levels may be regionally amplified by increased precipitation causing overflow into the Lake Turkana Basin from the adjacent Suguta and Chew Bahir basins, particularly during high stands at ca. >8.5 ka and at 6.3 ka. Our analysis of the Lake Turkana strandplain reveals that water level may have varied by × 60 m, potentially reaching the outlet elevation at ca.11.3, 10.3, 9.0, 6.3 and 5.1 ka. There are other possible high stands at ca. 13.0, 8.4, 7.8 and 7.0 ka with limited elevational and age constraints; it is unknown if these lake stands reached the outlet elevation. Evidence from relict strand plains indicate that lake level was probably below 20 m since ca. 4.5 ka, though there were two noticeable high stands up to >12 to 18 m at ca. 830 years ago and <100 years, the latter consistent with the historic record of lake levels. Inferences on the source of moisture to sustain these many high stands are based on the isotopic data on leaf wax (δDwax) from lakes Tanganika and Victoria and associated sea surface temperature

  8. Tropical African climate variability during the last glacial/interglacial transition: the molecular record from Lake Malawi

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Castañeda, I. S.; Werne, J. P.; Johnson, T. C.

    2003-12-01

    In general, information regarding tropical African climate variability is relatively limited, especially in comparison with high-latitude studies. Unlike the high-latitudes where climate change is often expressed by fluctuations in temperature, low-latitude climate change is often expressed as variability in zonal circulation, which can result in hydrological fluctuations. Lake Malawi, situated in low-latitude tropical Africa (9-14° S), contains a continuous and high-resolution sedimentary record of the past 22ka BP and is anoxic below 250m, which enhances preservation of organic matter (OM). For these reasons, L. Malawi is an excellent location to examine the response of low-latitude African climate to global climate change. The climate of Malawi is strongly influenced by the position and seasonal migration of the ITCZ. During the rainy season from November to March, the ITCZ is positioned over L. Malawi (12-13° S) and the dominant winds are weak and northerly. Between April and May the ITCZ moves northward towards the equator and strong southerly winds prevail (Jury & Mwafulirwa, 2002). Previous studies of L. Malawi have shown responses to global climatic events, such as the Younger Dryas. Additionally, studies have demonstrated the response of L. Malawi to local or regional events, such as variability in the ITCZ. Based on BSi MAR, diatom, phosphorus, and trace metal data, Johnson et al. (2002) proposed that at times more frequent or stronger northerly winds promoted upwelling in the northern basin of L. Malawi, and suggested more southerly migrations of the ITCZ (reaching latitudes of >13\\deg S) as the cause of these increased winds. Additionally, a recent study of L. Malawi based on multiple bulk geochemical proxies provides evidence for both southward and northward displacements of the ITCZ during the past 23ka BP (Filippi and Talbot, submitted). In this study the molecular biomarker record of L. Malawi is examined. Previous studies of Lake Malawi have

  9. Perception, experience, and indigenous knowledge of climate change and variability: the case of Accra, a sub-Saharan African city

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Codjoe, Samuel N.A.; Owusu, George; Burkett, Virginia

    2014-01-01

    Several recent international assessments have concluded that climate change has the potential to reverse the modest economic gains achieved in many developing countries over the past decade. The phenomenon of climate change threatens to worsen poverty or burden populations with additional hardships, especially in poor societies with weak infrastructure and economic well-being. The importance of the perceptions, experiences, and knowledge of indigenous peoples has gained prominence in discussions of climate change and adaptation in developing countries and among international development organizations. Efforts to evaluate the role of indigenous knowledge in adaptation planning, however, have largely focused on rural people and their agricultural livelihoods. This paper presents the results of a study that examines perceptions, experiences, and indigenous knowledge relating to climate change and variability in three communities of metropolitan Accra, which is the capital of Ghana. The study design is based on a three-part conceptual framework and interview process involving risk mapping, mental models, and individual stressor cognition. Most of the residents interviewed in the three communities of urban Accra attributed climate change to the combination of deforestation and the burning of firewood and rubbish. None of the residents associated climate change with fossil fuel emissions from developed countries. Numerous potential adaptation strategies were suggested by the residents, many of which have been used effectively during past drought and flood events. Results suggest that ethnic residential clustering as well as strong community bonds in metropolitan Accra have allowed various groups and long-settled communities to engage in the sharing and transmission of knowledge of weather patterns and trends. Understanding and building upon indigenous knowledge may enhance the design, acceptance, and implementation of climate change adaptation strategies in Accra and

  10. Divergent pattern of nuclear genetic diversity across the range of the Afromontane Prunus africana mirrors variable climate of African highlands

    PubMed Central

    Kadu, Caroline A. C.; Konrad, Heino; Schueler, Silvio; Muluvi, Geoffrey M.; Eyog-Matig, Oscar; Muchugi, Alice; Williams, Vivienne L.; Ramamonjisoa, Lolona; Kapinga, Consolatha; Foahom, Bernard; Katsvanga, Cuthbert; Hafashimana, David; Obama, Crisantos; Geburek, Thomas

    2013-01-01

    Background and Aims Afromontane forest ecosystems share a high similarity of plant and animal biodiversity, although they occur mainly on isolated mountain massifs throughout the continent. This resemblance has long provoked questions on former wider distribution of Afromontane forests. In this study Prunus africana (one of the character trees of Afromontane forests) is used as a model for understanding the biogeography of this vegetation zone. Methods Thirty natural populations from nine African countries covering a large part of Afromontane regions were analysed using six nuclear microsatellites. Standard population genetic analysis as well as Bayesian and maximum likelihood models were used to infer genetic diversity, population differentiation, barriers to gene flow, and recent and all migration among populations. Key Results Prunus africana exhibits strong divergence among five main Afromontane regions: West Africa, East Africa west of the Eastern Rift Valley (ERV), East Africa east of the ERV, southern Africa and Madagascar. The strongest divergence was evident between Madagascar and continental Africa. Populations from West Africa showed high similarity with East African populations west of the ERV, whereas populations east of the ERV are closely related to populations of southern Africa, respectively. Conclusions The observed patterns indicate divergent population history across the continent most likely associated to Pleistocene changes in climatic conditions. The high genetic similarity between populations of West Africa with population of East Africa west of the ERV is in agreement with faunistic and floristic patterns and provides further evidence for a historical migration route. Contrasting estimates of recent and historical gene flow indicate a shift of the main barrier to gene flow from the Lake Victoria basin to the ERV, highlighting the dynamic environmental and evolutionary history of the region. PMID:23250908

  11. Land Cover Land Use change and soil organic carbon under climate variability in the semi-arid West African Sahel (1960-2050)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dieye, Amadou M.

    Land Cover Land Use (LCLU) change affects land surface processes recognized to influence climate change at local, national and global levels. Soil organic carbon is a key component for the functioning of agro-ecosystems and has a direct effect on the physical, chemical and biological characteristics of the soil. The capacity to model and project LCLU change is of considerable interest for mitigation and adaptation measures in response to climate change. A combination of remote sensing analyses, qualitative social survey techniques, and biogeochemical modeling was used to study the relationships between climate change, LCLU change and soil organic carbon in the semi-arid rural zone of Senegal between 1960 and 2050. For this purpose, four research hypotheses were addressed. This research aims to contribute to an understanding of future land cover land use change in the semi-arid West African Sahel with respect to climate variability and human activities. Its findings may provide insights to enable policy makers at local to national levels to formulate environmentally and economically adapted policy decisions. This dissertation research has to date resulted in two published and one submitted paper.

  12. Climate Variability Program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Halpern, David (Editor)

    2002-01-01

    The Annual Report of the Climate Variability Program briefly describes research activities of Principal Investigators who are funded by NASA's Earth Science Enterprise Research Division. The report is focused on the year 2001. Utilization of satellite observations is a singularity of research on climate science and technology at JPL (Jet Propulsion Laboratory). Research at JPL has two foci: generate new knowledge and develop new technology.

  13. Inter-annual Tropospheric Aerosol Variability in Late Twentieth Century and its Impact on Tropical Atlantic and West African Climate by Direct and Semi-direct Effects

    SciTech Connect

    Evans, Katherine J; Hack, James J; Truesdale, John; Mahajan, Salil; Lamarque, J-F

    2012-01-01

    A new high-resolution (0.9$^{\\circ}$x1.25$^{\\circ}$ in the horizontal) global tropospheric aerosol dataset with monthly resolution is generated using the finite-volume configuration of Community Atmosphere Model (CAM4) coupled to a bulk aerosol model and forced with recent estimates of surface emissions for the latter part of twentieth century. The surface emissions dataset is constructed from Coupled Model Inter-comparison Project (CMIP5) decadal-resolution surface emissions dataset to include REanalysis of TROpospheric chemical composition (RETRO) wildfire monthly emissions dataset. Experiments forced with the new tropospheric aerosol dataset and conducted using the spectral configuration of CAM4 with a T85 truncation (1.4$^{\\circ}$x1.4$^{\\circ}$) with prescribed twentieth century observed sea surface temperature, sea-ice and greenhouse gases reveal that variations in tropospheric aerosol levels can induce significant regional climate variability on the inter-annual timescales. Regression analyses over tropical Atlantic and Africa reveal that increasing dust aerosols can cool the North African landmass and shift convection southwards from West Africa into the Gulf of Guinea in the spring season in the simulations. Further, we find that increasing carbonaceous aerosols emanating from the southwestern African savannas can cool the region significantly and increase the marine stratocumulus cloud cover over the southeast tropical Atlantic ocean by aerosol-induced diabatic heating of the free troposphere above the low clouds. Experiments conducted with CAM4 coupled to a slab ocean model suggest that present day aerosols can shift the ITCZ southwards over the tropical Atlantic and can reduce the ocean mixed layer temperature beneath the increased marine stratocumulus clouds in the southeastern tropical Atlantic.

  14. Zoonoses and climate variability.

    PubMed

    Cardenas, Rocio; Sandoval, Claudia M; Rodriguez-Morales, Alfonso J; Vivas, Paul

    2008-12-01

    Leishmaniasis in the Americas is transmitted by Lutzomyia spp., which have many animal reservoirs. Previous studies indicated potential changes in vectors of climate-related distribution, but impact outcomes need to be further studied. We report climatic and El Niño events during 1985-2002 that may have had an impact on leishmaniasis in 11 southern departments of Colombia: Amazonas, Caquetá, Cauca (Ca), Huila, Meta (Mt), Nariño, Putumayo (Py), Tolima, Valle (Va), Vaupes (Vp), and Vichada. Climatic data were obtained by satellite and epidemiologic data were obtained from the Health Ministry. NOAA climatic classification and SOI/ONI indexes were used as indicators of global climate variability. Yearly variation comparisons and median trend deviations were made for disease incidence and climatic variability. During this period there was considerable climatic variability, with a strong El Niño for 6 years and a strong La Niña for 8. During this period, 19,212 cases of leishmaniasis were registered, for a mean of 4756.83 cases/year. Disease in the whole region increased (mean of 4.98%) during the El Niño years in comparison to the La Niña years, but there were differences between departments with increases during El Niño (Mt 6.95%, Vp 4.84%), but the rest showed an increase during La Niña (1.61%-64.41%). Differences were significant in Va (P= 0.0092), Py (P= 0.0001), Ca (P= 0.0313), and for the whole region (P= 0.0023), but not in the rest of the departments. The importance of climate change is shown by shifts in insect and animal distributions. These data reflect the importance of climate on transmission of leishmaniasis and open further investigations related to forecasting and monitoring systems, where understanding the relationship between zoonoses and climate variability could help to improve the management of these emerging and reemerging diseases.

  15. Current Climate Variability & Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Diem, J.; Criswell, B.; Elliott, W. C.

    2013-12-01

    Current Climate Variability & Change is the ninth among a suite of ten interconnected, sequential labs that address all 39 climate-literacy concepts in the U.S. Global Change Research Program's Climate Literacy: The Essential Principles of Climate Sciences. The labs are as follows: Solar Radiation & Seasons, Stratospheric Ozone, The Troposphere, The Carbon Cycle, Global Surface Temperature, Glacial-Interglacial Cycles, Temperature Changes over the Past Millennium, Climates & Ecosystems, Current Climate Variability & Change, and Future Climate Change. All are inquiry-based, on-line products designed in a way that enables students to construct their own knowledge of a topic. Questions representative of various levels of Webb's depth of knowledge are embedded in each lab. In addition to the embedded questions, each lab has three or four essential questions related to the driving questions for the lab suite. These essential questions are presented as statements at the beginning of the material to represent the lab objectives, and then are asked at the end as questions to function as a summative assessment. For example, the Current Climate Variability & Change is built around these essential questions: (1) What has happened to the global temperature at the Earth's surface, in the middle troposphere, and in the lower stratosphere over the past several decades?; (2) What is the most likely cause of the changes in global temperature over the past several decades and what evidence is there that this is the cause?; and (3) What have been some of the clearly defined effects of the change in global temperature on the atmosphere and other spheres of the Earth system? An introductory Prezi allows the instructor to assess students' prior knowledge in relation to these questions, while also providing 'hooks' to pique their interest related to the topic. The lab begins by presenting examples of and key differences between climate variability (e.g., Mt. Pinatubo eruption) and

  16. Possible Climate Change/Variability and Human Impacts, Vulnerability of African Drought Prone Regions, its Water Resources and Capacity Building

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yew Gan, Thian; Huelsmann, Stephen; Qin, XiaoSheng; Lu, Xi Xi; Liong, Shie-Yui; Rutschmann, Peter; Disse, Markus; Koivusalo, Harri

    2016-04-01

    The climate, water resources and historical droughts of Africa, drought indices, vulnerability, impact of global warming and landuse to drought-prone regions in West, Southern, and Greater Horn of Africa, which have suffered recurrent severe droughts in the past are reviewed first. Recent studies detected warming and drying trends in Africa since the mid-20th century. Based on the 4th Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel of Climate Change, and that of the 5th Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP5), both northern and southern Africa are projected to experience drying such as decreasing precipitation, runoff and soil moisture in the 21st Century and could become more vulnerable to impact of droughts. The daily maximum temperature is projected to increase up to 8oC (RCP8.5 of CMIP5), precipitation indices such as total wet day precipitation (PRCPTOT) and heavy precipitation days (R10mm) could decrease, while warm spell duration (WSDI) and consecutive dry days (CDD) could increase. Uncertainties of the above long-term projections, teleconnections to climate anomalies such as ENSO and Madden Julian Oscillation which could also affect water resources of Africa, and capacity building in terms of physical infrastructure and non-structural solutions, are also discussed. Given traditional climate and hydrologic data observed in Africa are generally limited, satellite data should also be exploited to fill in the data gap for Africa in future.

  17. Climate change, climate variability and brucellosis.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez-Morales, Alfonso J

    2013-04-01

    In addition to natural climate variability observed over comparable time periods, climate change is attributed directly or indirectly to human activity, altering the composition of global atmosphere. This phenomenon continues to be a significant and global threat for the humankind, and its impact compromises many aspects of the society at different levels, including health. The impact of climate change on zoonotic diseases has been largely ignored, particularly brucellosis. We here review some direct and indirect evidences of the impact of climate change and climate variability on brucellosis.

  18. Climate Impact of Solar Variability

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schatten, Kenneth H. (Editor); Arking, Albert (Editor)

    1990-01-01

    The conference on The Climate Impact of Solar Variability, was held at Goddard Space Flight Center from April 24 to 27, 1990. In recent years they developed a renewed interest in the potential effects of increasing greenhouse gases on climate. Carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, and the chlorofluorocarbons have been increasing at rates that could significantly change climate. There is considerable uncertainty over the magnitude of this anthropogenic change. The climate system is very complex, with feedback processes that are not fully understood. Moreover, there are two sources of natural climate variability (volcanic aerosols and solar variability) added to the anthropogenic changes which may confuse our interpretation of the observed temperature record. Thus, if we could understand the climatic impact of the natural variability, it would aid our interpretation and understanding of man-made climate changes.

  19. Trends and variability in East African rainfall and temperature observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seregina, Larisa; Ermert, Volker; Fink, Andreas H.; Pinto, Joaquim G.

    2014-05-01

    The economy of East Africa is highly dependent on agriculture, leading to a strong vulnerability of local society to fluctuations in seasonal rainfall amounts, including extreme events. Hence, the knowledge about the evolution of seasonal rainfall under future climate conditions is crucial. Rainfall regimes over East Africa are influenced by multiple factors, including two monsoon systems, several convergence zones and the Rift Valley lakes. In addition, local conditions, like topography, modulate the large-scale rainfall pattern. East African rainfall variability is also influenced by various teleconnections like the Indian Ocean Zonal Mode and El Niño Southern Oscillation. Regarding future climate projections, regional and global climate models partly disagree on the increase or decrease of East African rainfall. The specific aim of the present study is the acquirement of historic data from weather stations in East Africa (Kenya, Tanzania, Ruanda and Uganda), the use of gridded satellite (rainfall) products (ARC2 and TRMM), and three-dimensional atmospheric reanalysis (e.g., ERA-Interim) to quantify climate variability in the recent past and to understand its causes. Climate variability and trends, including changes in extreme events, are evaluated using ETCCDI climate change and standardized precipitation indices. These climate indices are determined in order to investigate the variability of temperature and rainfall and their trends with the focus on most recent decades. In the follow-up, statistical and dynamical analyses are conducted to quantify the local impact of pertinent large-scale modes of climate variability (Indian Ocean Zonal Mode, El Niño Southern Oscillation, Sea Surface Temperature of the Indian Ocean).

  20. African climate change and faunal evolution during the Pliocene-Pleistocene

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    deMenocal, Peter B.

    2004-03-01

    Environmental theories of African faunal evolution state that important evolutionary changes during the Pliocene-Pleistocene interval (the last ca. 5.3 million years) were mediated by changes in African climate or shifts in climate variability. Marine sediment sequences demonstrate that subtropical African climate periodically oscillated between markedly wetter and drier conditions, paced by earth orbital variations, with evidence for step-like (±0.2 Ma) increases in African climate variability and aridity near 2.8 Ma, 1.7 Ma, and 1.0 Ma, coincident with the onset and intensification of high-latitude glacial cycles. Analysis of the best dated and most complete African mammal fossil databases indicates African faunal assemblage and, perhaps, speciation changes during the Pliocene-Pleistocene, suggesting more varied and open habitats at 2.9-2.4 Ma and after 1.8 Ma. These intervals correspond to key junctures in early hominid evolution, including the emergence of our genus Homo. Pliocene-Pleistocene shifts in African climate, vegetation, and faunal assemblages thus appear to be roughly contemporary, although detailed comparisons are hampered by sampling gaps, dating uncertainties, and preservational biases in the fossil record. Further study of possible relations between African faunal and climatic change will benefit from the accelerating pace of important new fossil discoveries, emerging molecular biomarker methods for reconstructing African paleovegetation changes, tephra correlations between terrestrial and marine sequences, as well as continuing collaborations between the paleoclimatic and paleoanthropological communities.

  1. African hydroclimatic variability during the last 2000 years

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nash, David J.; De Cort, Gijs; Chase, Brian M.; Verschuren, Dirk; Nicholson, Sharon E.; Shanahan, Timothy M.; Asrat, Asfawossen; Lézine, Anne-Marie; Grab, Stefan W.

    2016-12-01

    The African continent is characterised by a wide range of hydroclimate regimes, ranging from humid equatorial West Africa to the arid deserts in the northern and southern subtropics. The livelihoods of much of its population are also vulnerable to future climate change, mainly through variability in rainfall affecting water resource availability. A growing number of data sources indicate that such hydroclimatic variability is an intrinsic component of Africa's natural environment. This paper, co-authored by members of the PAGES Africa 2k Working Group, presents an extensive assessment and discussion of proxy, historical and instrumental evidence for hydroclimatic variability across the African continent, spanning the last two millennia. While the African palaeoenvironmental record is characterised by spatially disjunctive datasets, with often less-than-optimal temporal resolution and chronological control, the available evidence allows the assessment of prominent spatial patterns of palaeomoisture variability through time. In this study, we focus sequentially on data for six major time windows: the first millennium CE, the Medieval Climate Anomaly (900-1250 CE), the Little Ice Age (1250-1750 CE), the end of the LIA (1750-1850 CE), the Early Modern Period (1850-1950), and the period of recent warming (1950 onwards). This results in a continent-wide synthesis of regional moisture-balance trends through history, allowing consideration of possible driving mechanisms, and suggestions for future research.

  2. Solar Variability and Climate Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pap, J. M.

    2004-12-01

    One of the most exciting and important challenges in science today is to understand climate variability and to make reliable predictions. The Earth's climate is a complex system driven by external and internal forces. Climate can vary over a large range of time scales as a consequence of natural variability or anthropogenic influence, or both. Observations of steadily increasing concentrations of greenhouse gases --primarily man-made-- in the Earth's atmosphere have led to an expectation of global warming during the coming decades. However, the greenhouse effect competes with other climate forcing mechanisms, such as solar variability, cosmic ray flux changes, desertification, deforestation, and changes in natural and man-made atmospheric aerosols. Indeed, the climate is always changing, and has forever been so, including periods before the industrial era began. Since the dominant driving force of the climate system is the Sun, the accurate knowledge of the solar radiation received by Earth at various wavelengths and from energetic particles with varying intensities, as well as a better knowledge of the solar-terrestrial interactions and their temporal and spatial variability are crucial to quantify the solar influence on climate and to distinguish between natural and anthropogenic influences. In this paper we give an overview on the recent results of solar irradiance measurements over the last three decades and the possible effects of solar variability on climate.

  3. Influence of the African Great Lakes on the regional climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thiery, Wim; Davin, Edouard; Panitz, Hans-Jürgen; Demuzere, Matthias; Lhermitte, Stef; van Lipzig, Nicole

    2015-04-01

    Although the African Great Lakes are important regulators for the East-African climate, their influence on atmospheric dynamics and the regional hydrological cycle remains poorly understood. We aim to assess this impact by conducting a regional climate model simulation which resolves individual lakes and explicitly computes lake temperatures. The regional climate model COSMO-CLM, coupled to a state-of-the-art lake parameterization scheme and land surface model, is used to dynamically downscale the COSMO-CLM CORDEX-Africa evaluation simulation to 7 km grid spacing for the period 1999-2008. Evaluation of the model reveals good performance compared to both in-situ and satellite observations, especially for spatio-temporal variability of lake surface temperatures and precipitation. Model integrations indicate that the four major African Great Lakes almost double precipitation amounts over their surface relative to a simulation without lakes, but hardly exert any influence on precipitation beyond their shores. The largest lakes also cool their near-surface air, this time with pronounced downwind influence. The lake-induced cooling happens during daytime, when the lakes absorb incoming solar radiation and inhibit upward turbulent heat transport. At night, when this heat is released, the lakes warm the near-surface air. Furthermore, Lake Victoria has profound influence on atmospheric dynamics and stability as it induces cellular motion with over-lake convective inhibition during daytime, and the reversed pattern at night. Overall, this study shows the added value of resolving individual lakes and realistically representing lake surface temperatures for climate studies in this region. Thiery, W., Davin, E., Panitz, H.-J., Demuzere, M., Lhermitte, S., van Lipzig, N.P.M., The impact of the African Great Lakes on the regional climate, J. Climate (in review).

  4. NPOESS, Essential Climates Variables and Climate Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Forsythe-Newell, S. P.; Bates, J. J.; Barkstrom, B. R.; Privette, J. L.; Kearns, E. J.

    2008-12-01

    Advancement in understanding, predicting and mitigating against climate change implies collaboration, close monitoring of Essential Climate Variable (ECV)s through development of Climate Data Record (CDR)s and effective action with specific thematic focus on human and environmental impacts. Towards this end, NCDC's Scientific Data Stewardship (SDS) Program Office developed Climate Long-term Information and Observation system (CLIO) for satellite data identification, characterization and use interrogation. This "proof-of-concept" online tool provides the ability to visualize global CDR information gaps and overlaps with options to temporally zoom-in from satellite instruments to climate products, data sets, data set versions and files. CLIO provides an intuitive one-stop web site that displays past, current and planned launches of environmental satellites in conjunction with associated imagery and detailed information. This tool is also capable of accepting and displaying Web-based input from Subject Matter Expert (SME)s providing a global to sub-regional scale perspective of all ECV's and their impacts upon climate studies. SME's can access and interact with temporal data from the past and present, or for future planning of products, datasets/dataset versions, instruments, platforms and networks. CLIO offers quantifiable prioritization of ECV/CDR impacts that effectively deal with climate change issues, their associated impacts upon climate, and this offers an intuitively objective collaboration and consensus building tool. NCDC's latest tool empowers decision makers and the scientific community to rapidly identify weaknesses and strengths in climate change monitoring strategies and significantly enhances climate change collaboration and awareness.

  5. CLANIMAE: Climatic and Anthropogenic Impacts on African Ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Verschuren, D.; André, L.; Mahy, G.; Cocquyt, C.; Plisnier, P.-D.; Gelorini, V.; Rumes, B.; Lebrun, J.; Bock, L.; Marchant, R.

    2009-04-01

    distribution against lake trophic status and turbidity in the modern-day regional lake gradient. The integrated paleoecological research method of this project addresses the question of past climate-environment-human relationships at the time scale at which the relevant processes have actually occurred. This will allow us to 1) separate the influences of natural climate variability and human activity on East African ecosystems, 2) determine the exact timing and relative magnitude of indigenous (pre-20th century) anthropogenic land clearance compared to recent landscape alteration, 3) determine the severity of lake water-quality losses due to siltation and excess nutrient input directly linked to deforestation and agriculture, compared to those associated with natural ecosystem variability, and 4) assess the resilience of African ecosystems, and prospects for the restoration of disturbed ecosystems if human pressure were to be reversed.

  6. Evolution and climate variability

    SciTech Connect

    Potts, R.

    1996-08-16

    Variations in organisms are preserved and accrue if there is a consistent bias in selection over many generations. This idea of long-term directional selection has been embraced to explain major adaptive change. It is widely thought that important adaptive shifts in hominids corresponded with directional environmental change. This view, which echoes the savanna scenario of hominid evolution, has strongly been supported by paleontologists and paleoclimatologists over the past decade. The origin of the hominids, bipedality, stone toolmaking, and brain size increase have all been related to cooling, aridification, and savanna expansion. However there appears to be a more prominent signal than the aridity trend: an increase in the range of climatic variation over time. This article discusses the possible reprocussions of this interpertation. 13 refs.

  7. Solar variability, weather, and climate

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1982-01-01

    Advances in the understanding of possible effects of solar variations on weather and climate are most likely to emerge by addressing the subject in terms of fundamental physical principles of atmospheric sciences and solar-terrestrial physis. The limits of variability of solar inputs to the atmosphere and the depth in the atmosphere to which these variations have significant effects are determined.

  8. Aerosol interactions with African/Atlantic climate dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hosseinpour, F.; Wilcox, E. M.

    2014-07-01

    Mechanistic relationships exist between variability of dust in the oceanic Saharan air layer (OSAL) and transient changes in the dynamics of Western Africa and the tropical Atlantic Ocean. This study provides evidence of possible interactions between dust in the OSAL region and African easterly jet-African easterly wave (AEJ-AEW) system in the climatology of boreal summer, when easterly wave activity peaks. Synoptic-scale changes in instability and precipitation in the African/Atlantic intertropical convergence zone are correlated with enhanced aerosol optical depth (AOD) in the OSAL region in response to anomalous 3D overturning circulations and upstream/downstream thermal anomalies at above and below the mean-AEJ level. Upstream and downstream anomalies are referred to the daily thermal/dynamical changes over the West African monsoon region and the Eastern Atlantic Ocean, respectively. Our hypothesis is that AOD in the OSAL is positively correlated with the downstream AEWs and negatively correlated with the upstream waves from climatological perspective. The similarity between the 3D pattern of thermal/dynamical anomalies correlated with dust outbreaks and those of AEWs provides a mechanism for dust radiative heating in the atmosphere to reinforce AEW activity. We proposed that the interactions of OSAL dust with regional climate mainly occur through coupling of dust with the AEWs.

  9. Solar Variability and Terrestrial Climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mörner, N.-A.

    The thermal conditions on Planet Earth are primarily the function of the energy in- put from the Sun. The variations in climate on Planet Earth is, however, primarily the function of the redistribution and reorganisation of the internal terrestrial heat balance. Solar variability may affect terrestrial climate (1) by direct changes in irradiance, a fac- tor, however, which is known to be very small, (2) by the solar wind interaction with the geomagnetic field increasing and decreasing the shielding capacity to infalling cosmic-ray, which is known to affect the formation of clouds thereby also affecting global terrestrial climat, and (3) by the solar wind interaction with the geomagnetic field leading to changes in the EarthSs rate of rotation which affect ocean and atmo- sphere circulation thereby also affecting global climate (and sea level). INTAS Project 97-301008 concerns the interaction between geomagnetic field changes and global climatic changes. No doubts, we see important links between externally and internally driven changes in the EarthSs geomagnetic field and changes in terrestrial climate.

  10. Extreme events evaluation over African cities with regional climate simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bucchignani, Edoardo; Mercogliano, Paola; Simonis, Ingo; Engelbrecht, Francois

    2013-04-01

    The warming of the climate system in recent decades is evident from observations and is mainly related to the increase of anthropogenic greenhouse gas concentrations (IPCC, 2012). Given the expected climate change conditions on the African continent, as underlined in different publications, and their associated socio-economic impacts, an evaluation of the specific effects on some strategic African cities on the medium and long-term is of crucial importance with regard to the development of adaptation strategies. Assessments usually focus on averages climate properties rather than on variability or extremes, but often these last ones have more impacts on the society than averages values. Global Coupled Models (GCM) are generally used to simulate future climate scenarios as they guarantee physical consistency between variables; however, due to the coarse spatial resolution, their output cannot be used for impact studies on local scales, which makes necessary the generation of higher resolution climate change data. Regional Climate Models (RCM) describe better the phenomena forced by orography or by coastal lines, or that are related to convection. Therefore they can provide more detailed information on climate extremes that are hard to study and even harder to predict because they are, by definition, rare and obey different statistical laws. The normal bias of the RCM to represent the local climatology is reduced using adequate statistical techniques based on the comparison of the simulated results with long observational time series. In the framework of the EU-FP7 CLUVA (Climate Change and Urban Vulnerability in Africa) project, regional projections of climate change at high resolution (about 8 km), have been performed for selected areas surrounding five African cities. At CMCC, the regional climate model COSMO-CLM has been employed: it is a non-hydrostatic model. For each domain, two simulations have been performed, considering the RCP4.5 and RCP8.5 emission

  11. East African climate pulses and early human evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maslin, Mark A.; Brierley, Chris M.; Milner, Alice M.; Shultz, Susanne; Trauth, Martin H.; Wilson, Katy E.

    2014-10-01

    Current evidence suggests that all of the major events in hominin evolution have occurred in East Africa. Over the last two decades, there has been intensive work undertaken to understand African palaeoclimate and tectonics in order to put together a coherent picture of how the environment of East Africa has varied in the past. The landscape of East Africa has altered dramatically over the last 10 million years. It has changed from a relatively flat, homogenous region covered with mixed tropical forest, to a varied and heterogeneous environment, with mountains over 4 km high and vegetation ranging from desert to cloud forest. The progressive rifting of East Africa has also generated numerous lake basins, which are highly sensitive to changes in the local precipitation-evaporation regime. There is now evidence that the presence of precession-driven, ephemeral deep-water lakes in East Africa were concurrent with major events in hominin evolution. It seems the unusual geology and climate of East Africa created periods of highly variable local climate, which, it has been suggested could have driven hominin speciation, encephalisation and dispersal out of Africa. One example is the significant hominin speciation and brain expansion event at ˜1.8 Ma that seems to have been coeval with the occurrence of highly variable, extensive, deep-water lakes. This complex, climatically very variable setting inspired first the variability selection hypothesis, which was then the basis for the pulsed climate variability hypothesis. The newer of the two suggests that the long-term drying trend in East Africa was punctuated by episodes of short, alternating periods of extreme humidity and aridity. Both hypotheses, together with other key theories of climate-evolution linkages, are discussed in this paper. Though useful the actual evolution mechanisms, which led to early hominins are still unclear and continue to be debated. However, it is clear that an understanding of East African

  12. West Indian Ocean variability and East African fish catch.

    PubMed

    Jury, M; McClanahan, T; Maina, J

    2010-08-01

    We describe marine climate variability off the east coast of Africa in the context of fish catch statistics for Tanzania and Kenya. The time series exhibits quasi-decadal cycles over the period 1964-2007. Fish catch is up when sea surface temperature (SST) and atmospheric humidity are below normal in the tropical West Indian Ocean. This pattern relates to an ocean Rossby wave in one phase of its east-west oscillation. Coastal-scale analyses indicate that northward currents and uplift on the shelf edge enhance productivity of East African shelf waters. Some of the changes are regulated by the south equatorial current that swings northward from Madagascar. The weather is drier and a salty layer develops in high catch years. While the large-scale West Indian Ocean has some impact on East African fish catch, coastal dynamics play a more significant role. Climatic changes are reviewed using 200 years of past and projected data. The observed warming trend continues to increase such that predicted SST may reach 30 degrees C by 2100 while SW monsoon winds gradually increase, according to a coupled general circulation model simulation with a gradual doubling of CO(2).

  13. Harnessing Historical Climate Variability to Assess Multivariate Climate Changes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mahony, C. R.; Cannon, A. J.; Aitken, S. N.

    2015-12-01

    Climate is intrinsically multivariate—the collective influence of various aspects of weather at different times of year. A central challenge of climate change impact analysis is therefore to characterize changes in multiple temperature and precipitation variables simultaneously. Historical climate variability provides key context for relating climate variables to each other and assessing collective deviations from historical climate conditions. We have developed a Mahalanobian probability metric to describe spatial and temporal climatic dissimilarity in terms of local interannual climatic variability. Our approach is particularly suited to evaluation of climate analogs in space and time, but also facilitates multivariate extensions to several prominent indices of climate change. We use this metric to detect the departure of multivariate climate conditions from the historical range of local variability across North America and to identify regions that are particularly susceptible to emergence of no-analog climates. With respect to interpreting climate extremes, some critical considerations emerge from this research. In particular, we highlight the potential for temporal aggregation to exaggerate the statistical significance of extreme conditions, and the dilemma of identifying an appropriate statistical distribution for precipitation across both space and time. Despite the challenges of interpreting the specific impacts associated with multivariate climate changes and extremes, expressing these conditions relative to historical climate variability provides a useful first approximation of their ecological and socioeconomic significance. Figure Caption: Demonstration of the use of the chi distribution to measure spatial climatic dissimilarity in terms of local interannual climatic variability.

  14. Observed Oceanic and Terrestrial Drivers of North African Climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yu, Y.; Notaro, M.; Wang, F.; Mao, J.; Shi, X.; Wei, Y.

    2015-12-01

    Hydrologic variability can pose a serious threat to the poverty-stricken regions of North Africa. Yet, the current understanding of oceanic versus terrestrial drivers of North African droughts/pluvials is largely model-based, with vast disagreement among models. In order to identify the observed drivers of North African climate and develop a benchmark for model evaluations, the multivariate Generalized Equilibrium Feedback Assessment (GEFA) is applied to observations, remotely sensed data, and reanalysis products. The identified primary oceanic drivers of North African rainfall variability are the Atlantic, tropical Indian, and tropical Pacific Oceans and Mediterranean Sea. During the summer monsoon, positive tropical eastern Atlantic sea-surface temperature (SST) anomalies are associated with a southward shift of the Inter-Tropical Convergence Zone, enhanced ocean evaporation, and greater precipitable water across coastal West Africa, leading to increased West African monsoon (WAM) rainfall and decreased Sahel rainfall. During the short rains, positive SST anomalies in the western tropical Indian Ocean and negative anomalies in the eastern tropical Indian Ocean support greater easterly oceanic flow, evaporation over the western ocean, and moisture advection to East Africa, thereby enhancing rainfall. The sign, magnitude, and timing of observed vegetation forcing on rainfall vary across North Africa. The positive feedback of leaf area index (LAI) on rainfall is greatest during DJF for the Horn of Africa, while it peaks in autumn and is weakest during the summer monsoon for the Sahel. Across the WAM region, a positive LAI anomaly supports an earlier monsoon onset, increased rainfall during the pre-monsoon, and decreased rainfall during the wet season. Through unique mechanisms, positive LAI anomalies favor enhanced transpiration, precipitable water, and rainfall across the Sahel and Horn of Africa, and increased roughness, ascent, and rainfall across the WAM region

  15. Climate Change Projections for African Urban Areas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simonis, Ingo; Engelbrecht, Francois; Bucchignani, Edoardo; Mercogliano, Paola; Naidoo, Mogesh

    2013-04-01

    Africa have been derived (six at CSIR and two at CMCC). That is, a multi-model ensemble of simulations of present-day and future climate has been made available for a number of African regions. This approach is most useful to describe the range of uncertainty associated with future climate. In order to obtain a set of plausible and physically defensible projections that can be used for a broad range of subsequent research questions, the two partners followed two different modelling approaches. The first approach, (by CMCC) uses a single dynamic climate change model: the model gets executed several times using a number of pertubations, e.g. changing initial conditions to account for the non-linear dynamics, perturbations of the boundary conditions to account for the 'imperfect' characterizations of the non-atmospheric components of the climate system or to handle the uncertainty of the driving global model, or perturbations of the model physics to account for the uncertainties inherent in the parameterizations. The second approach, (by CSIR) keeps the boundary conditions static but downscales a number of different global circulation models to account for the uncertainties inherent in the models themselves. In total, CSIR has run six different dynamic models. All runs have been conducted on super computing clusters to be completed within reasonable timeframes. The full data set is currently made available on the web. A number of tools is used to provide maximum user experience for climate change experts, social geographers, city planners and policy decision makers.

  16. Land Cover Land Use Change and Soil Organic Carbon under Climate Variability in the Semi-Arid West African Sahel (1960-2050)

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dieye, Amadou M.

    2016-01-01

    Land Cover Land Use (LCLU) change affects land surface processes recognized to influence climate change at local, national and global levels. Soil organic carbon is a key component for the functioning of agro-ecosystems and has a direct effect on the physical, chemical and biological characteristics of the soil. The capacity to model and project…

  17. Variables affecting racial-identity salience among African Americans.

    PubMed

    Thompson, V L

    1999-12-01

    The author clarified the African American racial-group identification process by addressing the issue of salience and its relationship to racial-group attitudes. A sample of 409 African American adults responded to surveys pertaining to their racial-group salience, racial-group attitudes, racial socialization, racial-group interaction, political activism, experiences of discrimination, and demographic data (e.g., sex, age, and income). The author tested 3 hypotheses: (a) Racial socialization and interaction with other African Americans are predictive of African American racial-identity salience; (b) discriminatory experiences are predictive of African American racial-identity salience; and (c) racial-identity salience is a stronger predictor of African American racial-group identification than are previously identified predictive variables (D. H. Demo & H. Hughes, 1990; V. L. Thompson Sanders, 1991, 1995). The results supported the 1st and 3rd hypotheses.

  18. Human Responses to Climate Variability: The Case of South Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oppenheimer, M.; Licker, R.; Mastrorillo, M.; Bohra-Mishra, P.; Estes, L. D.; Cai, R.

    2014-12-01

    Climate variability has been associated with a range of societal and individual outcomes including migration, violent conflict, changes in labor productivity, and health impacts. Some of these may be direct responses to changes in mean temperature or precipitation or extreme events, such as displacement of human populations by tropical cyclones. Others may be mediated by a variety of biological, social, or ecological factors such as migration in response to long-term changes in crops yields. Research is beginning to elucidate and distinguish the many channels through which climate variability may influence human behavior (ranging from the individual to the collective, societal level) in order to better understand how to improve resilience in the face of current variability as well as future climate change. Using a variety of data sets from South Africa, we show how climate variability has influenced internal (within country) migration in recent history. We focus on South Africa as it is a country with high levels of internal migration and dramatic temperature and precipitation changes projected for the 21st century. High poverty rates and significant levels of rain-fed, smallholder agriculture leave large portions of South Africa's population base vulnerable to future climate change. In this study, we utilize two complementary statistical models - one micro-level model, driven by individual and household level survey data, and one macro-level model, driven by national census statistics. In both models, we consider the effect of climate on migration both directly (with gridded climate reanalysis data) and indirectly (with agricultural production statistics). With our historical analyses of climate variability, we gain insights into how the migration decisions of South Africans may be influenced by future climate change. We also offer perspective on the utility of micro and macro level approaches in the study of climate change and human migration.

  19. Trends and variability of East African rainfall and its relationship to the Mascarene High pressure system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seregina, Larisa; Pinto, Joaquim G.; Fink, Andreas H.; Ermert, Volker

    2016-04-01

    In the recent decades, East Africa needs to deal with strong fluctuations in seasonal rainfall including precipitation extremes. In context of climate change, such extremes can become more frequent in the future. However, regional climate projections are uncertain about the future development of seasonal precipitation in the region. Rainfall regimes over East Africa are influenced by multiple factors, including two monsoon systems, several convergence zones and the Rift Valley lakes. In addition, local conditions, like topography, modulate the large-scale rainfall pattern. East African rainfall variability is also influenced by various teleconnections like the Indian Ocean Zonal Mode and El Niño Southern Oscillation. The study of past climate variability in East Africa requires sufficient observational data coverage in the region. As East Africa does not have a dense observational network of meteorological stations, satellite rainfall observations gain on importance in studies on climate variability in the region. The specific aim of the present study is the analysis of historic data from weather stations in East Africa (Kenya, Tanzania, Ruanda and Uganda), the use of gridded satellite products, and three-dimensional atmospheric reanalysis (e.g., ERA-Interim) to quantify climate variability in the recent past and to understand its causes. Climate variability and trends, including changes in extreme events, are evaluated using ETCCDI climate change and standardized precipitation indices. These climate indices are determined in order to investigate the variability of rainfall and its trends with the focus on recent decades. For seasonal trend analysis, an independent and non-calendaric rainfall onset criterion is introduced. In the follow-up, statistical and dynamical analyses are conducted to quantify the local impact of Mascarene High as a part of the Subtropical High Pressure Ridge on East African seasonal rainfall. Possible connections to pertinent large

  20. Multidecadal variability in East African hydroclimate controlled by the Indian Ocean.

    PubMed

    Tierney, Jessica E; Smerdon, Jason E; Anchukaitis, Kevin J; Seager, Richard

    2013-01-17

    The recent decades-long decline in East African rainfall suggests that multidecadal variability is an important component of the climate of this vulnerable region. Prior work based on analysing the instrumental record implicates both Indian and Pacific ocean sea surface temperatures (SSTs) as possible drivers of East African multidecadal climate variability, but the short length of the instrumental record precludes a full elucidation of the underlying physical mechanisms. Here we show that on timescales beyond the decadal, the Indian Ocean drives East African rainfall variability by altering the local Walker circulation, whereas the influence of the Pacific Ocean is minimal. Our results, based on proxy indicators of relative moisture balance for the past millennium paired with long control simulations from coupled climate models, reveal that moist conditions in coastal East Africa are associated with cool SSTs (and related descending circulation) in the eastern Indian Ocean and ascending circulation over East Africa. The most prominent event identified in the proxy record--a coastal pluvial from 1680 to 1765--occurred when Indo-Pacific warm pool SSTs reached their minimum values of the past millennium. Taken together, the proxy and model evidence suggests that Indian Ocean SSTs are the primary influence on East African rainfall over multidecadal and perhaps longer timescales.

  1. Climate variability and vulnerability to climate change: a review

    PubMed Central

    Thornton, Philip K; Ericksen, Polly J; Herrero, Mario; Challinor, Andrew J

    2014-01-01

    The focus of the great majority of climate change impact studies is on changes in mean climate. In terms of climate model output, these changes are more robust than changes in climate variability. By concentrating on changes in climate means, the full impacts of climate change on biological and human systems are probably being seriously underestimated. Here, we briefly review the possible impacts of changes in climate variability and the frequency of extreme events on biological and food systems, with a focus on the developing world. We present new analysis that tentatively links increases in climate variability with increasing food insecurity in the future. We consider the ways in which people deal with climate variability and extremes and how they may adapt in the future. Key knowledge and data gaps are highlighted. These include the timing and interactions of different climatic stresses on plant growth and development, particularly at higher temperatures, and the impacts on crops, livestock and farming systems of changes in climate variability and extreme events on pest-weed-disease complexes. We highlight the need to reframe research questions in such a way that they can provide decision makers throughout the food system with actionable answers, and the need for investment in climate and environmental monitoring. Improved understanding of the full range of impacts of climate change on biological and food systems is a critical step in being able to address effectively the effects of climate variability and extreme events on human vulnerability and food security, particularly in agriculturally based developing countries facing the challenge of having to feed rapidly growing populations in the coming decades. PMID:24668802

  2. Climatic Variability over the North Atlantic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hurrell, J.; Hoerling, M. P.; Folland, C. K.

    INTRODUCTION WHAT IS THE NORTH ATLANTIC OSCILLATION AND HOW DOES IT IMPACT REGIONAL - CLIMATE? WHAT ARE THE MECHANISMS THAT GOVERN NORTH ATLANTIC OSCILLATION VARIABILITY? Atmospheric Processes Ocean Forcing of the Atmosphere CONCLUDING COMMENTS ON THE OTHER ASPECTS OF NORTH ATLANTIC CLIMATE - VARIABILITY REFERENCES

  3. Plio-Pleistocene climate-driven facial morphology in southern African australopithecines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Williams, F. L.; Christensen, B. A.

    2004-12-01

    Intensification of Northern Hemispheric Glaciation (INHG) has been cited as the driving force for climate change in southern Africa, despite the fact that rare and fragmentary continental records for the region allow for only a loose correlation between local faunal events and global climate change. Determining climatic influence from the limited climate history is exacerbated by the difficult chronology for the cave sites. The depositional history of the caves nonetheless reveals a turnover of southern African mammals, and variability, among other forcing factors, have implicated the INHG to explain the evolution of these novel forms. We suggest that evolutionary changes in southern African fauna may have also been driven by a subsequent climate event, the Onset of Walker Circulation (OWC) at ~ 2 Myr. The OWC, with enhanced high frequency climate variability, may have been more dominant than INHG in driving southern African mammalian evolution. For example, Pleistocene Australopithecus robustus, but not Pliocene Australopithecus africanus, exhibits relatively broad palates, postcanine megadonty and deep mandibular corpora that correspond to a dietary niche involving heavy mastication. These adaptations may have been selected for in unstable Pleistocene environments initiated by the OWC. Moreover, the temporal context of Australopithecus robustus, found in the Pleistocene dated caves of Swartkrans, Kromdraai and Drimolen, coincides more closely with the OWC than with the INHG.

  4. Evaluating CMIP5 Models' Representation of Oceanic Drivers of North African Climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Notaro, M.; Wang, F.; Yu, Y.; Mao, J.; Shi, X.; Wei, Y.

    2015-12-01

    North Africa is highly vulnerable to hydrologic variability and extremes, including impacts of climate change. Prior North African studies largely disagree regarding the dominant oceanic drivers of the region's hydrologic variability and the likely impacts of climate change. Here, we aim to apply a multivariate statistical method, the Generalized Equilibrium Feedback Assessment (GEFA), to evaluate the representation of the oceanic drivers of North African rainfall in the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase Five (CMIP5) in comparison to a GEFA-based observational benchmark. The reliability of the statistical GEFA method is first evaluated against dynamical experiments within the Community Earth System Model (CESM), with initial focus on the atmospheric response to sea-surface temperature anomalies in the tropical Pacific and Indian Oceans. In order to estimate the minimum number of years of data needed to obtain stable GEFA response estimates to individual SST forcings, given large atmospheric internal variability, we apply GEFA to data records of varying durations from the CESM Large Ensemble historical simulations. After validating the GEFA method, we apply the statistical approach to both CESM and a range of CMIP5 models in order to elucidate the models' representation of oceanic drivers of North African rainfall. The observed oceanic forcings of North African rainfall, as investigated in a parallel study, serves as the benchmark for evaluating each model's performance and credibility in terms of future climate projections.

  5. Creating a Learning Climate: A South African Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Carrim, Nasima Mohamed Hoosen; Basson, Johan Schutte

    2013-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of this study is to ascertain whether there were differences in how one public and two private South African organizations created a learning climate. Design/methodology/approach: This article is based on a survey and comparative analysis of specific departments in a chemical and gas company, an insurance company, and a…

  6. Solar Variability and Climate Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haigh, Joanna

    2013-03-01

    The need to distinguish natural from anthropogenic causes of climate change makes it important to understand and quantify any impact of the Sun. In this talk I will outline what is known about variations in solar output and review the evidence for solar influences on climate over a range of timescales. When the Sun is more active our work shows the response in temperature is not a warming of the tropics but mainly of mid-latitudes, along with a weakening and poleward shift of the jet streams and storm-tracks. Using climate models we have found that an important factor driving this response is the absorption in the stratosphere of solar UV radiation and we have identified a dynamical coupling mechanism which transfers a solar signal from the stratosphere to the atmosphere below. This means that simple assessments of the solar impact based on energy balance ideas may be effective in estimating global mean temperature change but might be neglecting important effects on regional climate. During the last solar cycle minimum the Sun was in a state of very low activity and some satellite measurements have suggested that the solar spectrum has been behaving in a strange and unexpected way. The talk will finish with a discussion of recent work on the implications of these spectral variations.

  7. The income-climate trap of health development: a comparative analysis of African and Non-African countries.

    PubMed

    Tang, Kam Ki; Petrie, Dennis; Rao, D S Prasada

    2009-10-01

    This article conducts a comparative analysis of the interrelationship between climate, life expectancy and income between African and non-African countries. To put the analysis in a broader context of development, the paper develops an income-climate trap model that explains the multi-directional interaction between income, climate and life expectancy. It is suggested that the interaction can give rise to either a virtuous cycle of prosperity or a vicious cycle of poverty. Applying the model to a data set of 158 countries, we find that climate is a more important determinant of life expectancy in African countries than in non-African countries. We provide further empirical evidence that while climate is important in determining both life expectancy and income, income can in turn moderate the adverse effects of climate on life expectancy. In the past two decades, the income level of non-African countries has grown significantly while that of African countries has largely been stagnant, implying that the future development of African countries remains highly vulnerable to adverse climatic conditions. These findings have important implications in the context of climate change, as global warming is likely to create worsening climatic conditions that could see many less developed countries sinking deeper into an income-climate trap of underdevelopment in health.

  8. Mid-Holocene regional reorganization of climate variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wirtz, K. W.; Bernhardt, K.; Lohmann, G.; Lemmen, C.

    2009-01-01

    We integrate 130 globally distributed proxy time series to refine the understanding of climate variability during the Holocene. Cyclic anomalies and temporal trends in periodicity from the Lower to the Upper Holocene are extracted by combining Lomb-Scargle Fourier-transformed spectra with bootstrapping. Results were cross-checked by counting events in the time series. Main outcomes are: First, the propensity of the climate system to fluctuations is a region specific property. Many records of adjacent sites reveal a similar change in variability although they belong to different proxy types (e.g., δ18O, lithic composition). Secondly, at most sites, irreversible change occured in the Mid-Holocene. We suggest that altered ocean circulation together with slightly modified coupling intensity between regional climate subsystems around the 5.5 kyr BP event (termination of the African Humid Period) were responsible for the shift. Fluctuations especially intensified along a pan-American corridor. This may have led to an unequal crisis probability for early human civilizations in the Old and New World. Our study did not produce evidence for millennial scale cyclicity in some solar activity proxies for the Upper Holocene, nor for a privileged role of the prominent 250, 550, 900 and 1450 yr cycles. This lack of global periodicities corroborates the regional character of climate variability.

  9. Mid-Holocene regional reorganization of climate variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wirtz, K. W.; Bernhardt, K.; Lohmann, G.; Lemmen, C.

    2009-04-01

    We integrate 130 globally distributed proxy time series to refine the understanding of climate variability during the Holocene. Cyclic anomalies and temporal trends in periodicity from the Lower to the Upper Holocene are extracted by combining Lomb-Scargle Fourier-transformed spectra with bootstrapping. Results were cross-checked by counting events in the time series. Main outcomes are: First, the propensity of the climate system to fluctuations is a region specific property. Many records of adjacent sites reveal a similar change in variability although they belong to different proxy types (e.g., δ18O, lithic composition). Secondly, at most sites, irreversible change occured in the Mid- Holocene. We suggest that altered ocean circulation together with slightly modified coupling intensity between regional climate subsystems around the 5.5 kyr BP event (termination of the African Humid Period) were responsible for the shift. Fluctuations especially intensified along a pan- American corridor. This may have led to an unequal crisis probability for early human civilizations in the Old and New World. Our study did not produce evidence for millennial scale cyclicity in some solar activity proxies for the Upper Holocene, nor for a privileged role of the prominent 250, 550, 900 and 1450 yr cycles. This lack of global periodicities corroborates the regional character of climate variability.

  10. Recent climatological trend of the Saharan heat low and its impact on the West African climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lavaysse, Christophe; Flamant, Cyrille; Evan, Amato; Janicot, Serge; Gaetani, Marco

    2016-12-01

    The Saharan heat low (SHL) plays a pivotal role in the West African monsoon system in spring and summer. The recent trend in SHL activity has been analysed using two sets of numerical weather prediction (NWP) model reanalyses and Atmospheric Models Intercomparison Project simulations from 15 climate models performed in the framework of the 5th Coupled Models Intercomparison Project (CMIP5) exercise. A local increase of temperature in the Sahara during the 90s is found in the two sets of NWP models temperature. This increase is stronger within the SHL region than over the surrounding areas. Using different temporal filters (under 25 days, 25-100 days and above 300 days), we show that this is accompanied by a slight but widespread increase of temperature, and a change in the filtered signal under 25 days during the transition period of the 90s. We also show that SHL pulsations occurring at different time scales impact the West Africa climate on a variety of spatial scales, from the regional scale (for the high band pass) to the synoptic scale (for the low band pass signal). Despite a large variability in the temporal trends for 15 climate models from the CMIP5 project, the warming trend in the 90s is observed in the models ensemble mean. Nevertheless, large discrepancies are found between the NWP models reanalyses and the climate model simulations regarding the spatial and temporal evolutions of the SHL as well as its impact on West African climate at the different time scales. These comparisons also reveal that climate models represent the West African monsoon interactions with SHL pulsations quite differently. We provide recommendations to use some of them depending on the time scales of the processes at play (synoptic, seasonal, interannual) and based on key SHL metrics (location, mean intensity, global trend, interaction with the West African monsoon dynamics).

  11. Reconstruction of Past Climatic Variability

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1976-03-01

    United States. Extensive tree-ring sampling would be required In those areas to validate the revised hypothesis. In a similar vein, corn and wheat ...1910-1961. The tree-ring amplitudes were derived from the aforementioned 49-station network and formed the set of independent variables. The wheat ...Indices were based upon a weighted average of wheat production in North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, and Oklahoma, and it is unclear

  12. Mechanisms of African Aerosol-Climate Interactions and their Forcing on Dynamical Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hosseinpour, F.; Wilcox, E. M.

    2012-12-01

    African climate is often interpreted as a continental scale phenomenon which could have strong complex remote influences on global atmospheric circulation, as well as large scale patterns of climate variability and climate change. More than 90% of aerosol optical depth (AOD) over West Africa, and more than 80% over the eastern tropical Atlantic Ocean during summer are contributed by dust particles (K. M. Lau et. al., 2009). Dust aerosols and smoke from wildfires can propagate vertically above the boundary layer, which allows zonal winds in mid-troposphere to transport them thousands of kilometers horizontally. This process can extend their atmospheric life cycles, and their global climatic impact. In this study, ensemble of the Modern-Era Retrospective Analysis for Research and Applications (MERRA) and the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) data sets for warm season were used to better understand the long-term effect of African radiative forcing on large-scale dynamical systems, and their interaction with climatic circulations. In cloud free condition, strong positive correlation exists between the total precipitation and soil wetness over western tropics of Africa and AOD for dust particles over Northern Africa. Increasing absorption of short-wave radiation by smoke in South-West Africa is accompanied with more precipitation in the ITCZ, which is associated with positive core of vorticity at 500 hPa over western African tropical region. African dust and smoke has warming effect in the vertical averaged of troposphere. In warm season, the long-term average of atmospheric heating due to dust and smoke ranges from 10 to 35 Wm-2. Furthermore, the climatic variability is the least over western tropics of Africa which could be due to feedback of soil memory. Convection along with the net downward long-wave radiative flux at surface has increased over the northern African dust region, while these components have decreased over the southern African

  13. Persistence of African American Men in Science: Exploring the Influence of Scientist Identity, Mentoring, and Campus Climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guy, Breonte Stephan

    The scant literature on persistence of African American males in science typically takes a deficits-based approach to encapsulate the myriad reasons this population is so often underrepresented. Scientist Identity, Mentoring, and Campus Climate have, individually, been found to be related to the persistence of African American students. However, the unified impact of these three variables on the persistence of African American students with science interests has not been evaluated, and the relationship between the variables, the students' gender, and markers of academic achievement have not been previously investigated. The current study takes a strengths-based approach to evaluating the relationship between Scientist Identity, Mentoring, and Campus climate with a population of African American students with science interests who were studying at six Minority Serving Institutions and Predominantly White Institutions in the Southern United States. Multiple regression analyses were conducted to determine the impact of Scientist Identity, Mentoring, and Campus Climate on Intention to Persist of African American males. The results indicate that Scientist Identity predicts Intention to Persist, and that gender, academic performance, and institution type moderate the relationship between Scientist Identity and Intention to Persist. These results lend credence to the emerging notion that, for African American men studying science, generating a greater depth and breadth of understanding of the factors that lead to persistence will aid in the development of best practices for supporting persistence among this perpetually underrepresented population.

  14. Modification of the southern African rainfall variability/ENSO relationship since the late 1960s

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Richard, Y.; Trzaska, S.; Roucou, P.; Rouault, M.

    Analysis of 149 raingauge series (1946-1988) shows a weak positive correlation between late summer rainfalls (January-March) in tropical southern Africa and the Southern Oscillation Index (SOI). The correlation coefficients have been unstable since World War II. They were close to zero before 1970 and significant thereafter. Before 1970, southern African late summer rainfalls were more specifically correlated with regional patterns of sea surface temperature (SST), mainly over the southwestern Indian Ocean. After 1970, teleconnections with near global SST anomaly patterns, i.e. over the central Pacific and Indian oceans, dominate the regional connections. The increase in the sensitivity of the southern African rainfall to the global SO-related circulation anomalies is simultaneous with the correlation between SOI and more extensive SST anomalies, particularly over the southern Indian Ocean. This feature is part of longer term (decadal), global SST variability, as inferred from statistical analyses. Numerical experiments, using the Météo-France general circulation model ARPEGE-Climat, are performed to test the impact of the observed SST warming in the southern Indian and extratropical oceans during El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) events on southern African rainfall. Simulated results show that ENSO events, which occurred in the relatively cold background of the pre-1970 period in the southern oceans, had a little effect on southern Africa climatic conditions and atmospheric circulation. By contrast, more recent ENSO events, with warmer SST over the southern oceans, lead to a climatic bipolar pattern between continental southern African and the western Indian Ocean, which is characterized by reduced (enhanced) deep convection and rainfall over the subcontinent (the western Indian Ocean). A weaker subtropical high-pressure belt in the southwestern Indian Ocean is also simulated, along with a reduced penetration of the moist southern Indian Ocean trade winds

  15. Environment, Health and Climate: Impact of African aerosols

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liousse, C.; Doumbia, T.; Assamoi, E.; Galy-Lacaux, C.; Baeza, A.; Penner, J. E.; Val, S.; Cachier, H.; Xu, L.; Criqui, P.

    2012-12-01

    Fossil fuel and biofuel emissions of particles in Africa are expected to significantly increase in the near future, particularly due to rapid growth of African cities. In addition to biomass burning emissions prevailing in these areas, air quality degradation is then expected with important consequences on population health and climatic/radiative impact. In our group, we are constructing a new integrated methodology to study the relations between emissions, air quality and their impacts. This approach includes: (1) African combustion emission characterizations; (2) joint experimental determination of aerosol chemistry from ultrafine to coarse fractions and health issues (toxicology and epidemiology). (3) integrated environmental, health and radiative modeling. In this work, we show some results illustrating our first estimates of African anthropogenic emission impacts: - a new African anthropogenic emission inventory adapted to regional specificities on traffic, biofuel and industrial emissions has been constructed for the years 2005 and 2030. Biomass burning inventories were also improved in the frame of AMMA (African Monsoon) program. - carbonaceous aerosol radiative impact in Africa has been modeled with TM5 model and Penner et al. (2011) radiative code for these inventories for 2005 and 2030 and for two scenarios of emissions : a reference scenario, with no further emission controls beyond those achieved in 2003 and a ccc* scenario including planned policies in Kyoto protocol and regulations as applied to African emission specificities. In this study we will show that enhanced heating is expected with the ccc* scenarios emissions in which the OC fraction is relatively lower than in the reference scenario. - results of short term POLCA intensive campaigns in Bamako and Dakar in terms of aerosol chemical characterization linked to specific emissions sources and their inflammatory impacts on the respiratory tract through in vitro studies. In this study, organic

  16. Climatic Variability In Tropical Countries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seneviratne, L. W.

    2003-04-01

    atmospheric condition and hence reduces rainfall for about 1.5 years in tropical countries. This was proved in 2001. This forecast was presented as a paper in 1998 Stockholm Water Symposium. The results were true for Brazil as well. The danger is now over when the episode is relaxed. Second half of 2002 was heavily wet and all the tanks in Sri Lanka except Kirindioya complex in Hambanthoa area got filled. This condition was seen in 1997 where all tanks got filled. El Nino analysts declared 1997 as a drought year as the previous year had experienced warming in Pacific Ocean. Southern Oscillation events are now dissociating to conformity. Discussion Hambanthoa District remained in the dry zone of Sri Lanka for 2000 years as the soil forms expressed as reddish brown earths. Original kingdoms had its base in Anuradhapura in Northcentral Province and Magama in Hambanthota district. Tools used by contemporary farmers were not powerful to use enormous water resources in wet zone. A system of diversion dams and use of run of the river irrigation has proved as the main criteria of that era. Diversion dams and canal projects were in existence. The diversion dams with special shape was mistaken by british surveyors and marked as broken dams in plans. DLOMendis later identified these as effective deflecting dams. The purpose was to wet the area to do cultivation. This system of wetting the land was suitable for dry climates with low rainfall. High technology was introduced by Irrigation Department to construct several reservoirs in Hambanthota. This was planned after the insufficient water use of Ellagala anicut from Kirindi Oya. Next step was to plan a reservoir project at Lunugamvehera dam site. Precipitation data available for 50 years were studied and a reservoir was designed for 20 000acres of paddy. It was planned to cultivate rice for Maha season and other field crops for Yala season. Cultivation commenced in 1985 and the farmers had enough water for 20000acres including

  17. Weather variability, climatic change, and soybean production

    SciTech Connect

    Thompson, L.M.

    1985-01-01

    A crop/weather model was used to determine the effect of changing climate and weather variability on soybean production in the Corn Belt. A cooling trend from the 1930s to the 1970s was accompanied by an upward trend in July plus August rainfall. There was decreased weather variability from the 1930s to 1973 and greatly increased weather variability after 1973. Improved weather from 1930 to 1972 increased soybean yields 3 bushels/acre. Higher intensity rainfalls increased in Illinois and Iowa after 1970.

  18. Inferring climate variability from skewed proxy records

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Emile-Geay, J.; Tingley, M.

    2013-12-01

    Many paleoclimate analyses assume a linear relationship between the proxy and the target climate variable, and that both the climate quantity and the errors follow normal distributions. An ever-increasing number of proxy records, however, are better modeled using distributions that are heavy-tailed, skewed, or otherwise non-normal, on account of the proxies reflecting non-normally distributed climate variables, or having non-linear relationships with a normally distributed climate variable. The analysis of such proxies requires a different set of tools, and this work serves as a cautionary tale on the danger of making conclusions about the underlying climate from applications of classic statistical procedures to heavily skewed proxy records. Inspired by runoff proxies, we consider an idealized proxy characterized by a nonlinear, thresholded relationship with climate, and describe three approaches to using such a record to infer past climate: (i) applying standard methods commonly used in the paleoclimate literature, without considering the non-linearities inherent to the proxy record; (ii) applying a power transform prior to using these standard methods; (iii) constructing a Bayesian model to invert the mechanistic relationship between the climate and the proxy. We find that neglecting the skewness in the proxy leads to erroneous conclusions and often exaggerates changes in climate variability between different time intervals. In contrast, an explicit treatment of the skewness, using either power transforms or a Bayesian inversion of the mechanistic model for the proxy, yields significantly better estimates of past climate variations. We apply these insights in two paleoclimate settings: (1) a classical sedimentary record from Laguna Pallcacocha, Ecuador (Moy et al., 2002). Our results agree with the qualitative aspects of previous analyses of this record, but quantitative departures are evident and hold implications for how such records are interpreted, and

  19. Variability of the recent climate of eastern Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schreck, Carl J., III; Semazzi, Fredrick H. M.

    2004-05-01

    The primary objective of this study is to investigate the recent variability of the eastern African climate. The region of interest is also known as the Greater Horn of Africa (GHA), and comprises the countries of Burundi, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Somalia, Sudan, Uganda, and Tanzania.The analysis was based primarily on the construction of empirical orthogonal functions (EOFs) of gauge rainfall data and on CPC Merged Analysis of Precipitation (CMAP) data, derived from a combination of rain-gauge observations and satellite estimates. The investigation is based on the period 1961-2001 for the short rains season of eastern Africa of October through to December. The EOF analysis was supplemented by projection of National Centers for Environmental Prediction wind data onto the rainfall eigenmodes to understand the rainfall-circulation relationships. Furthermore, correlation and composite analyses have been performed with the Climatic Research Unit globally averaged surface-temperature time series to explore the potential relationship between the climate of eastern Africa and global warming.The most dominant mode of variability (EOF1) based on CMAP data over eastern Africa corresponds to El Niño-southern oscillation (ENSO) climate variability. It is associated with above-normal rainfall amounts during the short rains throughout the entire region, except for Sudan. The corresponding anomalous low-level circulation is dominated by easterly inflow from the Indian Ocean, and to a lesser extent the Congo tropical rain forest, into the positive rainfall anomaly region that extends across most of eastern Africa. The easterly inflow into eastern Africa is part of diffluent outflow from the maritime continent during the warm ENSO events. The second eastern African EOF (trend mode) is associated with decadal variability. In distinct contrast from the ENSO mode pattern, the trend mode is characterized by positive rainfall anomalies over the northern sector of

  20. Climate variation explains a third of global crop yield variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ray, Deepak K.; Gerber, James S.; MacDonald, Graham K.; West, Paul C.

    2015-01-01

    Many studies have examined the role of mean climate change in agriculture, but an understanding of the influence of inter-annual climate variations on crop yields in different regions remains elusive. We use detailed crop statistics time series for ~13,500 political units to examine how recent climate variability led to variations in maize, rice, wheat and soybean crop yields worldwide. While some areas show no significant influence of climate variability, in substantial areas of the global breadbaskets, >60% of the yield variability can be explained by climate variability. Globally, climate variability accounts for roughly a third (~32-39%) of the observed yield variability. Our study uniquely illustrates spatial patterns in the relationship between climate variability and crop yield variability, highlighting where variations in temperature, precipitation or their interaction explain yield variability. We discuss key drivers for the observed variations to target further research and policy interventions geared towards buffering future crop production from climate variability.

  1. Climate variation explains a third of global crop yield variability.

    PubMed

    Ray, Deepak K; Gerber, James S; MacDonald, Graham K; West, Paul C

    2015-01-22

    Many studies have examined the role of mean climate change in agriculture, but an understanding of the influence of inter-annual climate variations on crop yields in different regions remains elusive. We use detailed crop statistics time series for ~13,500 political units to examine how recent climate variability led to variations in maize, rice, wheat and soybean crop yields worldwide. While some areas show no significant influence of climate variability, in substantial areas of the global breadbaskets, >60% of the yield variability can be explained by climate variability. Globally, climate variability accounts for roughly a third (~32-39%) of the observed yield variability. Our study uniquely illustrates spatial patterns in the relationship between climate variability and crop yield variability, highlighting where variations in temperature, precipitation or their interaction explain yield variability. We discuss key drivers for the observed variations to target further research and policy interventions geared towards buffering future crop production from climate variability.

  2. Climate variation explains a third of global crop yield variability

    PubMed Central

    Ray, Deepak K.; Gerber, James S.; MacDonald, Graham K.; West, Paul C.

    2015-01-01

    Many studies have examined the role of mean climate change in agriculture, but an understanding of the influence of inter-annual climate variations on crop yields in different regions remains elusive. We use detailed crop statistics time series for ~13,500 political units to examine how recent climate variability led to variations in maize, rice, wheat and soybean crop yields worldwide. While some areas show no significant influence of climate variability, in substantial areas of the global breadbaskets, >60% of the yield variability can be explained by climate variability. Globally, climate variability accounts for roughly a third (~32–39%) of the observed yield variability. Our study uniquely illustrates spatial patterns in the relationship between climate variability and crop yield variability, highlighting where variations in temperature, precipitation or their interaction explain yield variability. We discuss key drivers for the observed variations to target further research and policy interventions geared towards buffering future crop production from climate variability. PMID:25609225

  3. Differentiating Climatic Variability with Multi - Permutation Procedures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Law-Evans, Elizabeth

    It is hypothesized that a Multi-Response Permutation Procedure (MRPP) can be developed which can detect changes in natural time series. A companion hypothesis is that climatic and hydrologic changes have occurred in historical time in watersheds in Colorado and northern New Mexico. The non-parametric nature of MRPP precludes normality assumptions required by many techniques. The MRPP technique was applied to historical climatic and hydrologic time series (annual air temperature and snowfall; annual and monthly precipitation and streamflow). A variation of the MRPP technique was adapted, termed "moving-MRPP". The moving-MRPP marched the MRPP analyses through the series in a fashion similar to a moving average. The use of non-normal values brought about the greatest improvement between the results from the moving -MRPP technique with a distance exponent of one (v = 1) and the squared distance exponent (v = 2; used in "normal" or "classical" statistics such as standard deviation). Using moving-MRPP as an exploratory technique, seven meteorological and two streamflow sites in Colorado and New Mexico were studied. Analysis of the sites' historical records suggested region-wide changes in variability during the period of record which agreed with published dates and types of changes in hemispheric circulation regimes. Two changes in variability are especially noticeable: first, a period of low climatic variability from the early 1920s to the mid 1950s. Second, a period of highly variable conditions from the mid 1970s to 1986.

  4. Monitoring and Predicting the African Climate for Food Security

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thiaw, W. M.

    2015-12-01

    Drought is one of the greatest challenges in Africa due to its impact on access to sanitary water and food. In response to this challenge, the international community has mobilized to develop famine early warning systems (FEWS) to bring safe food and water to populations in need. Over the past several decades, much attention has focused on advance risk planning in agriculture and water. This requires frequent updates of weather and climate outlooks. This paper describes the active role of NOAA's African Desk in FEWS. Emphasis is on the operational products from short and medium range weather forecasts to subseasonal and seasonal outlooks in support of humanitarian relief programs. Tools to provide access to real time weather and climate information to the public are described. These include the downscaling of the U.S. National Multi-model Ensemble (NMME) to improve seasonal forecasts in support of Regional Climate Outlook Forums (RCOFs). The subseasonal time scale has emerged as extremely important to many socio-economic sectors. Drawing from advances in numerical models that can now provide a better representation of the MJO, operational subseasonal forecasts are included in the African Desk product suite. These along with forecasts skill assessment and verifications are discussed. The presentation will also highlight regional hazards outlooks basis for FEWSNET food security outlooks.

  5. Tree Density and Species Decline in the African Sahel Attributable to Climate

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gonzalez, Patrick; Tucker, Compton J.; Sy, H.

    2012-01-01

    Increased aridity and human population have reduced tree cover in parts of the African Sahel and degraded resources for local people. Yet, tree cover trends and the relative importance of climate and population remain unresolved. From field measurements, aerial photos, and Ikonos satellite images, we detected significant 1954-2002 tree density declines in the western Sahel of 18 +/- 14% (P = 0.014, n = 204) and 17 +/- 13% (P = 0.0009, n = 187). From field observations, we detected a significant 1960-2000 species richness decline of 21 +/- 11% (P = 0.0028, n = 14) across the Sahel and a southward shift of the Sahel, Sudan, and Guinea zones. Multivariate analyses of climate, soil, and population showed that temperature most significantly (P < 0.001) explained tree cover changes. Multivariate and bivariate tests and field observations indicated the dominance of temperature and precipitation, supporting attribution of tree cover changes to climate variability. Climate change forcing of Sahel climate variability, particularly the significant (P < 0.05) 1901-2002 temperature increases and precipitation decreases in the research areas, connects Sahel tree cover changes to global climate change. This suggests roles for global action and local adaptation to address ecological change in the Sahel.

  6. Advances in Understanding Decadal Climate Variability

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Busalacchi, Antonio J.

    1999-01-01

    Recently, a joint Brazil-France-U.S. program, known as PIRATA (Pilot Research moored Array in the Tropical Atlantic), was proposed to begin the deployment of moored measurement platforms in the tropical Atlantic in order to enhance the existing observational data base and subsequent understanding of the processes by which the ocean and atmosphere couple in key regions of the tropical Atlantic Ocean. Empirical studies have suggested that there are strong relationships between tropical Atlantic upper ocean variability, SST, ocean-atmosphere coupling and regional climate variability. During the early 1980's a coordinated set of surface wind, subsurface thermal structure, and subsurface current observations were obtained as part of the U.S.-France SEQUAL-FOCAL process experiment designed to observe the seasonal response of the tropical Atlantic Ocean to surface forcing. Since that time, however, the observational data base for the tropical Atlantic Ocean has disintegrated to a few ship-tracks measuring ocean temperatures and a small collection of tide gauge stations measuring sea level. A more comprehensive set of observations, modeling and empirical studies is now in order to make progress on understanding the regional climate variability. The proposed PIRATA program will use mooring platforms similar to the tropical Pacific Ocean TAO array to measure surface fluxes of momentum and heat and the corresponding changes in the upper ocean thermal structure. It is anticipated that the oceanic data from this monitoring array will also be used in a predictive mode for initialization studies of regional coupled climate models. Of particular interest are zonal and meridional modes of ocean-atmosphere variability within the tropical Atlantic basin that have significant impacts on the regional climate of the bordering continents.

  7. Advances in Understanding Decadal Climate Variability

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Busalaacchi, Antonio J.

    1998-01-01

    Recently, a joint Brazil-France-U.S. program, known as PIRATA (Pilot Research moored Array in the Tropical Atlantic), was proposed to begin the deployment of moored measurement platforms in the tropical Atlantic in order to enhance the existing observational data base and subsequent understanding of the processes by which the ocean and atmosphere couple in key regions of the tropical Atlantic Ocean. Empirical studies have suggested that there are strong relationships between tropical Atlantic upper ocean variability, SST, ocean-atmosphere coupling and regional climate variability. During the early 1980's a coordinated set of surface wind, subsurface thermal structure, and subsurface current observations were obtained as part of the U.S.-France SEQUAL- FOCAL process experiment designed to observe the seasonal response of the tropical Atlantic Ocean to surface forcing. Since that time, however, the observational data base for the tropical Atlantic Ocean has disintegrated to a few shiptracks measuring ocean temperatures and a small collection of tide gauge stations measuring sea level. A more comprehensive set of observations, modeling and empirical studies is now in order to make progress on understanding the regional climate variability. The proposed PIRATA program will use mooring platforms similar to the tropical Pacific Ocean TAO array to measure surface fluxes of momentum and heat and the corresponding changes in the upper ocean thermal structure. It is anticipated that the oceanic data from this monitoring array will also be used in a predictive mode for initialization studies of regional coupled climate models. Of particular interest are zonal and meridional modes of ocean-atmosphere variability within the tropical Atlantic basin that have significant impacts on the regional climate of the bordering continents.

  8. Simulated remote vegetation-climate feedbacks modulate African tropical rainfall under climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, M.; Schurgers, G.; Rummukainen, M.; Smith, B.; Samuelsson, P.; Jansson, C.; Siltberg, J.; May, W.; Miller, P. A.

    2015-12-01

    We investigated vegetation feedbacks on the large-scale climate change over the African continent using a fully coupled regional vegetation-climate model called RCA-GUESS, which accounts for the major biogeophysical feedback mechanisms coupling the atmosphere to the land surface and vegetation at regional scale. We conducted three long-term transient climate change experiments driven by the CanESM2 GCM under the future climate scenarios RCP8.5, and investigated future changes in African vegetation dynamics as well as the effects of regional vegetation-related feedbacks on climate. We found that changes in vegetation over savannah under climate change not only impose important local effects on regional climate by altering surface energy fluxes, but they also produce meso-scale remote effects on central Africa by modulating land-ocean temperature gradient, lower boundary layer circulation, and moisture inflow from ocean to land, thus influencing the strength of precipitation over convection-dominant region. This emphasizes the importance of representing vegetation dynamics in regional Earth System Models particularly for the region with strong vegetation dynamics such as Africa.

  9. Challenges in probabilistic event attribution in African climates (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Otto, F. E.; Allen, M. R.; Massey, N.

    2013-12-01

    Global climate change is almost certainly affecting the magnitude and frequency of extreme weather and hydrological events around the world. However, whether and to what extent the occurrence of an extreme weather event or the impacts of such an event on, agriculture, infrastructure, and livelihoods can be attributed to climate change remains a challenging question. With the introduction of the work programme on loss and damage associated with the impacts of climate change in developing countries on the UNFCCC agenda finding answers to this question has become even more important. Probabilistic event attribution (PEA) provides a method of evaluating the extent to which human-induced climate change is affecting localised weather events and impacts of such events that relies on good observations as well as climate modelling. The overall approach is to simulate, with as realistic a model as possible and accounting as far as possible for modelling uncertainties, both the statistics of observed weather and the statistics of the weather that would have occurred had specific external drivers of climate change been absent. The majority of studies applying PEA have focused on quantifying attributable risk, with changes in risk depending on an assumption of 'all other things being equal', including natural drivers of climate change and vulnerability. The fraction of attributable risk (FAR) to human-induced climate change is defined as the change in the probability of an event occurring due to human influence on the climate compared to the corresponding probability in a world not influenced by humans. We will present first results of a recently started project on 'Attributing the impacts of external climate drivers on extreme weather in Africa' applying PEA, which will provide an important step towards quantifying the link between climate change and extreme weather in Africa. However, especially in an African context, with the strong influence of global sea surface

  10. Influence of 21st century atmospheric and sea surface temperature forcing on West African climate

    SciTech Connect

    Skinner, Chris B; Ashfaq, Moetasim; Diffenbaugh, Noah

    2011-01-01

    he persistence of extended drought events throughout West Africa during the 20th century has motivated a substantial effort to understand the mechanisms driving African climate variability, as well as the possible response to elevated greenhouse gas (GHG) forcing. We use an ensemble of global climate model experiments to examine the relative roles of future direct atmospheric radiative forcing and SST forcing in shaping potential future changes in boreal summer precipitation over West Africa. We find that projected increases in precipitation throughout the Western Sahel result primarily from direct atmospheric radiative forcing. The changes in atmospheric forcing generate a slight northward displacement and weakening of the African easterly jet (AEJ), a strengthening of westward monsoon flow onto West Africa and an intensification of the tropical easterly jet (TEJ). Alternatively, we find that the projected decreases in precipitation over much of the Guinea Coast region are caused by SST changes that are induced by the atmospheric radiative forcing. The changes in SSTs generate a weakening of the monsoon westerlies and the TEJ, as well as a decrease in low-level convergence and resultant rising air throughout the mid levels of the troposphere. Our experiments suggest a potential shift in the regional moisture balance of West Africa should global radiative forcing continue to increase, highlighting the importance of climate system feedbacks in shaping the response of regional-scale climate to global-scale changes in radiative forcing.

  11. Ecological and evolutionary impacts of changing climatic variability.

    PubMed

    Vázquez, Diego P; Gianoli, Ernesto; Morris, William F; Bozinovic, Francisco

    2017-02-01

    While average temperature is likely to increase in most locations on Earth, many places will simultaneously experience higher variability in temperature, precipitation, and other climate variables. Although ecologists and evolutionary biologists widely recognize the potential impacts of changes in average climatic conditions, relatively little attention has been paid to the potential impacts of changes in climatic variability and extremes. We review the evidence on the impacts of increased climatic variability and extremes on physiological, ecological and evolutionary processes at multiple levels of biological organization, from individuals to populations and communities. Our review indicates that climatic variability can have profound influences on biological processes at multiple scales of organization. Responses to increased climatic variability and extremes are likely to be complex and cannot always be generalized, although our conceptual and methodological toolboxes allow us to make informed predictions about the likely consequences of such climatic changes. We conclude that climatic variability represents an important component of climate that deserves further attention.

  12. Robust negative impacts of climate change on African agriculture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schlenker, Wolfram; Lobell, David B.

    2010-01-01

    There is widespread interest in the impacts of climate change on agriculture in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA), and on the most effective investments to assist adaptation to these changes, yet the scientific basis for estimating production risks and prioritizing investments has been quite limited. Here we show that by combining historical crop production and weather data into a panel analysis, a robust model of yield response to climate change emerges for several key African crops. By mid-century, the mean estimates of aggregate production changes in SSA under our preferred model specification are - 22, - 17, - 17, - 18, and - 8% for maize, sorghum, millet, groundnut, and cassava, respectively. In all cases except cassava, there is a 95% probability that damages exceed 7%, and a 5% probability that they exceed 27%. Moreover, countries with the highest average yields have the largest projected yield losses, suggesting that well-fertilized modern seed varieties are more susceptible to heat related losses.

  13. Multiscale Variability of the Monsoon Climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krishnamurthy, V.

    2005-05-01

    The reliability of weather forecasts is limited to a few days and is mainly determined by the synoptic scale features of the atmosphere. The predictability of weather models depends on the error growth determined by nonlinear terms representing advection. Smaller scale features, such as convection, may also influence the predictability of the synoptic scale forecasts. While the prediction of instantaneous states of the system may be impossible on longer time scale, there is optimism for medium-range and long-range forecasts of time-averaged features of the climate system. Such optimism is based on the observation that slowly-varying boundary forces such as sea surface temperature, soil moisture and snow influence the variability of the atmosphere on a longer time scale, especially in the tropical region. This study discusses the variability of such a tropical climate system, the monsoon, and shows that its variability consists of a combination of large-scale persistent seasonal mean component and intraseasonal variability of different time scales. The spatial variability of these components is also found to consist of different scales. By performing multi-channel singular spectrum analysis of daily rainfall, low-pressure systems, outgoing long-wave radiation and winds, two oscillatory modes with periods of about 45 and 20 days have been identified and shown to correspond to the active and break phases of the monsoon. These two intraseasonal modes, however, do not contribute much to the seasonal mean rainfall. Three other components of the MSSA are identified as the contributors to the seasonal mean rainfall, possibly arising from the influence of slowly-varying boundary forces. The prospect for making accurate long-range forecasts of the monsoon depends on the relative magnitudes of the large-scale seasonally persistent component and the intraseasonal component and on climate model experiments to establish a relation between the two components.

  14. Implications of global warming for the climate of African rainforests

    PubMed Central

    James, Rachel; Washington, Richard; Rowell, David P.

    2013-01-01

    African rainforests are likely to be vulnerable to changes in temperature and precipitation, yet there has been relatively little research to suggest how the regional climate might respond to global warming. This study presents projections of temperature and precipitation indices of relevance to African rainforests, using global climate model experiments to identify local change as a function of global temperature increase. A multi-model ensemble and two perturbed physics ensembles are used, one with over 100 members. In the east of the Congo Basin, most models (92%) show a wet signal, whereas in west equatorial Africa, the majority (73%) project an increase in dry season water deficits. This drying is amplified as global temperature increases, and in over half of coupled models by greater than 3% per °C of global warming. Analysis of atmospheric dynamics in a subset of models suggests that this could be partly because of a rearrangement of zonal circulation, with enhanced convection in the Indian Ocean and anomalous subsidence over west equatorial Africa, the Atlantic Ocean and, in some seasons, the Amazon Basin. Further research to assess the plausibility of this and other mechanisms is important, given the potential implications of drying in these rainforest regions. PMID:23878329

  15. Implications of global warming for the climate of African rainforests.

    PubMed

    James, Rachel; Washington, Richard; Rowell, David P

    2013-01-01

    African rainforests are likely to be vulnerable to changes in temperature and precipitation, yet there has been relatively little research to suggest how the regional climate might respond to global warming. This study presents projections of temperature and precipitation indices of relevance to African rainforests, using global climate model experiments to identify local change as a function of global temperature increase. A multi-model ensemble and two perturbed physics ensembles are used, one with over 100 members. In the east of the Congo Basin, most models (92%) show a wet signal, whereas in west equatorial Africa, the majority (73%) project an increase in dry season water deficits. This drying is amplified as global temperature increases, and in over half of coupled models by greater than 3% per °C of global warming. Analysis of atmospheric dynamics in a subset of models suggests that this could be partly because of a rearrangement of zonal circulation, with enhanced convection in the Indian Ocean and anomalous subsidence over west equatorial Africa, the Atlantic Ocean and, in some seasons, the Amazon Basin. Further research to assess the plausibility of this and other mechanisms is important, given the potential implications of drying in these rainforest regions.

  16. Variable temperature seat climate control system

    DOEpatents

    Karunasiri, Tissa R.; Gallup, David F.; Noles, David R.; Gregory, Christian T.

    1997-05-06

    A temperature climate control system comprises a variable temperature seat, at least one heat pump, at least one heat pump temperature sensor, and a controller. Each heat pump comprises a number of Peltier thermoelectric modules for temperature conditioning the air in a main heat exchanger and a main exchanger fan for passing the conditioned air from the main exchanger to the variable temperature seat. The Peltier modules and each main fan may be manually adjusted via a control switch or a control signal. Additionally, the temperature climate control system may comprise a number of additional temperature sensors to monitor the temperature of the ambient air surrounding the occupant as well as the temperature of the conditioned air directed to the occupant. The controller is configured to automatically regulate the operation of the Peltier modules and/or each main fan according to a temperature climate control logic designed both to maximize occupant comfort during normal operation, and minimize possible equipment damage, occupant discomfort, or occupant injury in the event of a heat pump malfunction.

  17. Use of Machine Learning Techniques for Iidentification of Robust Teleconnections to East African Rainfall Variability in Observations and Models

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Roberts, J. Brent; Robertson, Franklin R.; Funk, Chris

    2014-01-01

    Providing advance warning of East African rainfall variations is a particular focus of several groups including those participating in the Famine Early Warming Systems Network. Both seasonal and long-term model projections of climate variability are being used to examine the societal impacts of hydrometeorological variability on seasonal to interannual and longer time scales. The NASA / USAID SERVIR project, which leverages satellite and modeling-based resources for environmental decision making in developing nations, is focusing on the evaluation of both seasonal and climate model projections to develop downscaled scenarios for using in impact modeling. The utility of these projections is reliant on the ability of current models to capture the embedded relationships between East African rainfall and evolving forcing within the coupled ocean-atmosphere-land climate system. Previous studies have posited relationships between variations in El Niño, the Walker circulation, Pacific decadal variability (PDV), and anthropogenic forcing. This study applies machine learning methods (e.g. clustering, probabilistic graphical model, nonlinear PCA) to observational datasets in an attempt to expose the importance of local and remote forcing mechanisms of East African rainfall variability. The ability of the NASA Goddard Earth Observing System (GEOS5) coupled model to capture the associated relationships will be evaluated using Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP5) simulations.

  18. The Response of African Land Surface Phenology to Large Scale Climate Oscillations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brown, Molly E.; de Beurs, Kirsten; Vrieling, Anton

    2010-01-01

    Variations in agricultural production due to rainfall and temperature fluctuations are a primary cause of food insecurity on the African continent. Analysis of changes in phenology can provide quantitative information on the effect of climate variability on growing seasons in agricultural regions. Using a robust statistical methodology, we describe the relationship between phenology metrics derived from the 26 year AVHRR NDVI record and the North Atlantic Oscillation index (NAO), the Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD), the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO), and the Multivariate ENSO Index (MEI). We map the most significant positive and negative correlation for the four climate indices in Eastern, Western and Southern Africa between two phenological metrics and the climate indices. Our objective is to provide evidence of whether climate variability captured in the four indices has had a significant impact on the vegetative productivity of Africa during the past quarter century. We found that the start of season and cumulative NDVI were significantly affected by large scale variations in climate. The particular climate index and the timing showing highest correlation depended heavily on the region examined. In Western Africa the cumulative NDVI correlates with PDO in September-November. In Eastern Africa the start of the June-October season strongly correlates with PDO in March-May, while the PDO in December-February correlates with the start of the February-June season. The cumulative NDVI over this last season relates to the MEI of March-May. For Southern Africa, high correlations exist between SOS and NAO of September-November, and cumulative NDVI and MEI of March-May. The research shows that climate indices can be used to anticipate late start and variable vigor in the growing season of sensitive agricultural regions in Africa.

  19. Methods for assessing the vulnerability of African fisheries resources to climate change.

    SciTech Connect

    Hlohowskyj, I.; Brody, M. S.; Lackey, R. T.; Environmental Assessment; EPA

    1996-02-01

    Because of the dietary and financial importance of fisheries resources in many African countries, concerns have been expressed regarding the potential for adverse impacts to fisheries resources from climate change, and a need has been identified for assessment tools that can evaluate the potential for impacts in a timely and cost-effective manner. This paper presents a framework and set of methods for assessing the potential effects of climate change on fisheries resources in Africa. The framework identifies the need to first link predicted climate changes to changes in the aquatic environment, and only then can potential impacts to aquatic resources be evaluated. The approach developed for Africa was constrained by several factors, including availability of existing data and assessment technologies, and the need for a rapid evaluation of potential climate impacts. The assessment approach employs a variety of methods including empirical models which predict changes in mortality, maximum sustainable yield, and yearly catch, a bioenergetics model, and a habitat suitability model. Previously developed or newly derived site-specific empirical models can be used to compare mortality, yield, and annual catch estimates among historic, current, and predicted climate conditions. Similarly, bioenergetics modeling can be used to compare growth rates and biomass production among different climate conditions. Habitat suitability models can be developed for current climate conditions, and the effects of changes in climate-driven habitat variables such as water depth, temperature, and current velocity on habitat suitability can be evaluated for different climate conditions. Use of these approaches is recommended because they can utilize existing ecological data and do not require extensive new data collection activities, they are not technologically complex, and they can provide evaluations of potential climate change impacts in a timely and cost-effective manner.

  20. Climate variability and Port wine quality

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gouveia, Celia; Liberato, Margarida L. R.; Trigo, Ricardo M.; Dacamara, Carlos

    2010-05-01

    ), suggesting that this type of analysis may be used in developing a tool that may help anticipating a vintage year, based on already available seasonal climate outlooks. Célia Gouveia and Ricardo M. Trigo. "Influence of climate variability on wheat production in Portugal". GeoENV2006- 6th International Conference on Geostatistics for Environmental Applications, Rhodes, October, 25-27, 2006 Miranda, P.M.A., F. Coelho, A. R. Tomé, M. A Valente., A. Carvalho, C. Pires, H. O. Pires, V. C. Cabrinha and C. Ramalho (2002) "20th Century Portuguese Climate and Climate Scenarios", in Santos, F.D., K Forbes and R. Moita (eds) Climate Change in Portugal: Scenarios, Impacts and Adptation Measures", 27-83. Gradiva

  1. Reconstruction of Holocene southern African continental climate using biomarkers from salt pan sediments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Belz, Lukas; Schüller, Irka; Wehrmann, Achim; Wilkes, Heinz

    2015-04-01

    The climate system of southern Africa is strongly influenced by large scale atmospheric and marine circulation processes and, therefore, very sensitive to global climate change. Recent publications provided evidence for strong spatial and temporal climate variability in southern Africa over the Holocene. It is of major importance to understand the mechanisms driving the southern African climate system in order to estimate regional implications of current global change. However, proxy datasets from continental geoarchives especially of the semi-arid western Kalahari region are still scarce. A main problem is the absence of conventional continental climatic archives, due to the lack of lacustrine systems. In this study we are exploring the utility of sediments from western Kalahari salt pans, i.e. local depressions which are flooded temporarily during rainfall events. Besides the analyses of basic geochemical bulk parameters including TOC, δ13Corg, TIC, δ13Ccarb, δ18Ocarb, TN, δ15N, the paleo-climatic approach focuses on reconstruction of local vegetation assemblages to identify changes in the ecosystem. This is pursued using plant biomarkers, particularly leaf wax n-alkanes and n-alcohols and their stable carbon and hydrogen isotopic signatures. Preliminary results show prominent shifts in n-alkane distribution and δ13C values of the C33 homologue during late Pleistocene and early Holocene. These shifts correlate to changes of the TOC content. Our data indicate changes in carbon sources which possibly reflect major environmental changes.

  2. Exploring Connections between Global Climate Indices and African Vegetation Phenology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brown, Molly E.; deBeurs, Kirsten; Vrieling, Anton

    2009-01-01

    Variations in agricultural production due to rainfall and temperature fluctuations are a primary cause of food insecurity on the continent in Africa. Agriculturally destructive droughts and floods are monitored from space using satellite remote sensing by organizations seeking to provide quantitative and predictive information about food security crises. Better knowledge on the relation between climate indices and food production may increase the use of these indices in famine early warning systems and climate outlook forums on the continent. Here we explore the relationship between phenology metrics derived from the 26 year AVHRR NDVI record and the North Atlantic Oscillation index (NAO), the Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD), the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO), the Multivariate ENSO Index (MEI) and the Southern Oscillation Index (SOI). We explore spatial relationships between growing conditions as measured by the NDVI and the five climate indices in Eastern, Western and Southern Africa to determine the regions and periods when they have a significant impact. The focus is to provide a clear indication as to which climate index has the most impact on the three regions during the past quarter century. We found that the start of season and cumulative NDVI were significantly affected by variations in the climate indices. The particular climate index and the timing showing highest correlation depended heavily on the region examined. The research shows that climate indices can contribute to understanding growing season variability in Eastern, Western and Southern Africa.

  3. Latitudinal Hydrologic Variability Along the East African Rift, Over the Past 200 Kyr

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scholz, C. A.

    2014-12-01

    Within the deep sediments of the large lakes of Africa's Great Rift Valley are continuous environmental records of remarkable antiquity and fidelity. Not only do stratigraphic sections from these basins extend back millions of years, many of the intervals represented contain high-resolution material of decadal resolution or better. East African lake basins remain sparsely sampled however, with only a few long and continuous records available. Our ability to image the lakes using seismic reflection methods greatly exceeds our opportunities for coring and drilling however; assessing stratal relationships observed in the geophysical data permits powerful inferences about past hydrologic changes. With intensive hydrocarbon exploration work underway in East Africa, industry well data can also help constrain and ground truth basin histories. Substantial spatio-temporal hydrologic variability is observed in East African basins over the past 200 kyr. Paleohydrological changes in the late Pleistocene and early Holocene are now well constrained in the northern hemisphere East African topics, with widespread aridity and in some cases lake desiccation observed during Heinrich Event 1. A climate recovery followed in the northern hemisphere East African tropics, with the early Holocene African Humid Period a time of positive water balance across most of the rift valley. The paleohydrology of southern hemisphere tropical East Africa is more equivocal, for instance with negligible draw-down of Lake Malawi at HE1. Whereas these late Pleistocene events represent substantial climate reorganizations, severe droughts during the middle-late Pleistocene (150-65 kyr BP) were far more intense, and produced much more severe drawdowns of Lakes Malawi and Tanganyika. Scientific drill cores, kullenberg cores, and extensive seismic reflection data sets from Lakes Malawi and Tanganyika provide indisputable evidence for lowstands of -500m and -600 m respectively. Climate changes that lowered the

  4. Tectonics, orbital forcing, global climate change, and human evolution in Africa: introduction to the African paleoclimate special volume.

    PubMed

    Maslin, Mark A; Christensen, Beth

    2007-11-01

    The late Cenozoic climate of Africa is a critical component for understanding human evolution. African climate is controlled by major tectonic changes, global climate transitions, and local variations in orbital forcing. We introduce the special African Paleoclimate Issue of the Journal of Human Evolution by providing a background for and synthesis of the latest work relating to the environmental context for human evolution. Records presented in this special issue suggest that the regional tectonics, appearance of C(4) plants in East Africa, and late Cenozoic global cooling combined to produce a long-term drying trend in East Africa. Of particular importance is the uplift associated with the East African Rift Valley formation, which altered wind flow patterns from a more zonal to more meridinal direction. Results in this volume suggest a marked difference in the climate history of southern and eastern Africa, though both are clearly influenced by the major global climate thresholds crossed in the last 3 million years. Papers in this volume present lake, speleothem, and marine paleoclimate records showing that the East African long-term drying trend is punctuated by episodes of short, alternating periods of extreme wetness and aridity. These periods of extreme climate variability are characterized by the precession-forced appearance and disappearance of large, deep lakes in the East African Rift Valley and paralleled by low and high wind-driven dust loads reaching the adjacent ocean basins. Dating of these records show that over the last 3 million years such periods only occur at the times of major global climatic transitions, such as the intensification of Northern Hemisphere Glaciation (2.7-2.5 Ma), intensification of the Walker Circulation (1.9-1.7 Ma), and the Mid-Pleistocene Revolution (1-0.7 Ma). Authors in this volume suggest this onset occurs as high latitude forcing in both Hemispheres compresses the Intertropical Convergence Zone so that East Africa

  5. Online Impact Prioritization of Essential Climate Variables on Climate Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Forsythe-Newell, S. P.; Barkstrom, B. B.; Roberts, K. P.

    2007-12-01

    The National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)'s NCDC Scientific Data Stewardship (SDS) Team has developed an online prototype that is capable of displaying the "big picture" perspective of all Essential Climate Variable (ECV) impacts on society and value to the IPCC. This prototype ECV-Model provides the ability to visualize global ECV information with options to drill down in great detail. It offers a quantifiable prioritization of ECV impacts that potentially may significantly enhance collaboration with respect to dealing effectively with climate change. The ECV-Model prototype assures anonymity and provides an online input mechanism for subject matter experts and decision makers to access, review and submit: (1) ranking of ECV"s, (2) new ECV's and associated impact categories and (3) feedback about ECV"s, satellites, etc. Input and feedback are vetted by experts before changes or additions are implemented online. The SDS prototype also provides an intuitive one-stop web site that displays past, current and planned launches of satellites; and general as well as detailed information in conjunction with imagery. NCDC's version 1.0 release will be available to the public and provide an easy "at-a-glance" interface to rapidly identify gaps and overlaps of satellites and associated instruments monitoring climate change ECV's. The SDS version 1.1 will enhance depiction of gaps and overlaps with instruments associated with In-Situ and Satellites related to ECVs. NOAA's SDS model empowers decision makers and the scientific community to rapidly identify weaknesses and strengths in monitoring climate change ECV's and potentially significantly enhance collaboration.

  6. Regional Climate Modeling of West African Summer Monsoon Climate: Impact of Historical Boundary Forcing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kebe, I.

    2015-12-01

    In this paper, we analyze and intercompare the performance of an ensemble of three Regional Climate Models (RCMs) driven by three set of Global Climate Models (GCMs), in reproducing seasonal mean climatologies with their annual cycle and the key features of West African summer monsoon over 20 years period (1985-2004) during the present day. The results show that errors in lateral boundary conditions from the GCM members, have an unexpected way on the skill of the RCMs in reproducing regional climate features such as the West African Monsoon features and the annual cycle of precipitation and temperature in terms of outperforming the GCM simulation. It also shows the occurrence of the West African Monsoon jump, the intensification and northward shift of the Saharan Heat Low (SHL) as expressed in some RCMs than the GCMs. Most RCMs also capture the mean annual cycle of precipitation and temperature, including, single and double-peaked during the summer months, in terms of events and amplitude. In a series of RCMs and GCMs experiments between the Sahara region and equatorial Africa, the presence of strong positive meridional temperature gradients at the surface and a strong meridional gradients in the potential temperatures near the surface are obvious, indicating the region of strong vertical shear development enough to establish easterly flow such as the African easterly jet. In addition, the isentropic potential vorticity (IPV) gradient decreases northward in the lower troposphere across northern Africa, with the maximum reversal on the 315-K surface. The region with negative IPV gradient favors the potential instability which has been associated with the growth of easterly waves.

  7. Food Price Volatility and Decadal Climate Variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brown, M. E.

    2013-12-01

    The agriculture system is under pressure to increase production every year as global population expands and more people move from a diet mostly made up of grains, to one with more meat, dairy and processed foods. Weather shocks and large changes in international commodity prices in the last decade have increased pressure on local food prices. This paper will review several studies that link climate variability as measured with satellite remote sensing to food price dynamics in 36 developing countries where local monthly food price data is available. The focus of the research is to understand how weather and climate, as measured by variations in the growing season using satellite remote sensing, has affected agricultural production, food prices and access to food in agricultural societies. Economies are vulnerable to extreme weather at multiple levels. Subsistence small holders who hold livestock and consume much of the food they produce are vulnerable to food production variability. The broader society, however, is also vulnerable to extreme weather because of the secondary effects on market functioning, resource availability, and large-scale impacts on employment in trading, trucking and wage labor that are caused by weather-related shocks. Food price variability captures many of these broad impacts and can be used to diagnose weather-related vulnerability across multiple sectors. The paper will trace these connections using market-level data and analysis. The context of the analysis is the humanitarian aid community, using the guidance of the USAID Famine Early Warning Systems Network and the United Nation's World Food Program in their response to food security crises. These organizations have worked over the past three decades to provide baseline information on food production through satellite remote sensing data and agricultural yield models, as well as assessments of food access through a food price database. Econometric models and spatial analysis are used

  8. Impact of climate variability on tropospheric ozone.

    PubMed

    Grewe, Volker

    2007-03-01

    A simulation with the climate-chemistry model (CCM) E39/C is presented, which covers both the troposphere and stratosphere dynamics and chemistry during the period 1960 to 1999. Although the CCM, by its nature, is not exactly representing observed day-by-day meteorology, there is an overall model's tendency to correctly reproduce the variability pattern due to an inclusion of realistic external forcings, like observed sea surface temperatures (e.g. El Niño), major volcanic eruption, solar cycle, concentrations of greenhouse gases, and Quasi-Biennial Oscillation. Additionally, climate-chemistry interactions are included, like the impact of ozone, methane, and other species on radiation and dynamics, and the impact of dynamics on emissions (lightning). However, a number of important feedbacks are not yet included (e.g. feedbacks related to biogenic emissions and emissions due to biomass burning). The results show a good representation of the evolution of the stratospheric ozone layer, including the ozone hole, which plays an important role for the simulation of natural variability of tropospheric ozone. Anthropogenic NO(x) emissions are included with a step-wise linear trend for each sector, but no interannual variability is included. The application of a number of diagnostics (e.g. marked ozone tracers) allows the separation of the impact of various processes/emissions on tropospheric ozone and shows that the simulated Northern Hemisphere tropospheric ozone budget is not only dominated by nitrogen oxide emissions and other ozone pre-cursors, but also by changes of the stratospheric ozone budget and its flux into the troposphere, which tends to reduce the simulated positive trend in tropospheric ozone due to emissions from industry and traffic during the late 80s and early 90s. For tropical regions the variability in ozone is dominated by variability in lightning (related to ENSO) and stratosphere-troposphere exchange (related to Northern Hemisphere Stratospheric

  9. Principal nonlinear dynamical modes of climate variability

    PubMed Central

    Mukhin, Dmitry; Gavrilov, Andrey; Feigin, Alexander; Loskutov, Evgeny; Kurths, Juergen

    2015-01-01

    We suggest a new nonlinear expansion of space-distributed observational time series. The expansion allows constructing principal nonlinear manifolds holding essential part of observed variability. It yields low-dimensional hidden time series interpreted as internal modes driving observed multivariate dynamics as well as their mapping to a geographic grid. Bayesian optimality is used for selecting relevant structure of nonlinear transformation, including both the number of principal modes and degree of nonlinearity. Furthermore, the optimal characteristic time scale of the reconstructed modes is also found. The technique is applied to monthly sea surface temperature (SST) time series having a duration of 33 years and covering the globe. Three dominant nonlinear modes were extracted from the time series: the first efficiently separates the annual cycle, the second is responsible for ENSO variability, and combinations of the second and the third modes explain substantial parts of Pacific and Atlantic dynamics. A relation of the obtained modes to decadal natural climate variability including current hiatus in global warming is exhibited and discussed. PMID:26489769

  10. Using Remote Sensing to Understand Climate Variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Green, J.; Gentine, P.

    2014-12-01

    While a major source of uncertainty in global climate model predictions is due to the coarseness of their resolution, a significant amount of error is also generated due to the lack of information regarding the interactions between atmospheric and land parameters over time. When the behavior of a certain parameter is not clearly understood it is frequently estimated as one specific value while in reality it may vary with time and space. Remote sensing is allowing researchers to better estimate each of these parameters so one can see how they change with time. This study is an effort to improve our knowledge of the inter-annual and seasonal variability in radiation, water and the carbon cycle using remote sensing products on a global scale. By examining monthly data over a multi-year period (data parameter and source are listed in Table 1) for fluorescence, groundwater, net radiation, vegetation indices, precipitation, soil moisture and evapotranspiration, we should be able to determine the behavior and interactions between these parameters and better understand how they vary together seasonally, annually and year to year. With this information it is our hope that global climate models can be improved to better understand what is occurring climatologically in the present as well as more accurately make predictions about future conditions. Table 1. Parameters and Sources Parameter Source Fluorescence Greenhouse gases Observing SATellite (GOSAT)1 Groundwater Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) Net Radiation Clouds and the Earth's Radiant Energy System (CERES) Vegetation Indices Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS)/ Multiangle Implementation of Atmospheric Correction (MAIAC) Precipitation Global Precipitation Climatology Project (GPCP) Soil Moisture Water Cycle Mutimission Observation Strategy (WACMOS) Evapotranspiration Global Land-surface Evaporation: the Amsterdam Methodology (GLEAM) 1In future work, we hope to use fluorescence data from

  11. Workshop 3 (synthesis): climate variability, water systems and management options.

    PubMed

    Connor, R; Kuylenstierna, J

    2004-01-01

    Addressing climate variability now will better prepare us for future impacts of climate change. Sustained, multi-stakeholder dialogue at local through national levels is an approach that will reach the widest audience, helped by tools that illustrate vulnerability such as the Climate Vulnerability Index. Integrated water resources management deals with managing for variability and change and is therefore highly appropriate for dealing with climate impacts.

  12. Evaluation of the capability of RegCM4.0 in simulating East African climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ogwang, Bob Alex; Chen, Haishan; Li, Xing; Gao, Chujie

    2016-04-01

    The International Centre for Theoretical Physics (ICTP) regional climate model RegCM4.0 is used in this study to examine its ability to reproduce the climate of East Africa (EA) in regard to the annual cycle and June-to-August (JJA) seasonal climatology. Two domain sizes [large domain (LD) and small domain (SD)] and two cumulus convection schemes [Grell convection scheme with Fritsch-Chappell closure assumption (GRE scheme) and MIT scheme (EMA scheme)] are used. Simulations were done for the period 1989-2008 at a resolution of 50 km. The experiments were performed with the initial and lateral boundary conditions obtained from ERA-Interim-gridded reanalysis data at a 1.5° resolution. The variables investigated are precipitation, temperature, humidity, diurnal temperature range, and 850-hPa winds. Results show that the model realistically reproduces the East African climate, with a few discrepancies due to the different cumulus convection schemes and the domain sizes used. Grell with Fritsch-Chappell (Grell-FC) scheme captures well the observed climate in regard to the annual cycle and June-to-August seasonal climatology, with a tendency to underestimate rainfall over the JJA rainfall maximum region (RMR). This scheme performs better in LD than in SD. EMA scheme similarly captures well the observed climatology. It tends to overestimate rainfall over RMR. It however performs better in SD than in LD. The ensemble mean of simulations with GRE and EMA schemes (ENSM) tends to offer an improved representation of the observed climate, with a few discrepancies owing to the individual schemes used. In general, therefore, considering the performance of the model in both domains, the East African climate based on this study is better simulated by the Grell-FC scheme over LD. The observed biases in this study signify that the ability of the model in simulating climate over East Africa is still a significant challenge. Thus, future work must focus on improving the performance of

  13. How does spatial variability of climate affect catchment streamflow predictions?

    EPA Science Inventory

    Spatial variability of climate can negatively affect catchment streamflow predictions if it is not explicitly accounted for in hydrologic models. In this paper, we examine the changes in streamflow predictability when a hydrologic model is run with spatially variable (distribute...

  14. South-western African climate depends on Antarctic sea ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stuut, J.-B. W.; Crosta, X.; van der Borg, K.; Schneider, R. R.

    2003-04-01

    The typical Fynbos vegetation of the Cape region of South-western Africa is brought about by the local Mediterranean (winter rainfall) climate and its associated sharp seasonal contrasts, especially in precipitation. This biome is bordered by hyper-arid deserts which may rapidly expand in response to future global warming, such as during the last warm period 125.000 years ago. It is therefore essential to understand the mechanisms that drive the winter rainfall in such a restricted area. We relate variations in South-western African humidity to changes in Antarctic sea-ice extent. New records of Antarctic sea-ice extent compared to existing palaeoclimate records of South-western Africa reveal a coherent signal during the last 50 kyr BP, with enhanced continental humidity and trade-wind intensity during periods of increased sea-ice presence. We propose that greater glacial Antarctic sea-ice extent causes a Northward shift of oceanic and atmospheric frontal zones, thereby increasing latitudinal temperature and pressure gradients, leading to enhanced trade-wind intensities. In addition, the equatorward shift and increased intensity of the Southern Westerlies causes an expansion of the winter-rain region and increased precipitation in South-western Africa. This relationship implies enhanced desertification in South-western Africa in response to retreating sea-ice edge in the Atlantic sector of the Southern Ocean if global warming continues.

  15. Climate Variability on Venus and Titan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taylor, F. W.

    2006-08-01

    Venus and Titan are both slowly-rotating, approximately Earth-sized bodies with cloudy, dynamic atmospheres. Each has a complex climate system, even less well understood than the terrestrial equivalent, and the processes that appear to maintain the climate near the surface on both bodies have interesting similarities and differences with each other and with the Earth. By considering these factors and their possible evolution with the aid of elementary climate models, some interesting, albeit tentative, conclusions can be reached concerning the stability of climate on Earth-like planets, and the likely nature of past and future climate change.

  16. The paleoclimate record of long-term climate variability

    SciTech Connect

    Webb, R.S.; Bartlein, P.J.; Overpeck, J.T. Univ. of Oregon, Eugene )

    1993-06-01

    Climate variability occurs on time scales ranging from decades or shorter to millions of years. An important step in determining the effects of trace-gas-induced warming on climate variability and ecosystems is characterizing past natural variability and change. Throughout the Quaternary long-term climate variability has been dominated by Milankovitch forcing of glacial/interglacial cycles. Superimposed on this millennia-scale orbitally forced variability have been more rapid climate events (e.g. Younger Dryas, Little Ice Age, Medieval Warm Period, Sahelian droughts). Although highly relevant to understanding possible responses of ecosystems to future climate change, most decade to century scale climate variability remains poorly understood. Insights into mechanisms and responses can be obtained from tree rings, ice cores, corals, marine, lake and fluvial sediments, pollen, and macrofossils. These paleoclimate records reveal that the range of natural climate variability is much larger than indicated by the instrumental record of the past 150 years. Global networks of well-dated, high-resolution paleocrunate records for key intervals of the past are currently being assembled. These networks should provide the baseline of natural variability required to understand climate-ecosystem dynamics and to identify anthropogenic-induced change.

  17. LAMPPOST: A Mnemonic Device for Teaching Climate Variables

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fahrer, Chuck; Harris, Dan

    2004-01-01

    This article introduces the word "LAMPPOST" as a mnemonic device to aid in the instruction of climate variables. It provides instructors with a framework for discussing climate patterns that is based on eight variables: latitude, altitude, maritime influence and continentality, pressure systems, prevailing winds, ocean currents, storms, and…

  18. The Climate Shift and the Climate Variability in the Mediterranean region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lopez Parages, Jorge; Rodriguez-Fonseca, Belen

    2010-05-01

    -based precipitation for the second half of the twenty century is used to investigate the precipitation variability over Europe and their links to the CS and the multidecadal variability. The seasonal modes are analyzed, using time series before and after the CS. To carry out this study, the NCEP-NCAR reanalysis field, the NCEP sea surface temperature (SST) and the ERA40 reanalysis data for the second half of the twenty century are used. To achieve a better understanding of the teleconnections linked to these changes, and its possible link to the SST variability, a long set of simulations with a General Circulation Model (AGCM), run with observed SSTs, has been analysed for the same time period. References: Hurrell, J.W., Kushnir Y., Ottersen G. and Visbeck M., (2003): An overview of the North Atlantic Oscillation. In: The North Atlantic Oscillation (Eds. Hurrell, J.W., Kushnir Y., Ottersen G. and Visbeck M.) AGU. Losada T, B Rodríguez-Fonseca, S Janicot, F Gervois, F Chauvin, P M Ruti (2009): A multi-model approach to the Atlantic equatorial mode. Impact on the West African monsoon and tropical teleconnections (submitted for a Spetial Issue at Climate Dynamics). Mantua, N.J. and S.R. Hare, Y. Zhang, J.M. Wallace, and R.C. Francis, (1997): A Pacific interdecadal climate oscillation with impacts on salmon production. Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, 78, pp. 1069-1079. Mariotti, A., Zeng, N. and Lau, K.-M.,(2002): Euro-Mediterranean rainfall and ENSO- a seasonally varying relationship, Geophysical Research Letters, 29, 12. 10.1029/2001GL014248. Miller A J, D R Cayan, T P Barnett, N E Graham and J M Oberhuber (1994): The 1976-77 Climate Shift of the Pacific Ocean. Oceanogr. 7, 21-26. Polo I, B Rodríguez-Fonseca, T Losada and J García-Serrano (2008a): Tropical Atlantic Variability modes (1979-2002). Part I: time-evolving SST modes related to West African rainfall. J. Climate, 21, 6457-6475. Rodriguez-Fonseca B., I. Polo, J. Garcia-Serrano, T. Losada, E. Mohino, C. R

  19. Present and Future Modes of Low Frequency Climate Variability

    SciTech Connect

    Cane, Mark A.

    2014-02-20

    This project addressed area (1) of the FOA, “Interaction of Climate Change and Low Frequency Modes of Natural Climate Variability”. Our overarching objective is to detect, describe and understand the changes in low frequency variability between model simulations of the preindustrial climate and simulations of a doubled CO2 climate. The deliverables are a set of papers providing a dynamical characterization of interannual, decadal, and multidecadal variability in coupled models with attention to the changes in this low frequency variability between pre-industrial concentrations of greenhouse gases and a doubling of atmospheric concentrations of CO2. The principle mode of analysis, singular vector decomposition, is designed to advance our physical, mechanistic understanding. This study will include external natural variability due to solar and volcanic aerosol variations as well as variability internal to the climate system. An important byproduct is a set of analysis tools for estimating global singular vector structures from the archived output of model simulations.

  20. Disease in a more variable and unpredictable climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McMahon, T. A.; Raffel, T.; Rohr, J. R.; Halstead, N.; Venesky, M.; Romansic, J.

    2014-12-01

    Global climate change is shifting the dynamics of infectious diseases of humans and wildlife with potential adverse consequences for disease control. Despite this, the role of global climate change in the decline of biodiversity and the emergence of infectious diseases remains controversial. Climate change is expected to increase climate variability in addition to increasing mean temperatures, making climate less predictable. However, few empirical or theoretical studies have considered the effects of climate variability or predictability on disease, despite it being likely that hosts and parasites will have differential responses to climatic shifts. Here we present a theoretical framework for how temperature variation and its predictability influence disease risk by affecting host and parasite acclimation responses. Laboratory experiments and field data on disease-associated frog declines in Latin America support this framework and provide evidence that unpredictable temperature fluctuations, on both monthly and diurnal timescales, decrease frog resistance to the pathogenic chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd). Furthermore, the pattern of temperature-dependent growth of the fungus on frogs was inconsistent with the pattern of Bd growth in culture, emphasizing the importance of accounting for the host-parasite interaction when predicting climate-dependent disease dynamics. Consistent with our laboratory experiments, increased regional temperature variability associated with global El Niño climatic events was the best predictor of widespread amphibian losses in the genus Atelopus. Thus, incorporating the effects of small-scale temporal variability in climate can greatly improve our ability to predict the effects of climate change on disease.

  1. Recent frequency component changes in interannual climate variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peel, Murray C.; McMahon, Thomas A.

    2006-08-01

    The potential impact of climate change on the variability structure of climate has been investigated predominately through changes to extreme event frequency or the shape of the daily frequency distribution. Recent change to interannual climate variability has received less attention. Here we report that the interannual variability of temperature and precipitation has marginally decreased since 1970. However, within this marginal decrease the inter-decadal component of interannual variability has decreased for both temperature and precipitation. The temperature results are consistent across urban and rural stations indicating that they are not due to any urbanisation effect.

  2. Future of West African Monsoon in A Warming Climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Raj, Jerry; Kunhu Bangalath, Hamza; Stenchikov, Georgiy

    2016-04-01

    West Africa is the home of more than 300 million people whose agriculture based economy highly relies on West African Monsoon (WAM), which produces a mean annual rainfall of 150 - 2,500 mm and variability and change of which have devastating impact on the local population. The observed widespread drought in West Africa during the 1970s and 1980s was the most significant drought at regional scale during the twentieth century. In this study, a high resolution AGCM, High Resolution Atmospheric Model (HiRAM), is used to study the effects of anthropogenic greenhouse warming on WAM. HiRAM is developed at GFDL based on AM2 and employs a cubed-sphere finite volume dynamical core and uses shallow convective scheme (for moist convection and stratiform cloudiness) instead of deep convective parameterization. Future projections are done using two representative concentration pathways, RCP 4.5 and RCP 8.5 from 2007 to 2050 at C360 (~25 km) resolution. Both RCP 4.5 and RCP 8.5 scenarios predict warming over West Africa during boreal summer, especially over Western Sahara. Also, both scenarios predict southward shift in WAM rainfall pattern and drying over Southern Sahara, while RCP 8.5 predicts enhanced rainfall over Gulf of Guinea. The intensification of rainfall over tropical latitudes is caused by increased low level winds due to warm SST over Gulf of Guinea.

  3. Climate and the landscape of fear in an African savanna.

    PubMed

    Riginos, Corinna

    2015-01-01

    Herbivores frequently have to make trade-offs between two basic needs: the need to acquire forage and the need to avoid predation. One manifestation of this trade-off is the 'landscape of fear' phenomenon - wherein herbivores avoid areas of high perceived predation risk even if forage is abundant or of high quality in those areas. Although this phenomenon is well established among invertebrates, its applicability to terrestrial large herbivores remains debated, in part because experimental evidence is scarce. This study was designed to (i) experimentally test the effects of tree density - a key landscape feature associated with predation risk for African ungulates - on herbivore habitat use and (ii) establish whether habitat use patterns could be explained by trade-offs between foraging opportunities and predation risk avoidance. In a Kenyan savanna system, replicate plots dominated by the tree Acacia drepanolobium were cleared, thinned or left intact. Ungulate responses were measured over four years, which included years of moderate rainfall as well as a severe drought. Under average rainfall conditions, most herbivores (primarily plains zebra, Grant's gazelle and hartebeest) favoured sites with fewer trees and higher visibility - regardless of grass production - while elephants (too large to be vulnerable to predation) favoured sites with many trees. During the drought, however, herbivores favoured sites that had high grass biomass, but not high visibility. Thus, during the drought, herbivores sought areas where food was more abundant, despite probable higher risk of predation. These results illustrate that the 'landscape of fear', and the associated interactions between top-down and bottom-up effects, is not static, but rather shifts markedly under different conditions. Climate thus has the potential to alter the strength and spatial dynamics of behaviourally mediated cascades in large herbivore systems.

  4. Multi-Wheat-Model Ensemble Responses to Interannual Climate Variability

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ruane, Alex C.; Hudson, Nicholas I.; Asseng, Senthold; Camarrano, Davide; Ewert, Frank; Martre, Pierre; Boote, Kenneth J.; Thorburn, Peter J.; Aggarwal, Pramod K.; Angulo, Carlos

    2016-01-01

    We compare 27 wheat models' yield responses to interannual climate variability, analyzed at locations in Argentina, Australia, India, and The Netherlands as part of the Agricultural Model Intercomparison and Improvement Project (AgMIP) Wheat Pilot. Each model simulated 1981e2010 grain yield, and we evaluate results against the interannual variability of growing season temperature, precipitation, and solar radiation. The amount of information used for calibration has only a minor effect on most models' climate response, and even small multi-model ensembles prove beneficial. Wheat model clusters reveal common characteristics of yield response to climate; however models rarely share the same cluster at all four sites indicating substantial independence. Only a weak relationship (R2 0.24) was found between the models' sensitivities to interannual temperature variability and their response to long-termwarming, suggesting that additional processes differentiate climate change impacts from observed climate variability analogs and motivating continuing analysis and model development efforts.

  5. Climate variability and climate change vulnerability and adaptation. Workshop summary

    SciTech Connect

    Bhatti, N.; Cirillo, R.R.; Dixon, R.K.

    1995-12-31

    Representatives from fifteen countries met in Prague, Czech Republic, on September 11-15, 1995, to share results from the analysis of vulnerability and adaptation to global climate change. The workshop focused on the issues of global climate change and its impacts on various sectors of a national economy. The U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change (FCCC), which has been signed by more than 150 governments worldwide, calls on signatory parties to develop and communicate measures they are implementing to respond to global climate change. An analysis of a country`s vulnerability to changes in the climate helps it identify suitable adaptation measures. These analyses are designed to determine the extent of the impacts of global climate change on sensitive sectors such as agricultural crops, forests, grasslands and livestock, water resources, and coastal areas. Once it is determined how vulnerable a country may be to climate change, it is possible to identify adaptation measures for ameliorating some or all of the effects.The objectives of the vulnerability and adaptation workshop were to: The objectives of the vulnerability and adaptation workshop were to: Provide an opportunity for countries to describe their study results; Encourage countries to learn from the experience of the more complete assessments and adjust their studies accordingly; Identify issues and analyses that require further investigation; and Summarize results and experiences for governmental and intergovernmental organizations.

  6. Interactions of Mean Climate Change and Climate Variability on Food Security Extremes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ruane, Alexander C.; McDermid, Sonali; Mavromatis, Theodoros; Hudson, Nicholas; Morales, Monica; Simmons, John; Prabodha, Agalawatte; Ahmad, Ashfaq; Ahmad, Shakeel; Ahuja, Laj R.

    2015-01-01

    Recognizing that climate change will affect agricultural systems both through mean changes and through shifts in climate variability and associated extreme events, we present preliminary analyses of climate impacts from a network of 1137 crop modeling sites contributed to the AgMIP Coordinated Climate-Crop Modeling Project (C3MP). At each site sensitivity tests were run according to a common protocol, which enables the fitting of crop model emulators across a range of carbon dioxide, temperature, and water (CTW) changes. C3MP can elucidate several aspects of these changes and quantify crop responses across a wide diversity of farming systems. Here we test the hypothesis that climate change and variability interact in three main ways. First, mean climate changes can affect yields across an entire time period. Second, extreme events (when they do occur) may be more sensitive to climate changes than a year with normal climate. Third, mean climate changes can alter the likelihood of climate extremes, leading to more frequent seasons with anomalies outside of the expected conditions for which management was designed. In this way, shifts in climate variability can result in an increase or reduction of mean yield, as extreme climate events tend to have lower yield than years with normal climate.C3MP maize simulations across 126 farms reveal a clear indication and quantification (as response functions) of mean climate impacts on mean yield and clearly show that mean climate changes will directly affect the variability of yield. Yield reductions from increased climate variability are not as clear as crop models tend to be less sensitive to dangers on the cool and wet extremes of climate variability, likely underestimating losses from water-logging, floods, and frosts.

  7. A Record of Early to Middle Holocene Hydroclimate Variability from the West African Sahel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McIntosh, R.; Douglas, P. M.; Warren, C.; Meyers, S. R.; Coutros, P.; Park, D. P.

    2011-12-01

    The African Humid Period (ca. 14.8 to 5.5 ka) is an interval of wet climates across northwest Africa, with evidence for widespread lake basins and savannah vegetation in areas that are now desert. There are few high-resolution continental records of hydrologic variability during the African humid period however. In particular, it remains uncertain how periods of north Atlantic climate variability were expressed in northwest Africa. We present results from a 5.4 meter sediment core from Lake Fati in northern Mali (16.29° N, 3.71° W), which represents the first lake sediment core from the western Sahel. The Lake Fati core contains a continuous record of lake mud from 10.43 to 4.66 kyr BP. Centimeter scale XRF scanning indicates strong covariation between iron, calcium, manganese and phosphorous abundance due to enrichment of these elements during periods of enhanced deposition of authigenic siderite. Preliminary oxygen isotope measurements indicate that authigenic siderite δ18O values are positively correlated with Fe counts, suggesting that siderite deposition increased during drier periods with greater evaporation of lake waters. These drying events occurred on decadal to centennial time scales, with higher-frequency variability during the early Holocene. Peaks in zirconium and titanium abundance coincide with some of the inferred dry periods, suggesting that deposition of aeolian silt coincided with periods of increased evaporation of lake water. A roughly 30 year interval of sand deposition at ~8.33 kyr BP suggests major drying and activation of aeolian sand deposition. This abrupt climate change could be related to the 8.2 ka event in the North Atlantic; further efforts to refine the sediment core age model will constrain the relationship of this rapid drying to abrupt climate change in the North Atlantic. Aluminum and silicon counts co-vary for much of the lake Fati record, and are related to input of terrigenous sediment, primarily during seasonal flooding

  8. A Survey of African American Physicians on the Health Effects of Climate Change

    PubMed Central

    Sarfaty, Mona; Mitchell, Mark; Bloodhart, Brittany; Maibach, Edward W

    2014-01-01

    The U.S. National Climate Assessment concluded that climate change is harming the health of many Americans and identified people in some communities of color as particularly vulnerable to these effects. In Spring 2014, we surveyed members of the National Medical Association, a society of African American physicians who care for a disproportionate number of African American patients, to determine whether they were seeing the health effects of climate change in their practices; the response rate was 30% (n = 284). Over 86% of respondents indicated that climate change was relevant to direct patient care, and 61% that their own patients were already being harmed by climate change moderately or a great deal. The most commonly reported health effects were injuries from severe storms, floods, and wildfires (88%), increases in severity of chronic disease due to air pollution (88%), and allergic symptoms from prolonged exposure to plants or mold (80%). The majority of survey respondents support medical training, patient and public education regarding the impact of climate change on health, and advocacy by their professional society; nearly all respondents indicated that the US should invest in significant efforts to protect people from the health effects of climate change (88%), and to reduce the potential impacts of climate change (93%). These findings suggest that African American physicians are currently seeing the health impacts of climate change among their patients, and that they support a range of responses by the medical profession, and public policy makers, to prevent further harm. PMID:25464138

  9. A survey of African American physicians on the health effects of climate change.

    PubMed

    Sarfaty, Mona; Mitchell, Mark; Bloodhart, Brittany; Maibach, Edward W

    2014-11-28

    The U.S. National Climate Assessment concluded that climate change is harming the health of many Americans and identified people in some communities of color as particularly vulnerable to these effects. In Spring 2014, we surveyed members of the National Medical Association, a society of African American physicians who care for a disproportionate number of African American patients, to determine whether they were seeing the health effects of climate change in their practices; the response rate was 30% (n = 284). Over 86% of respondents indicated that climate change was relevant to direct patient care, and 61% that their own patients were already being harmed by climate change moderately or a great deal. The most commonly reported health effects were injuries from severe storms, floods, and wildfires (88%), increases in severity of chronic disease due to air pollution (88%), and allergic symptoms from prolonged exposure to plants or mold (80%). The majority of survey respondents support medical training, patient and public education regarding the impact of climate change on health, and advocacy by their professional society; nearly all respondents indicated that the US should invest in significant efforts to protect people from the health effects of climate change (88%), and to reduce the potential impacts of climate change (93%). These findings suggest that African American physicians are currently seeing the health impacts of climate change among their patients, and that they support a range of responses by the medical profession, and public policy makers, to prevent further harm.

  10. Influence of Soil Moisture on the Asian and African Monsoons. Part II: Interannual Variability.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Douville, H.

    2002-04-01

    The relevance of soil moisture (SM) for simulating the interannual climate variability has not been much investigated until recently. Much more attention has been paid on SST anomalies, especially in the Tropics where the El Niño-Southern Oscillation represents the main mode of variability. In the present study, ensembles of atmospheric integrations based on the Action de Recherche Petit Echelle Grande Echelle (ARPEGE) climate model have been performed for two summer seasons: 1987 and 1988, respectively. The aim is to compare the relative impacts of using realistic boundary conditions of SST and SM on the simulated variability of the Asian and African monsoons. Besides control runs with interactive SM, sensitivity tests have been done in which SM is relaxed toward a state-of-the-art SM climatology, either globally or regionally over the monsoon domain. The simulations indicate that the variations of the Asian monsoon between 1987 and 1988 are mainly driven by SST anomalies. This result might be explained by the strong teleconnection with the ENSO and by a weak SM-precipitation feedback over south Asia (Part I of the study). The influence of SM is more obvious over Africa. The model needs both realistic SST and SM boundary conditions to simulate the observed variability of the Sahelian monsoon rainfall. The positive impact of the SM relaxation is not only due to a local mechanism whereby larger surface evaporation leads to larger precipitation. The best results are obtained when the relaxation is applied globally, suggesting that remote SM impacts also contribute to the improved simulation of the precipitation variability. A relationship between the Sahelian rainfall anomalies and the meridional wind anomalies over North Africa points out the possible influence of the Northern Hemisphere midlatitudes. The comparison of the low- and midtropospheric anomalies in the various pairs of experiments indicates that SM anomalies can trigger stationary waves over Europe, and

  11. The Dynamics of Ocean Climate Variability.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    White, Warren B.; Haney, Robert L.

    1978-01-01

    Halfway through a five-year experimental program designed to test classical concepts of ocean/atmosphere climate dynamics, researchers are finding that the theories may conflict with new data on disturbances in the ocean thermal structure. (Author BB)

  12. Projections of 21st Century African Climate: Implications for African Savanna Fire Dynamics, Human Health and Food Security

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adegoke, J. O.

    2015-12-01

    Fire is a key agent of change in the African savannas, which are shaped through the complex interactions between trees, C4 grasses, rainfall, temperature, CO2 and fire. These fires and their emitted smoke can have numerous direct and indirect effects on the environment, water resources, air quality, and climate. For instance, veld fires in southern Africa cause large financial losses to agriculture, livestock production and forestry on an annual basis. This study contributes to our understanding of the implications of projected surface temperature evolution in Africa for fire risk, human health and agriculture over the coming decades. We use an ensemble of high-resolution regional climate model simulations of African climate for the 21st century. Regional dowscalings and recent global circulation model projections obtained for Africa indicate that African temperatures are likely to rise at 1.5 times the global rate of temperature increase in the tropics, and at almost twice the global rate of increase in the subtropics. Warming is projected to occur during the 21st century, with increases of 4-6 °C over the subtropics and 3-5 °C over the tropics plausible by the end of the century relative to present-day climate under the A2 (low mitigation) scenario. We explore the significance of the projected warming by documenting increases in projected high fire danger days and heat-wave days. General drying is projected across the continent, even for areas (e.g. tropical Africa) where an increase in rainfall is plausible. This is due to the drastic increases in temperature that are projected, which leads to drier soils (through enhanced evaporation) despite the rainfall increases. This will likely impact negatively on crop yield, particularly on the maize crop that is of crucial importance in terms of African food security.

  13. Evaluation of Northern Hemisphere natural climate variability in multiple temperature reconstructions and global climate model simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bell, J. L.; Sloan, L. C.; Revenaugh, J.; Duffy, P. B.

    2003-06-01

    The detection of anthropogenic climate change in observations and the validation of climate models both rely on understanding natural climate variability. To evaluate internal climate variability, we apply spectral analysis to time series of surface air temperature (SAT) from nine coupled general circulation model (GCM) simulations, three recent global paleotemperature reconstructions, and Northern Hemisphere (NH) instrumental records. Our comparison is focused on the NH due to the greater spatial and temporal coverage and validation of the available NH temperature reconstructions. The paleotemperature reconstructions capture the general magnitude of NH climate variability, but not the precise variance and specific spatial, temporal, or periodic signals demonstrated in the instrumental record. The models achieved varying degrees of success for each measure of variability analyzed, with none of the models consistently capturing the appropriate variability. In general, the models performed best in the analysis of combined mean annual land and marine variability.

  14. Impact of Holocene climate variability on Arctic vegetation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gajewski, K.

    2015-10-01

    This paper summarizes current knowledge about the postglacial history of the vegetation of the Canadian Arctic Archipelago (CAA) and Greenland. Available pollen data were used to understand the initial migration of taxa across the Arctic, how the plant biodiversity responded to Holocene climate variability, and how past climate variability affected primary production of the vegetation. Current evidence suggests that most of the flora arrived in the area during the Holocene from Europe or refugia south or west of the region immediately after local deglaciation, indicating rapid dispersal of propagules to the region from distant sources. There is some evidence of shrub species arriving later in Greenland, but it is not clear if this is dispersal limited or a response to past climates. Subsequent climate variability had little effect on biodiversity across the CAA, with some evidence of local extinctions in areas of Greenland in the late Holocene. The most significant impact of climate changes is on vegetation density and/or plant production.

  15. Impacts of Climate Change on the Global Invasion Potential of the African Clawed Frog Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Ihlow, Flora; Courant, Julien; Secondi, Jean; Herrel, Anthony; Rebelo, Rui; Measey, G John; Lillo, Francesco; De Villiers, F André; Vogt, Solveig; De Busschere, Charlotte; Backeljau, Thierry; Rödder, Dennis

    2016-01-01

    By altering or eliminating delicate ecological relationships, non-indigenous species are considered a major threat to biodiversity, as well as a driver of environmental change. Global climate change affects ecosystems and ecological communities, leading to changes in the phenology, geographic ranges, or population abundance of several species. Thus, predicting the impacts of global climate change on the current and future distribution of invasive species is an important subject in macroecological studies. The African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis), native to South Africa, possesses a strong invasion potential and populations have become established in numerous countries across four continents. The global invasion potential of X. laevis was assessed using correlative species distribution models (SDMs). SDMs were computed based on a comprehensive set of occurrence records covering South Africa, North America, South America and Europe and a set of nine environmental predictors. Models were built using both a maximum entropy model and an ensemble approach integrating eight algorithms. The future occurrence probabilities for X. laevis were subsequently computed using bioclimatic variables for 2070 following four different IPCC scenarios. Despite minor differences between the statistical approaches, both SDMs predict the future potential distribution of X. laevis, on a global scale, to decrease across all climate change scenarios. On a continental scale, both SDMs predict decreasing potential distributions in the species' native range in South Africa, as well as in the invaded areas in North and South America, and in Australia where the species has not been introduced. In contrast, both SDMs predict the potential range size to expand in Europe. Our results suggest that all probability classes will be equally affected by climate change. New regional conditions may promote new invasions or the spread of established invasive populations, especially in France and Great Britain.

  16. Impacts of Climate Change on the Global Invasion Potential of the African Clawed Frog Xenopus laevis

    PubMed Central

    Ihlow, Flora; Courant, Julien; Secondi, Jean; Herrel, Anthony; Rebelo, Rui; Measey, G. John; Lillo, Francesco; De Villiers, F. André; Vogt, Solveig; De Busschere, Charlotte; Backeljau, Thierry; Rödder, Dennis

    2016-01-01

    By altering or eliminating delicate ecological relationships, non-indigenous species are considered a major threat to biodiversity, as well as a driver of environmental change. Global climate change affects ecosystems and ecological communities, leading to changes in the phenology, geographic ranges, or population abundance of several species. Thus, predicting the impacts of global climate change on the current and future distribution of invasive species is an important subject in macroecological studies. The African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis), native to South Africa, possesses a strong invasion potential and populations have become established in numerous countries across four continents. The global invasion potential of X. laevis was assessed using correlative species distribution models (SDMs). SDMs were computed based on a comprehensive set of occurrence records covering South Africa, North America, South America and Europe and a set of nine environmental predictors. Models were built using both a maximum entropy model and an ensemble approach integrating eight algorithms. The future occurrence probabilities for X. laevis were subsequently computed using bioclimatic variables for 2070 following four different IPCC scenarios. Despite minor differences between the statistical approaches, both SDMs predict the future potential distribution of X. laevis, on a global scale, to decrease across all climate change scenarios. On a continental scale, both SDMs predict decreasing potential distributions in the species’ native range in South Africa, as well as in the invaded areas in North and South America, and in Australia where the species has not been introduced. In contrast, both SDMs predict the potential range size to expand in Europe. Our results suggest that all probability classes will be equally affected by climate change. New regional conditions may promote new invasions or the spread of established invasive populations, especially in France and Great

  17. On the data-driven inference of modulatory networks in climate science: an application to West African rainfall

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    González, D. L., II; Angus, M. P.; Tetteh, I. K.; Bello, G. A.; Padmanabhan, K.; Pendse, S. V.; Srinivas, S.; Yu, J.; Semazzi, F.; Kumar, V.; Samatova, N. F.

    2014-04-01

    Decades of hypothesis-driven and/or first-principles research have been applied towards the discovery and explanation of the mechanisms that drive climate phenomena, such as western African Sahel summer rainfall variability. Although connections between various climate factors have been theorized, not all of the key relationships are fully understood. We propose a data-driven approach to identify candidate players in this climate system, which can help explain underlying mechanisms and/or even suggest new relationships, to facilitate building a more comprehensive and predictive model of the modulatory relationships influencing a climate phenomenon of interest. We applied coupled heterogeneous association rule mining (CHARM), Lasso multivariate regression, and Dynamic Bayesian networks to find relationships within a complex system, and explored means with which to obtain a consensus result from the application of such varied methodologies. Using this fusion of approaches, we identified relationships among climate factors that modulate Sahel rainfall, including well-known associations from prior climate knowledge, as well as promising discoveries that invite further research by the climate science community.

  18. Effect of flux adjustments on temperature variability in climate models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    CMIP investigators; Duffy, P. B.; Bell, J.; Covey, C.; Sloan, L.

    2000-03-01

    It has been suggested that “flux adjustments” in climate models suppress simulated temperature variability. If true, this might invalidate the conclusion that at least some of observed temperature increases since 1860 are anthropogenic, since this conclusion is based in part on estimates of natural temperature variability derived from flux-adjusted models. We assess variability of surface air temperatures in 17 simulations of internal temperature variability submitted to the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project. By comparing variability in flux-adjusted vs. non-flux adjusted simulations, we find no evidence that flux adjustments suppress temperature variability in climate models; other, largely unknown, factors are much more important in determining simulated temperature variability. Therefore the conclusion that at least some of observed temperature increases are anthropogenic cannot be questioned on the grounds that it is based in part on results of flux-adjusted models. Also, reducing or eliminating flux adjustments would probably do little to improve simulations of temperature variability.

  19. The Intensification of Global and Regional Climate Variability and Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weaver, S. J.

    2015-12-01

    Recent evidence from the IPCC and National Climate Assessment reports indicate that extreme climate events are increasing in many regions of the world. Interestingly, the nature and causes of the changes in extremes may be expressed differently for the global and regional scales, and also amongst climate variables (e.g., precipitation and temperature). For instance, over the last several decades the temperature probability density function on the global scale exhibits a mean shift to the warmer side, as opposed to a change in it's variability. Conversely, the interannual variability of precipitation is intensifying on the regional scale, especially over the U.S. during spring. Although the statistical characteristics of the temperature and precipitation changes may have a varied expression they both contribute to the potential for increases in extreme events. The causes and physical mechanisms for the intensification of mean global temperature and regional precipitation variability are explored using observationally constrained datasets and non-traditional climate model approaches.

  20. Land Use and Climate Variability Amplify Contaminant Pulses

    EPA Science Inventory

    Converting land to human-dominated uses has increased contaminant loads in streams and rivers and vastly transformed hydrological cycles (Vitousek et al. 1997). More recently, climate change has further altered hydrologic cycles and variability of precipitation (IPCC 2007). Toge...

  1. Impact of climate variability on vector-borne disease transmission

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    We will discuss the impact of climate variability on vector borne diseases and demonstrate that global climate teleconnections can be used to anticipate and forecast, in the case of Rift Valley fever, epidemics and epizootics. In this context we will examine significant worldwide weather anomalies t...

  2. Frontiers in Decadal Climate Variability: Proceedings of a Workshop

    SciTech Connect

    Purcell, Amanda

    2016-07-25

    A number of studies indicate an apparent slowdown in the overall rise in global average surface temperature between roughly 1998 and 2014. Most models did not predict such a slowdown--a fact that stimulated a lot of new research on variability of Earth's climate system. At a September 2015 workshop, leading scientists gathered to discuss current understanding of climate variability on decadal timescales (10 to 30 years) and whether and how prediction of it might be improved. Many researchers have focused their attention on the climate system itself, which is known to vary across seasons, decades, and other timescales. Several natural variables produce "ups and downs" in the climate system, which are superimposed on the long-term warming trend due to human influence. Understanding decadal climate variability is important not only for assessing global climate change but also for improving decision making related to infrastructure, water resources, agriculture, energy, and other realms. Like the well-studied El Nino and La Nina interannual variations, decadal climate variability is associated with specific regional patterns of temperature and precipitation, such as heat waves, cold spells, and droughts. Several participants shared research that assesses decadal predictive capability of current models.

  3. Inter-variable relations in regional climate model outputs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilcke, R.; Chandler, R. E.; Prein, A. F.

    2015-12-01

    Regional climate models (RCMs) intent to provide physically consistent climate data to the climate change impact research community. However, the effects of parametrisations of unresolved sub-grid processes and systematic biases in the model output requires not only a post-processing in form of bias adjustment but also an analysis of inter-variable relations. Many impact models require several climate variables as input data, which makes it necessary to check if the inter-variable dependence structure is simulated realistically by RCMs. A common practice is to bias adjust RCM output variables to improve their individual distribution and mean climate characteristics. This can be done by empirical bias adjustment procedures such as quantile mapping. However, applying statistical bias adjustment procedures on individual variables may alter the inter-variable relationships given by the climate model and hence distort the physical consistency.In our study we examined the inter-variable relations of RCM output variables by using estimates of conditional probability density functions for pairs of variables. Conditional densities obtained from multiple European RCMs were compared with those obtained from observations. We quantified the extent to which these conditional density estimates are distorted by an empirical bias adjustment procedure. Additionally, the influence of the model physics on the representation of inter-variable relations is analysed for a 24 member perturbed physics ensemble of WRF simulations in the U.S.. Here, multiple observational data sets were used to address the influence of observational uncertainties on the analysis. Finally, the results obtained from the European and U.S. modelling initiatives are compared to provide a common basis on the representation of inter-variable relations in RCM outputs.

  4. CLIMATE VARIABILITY, CHANGE, AND CONSEQUENCES IN ESTUARIES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Climate change operates at global, hemispheric, and regional scales, sometimes involving rapid shifts in ocean and atmospheric circulation. Changes of global scope occurred in the transition into the Little Ice Age (1350-1880) and subsequent warming during the 20th century. In th...

  5. Use of Machine Learning Techniques for Identification of Robust Teleconnections to East African Rainfall Variability

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Roberts, J. Brent; Robertson, F. R.; Funk, C.

    2014-01-01

    Hidden Markov models can be used to investigate structure of subseasonal variability. East African short rain variability has connections to large-scale tropical variability. MJO - Intraseasonal variations connected with appearance of "wet" and "dry" states. ENSO/IOZM SST and circulation anomalies are apparent during years of anomalous residence time in the subseasonal "wet" state. Similar results found in previous studies, but we can interpret this with respect to variations of subseasonal wet and dry modes. Reveal underlying connections between MJO/IOZM/ENSO with respect to East African rainfall.

  6. Has solar variability caused climate change that affected human culture?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Feynman, Joan

    If solar variability affects human culture it most likely does so by changing the climate in which the culture operates. Variations in the solar radiative input to the Earth's atmosphere have often been suggested as a cause of such climate change on time scales from decades to tens of millennia. In the last 20 years there has been enormous progress in our knowledge of the many fields of research that impinge on this problem; the history of the solar output, the effect of solar variability on the Earth's mean climate and its regional patterns, the history of the Earth's climate and the history of mankind and human culture. This new knowledge encourages revisiting the question asked in the title of this talk. Several important historical events have been reliably related to climate change including the Little Ice Age in northern Europe and the collapse of the Classical Mayan civilization in the 9th century AD. In the first section of this paper we discus these historical events and review the evidence that they were caused by changes in the solar output. Perhaps the most important event in the history of mankind was the development of agricultural societies. This began to occur almost 12,000 years ago when the climate changed from the Pleistocene to the modern climate of the Holocene. In the second section of the paper we will discuss the suggestion ( Feynman and Ruzmaikin, 2007) that climate variability was the reason agriculture developed when it did and not before.

  7. Quality Assurance for Essential Climate Variables

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Folkert Boersma, K.; Muller, Jan-Peter

    2015-04-01

    Satellite data are of central interest to the QA4ECV project. Satellites have revolutionized the Earth's observation system of climate change and air quality over the past three decades, providing continuous data for the entire Earth. However, many users of these data are lost in the fog as to the quality of these satellite data. Because of this, the European Union expressed in its 2013 FP7 Space Research Call a need for reliable, traceable, and understandable quality information on satellite data records that could serve as a blueprint contribution to a future Copernicus Climate Change Service. The potential of satellite data to benefit climate change and air quality services is too great to be ignored. QA4ECV therefore bridges the gap between end-users of satellite data and the satellite data products. We are developing an internationally acceptable Quality Assurance (QA) framework that provides understandable and traceable quality information for satellite data used in climate and air quality services. Such a framework should deliver the historically linked long-term data sets that users need, in a format that they can readily use. QA4ECV has approached more than 150 users and suppliers of satellite data to collect their needs and expectations. The project will use their response as a guideline for developing user-friendly tools to obtain information on the completeness, accuracy, and fitness-for-purpose of the satellite datasets. QA4ECV collaborates with 4 joint FP7 Space projects in reaching out to scientists, policy makers, and other end-users of satellite data to improve understanding of the special challenges -and also opportunities- of working with satellite data for climate and air quality purposes. As a demonstration of its capacity, QA4ECV will generate multi-decadal climate data records for 3 atmospheric ECV precursors (nitrogen dioxide, formaldehyde, and carbon monoxide) and 3 land ECVs (albedo, leaf area index and absorbed photosynthetically active

  8. Reservoirs performances under climate variability: a case study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Longobardi, A.; Mautone, M.; de Luca, C.

    2014-09-01

    A case study, the Piano della Rocca dam (southern Italy) is discussed here in order to quantify the system performances under climate variability conditions. Different climate scenarios have been stochastically generated according to the tendencies in precipitation and air temperature observed during recent decades for the studied area. Climate variables have then been filtered through an ARMA model to generate, at the monthly scale, time series of reservoir inflow volumes. Controlled release has been computed considering the reservoir is operated following the standard linear operating policy (SLOP) and reservoir performances have been assessed through the calculation of reliability, resilience and vulnerability indices (Hashimoto et al. 1982), comparing current and future scenarios of climate variability. The proposed approach can be suggested as a valuable tool to mitigate the effects of moderate to severe and persistent droughts periods, through the allocation of new water resources or the planning of appropriate operational rules.

  9. Future warming patterns linked to today’s climate variability

    SciTech Connect

    Dai, Aiguo

    2016-01-11

    The reliability of model projections of greenhouse gas (GHG)-induced future climate change is often assessed based on models’ ability to simulate the current climate, but there has been little evidence that connects the two. In fact, this practice has been questioned because the GHG-induced future climate change may involve additional physical processes that are not important for the current climate. Here I show that the spatial patterns of the GHG-induced future warming in the 21st century is highly correlated with the patterns of the year-to-year variations of surface air temperature for today’s climate, with areas of larger variations during 1950–1979 having more GHG-induced warming in the 21st century in all climate models. Such a relationship also exists in other climate fields such as atmospheric water vapor, and it is evident in observed temperatures from 1950–2010. The results suggest that many physical processes may work similarly in producing the year-to-year climate variations in the current climate and the GHG-induced long-term changes in the 21st century in models and in the real world. Furthermore, they support the notion that models that simulate present-day climate variability better are likely to make more reliable predictions of future climate change.

  10. Future warming patterns linked to today’s climate variability

    DOE PAGES

    Dai, Aiguo

    2016-01-11

    The reliability of model projections of greenhouse gas (GHG)-induced future climate change is often assessed based on models’ ability to simulate the current climate, but there has been little evidence that connects the two. In fact, this practice has been questioned because the GHG-induced future climate change may involve additional physical processes that are not important for the current climate. Here I show that the spatial patterns of the GHG-induced future warming in the 21st century is highly correlated with the patterns of the year-to-year variations of surface air temperature for today’s climate, with areas of larger variations during 1950–1979more » having more GHG-induced warming in the 21st century in all climate models. Such a relationship also exists in other climate fields such as atmospheric water vapor, and it is evident in observed temperatures from 1950–2010. The results suggest that many physical processes may work similarly in producing the year-to-year climate variations in the current climate and the GHG-induced long-term changes in the 21st century in models and in the real world. Furthermore, they support the notion that models that simulate present-day climate variability better are likely to make more reliable predictions of future climate change.« less

  11. Future Warming Patterns Linked to Today's Climate Variability.

    PubMed

    Dai, Aiguo

    2016-01-11

    The reliability of model projections of greenhouse gas (GHG)-induced future climate change is often assessed based on models' ability to simulate the current climate, but there has been little evidence that connects the two. In fact, this practice has been questioned because the GHG-induced future climate change may involve additional physical processes that are not important for the current climate. Here I show that the spatial patterns of the GHG-induced future warming in the 21(st) century is highly correlated with the patterns of the year-to-year variations of surface air temperature for today's climate, with areas of larger variations during 1950-1979 having more GHG-induced warming in the 21(st) century in all climate models. Such a relationship also exists in other climate fields such as atmospheric water vapor, and it is evident in observed temperatures from 1950-2010. The results suggest that many physical processes may work similarly in producing the year-to-year climate variations in the current climate and the GHG-induced long-term changes in the 21(st) century in models and in the real world. They support the notion that models that simulate present-day climate variability better are likely to make more reliable predictions of future climate change.

  12. WASCAL - West African Science Service Center on Climate Change and Adapted Land Use Regional Climate Simulations and Land-Atmosphere Simulations for West Africa at DKRZ and elsewhere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hamann, Ilse; Arnault, Joel; Bliefernicht, Jan; Klein, Cornelia; Heinzeller, Dominikus; Kunstmann, Harald

    2014-05-01

    Changing climate and hydro-meteorological boundary conditions are among the most severe challenges to Africa in the 21st century. In particular West Africa faces an urgent need to develop effective adaptation and mitigation strategies to cope with negative impacts on humans and environment due to climate change, increased hydro-meteorological variability and land use changes. To help meet these challenges, the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) started an initiative with institutions in Germany and West African countries to establish together a West African Science Service Center on Climate Change and Adapted Land Use (WASCAL). This activity is accompanied by an establishment of trans-boundary observation networks, an interdisciplinary core research program and graduate research programs on climate change and related issues for strengthening the analytical capabilities of the Science Service Center. A key research activity of the WASCAL Competence Center is the provision of regional climate simulations in a fine spatio-temporal resolution for the core research sites of WASCAL for the present and the near future. The climate information is needed for subsequent local climate impact studies in agriculture, water resources and further socio-economic sectors. The simulation experiments are performed using regional climate models such as COSMO-CLM, RegCM and WRF and statistical techniques for a further refinement of the projections. The core research sites of WASCAL are located in the Sudanian Savannah belt in Northern Ghana, Southern Burkina Faso and Northern Benin. The climate in this region is semi-arid with six rainy months. Due to the strong population growth in West Africa, many areas of the Sudanian Savannah have been already converted to farmland since the majority of the people are living directly or indirectly from the income produced in agriculture. The simulation experiments of the Competence Center and the Core Research Program are

  13. Climate variability and change impacts on coastal environmental variables in British Columbia Canada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abeysirigunawardena, Dilumie Saumedaka

    The research presented in this dissertation attempted to determine whether climate variability is critical to sea level changes in coastal BC. To that end, a number of statistical models were proposed to clarify the relationships between five climate variability indices representing large-scale atmospheric circulation regimes and sea levels, storm surges, extreme winds and storm track variability in coastal BC. The research findings demonstrate that decadal to inter decadal climatic variability is fundamental to explaining the changing frequency and intensity of extreme atmospheric and oceanic environmental variables in coastal BC. The trends revealed by these analyses suggest that coastal flooding risks are certain to increase in this region during the next few decades, especially if the global sea-levels continue to rise as predicted. The out come of this study emphasis the need to look beyond climatic means when completing climate impact assessments, by clearly showing that climate extremes are currently causing the majority of weather-related damage along coastal BC. The findings highlight the need to derive knowledge on climate variability and change effects relevant at regional to local scales to enable useful adaptation strategies. The major findings of this research resulted in five independent manuscripts: (i) Sea level responses to climatic variability and change in Northern BC. The Manuscript (MC) is published in the Journal of atmospheric and oceans (AO 46 (3), 277-296); (ii) Extreme sea-level recurrences in the south coast of BC with climate considerations. This MC is in review with the Asia Pacific Journal of Climate Change (APJCC); (iii) Extreme sea-surge responses to climate variability in coastal BC. This MC is currently in review in the Annals of the AAG (AN-2009-0098); (iv) Extreme wind regime responses to climate variability and change in the inner-south-coast of BC. This MC is published in the Journal of Atmosphere and Oceans (AO 47 (1), 41

  14. On the data-driven inference of modulatory networks in climate science: An application to West African rainfall

    SciTech Connect

    Gonzalez, II, D. L.; Angus, M. P.; Tetteh, I. K.; Bello, G. A.; Padmanabhan, K.; Pendse, S. V.; Srinivas, S.; Yu, J.; Semazzi, Fred; Kumar, Vipin; Samatova, Nagiza F.

    2015-01-13

    Decades of hypothesis-driven and/or first-principles research have been applied towards the discovery and explanation of the mechanisms that drive climate phenomena, such as western African Sahel summer rainfall~variability. Although connections between various climate factors have been theorized, not all of the key relationships are fully understood. We propose a data-driven approach to identify candidate players in this climate system, which can help explain underlying mechanisms and/or even suggest new relationships, to facilitate building a more comprehensive and predictive model of the modulatory relationships influencing a climate phenomenon of interest. We applied coupled heterogeneous association rule mining (CHARM), Lasso multivariate regression, and dynamic Bayesian networks to find relationships within a complex system, and explored means with which to obtain a consensus result from the application of such varied methodologies. Using this fusion of approaches, we identified relationships among climate factors that modulate Sahel rainfall. As a result, these relationships fall into two categories: well-known associations from prior climate knowledge, such as the relationship with the El Niño–Southern Oscillation (ENSO) and putative links, such as North Atlantic Oscillation, that invite further research.

  15. On the data-driven inference of modulatory networks in climate science: An application to West African rainfall

    DOE PAGES

    Gonzalez, II, D. L.; Angus, M. P.; Tetteh, I. K.; ...

    2015-01-13

    Decades of hypothesis-driven and/or first-principles research have been applied towards the discovery and explanation of the mechanisms that drive climate phenomena, such as western African Sahel summer rainfall~variability. Although connections between various climate factors have been theorized, not all of the key relationships are fully understood. We propose a data-driven approach to identify candidate players in this climate system, which can help explain underlying mechanisms and/or even suggest new relationships, to facilitate building a more comprehensive and predictive model of the modulatory relationships influencing a climate phenomenon of interest. We applied coupled heterogeneous association rule mining (CHARM), Lasso multivariate regression,more » and dynamic Bayesian networks to find relationships within a complex system, and explored means with which to obtain a consensus result from the application of such varied methodologies. Using this fusion of approaches, we identified relationships among climate factors that modulate Sahel rainfall. As a result, these relationships fall into two categories: well-known associations from prior climate knowledge, such as the relationship with the El Niño–Southern Oscillation (ENSO) and putative links, such as North Atlantic Oscillation, that invite further research.« less

  16. On the data-driven inference of modulatory networks in climate science: an application to West African rainfall

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    González, D. L., II; Angus, M. P.; Tetteh, I. K.; Bello, G. A.; Padmanabhan, K.; Pendse, S. V.; Srinivas, S.; Yu, J.; Semazzi, F.; Kumar, V.; Samatova, N. F.

    2015-01-01

    Decades of hypothesis-driven and/or first-principles research have been applied towards the discovery and explanation of the mechanisms that drive climate phenomena, such as western African Sahel summer rainfall~variability. Although connections between various climate factors have been theorized, not all of the key relationships are fully understood. We propose a data-driven approach to identify candidate players in this climate system, which can help explain underlying mechanisms and/or even suggest new relationships, to facilitate building a more comprehensive and predictive model of the modulatory relationships influencing a climate phenomenon of interest. We applied coupled heterogeneous association rule mining (CHARM), Lasso multivariate regression, and dynamic Bayesian networks to find relationships within a complex system, and explored means with which to obtain a consensus result from the application of such varied methodologies. Using this fusion of approaches, we identified relationships among climate factors that modulate Sahel rainfall. These relationships fall into two categories: well-known associations from prior climate knowledge, such as the relationship with the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) and putative links, such as North Atlantic Oscillation, that invite further research.

  17. A Climate Change Threshold for Forest Dieback in the African Sahel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gonzalez, P.; Tucker, C. J.; Sy, H.

    2007-12-01

    Increases in human greenhouse gas emissions to the atmosphere have increased global sea surface temperatures. Reinforced by a reduction in vegetation cover in the African Sahel, warmer sea surface temperatures have reduced rainfall in the Sahel by up to 30% in the 20th Century. In Senegal, annual precipitation fell to below one standard deviation of the 148 year mean for 5 years in the period 1968-1973. Although the region had experienced high historic variability in precipitation, the 1968-1973 drought crossed a climate threshold for agriculture that caused famine and human death. Sahel, Sudan, and Guinean ecosystems also crossed a climate threshold of aridity in an abrupt, nonlinear manner. The long-term decrease in precipitation caused extensive forest dieback and a latitudinal shift of the Sahel, Sudan, and Guinean ecological zones. The range of xeric forest species has expanded and mesic species have retracted southward towards areas of higher precipitation. Field inventories of tree species richness show declines in local biodiversity across the Sahel. Analyses of 1954 and 1989 aerial photographs and 2002 1-meter resolution IKONOS satellite images of three 200 km2 areas in Senegal and Mauritania also show declines in the density of trees of height > 3 m. Forest dieback fuels three positive feedback mechanisms: reduction of the evapotranspiration inputs necessary for the northward advance of the summer monsoon rains that sustain vegetation and forestall desertification, increases in the greenhouse gas emissions that cause the reduction in rainfall, and reduction of the forest biodiversity that strengthens ecosystem resilience to long-term drought. The interaction of climate change, desertification, and loss of biodiversity, as well as the complex social, economic, and political factors that lead to forest dieback and other ecological changes in the Sahel present difficulties in monitoring and foreseeing future threshold behavior. Nevertheless, any reduction in

  18. Climate Change and Climate Variability in the Latin American Region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Magrin, G. O.; Gay Garcia, C.; Cruz Choque, D.; Gimenez-Sal, J. C.; Moreno, A. R.; Nagy, G. J.; Nobre, C.; Villamizar, A.

    2007-05-01

    Over the past three decades LA was subjected to several climate-related impacts due to increased El Niño occurrences. Two extremely intense episodes of El Niño and other increased climate extremes happened during this period contributing greatly to augment the vulnerability of human systems to natural disasters. In addition to weather and climate, the main drivers of the increased vulnerability are demographic pressure, unregulated urban growth, poverty and rural migration, low investment in infrastructure and services, and problems in inter-sector coordination. As well, increases in temperature and increases/decreases in precipitation observed during the last part of 20th century have yet led to intensification of glaciers melting, increases in floods/droughts and forest fires frequency, increases in morbidity and mortality, increases in plant diseases incidence; lost of biodiversity, reduction in dairy cattle production, and problems with hydropower generation, highly affecting LA human system. For the end of the 21st century, the projected mean warming for LA ranges from 1 to 7.5ºC and the frequency of weather and climate extremes could increase. Additionally, deforestation is projected to continue leading to a reduction of 25 percent in Amazonia forest in 2020 and 40 percent in 2050. Soybeans planted area in South America could increase by 55 percent by 2020 enhancing aridity/desertification in many of the already water- stressed regions. By 2050 LA population is likely to be 50 percent larger than in 2000, and migration from the country sides to the cities will continue. In the near future, these predicted changes are very likely to severely affect a number of ecosystems and sectors distribution; b) Disappearing most tropical glaciers; c) Reducing water availability and hydropower generation; d) Increasing desertification and aridity; e) Severely affecting people, resources and economic activities in coastal areas; f) Increasing crop's pests and diseases

  19. A 1700-year history of West African multidecadal sea surface temperature and rainfall variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuhnert, Henning; Stefan, Mulitza; Gesine, Mollenhauer

    2010-05-01

    Tropical Atlantic sea surface temperatures (SST) exert a major influence on the latitudinal position and intensity of the West African Monsoon and the tropical rainbelt. The impact of the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO) in particular has previously been demonstrated, but little information is available beyond the instrumental time period. We have reconstructed summer-fall SST and relative changes in the discharge of the Senegal River from a sediment core off southern Mauritania. Time series of SST and seawater-d18O (a measure of salinity and hence discharge) were estimated from planktonic foraminiferal Mg/Ca and d18O. The records are sufficiently resolved to infer multidecadal variability over the past 1700 years and centennial variability over the past 3300 years. River discharge increases slightly over the entire time series. This can be brought into agreement with the general Sahel drying trend indicated by previous studies, when we assume a southward migration of the rainbelt that leads to locally enhanced rainfall over the southernmost Senegal River catchment area in Guinea. SST cooled by 1-1.5 °C between AD 1250 and 1500, more pronounced and somewhat earlier compared with the North Atlantic mean. Spectral analysis reveals several multidecadal periods (38, ~45 and ~62 years) where SST and Senegal River discharge are tightly coupled and are driven by the AMO. The exception is a 30-year periodicity in discharge that has no counterpart in SST, and is potentially linked to meridional tropical SST gradient anomalies. AMO signatures are present throughout the past 1700 years, but vary in amplitude. The most recent and persistent phase of enhanced AMO variability commences around AD 1250 contemporaneous with the transition from the Medieval Climate Anomaly to the Little Ice Age.

  20. Regional-scale climate-variability synchrony of cholera epidemics in West Africa

    PubMed Central

    Constantin de Magny, Guillaume; Guégan, Jean-François; Petit, Michel; Cazelles, Bernard

    2007-01-01

    Background The relationship between cholera and climate was explored in Africa, the continent with the most reported cases, by analyzing monthly 20-year cholera time series for five coastal adjoining West African countries: Côte d'Ivoire, Ghana, Togo, Benin and Nigeria. Methods We used wavelet analyses and derived methods because these are useful mathematical tools to provide information on the evolution of the periodic component over time and allow quantification of non-stationary associations between time series. Results The temporal variability of cholera incidence exhibits an interannual component, and a significant synchrony in cholera epidemics is highlighted at the end of the 1980's. This observed synchrony across countries, even if transient through time, is also coherent with both the local variability of rainfall and the global climate variability quantified by the Indian Oscillation Index. Conclusion Results of this study suggest that large and regional scale climate variability influence both the temporal dynamics and the spatial synchrony of cholera epidemics in human populations in the Gulf of Guinea, as has been described for two other tropical regions of the world, western South America and Bangladesh. PMID:17371602

  1. Time series of Essential Climate Variables from Satellite Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Werscheck, M.

    2010-09-01

    Climate change is a fact. We need to know how the climate system will develop in future and how this will affect workaday life. To do this we need climate models for prediction of the future on all time scales, and models to assess the impact of the prediction results to the various sectors of social and economic life. With this knowledge we can take measures to mitigate the causes and adapt to changes. Prerequisite for this is a careful and thorough monitoring of the climate systems. Satellite data are an increasing & valuable source of information to observe the climate system. For many decades now satellite data are available to derive information about our planet earth. EUMETSAT is the European Organisation in charge of the exploitation of satellite data for meteorology and (since the year 2000) climatology. Within the EUMETSAT Satellite Application Facility (SAF) Network, comprising 8 initiatives to derive geophysical parameters from satellite, the Satellite Application Facility on Climate Monitoring (CM SAF) is especially dedicated to provide climate relevant information from satellite data. Many products as e.g. water vapour, radiation at surface and top of atmosphere, cloud properties are available, some of these for more then 2 decades. Just recently the European Space Agency (ESA) launched the Climate Change Initiative (CCI) to derive Essential Climate Variables (ECVs) from satellite data, including e.g. cloud properties, aerosol, ozone, sea surface temperature etc.. The presentation will give an overview on some relevant European activities to derive Essential Climate Variables from satellite data and the links to Global Climate Observing System (GCOS), the Global Satellite Intercalibration System (GSICS) as well as the Sustained Co-ordinated Processing of Environmental Satellite Data for Climate Monitoring (SCOPE CM).

  2. Do bioclimate variables improve performance of climate envelope models?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Watling, James I.; Romañach, Stephanie S.; Bucklin, David N.; Speroterra, Carolina; Brandt, Laura A.; Pearlstine, Leonard G.; Mazzotti, Frank J.

    2012-01-01

    Climate envelope models are widely used to forecast potential effects of climate change on species distributions. A key issue in climate envelope modeling is the selection of predictor variables that most directly influence species. To determine whether model performance and spatial predictions were related to the selection of predictor variables, we compared models using bioclimate variables with models constructed from monthly climate data for twelve terrestrial vertebrate species in the southeastern USA using two different algorithms (random forests or generalized linear models), and two model selection techniques (using uncorrelated predictors or a subset of user-defined biologically relevant predictor variables). There were no differences in performance between models created with bioclimate or monthly variables, but one metric of model performance was significantly greater using the random forest algorithm compared with generalized linear models. Spatial predictions between maps using bioclimate and monthly variables were very consistent using the random forest algorithm with uncorrelated predictors, whereas we observed greater variability in predictions using generalized linear models.

  3. Deglacial climate variability in central Florida, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Willard, D.A.; Bernhardt, C.E.; Brooks, G.R.; Cronin, T. M.; Edgar, T.; Larson, R.

    2007-01-01

    Pollen and ostracode evidence from lacustrine sediments underlying modern Tampa Bay, Florida, document frequent and abrupt climatic and hydrological events superimposed on deglacial warming in the subtropics. Radiocarbon chronology on well-preserved mollusk shells and pollen residue from core MD02-2579 documents continuous sedimentation in a variety of non-marine habitats in a karst-controlled basin from 20 ka to 11.5 ka. During the last glacial maximum (LGM), much drier and cooler-than-modern conditions are indicated by pollen assemblages enriched in Chenopodiaceae and Carya, with rare Pinus (Pinus pollen increased to 20–40% during the warming of the initial deglaciation (∼ 17.2 ka), reaching near modern abundance (60–80%) during warmer, moister climates of the Bølling/Allerød interval (14.7–12.9 ka). Within the Bølling/Allerød, centennial-scale dry events corresponding to the Older Dryas and Intra-Allerød Cold Period indicate rapid vegetation response (

  4. Quantifying the increasing sensitivity of power systems to climate variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bloomfield, H. C.; Brayshaw, D. J.; Shaffrey, L. C.; Coker, P. J.; Thornton, H. E.

    2016-12-01

    Large quantities of weather-dependent renewable energy generation are expected in power systems under climate change mitigation policies, yet little attention has been given to the impact of long term climate variability. By combining state-of-the-art multi-decadal meteorological records with a parsimonious representation of a power system, this study characterises the impact of year-to-year climate variability on multiple aspects of the power system of Great Britain (including coal, gas and nuclear generation), demonstrating why multi-decadal approaches are necessary. All aspects of the example system are impacted by inter-annual climate variability, with the impacts being most pronounced for baseload generation. The impacts of inter-annual climate variability increase in a 2025 wind-power scenario, with a 4-fold increase in the inter-annual range of operating hours for baseload such as nuclear. The impacts on peak load and peaking-plant are comparably small. Less than 10 years of power supply and demand data are shown to be insufficient for providing robust power system planning guidance. This suggests renewable integration studies—widely used in policy, investment and system design—should adopt a more robust approach to climate characterisation.

  5. Taking the pulse of mountains: Ecosystem responses to climatic variability

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fagre, D.B.; Peterson, D.L.; Hessl, A.E.

    2003-01-01

    An integrated program of ecosystem modeling and field studies in the mountains of the Pacific Northwest (U.S.A.) has quantified many of the ecological processes affected by climatic variability. Paleoecological and contemporary ecological data in forest ecosystems provided model parameterization and validation at broad spatial and temporal scales for tree growth, tree regeneration and treeline movement. For subalpine tree species, winter precipitation has a strong negative correlation with growth; this relationship is stronger at higher elevations and west-side sites (which have more precipitation). Temperature affects tree growth at some locations with respect to length of growing season (spring) and severity of drought at drier sites (summer). Furthermore, variable but predictable climate-growth relationships across elevation gradients suggest that tree species respond differently to climate at different locations, making a uniform response of these species to future climatic change unlikely. Multi-decadal variability in climate also affects ecosystem processes. Mountain hemlock growth at high-elevation sites is negatively correlated with winter snow depth and positively correlated with the winter Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) index. At low elevations, the reverse is true. Glacier mass balance and fire severity are also linked to PDO. Rapid establishment of trees in subalpine ecosystems during this century is increasing forest cover and reducing meadow cover at many subalpine locations in the western U.S.A. and precipitation (snow depth) is a critical variable regulating conifer expansion. Lastly, modeling potential future ecosystem conditions suggests that increased climatic variability will result in increasing forest fire size and frequency, and reduced net primary productivity in drier, east-side forest ecosystems. As additional empirical data and modeling output become available, we will improve our ability to predict the effects of climatic change

  6. The 19th century discussion of climate variability and climate change: Analogies for the present debate?

    SciTech Connect

    Stehr, N.; Storch, H. von; Fluegel, M.

    1995-12-01

    Toward the end of the nineteenth and at the beginning of twentieth century significant discussions occurred among geographers, meteorologists and climatologists concerned with the notion of climate variability and anthropogenic climate change, for instance, due to deforestation and reforestation. The authors identify two protagonists of this debate, Eduard Brueckner and Julius Hann, who both accept the notion of climate variability on the decadal scale, but respond in very different ways to the discovery of climate change. Brueckner assessed the impact of climate variability on society (e.g., on health, the balance of trade, emigration to the US), and tried to bring these to the attention of the public, whereas Hann limited himself to the immediate natural scientific problem of monitoring and documenting climate variability. The authors suggest that these discussions and the formation of national governmental and parliamentary committees almost 100 hundred years ago, are not merely of historical interest. In view of present discussions of climate variability and anthropogenic climate change, and the need for adequate socio-economic response strategies, past and now neglected arguments may prove important for methodological and theoretical as well as for practical reasons. The past discussions represent a significant social and intellectual analogy for the present situation. 51 refs., 2 figs.

  7. Intra-interglacial climate variability from Marine Isotope Stage 15 to the Holocene

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rachmayani, R.; Prange, M.; Schulz, M.

    2015-07-01

    Using the Community Climate System Model version 3 (CCSM3) including a dynamic global vegetation model a set of 13 interglacial time slice experiments was carried out to study global climate variability between and within the Quaternary interglaciations of Marine Isotope Stages (MIS) 1, 5, 11, 13, and 15. The different effects of obliquity, precession and greenhouse gas forcing on global surface temperature and precipitation fields are illuminated. Several similarities with previous idealized orbital-forcing experiments can be identified. In particular, a significant role of meridional insolation-gradient forcing by obliquity variations in forcing the West African monsoon is found. The sensitivity of the West African monsoon to this obliquity forcing, however, depends on the climatic precession. According to the CCSM3 results, the Indian monsoon is less sensitive to direct obliquity-induced insolation forcing, consistent with the interpretation of proxy records from the Arabian Sea. Moreover, the model results suggest that the two monsoon systems do not always vary in concert, challenging the concept of a global monsoon system at orbital timescales. High obliquity can also explain relatively warm Northern Hemisphere high-latitude summer temperatures despite maximum precession around 495 kyr BP (MIS 13) probably preventing a glacial inception at that time.

  8. Impact of large-scale climate variability and change on crop yields in Africa: An observational assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smoliak, B. V.; Po-Chedley, S.; Cullen, A. C.

    2011-12-01

    Assessments of the relationships between climate and agricultural production have progressed from opposite ends of the spatio-temporal spectrum. While studies of global-scale climate-yield relationships have provided estimates of the impact of multi-decadal trends in temperature and precipitation on recent production, studies of local weather impacts on yield have demonstrated the influence of temperature and precipitation variability on plant physiology, particularly with respect to the duration and timing of extremes. At intermediate spatial and temporal scales, somewhat of a gap in understanding exists. Our investigation contributes to better understanding climate-yield relationships at intermediate scales by assessing the impact of climate variability on crop yields at the country to continent scale on interannual to interdecadal timescales. Toward this end, we employ historical climatic data and reported cereal crop yields from the African continent, 1961 to 2009, in conjunction with principal component regression and partial least squares regression. Our results show that a discrete set of spatial patterns of climate variability account for up to half of the year-to-year variability in crop yields over portions of Africa. The impact of this climate variability is particularly strong in Sub-Saharan Africa, where large or prolonged deficits in yields can result in food shortages. The fundamental patterns of variability used to explain yield fluctuations are based on temperature and precipitation, chosen due to their influence on plant physiology; however, the time-varying behavior of the patterns may also be linked to coherent large-scale climate variability through regressions with sea surface temperature, sea level pressure and low-level wind fields. Results are distilled in terms of five UN designated geographic regions of Africa. Implications for short-term food security and future climate change are discussed.

  9. West African monsoon intraseasonal activity and its daily precipitation indices in regional climate models: diagnostics and challenges

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Poan, E. D.; Gachon, P.; Dueymes, G.; Diaconescu, E.; Laprise, R.; Seidou Sanda, I.

    2016-11-01

    The West African monsoon intraseasonal variability has huge socio-economic impacts on local populations but understanding and predicting it still remains a challenge for the weather prediction and climate scientific community. This paper analyses an ensemble of simulations from six regional climate models (RCMs) taking part in the coordinated regional downscaling experiment, the ECMWF ERA-Interim reanalysis (ERAI) and three satellite-based and observationally-constrained daily precipitation datasets, to assess the performance of the RCMs with regard to the intraseasonal variability. A joint analysis of seasonal-mean precipitation and the total column water vapor (also called precipitable water— PW) suggests the existence of important links at different timescales between these two variables over the Sahel and highlights the relevance of using PW to follow the monsoon seasonal cycle. RCMs that fail to represent the seasonal-mean position and amplitude of the meridional gradient of PW show the largest discrepancies with respect to seasonal-mean observed precipitation. For both ERAI and RCMs, spectral decompositions of daily PW as well as rainfall show an overestimation of low-frequency activity (at timescales longer than 10 days) at the expense of the synoptic (timescales shorter than 10 days) activity. Consequently, the effects of the African Easterly Waves and the associated mesoscale convective systems are substantially underestimated, especially over continental regions. Finally, the study investigates the skill of the models with respect to hydro-climatic indices related to the occurrence, intensity and frequency of precipitation events at the intraseasonal scale. Although most of these indices are generally better reproduced with RCMs than reanalysis products, this study indicates that RCMs still need to be improved (especially with respect to their subgrid-scale parameterization schemes) to be able to reproduce the intraseasonal variance spectrum adequately.

  10. Late Holocene climate variability in the Sahel: inferences from a marine dust record offshore Senegal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stuut, Jan-Berend; Mulitza, Stefan; Heslop, David; Pittauerova, Daniela; Fischer, Helmut; Zabel, Matthias; Collins, James; Kuhnert, Henning; Mollenhauer, Gesine; Meyer, Inka

    2010-05-01

    Societies and ecosystems in northern Africa are strongly affected by the availability of water. As a consequence, long-term absence of rainfall has very dear effects on the ecosystems, as was dramatically shown in the 70'ies and 80'ies of the 20 century. Recent high-resolution reconstructions of Sahel palaeoclimate allow for new insights into these drastic climate variations and to disentangle the effects of the different components of the climate system on African climate change. In this study we extend the instrumental record of climate variability using a marine sediment core that was retrieved off the coast of Senegal, northwest Africa. The 530-cm long record covers the last 4,000 years continuously. A Pb age model allows for a matching of the proxy record with instrumental data. Specifically, variations in the grain-size distributions of the terrigenous sediment fraction, deconvolved with an end-member modelling algorithm (Weltje, 1997) are used to reconstruct rainfall variability on land. In addition, chemical data are used to study the effect of human-induced dust production throughout the late Holocene. We show that dust deposition is closely related to monsoonal precipitation in West Africa until the 17th century AD, followed by a sharp increase in dust deposition at the beginning of the 18th century. We hypothesise that this increase in dust mobilisation is related to the advent of commercial agriculture in the Sahel region.

  11. Late Quaternary climate variability in the Sahel: inferences from marine dust records offshore Senegal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stuut, J. W.; Meyer, I.; Fischer, H.; Mollenhauer, G.; Mulitza, S.; Pittauerova, D.; Zabel, M.; Schulz, M.

    2008-12-01

    Societies and ecosystems in northern Africa are strongly affected by the availability of water. As a consequence, long-term absence of rainfall has very dear effects on the ecosystems, as was dramatically shown in the 70'ies and 80'ies of the 20th century. Recent high-resolution reconstructions of Sahel palaeoclimate allow for new insights into these drastic climate variations and to disentangle the effects of the different components of the climate system on African climate change. In this study we extend the instrumental record of climate variability using marine sediment cores that were retrieved off the coast of Senegal, northwest Africa. The sediment records contain continuous high-resolution records of dust sedimentation ranging from about 4,000 to about 57,000 years. A 210Pb age model for the youngest sediments allows for a matching of the proxy rainfall record with instrumental precipitation data. Specifically, variations in the grain-size distributions of the terrigenous sediment fraction, deconvolved with an end-member modelling algorithm (Weltje, 1997) are used to reconstruct rainfall variability on land throughout the late Quaternary.

  12. Terrestrial essential climate variables (ECVs) at a glance

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Stitt, Susan; Dwyer, John; Dye, Dennis; Josberger, Edward

    2011-01-01

    The Global Terrestrial Observing System, Global Climate Observing System, World Meteorological Organization, and Committee on Earth Observation Satellites all support consistent global land observations and measurements. To accomplish this goal, the Global Terrestrial Observing System defined 'essential climate variables' as measurements of atmosphere, oceans, and land that are technically and economically feasible for systematic observation and that are needed to meet the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and requirements of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. The following are the climate variables defined by the Global Terrestrial Observing System that relate to terrestrial measurements. Several of them are currently measured most appropriately by in-place observations, whereas others are suitable for measurement by remote sensing technologies. The U.S. Geological Survey is the steward of the Landsat archive, satellite imagery collected from 1972 to the present, that provides a potential basis for deriving long-term, global-scale, accurate, timely and consistent measurements of many of these essential climate variables.

  13. Experiences on climate variability education from an empirical perspective

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rodriguez-Puebla, Concepcion

    2015-04-01

    Education materials based on investigations are prepared for teaching climate matters using graphics representation, data analysis and GrADS software. An example of how climate teleconnection are included in the teaching activities would be presented. The goal is for students to learn about how climate variability and extreme events over a region are connected to large-scale atmospheric and oceanic circulation from an empirical perspective. Exercises and questions are prepared for collaborative and interactive learning considering the visualization and workshop activities included in the Moodle learning platform.

  14. Northern high latitude climate variability of the last millennium

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Andres, Heather J.

    This work explores the causes of northern high-latitude climate variations over the last millennium, and industrial and future periods. Attribution studies are performed on a suite of global climate simulations, and four historical reconstructions of Greenland surface temperatures and precipitation (two of which are new to this work). The simulations followed the protocols of the Palaeoclimate Modelling Intercomparison Project 3 and Coupled Model Intercomparison Project 5. At least half of the multi-decadal variability in simulated Greenland climate variations over the last millennium is reproduced by a linear, empirically-generated model including terms for volcanic emissions, solar insolation changes (including total solar irradiance and orbital components) and an index associated with latitudinal shifts in the North Atlantic jet. Empirical model parameters are obtained by regressing simulated Greenland temperatures and precipitation against time series for each of the response variables. Greenhouse gas radiative forcing changes are unimportant to simulated Greenland conditions over the last millennium, although they dominate after the mid-20th century. Most of the historical Greenland climate reconstructions are restricted to the industrial period, due to a lack of spatially-comprehensive climate records. They exhibit substantial differences in the timing, phasing and amplitudes of past climate variations, due to regional sensitivities in the source data and the reconstruction methodologies. Reconstructions indicate that Greenland temperatures did not begin to follow hemispheric greenhouse gas warming patterns until the mid-1990s. This discrepancy indicates either that the warming hiatus was associated with internal climate variability, or that the simulations are missing processes important to Greenland climate. For example, indirect effects of anthropogenic aerosols are not captured in the climate model employed here. All of the external climate forcings

  15. Processes in Decadal Climate Variability and their Incorporation into a Decadal Climate Prediction System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Proemmel, K.; Cubasch, U.; Vamborg, F.

    2012-12-01

    The quality of decadal climate predictions rests fundamentally on the ability of the forecast models realistically to simulate climate and its variability, in particular at decadal timescales. The new German research project "MiKlip - Decadal Predictions" (http://www.fona-miklip.de/en/) aims to develop a system for climate predictions for up to a decade ahead that can then be applied by an operational agency such as the German Meteorological Service DWD. This climate prediction system is based on the MPI-M Earth System Model (MPI-ESM) from the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology in Germany. Different aspects of decadal climate predictions are considered in MiKlip like initialisation strategies, the predictive skill on the regional scale with focus on Europe and Africa and the systematic evaluation of the prediction system. Another part of MiKlip deals with the incorporation of those processes in climate models that are important for the realistic representation of decadal climate variability, and the understanding of the important processes in the numerical prediction system. Processes that have the potential to improve decadal climate predictions are related to e.g. Arctic sea ice, atmospheric chemistry, large volcanic eruptions, atmosphere-ocean coupling, stratosphere and land-atmosphere interaction. The work dealing with the processes can be categorized into assessing the effects of enhanced resolution and of advanced parameterizations and numerics, investigating mechanisms of decadal variability, improvement of existing system components and coupling of additional climate subsystems.

  16. The West African monsoon: Contribution of the AMMA multidisciplinary programme to the study of a regional climate system.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lebel, T.; Janicot, S.; Redelsperger, J. L.; Parker, D. J.; Thorncroft, C. D.

    2015-12-01

    The AMMA international project aims at improving our knowledge and understanding of the West African monsoon and its variability with an emphasis on daily-to-interannual timescales. AMMA is motivated by an interest in fundamental scientific issues and by the societal need for improved prediction of the WAM and its impacts on water resources, health and food security for West African nations. The West African monsoon (WAM) has a distinctive annual cycle in rainfall that remains a challenge to understand and predict. The location of peak rainfall, which resides in the Northern Hemisphere throughout the year, moves from the ocean to the land in boreal spring. Around the end of June there is a rapid shift in the location of peak rainfall between the coast and around 10°N where it remains until about the end of August. In September the peak rainfall returns equatorward at a relatively steady pace and is located over the ocean again by November. The fact that the peak rainfall migrates irregularly compared to the peak solar heating is due to the interactions that occur between the land, the atmosphere and the ocean. To gain a better understanding of this complex climate system, a large international research programme was launched in 2002, the biggest of its kind into environment and climate ever attempted in Africa. AMMA has involved a comprehensive field experiment bringing together ocean, land and atmospheric measurements, on timescales ranging from hourly and daily variability up to the changes in seasonal activity over a number of years. This presentation will focus on the description of the field programme and its accomplishments, and address some key questions that have been recently identified to form the core of AMMA-Phase 2.

  17. Surface Ozone Variability and Trends over the South African Highveld from 1990 to 2007

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Balashov, Nikolay V.; Thompson, Anne M.; Piketh, Stuart J.; Langerman, Kristy E.

    2014-01-01

    Surface ozone is a secondary air pollutant formed from reactions between nitrogen oxides (NOx = NO + NO2) and volatile organic compounds in the presence of sunlight. In this work we examine effects of the climate pattern known as the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) and NOx variability on surface ozone from 1990 to 2007 over the South African Highveld, a heavily populated region in South Africa with numerous industrial facilities. Over summer and autumn (December-May) on the Highveld, El Niño, as signified by positive sea surface temperature (SST) anomalies over the central Pacific Ocean, is typically associated with drier and warmer than normal conditions favoring ozone formation. Conversely, La Niña, or negative SST anomalies over the central Pacific Ocean, is typically associated with cloudier and above normal rainfall conditions, hindering ozone production. We use a generalized regression model to identify any linear dependence that the Highveld ozone, measured at five air quality monitoring stations, may have on ENSO and NOx. Our results indicate that four out of the five stations exhibit a statistically significant sensitivity to ENSO at some point over the December-May period where El Niño amplifies ozone formation and La Niña reduces ozone formation. Three out of the five stations reveal statistically significant sensitivity to NOx variability, primarily in winter and spring. Accounting for ENSO and NOx effects throughout the study period of 18 years, two stations exhibit statistically significant negative ozone trends in spring, one station displays a statistically significant positive trend in August, and two stations show no statistically significant change in surface ozone.

  18. Chaos, dynamical structure, and climate variability

    SciTech Connect

    Stewart, H.B.

    1996-06-01

    Deterministic chaos in dynamical systems offers a new paradigm for understanding irregular fluctuations. Techniques for identifying deterministic chaos from observed data, without recourse to mathematical models, are being developed. Powerful methods exist for reconstructing multidimensional phase space from an observed time series of a single scalar variable; these methods are invaluable when only a single scalar record of the dynamics is available. However in some applications multiple concurrent time series may be available for consideration as phase space coordinates. Here we propose some basic analytical tools for such multichannel time series data, and illustrate them by applications to a simple synthetic model of chaos, to a low-order model of atmospheric circulation, and to two high-resolution paleoclimate proxy data series. {copyright} {ital 1996 American Institute of Physics.}

  19. Metric variability in the anterior dentition of African colobines.

    PubMed

    Leutenegger, W

    1976-07-01

    The anterior dentition of three species of African colobines (Colobus polykomos, C. badius, and C. verus) was investigated metrically and the results analyzed for three characters: (1)intraspecific tooth size relations, (2)sexual dimorphism, and (3)interspecific relations. Based on incisor size sequences C. polykomos and C. badius appear to be more closely related to each other than either is to C. verus. However, incorporating the results of a previous study on postcanine dentition the three species appear to be equally closely related. The magnitude of sexual dimorphism in canine size decreases from C. badius to C. verus to C. polykomos. Interspecific differences in the degree of canine size dimorphism may be attributed to differential intensities of male intrasexual selection; however, the interspecific differences in canine size dimorphism do not correspond to the interspecific differences in body size dimorphism.

  20. Rainfall variability over southern Africa: an overview of current research using satellite and climate model data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Williams, C.; Kniveton, D.; Layberry, R.

    2009-04-01

    It is increasingly accepted that any possible climate change will not only have an influence on mean climate but may also significantly alter climatic variability. A change in the distribution and magnitude of extreme rainfall events (associated with changing variability), such as droughts or flooding, may have a far greater impact on human and natural systems than a changing mean. This issue is of particular importance for environmentally vulnerable regions such as southern Africa. The subcontinent is considered especially vulnerable to and ill-equipped (in terms of adaptation) for extreme events, due to a number of factors including extensive poverty, famine, disease and political instability. Rainfall variability is a function of scale, so high spatial and temporal resolution data are preferred to identify extreme events and accurately predict future variability. In this research, satellite-derived rainfall data are used as a basis for undertaking model experiments using a state-of-the-art climate model, run at both high and low spatial resolution. Once the model's ability to reproduce extremes has been assessed, idealised regions of sea surface temperature (SST) anomalies are used to force the model, with the overall aim of investigating the ways in which SST anomalies influence rainfall extremes over southern Africa. In this paper, a brief overview is given of the authors' research to date, pertaining to southern African rainfall. This covers (i) a description of present-day rainfall variability over southern Africa; (ii) a comparison of model simulated daily rainfall with the satellite-derived dataset; (iii) results from sensitivity testing of the model's domain size; and (iv) results from the idealised SST experiments.

  1. Climate Variability and Phytoplankton in the Pacific Ocean

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rousseaux, Cecile

    2012-01-01

    The effect of climate variability on phytoplankton communities was assessed for the tropical and sub-tropical Pacific Ocean between 1998 and 2005 using an established biogeochemical assimilation model. The phytoplankton communities exhibited wide range of responses to climate variability, from radical shifts in the Equatorial Pacific, to changes of only a couple of phytoplankton groups in the North Central Pacific, to no significant changes in the South Pacific. In the Equatorial Pacific, climate variability dominated the variability of phytoplankton. Here, nitrate, chlorophyll and all but one of the 4 phytoplankton types (diatoms, cyanobacteria and coccolithophores) were strongly correlated (p<0.01) with the Multivariate El Nino Southern Oscillation Index (MEI). In the North Central Pacific, MEI and chlorophyll were significantly (p<0.01) correlated along with two of the phytoplankton groups (chlorophytes and coccolithophores). Ocean biology in the South Pacific was not significantly correlated with MEI. During La Nina events, diatoms increased and expanded westward along the cold tongue (correlation with MEI, r=-0.81), while cyanobacteria concentrations decreased significantly (r=0.78). El Nino produced the reverse pattern, with cyanobacteria populations increasing while diatoms plummeted. The diverse response of phytoplankton in the different major basins of the Pacific suggests the different roles climate variability can play in ocean biology.

  2. Sensitivity of global terrestrial ecosystems to climate variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seddon, Alistair W. R.; Macias-Fauria, Marc; Long, Peter R.; Benz, David; Willis, Kathy J.

    2016-03-01

    The identification of properties that contribute to the persistence and resilience of ecosystems despite climate change constitutes a research priority of global relevance. Here we present a novel, empirical approach to assess the relative sensitivity of ecosystems to climate variability, one property of resilience that builds on theoretical modelling work recognizing that systems closer to critical thresholds respond more sensitively to external perturbations. We develop a new metric, the vegetation sensitivity index, that identifies areas sensitive to climate variability over the past 14 years. The metric uses time series data derived from the moderate-resolution imaging spectroradiometer (MODIS) enhanced vegetation index, and three climatic variables that drive vegetation productivity (air temperature, water availability and cloud cover). Underlying the analysis is an autoregressive modelling approach used to identify climate drivers of vegetation productivity on monthly timescales, in addition to regions with memory effects and reduced response rates to external forcing. We find ecologically sensitive regions with amplified responses to climate variability in the Arctic tundra, parts of the boreal forest belt, the tropical rainforest, alpine regions worldwide, steppe and prairie regions of central Asia and North and South America, the Caatinga deciduous forest in eastern South America, and eastern areas of Australia. Our study provides a quantitative methodology for assessing the relative response rate of ecosystems—be they natural or with a strong anthropogenic signature—to environmental variability, which is the first step towards addressing why some regions appear to be more sensitive than others, and what impact this has on the resilience of ecosystem service provision and human well-being.

  3. Sensitivity of global terrestrial ecosystems to climate variability.

    PubMed

    Seddon, Alistair W R; Macias-Fauria, Marc; Long, Peter R; Benz, David; Willis, Kathy J

    2016-03-10

    The identification of properties that contribute to the persistence and resilience of ecosystems despite climate change constitutes a research priority of global relevance. Here we present a novel, empirical approach to assess the relative sensitivity of ecosystems to climate variability, one property of resilience that builds on theoretical modelling work recognizing that systems closer to critical thresholds respond more sensitively to external perturbations. We develop a new metric, the vegetation sensitivity index, that identifies areas sensitive to climate variability over the past 14 years. The metric uses time series data derived from the moderate-resolution imaging spectroradiometer (MODIS) enhanced vegetation index, and three climatic variables that drive vegetation productivity (air temperature, water availability and cloud cover). Underlying the analysis is an autoregressive modelling approach used to identify climate drivers of vegetation productivity on monthly timescales, in addition to regions with memory effects and reduced response rates to external forcing. We find ecologically sensitive regions with amplified responses to climate variability in the Arctic tundra, parts of the boreal forest belt, the tropical rainforest, alpine regions worldwide, steppe and prairie regions of central Asia and North and South America, the Caatinga deciduous forest in eastern South America, and eastern areas of Australia. Our study provides a quantitative methodology for assessing the relative response rate of ecosystems--be they natural or with a strong anthropogenic signature--to environmental variability, which is the first step towards addressing why some regions appear to be more sensitive than others, and what impact this has on the resilience of ecosystem service provision and human well-being.

  4. Country-Specific Effects of Climate Variability on Human Migration.

    PubMed

    Gray, Clark; Wise, Erika

    2016-04-01

    Involuntary human migration is among the social outcomes of greatest concern in the current era of global climate change. Responding to this concern, a growing number of studies have investigated the consequences of short to medium-term climate variability for human migration using demographic and econometric approaches. These studies have provided important insights, but at the same time have been significantly limited by lack of expertise in the use of climate data, access to cross-national data on migration, and attention to model specification. To address these limitations, we link data on internal and international migration over a 6-year period from 9,812 origin households in Kenya, Uganda, Nigeria, Burkina Faso and Senegal to high-resolution gridded climate data from both station and satellite sources. Analyses of these data using several plausible specifications reveal that climate variability has country-specific effects on migration: Migration tends to increase with temperature anomalies in Uganda, tends to decrease with temperature anomalies in Kenya and Burkina Faso, and shows no consistent relationship with temperature in Nigeria and Senegal. Consistent with previous studies, precipitation shows weak and inconsistent relationships with migration across countries. These results challenge generalizing narratives that foresee a consistent migratory response to climate change across the globe.

  5. Prediction of primary climate variability modes at the Beijing Climate Center

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ren, Hong-Li; Jin, Fei-Fei; Song, Lianchun; Lu, Bo; Tian, Ben; Zuo, Jinqing; Liu, Ying; Wu, Jie; Zhao, Chongbo; Nie, Yu; Zhang, Peiqun; Ba, Jin; Wu, Yujie; Wan, Jianghua; Yan, Yuping; Zhou, Fang

    2017-02-01

    Climate variability modes, usually known as primary climate phenomena, are well recognized as the most important predictability sources in subseasonal-interannual climate prediction. This paper begins by reviewing the research and development carried out, and the recent progress made, at the Beijing Climate Center (BCC) in predicting some primary climate variability modes. These include the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO), Madden-Julian Oscillation (MJO), and Arctic Oscillation (AO), on global scales, as well as the sea surface temperature (SST) modes in the Indian Ocean and North Atlantic, western Pacific subtropical high (WPSH), and the East Asian winter and summer monsoons (EAWM and EASM, respectively), on regional scales. Based on its latest climate and statistical models, the BCC has established a climate phenomenon prediction system (CPPS) and completed a hindcast experiment for the period 1991-2014. The performance of the CPPS in predicting such climate variability modes is systematically evaluated. The results show that skillful predictions have been made for ENSO, MJO, the Indian Ocean basin mode, the WPSH, and partly for the EASM, whereas less skillful predictions were made for the Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD) and North Atlantic SST Tripole, and no clear skill at all for the AO, subtropical IOD, and EAWM. Improvements in the prediction of these climate variability modes with low skill need to be achieved by improving the BCC's climate models, developing physically based statistical models as well as correction methods for model predictions. Some of the monitoring/prediction products of the BCC-CPPS are also introduced in this paper.

  6. America's water risk: Current demand and climate variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Devineni, Naresh; Lall, Upmanu; Etienne, Elius; Shi, Daniel; Xi, Chen

    2015-04-01

    A new indicator of drought-induced water stress is introduced and applied at the county level in the USA. Unlike most existing drought metrics, we directly consider current daily water demands and renewable daily water supply to estimate the potential stress. Water stress indices developed include the Normalized Deficit Cumulated to represent multiyear droughts by computing the maximum cumulative deficit between demand and supply over the study period (1949-2009) and the Normalized Deficit Index representing drought associated with maximum cumulative deficit each year. These water stress indices map directly to storage requirements needed to buffer multiyear and within-year climate variability and can reveal the dependence on exogenous water transferred by rivers/canals to the area. Future climate change and variability can be also incorporated into this framework to inform climate-driven drought for additional storage development and potential applications of water trading across counties.

  7. Vulnerability to climate variability and change in East Timor.

    PubMed

    Barnett, Jon; Dessai, Suraje; Jones, Roger N

    2007-07-01

    This paper presents the results of a preliminary study of climate vulnerability in East Timor. It shows the results of projections of climate change in East Timor. The country's climate may become hotter, drier, and increasingly variable. Sea levels are likely to rise. The paper then considers the implications of these changes on three natural resources--water, soils, and the coastal zone--and finds all to be sensitive to changes in climate and sea level. Changes in the abundance and distribution of these resources is likely to cause a reduction in agricultural production and food security, and sea-level rise is likely to damage coastal areas, including Dili, the capital city.

  8. Determining the response of African biota to climate change: using the past to model the future

    PubMed Central

    Willis, K. J.; Bennett, K. D.; Burrough, S. L.; Macias-Fauria, M.; Tovar, C.

    2013-01-01

    Prediction of biotic responses to future climate change in tropical Africa tends to be based on two modelling approaches: bioclimatic species envelope models and dynamic vegetation models. Another complementary but underused approach is to examine biotic responses to similar climatic changes in the past as evidenced in fossil and historical records. This paper reviews these records and highlights the information that they provide in terms of understanding the local- and regional-scale responses of African vegetation to future climate change. A key point that emerges is that a move to warmer and wetter conditions in the past resulted in a large increase in biomass and a range distribution of woody plants up to 400–500 km north of its present location, the so-called greening of the Sahara. By contrast, a transition to warmer and drier conditions resulted in a reduction in woody vegetation in many regions and an increase in grass/savanna-dominated landscapes. The rapid rate of climate warming coming into the current interglacial resulted in a dramatic increase in community turnover, but there is little evidence for widespread extinctions. However, huge variation in biotic response in both space and time is apparent with, in some cases, totally different responses to the same climatic driver. This highlights the importance of local features such as soils, topography and also internal biotic factors in determining responses and resilience of the African biota to climate change, information that is difficult to obtain from modelling but is abundant in palaeoecological records. PMID:23878343

  9. Interannual- to multicentiennial-scale variability in the West African Monsoon during the Eemian

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McKay, N. P.; Overpeck, J. T.; Shanahan, T. M.; Peck, J. A.; King, J. W.; Scholz, C. A.; Heil, C. W.

    2011-12-01

    The Eemian was the last interglacial period prior to the Holocene, lasting from 130 to 118 ka. Whereas annual insolation during the Eemian was comparable to the Holocene, the substantial differences in seasonal forcing and the reduced extent of continental ice sheets make the interval an important benchmark for understanding how altered climatic forcing drives changes in both global and regional climate. Climate variability during the period is, however, poorly understood, especially on annual to decadal timescales. Here we present the initial results of 4,000-yr-long annually-resolved varve record from the Lake Bosumtwi from the early Eemian (ca. 130 to 126 ka). Lake Bosumtwi (6.5°N, 1.4°W) is a 1.07 Ma impact crater lake in southern Ghana. The lake is hydrologically closed, and is relatively small, and consequently, is particularly sensitive to changes in effective moisture and the West African Monsoon (WAM). In 2004, an ICDP lake drilling expedition recovered the complete 291-m sediment sequence that spans the 1 Myr history of the lake. More than half of the 1 Myr sediment sequence appears to be annually laminated, including the late Holocene. This allows us the rare opportunity to compare long, annually-resolved records between interglacials. We analyzed the varve sequence for major element composition at 25-μm resolution using a high-resolution scanning X-ray fluorescence analyzer (or μXRF). The abundance of terrestrial elements (i.e., Al, Si, K, Ti) in the sediments, as inferred by XRF, has been shown to be a proxy for lake level at Lake Bosumtwi. During the Holocene, lake level in Lake Bosumtwi generally tracked summer insolation; for most of the early Holocene lake level was near the crater rim and the lake overflowed. Summer insolation was substantially higher during the early Eemian (up to 30 W m-2), however there is no evidence of comparably high lake level at Lake Bosumtwi during any part of last interglacial. In contrast, abundant evidence from the

  10. Prediction and predictability of North American seasonal climate variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Infanti, Johnna M.

    Climate prediction on short time-scales such as months to seasons is of broad and current interest in the scientific research community. Monthly and seasonal climate prediction of variables such as precipitation, temperature, and sea surface temperature (SST) has implications for users in the agricultural and water management domains, among others. It is thus important to further understand the complexities of prediction of these variables using the most recent practices in climate prediction. The overarching goal of this dissertation is to determine the important contributions to seasonal prediction skill, predictability, and variability over North America using current climate prediction models and approaches. This dissertation aims to study a variety of approaches to seasonal climate prediction of variables over North America, including both climate prediction systems and methods of analysis. We utilize the North American Multi-Model Ensemble (NMME) System for Intra-Seasonal to Inter-Annual Prediction (ISI) to study seasonal climate prediction skill of North American and in particular for southeast US precipitation. We find that NMME results are often equal to or better than individual model results in terms of skill, as expected, making it a reasonable choice for southeast US seasonal climate predictions. However, climate models, including those involved in NMME, typically overestimate eastern Pacific warming during central Pacific El Nino events, which can affect regions that are influenced by teleconnections, such as the southeast US. Community Climate System Model version 4.0 (CCSM4) hindacasts and forecasts are included in NMME, and we preform a series of experiments that examine contributions to skill from certain drivers of North American climate prediction. The drivers we focus on are sea surface temperatures (SSTs) and their accuracy, land and atmosphere initialization, and ocean-atmosphere coupling. We compare measures of prediction skill of

  11. Impact of Solar Variability on the Earth's Climate Patterns

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ruzmaikin, A.

    2007-05-01

    We discuss the effect of solar variability on the Earth climate patterns. The climate patterns are naturally excited in the noisy atmosphere-ocean dynamical system as deviations (anomalies) from a global (mean) state. Some of the climate patterns couple the upper and lower atmosphere and are affected by the ocean. An example of this type of climate pattern is the Northern Annular Mode (NAM), a climate anomaly with two basic states corresponding to higher pressure at high latitudes with a band of lower pressure at lower latitudes and the other way round (Thompson & Wallace, 1998; Baldwin & Dunkerton, 1999). Two states of the NAM arise due to the dynamical interaction of planetary waves and zonal mean wind (Limpasuvan & Hartmann, 2001; Ruzmaikin et al., 2006). The NAM accounts for 23% of atmospheric variability at sea level and about 50% of the variability in the stratosphere. Solar variability influences the NAM through the change of the UV flux in upper atmosphere. The influence depends on the phase of the Quasi Biennial Oscillation and time in the winter season (Ruzmaikin & Feynman, 2002). We discuss a possible mechanism by which solar variability can affect the NAM and the climate patterns in general (involving the Rossby-Palmer conjecture, Palmer, 1999). In contrast to the standard linear evaluation of climate sensitivity to an external forcing we outline a non-linear approach to the forcing problem. In particular, we evaluate the distributions of residence times spent in each state of the pattern and show how these distributions depend on external forcing caused by the anthropogenic and solar changes. References: Thompson, D. W. J. & J. M. Wallace, Geophys. Res. Lett., 25, 1297, 1998; Baldwin, M. P. & T. J. Dunkerton, J. Geophys. Res. 104, 30,937, 1999; Limpasuvan, V., & D. Hartmann, J. Climate, 13, 4414, 2001; Ruzmaikin, A., J, Feynman, J. Geophys. Res., 107, D14, 10.1029/2001JD001239, 2002; Ruzmaikin, A., J. K. Lawrence & A. C. Cadavid, J. Atmos. Space Phys

  12. Decadal Variability of Clouds and Comparison with Climate Model Simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Su, H.; Shen, T. J.; Jiang, J. H.; Yung, Y. L.

    2014-12-01

    An apparent climate regime shift occurred around 1998/1999, when the steady increase of global-mean surface temperature appeared to hit a hiatus. Coherent decadal variations are found in atmospheric circulation and hydrological cycles. Using 30-year cloud observations from the International Satellite Cloud Climatology Project, we examine the decadal variability of clouds and associated cloud radiative effects on surface warming. Empirical Orthogonal Function analysis is performed. After removing the seasonal cycle and ENSO signal in the 30-year data, we find that the leading EOF modes clearly represent a decadal variability in cloud fraction, well correlated with the indices of Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) and Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO). The cloud radiative effects associated with decadal variations of clouds suggest a positive cloud feedback, which would reinforce the global warming hiatus by a net cloud cooling after 1998/1999. Climate model simulations driven by observed sea surface temperature are compared with satellite observed cloud decadal variability. Copyright:

  13. GCM simulations of the climate of 6 kyr BP: Mean changes and interdecadal variability

    SciTech Connect

    Hewitt, C.D.; Mitchell, J.F.B.

    1996-12-01

    A simulation of the climate for 6 kyr BP, using the Hadley Centre`s atmospheric GCM with prescribed SSTs is described. The control simulation successfully reproduces the large-scale features of the present-day climate and has realistic atmospheric interannual variability. The anomaly simulation for 6 kyr BP produces a climate with an enhanced Northern Hemisphere seasonal cycle, and, in particular, a strengthened African-Asian summer monsoon. Integrated over the full annual cycle, the land surface of the southern Tropics dries while the northern Tropics get wetter, and the high northern latitudes also dry. The model simulates large regional interdecadal differences in the response at 6 kyr BP highlighting the need to allow for and account for variability on long, that is, at least decadal, timescales. The authors describe the consequences of part of the experimental design employed, whereby the SSTs for the 6 kyr BP simulation are the same as in the control as recommended by the Paleoclimate Modelling Intercomparison Project, in particular, the potential importance of ocean and sea ice feedbacks. 49 refs., 14 figs., 4 tabs.

  14. Effects of climate variability on global scale flood risk

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ward, P.; Dettinger, M. D.; Kummu, M.; Jongman, B.; Sperna Weiland, F.; Winsemius, H.

    2013-12-01

    In this contribution we demonstrate the influence of climate variability on flood risk. Globally, flooding is one of the worst natural hazards in terms of economic damages; Munich Re estimates global losses in the last decade to be in excess of $240 billion. As a result, scientifically sound estimates of flood risk at the largest scales are increasingly needed by industry (including multinational companies and the insurance industry) and policy communities. Several assessments of global scale flood risk under current and conditions have recently become available, and this year has seen the first studies assessing how flood risk may change in the future due to global change. However, the influence of climate variability on flood risk has as yet hardly been studied, despite the fact that: (a) in other fields (drought, hurricane damage, food production) this variability is as important for policy and practice as long term change; and (b) climate variability has a strong influence in peak riverflows around the world. To address this issue, this contribution illustrates the influence of ENSO-driven climate variability on flood risk, at both the globally aggregated scale and the scale of countries and large river basins. Although it exerts significant and widespread influences on flood peak discharges in many parts of the world, we show that ENSO does not have a statistically significant influence on flood risk once aggregated to global totals. At the scale of individual countries, though, strong relationships exist over large parts of the Earth's surface. For example, we find particularly strong anomalies of flood risk in El Niño or La Niña years (compared to all years) in southern Africa, parts of western Africa, Australia, parts of Central Eurasia (especially for El Niño), the western USA (especially for La Niña), and parts of South America. These findings have large implications for both decadal climate-risk projections and long-term future climate change

  15. The West African Monsoon in the Regional Climate Model COSMO-CLM

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kothe, S.; Ahrens, B.

    2010-09-01

    The West African Monsoon is in parts of Africa the exceedingly climatic process with a high influence on flora, fauna and economy. In this study we evaluated ECHAM5 and ERA-Interim driven CCLM regional climate simulations of Africa to analyze the reproduction of characteristics of the West African Monsoon in the model. As indicators for the monsoon we looked at the total precipitation and the outgoing long-wave radiation (OLR) as a hint for convective clouds. Additionally the West African Monsoon Index (WAMI) should give a view at the dynamical component of the monsoon. Compared to the large-scale driving models, CCLM was not able to achieve more accurate results. There were regional strong under- and overestimations in precipitation but the mean values showed quite good results with a maximum difference of about 20%. For the ECHAM5 driven CCLM simulation, the strongest overestimation of precipitation at the African West coast, was combined with a strong overestimation of OLR, which indicated too much convection in this area. The model caught the WAMI very well. In a next step we want to quantify the influence of the driving model and the impact of surface features like the surface albedo on the monsoon.

  16. Assessing the impact of climate change on water resources in a tropical West African catchment using an ensemble of CORDEX climate simulations (Dano, Burkina Faso)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yira, Yacouba; Diekkrüger, Bernd; Steup, Gero; Yaovi Bossa, Aymar

    2016-04-01

    This study assesses the potential impact of climate change on water resources in the Dano catchment (Burkina Faso, West Africa). There is now essential consensus on the importance of performing multi (climate)-model assessments in order to estimate the response of the West African climate to global change. Taking advantage of the results of the COordinated Regional climate Downscaling Experiment (CORDEX-Africa) project, this study evaluates climate change impacts on water resources using an ensemble of six Regional Climate Models (RCMs) in a catchment that is potentially vulnerable to climate change and presents a low adaptive capacity. The ensemble of RCMs was first evaluated to get an estimate of the historical simulated rainfall for the catchment by comparing RCM-based simulated historical rainfall to the observed rainfall data provided by the National Meteorological Service (DGM). In general, the simulated historical rainfall agrees within some degree of variability with the observed rainfall in regard to the mean annual cycle of precipitation. However, significant biases such as a double-peaked rainy season as well as the timing of the rainy season were exhibited by individual RCMs. A statistical bias correction (Quantile mapping) was then applied to the RCM-based simulated daily rainfall for the overlapping period of 1971-2000. The results confirm the effectiveness of the applied bias correction method for rainfall. Temperature and bias corrected rainfall data from the ensemble of RCMs was used as input for the Water flow and balance Simulation Model (WaSiM) to simulate river discharge, soil moisture, evapotranspiration and groundwater depth. To take into account the concern of the potential alteration of the climate change signal due to bias correction, uncorrected climate data for a single RCM was also applied to the hydrological model. The simulated hydrological variables show a similar behavior under observed and bias corrected climate data for the

  17. Variability of foF2 in the African equatorial ionosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Akala, A. O.; Oyeyemi, E. O.; Somoye, E. O.; Adeloye, A. B.; Adewale, A. O.

    2010-06-01

    This paper presents the impact of diurnal, seasonal and solar activity effects on the variability of ionospheric foF2 in the African equatorial latitude. Three African ionospheric stations; Dakar (14.8°N, 17.4°W, dip: 11.4°N), Ouagadougou (12.4°N, 1.5°W, dip: 2.8°N) and Djibouti (11.5°N, 42.8°E, dip: 7.2°N) were considered for the investigation. The overall aim is to provide African inputs that will be of assistance at improving existing forecasting models. The diurnal analysis revealed that the ionospheric critical frequency (foF2) is more susceptible to variability during the night-time than the day-time, with two peaks in the range; 18-38% during post-sunset hours and 35-55% during post-midnight hours. The seasonal and solar activity analyses showed a post-sunset September Equinox maximum and June Solstice maximum of foF2 variability in all the stations for all seasons. At all the stations, foF2 variability was high for low solar activity year. Overall, we concluded that equatorial foF2 variability increases with decreasing solar activity during night-time.

  18. Revealing Relationships among Relevant Climate Variables with Information Theory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Knuth, Kevin H.; Golera, Anthony; Curry, Charles T.; Huyser, Karen A.; Kevin R. Wheeler; Rossow, William B.

    2005-01-01

    The primary objective of the NASA Earth-Sun Exploration Technology Office is to understand the observed Earth climate variability, thus enabling the determination and prediction of the climate's response to both natural and human-induced forcing. We are currently developing a suite of computational tools that will allow researchers to calculate, from data, a variety of information-theoretic quantities such as mutual information, which can be used to identify relationships among climate variables, and transfer entropy, which indicates the possibility of causal interactions. Our tools estimate these quantities along with their associated error bars, the latter of which is critical for describing the degree of uncertainty in the estimates. This work is based upon optimal binning techniques that we have developed for piecewise-constant, histogram-style models of the underlying density functions. Two useful side benefits have already been discovered. The first allows a researcher to determine whether there exist sufficient data to estimate the underlying probability density. The second permits one to determine an acceptable degree of round-off when compressing data for efficient transfer and storage. We also demonstrate how mutual information and transfer entropy can be applied so as to allow researchers not only to identify relations among climate variables, but also to characterize and quantify their possible causal interactions.

  19. Effect of Solar Variability on Earth Climate Patterns.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ruzmaikin, A.; Feynman, J.

    2006-12-01

    We discuss the impact of solar variability on the patterns of Earth climate variability. These climate patterns are naturally excited in the noisy atmosphere-ocean dynamical system as deviations (anomalies) from a global (mean) state. The patterns include North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) and related Northern Annular Mode (NAM), Southern Annular Mode (SAM), Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO), Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO). An example of a pattern influenced by variations in solar UV irradiance is the NAM, a wintertime climate anomaly with two states corresponding to higher pressure at high latitudes with a band of lower pressure at lower latitudes and the other way round (Thompson &Wallace, 1998). Two states of the NAM arise due to the dynamical interaction of planetary waves and zonal mean wind (Limpasuvan &Hartmann, 2001; Ruzmaikin et al., 2006). The NAM accounts for 23% of atmospheric variability at sea level and about 50% of the variability in the stratosphere. Solar variability affects the NAM and that the influence varies dependent on the phase of the Quasi Biennial Oscillation and time in the winter season (Ruzmaikin &Feynman, 2002). The temperature pattern (cold in Europe-warm in Greenland) produced by the negative NAM was dominant during the Maunder Minimum of solar activity (Ruzmaikin et al., 2004). We discuss possible physical mechanisms by which solar variability can influence the climate patterns. In particular, we address the Rossby-Palmer hypothesis (Palmer, 1998) that external forcing (in our case solar variability) may affect only the magnitude of the pattern variability without changing its spatial structure. References: Thompson, D. W. J. &J. M. Wallace, Geophys. Res. Lett., 25, 1297, 1998; Palmer, T. N., Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc., 79, 1412 1998; Baldwin, M. P. and T. J. Dunkerton, J. Geophys. Res. 104, 30,937, 1999; Limpasuvan, V., &D. Hartmann, J. Climate, 13, 4414, 2001; Ruzmaikin, A., J, Feynman, J. Geophys. Res., 107, D14, 10

  20. The IPCC (1995) scientific assessment of climate change: Observed climate variability and change

    SciTech Connect

    Karl, T.R.

    1996-12-31

    The IPCC (1995) scientific assessment of climate change shows that human activities have increased the concentrations and changed the distributions of greenhouse gases and aerosols during the 19th and 20th Centuries. Questions arise regarding the magnitude and significance of observed changes and variations of temperature, precipitation (and related hydrologic variables), and other important weather events as the atmospheric composition has changed. This assessment addresses the following broad questions: (1) has the climate warmed? (2) has the climate become wetter? (3) has the atmospheric/oceanic circulation changed? (4) has the climate become more variable or extreme? and (5) is the 20th Century warming unusual? Research addressing those questions is briefly summarized. 16 refs., 1 fig.

  1. The projected timing of climate departure from recent variability.

    PubMed

    Mora, Camilo; Frazier, Abby G; Longman, Ryan J; Dacks, Rachel S; Walton, Maya M; Tong, Eric J; Sanchez, Joseph J; Kaiser, Lauren R; Stender, Yuko O; Anderson, James M; Ambrosino, Christine M; Fernandez-Silva, Iria; Giuseffi, Louise M; Giambelluca, Thomas W

    2013-10-10

    Ecological and societal disruptions by modern climate change are critically determined by the time frame over which climates shift beyond historical analogues. Here we present a new index of the year when the projected mean climate of a given location moves to a state continuously outside the bounds of historical variability under alternative greenhouse gas emissions scenarios. Using 1860 to 2005 as the historical period, this index has a global mean of 2069 (±18 years s.d.) for near-surface air temperature under an emissions stabilization scenario and 2047 (±14 years s.d.) under a 'business-as-usual' scenario. Unprecedented climates will occur earliest in the tropics and among low-income countries, highlighting the vulnerability of global biodiversity and the limited governmental capacity to respond to the impacts of climate change. Our findings shed light on the urgency of mitigating greenhouse gas emissions if climates potentially harmful to biodiversity and society are to be prevented.

  2. Solar correlates of Southern Hemisphere mid-latitude climate variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thresher, Ronald E.

    2002-06-01

    Atmospheric circulation in the southern mid-latitudes is dominated by strong circum-Antarctic zonal west winds (ZWW) over the latitude range of 35 to 60°S. These winds exhibit coherent seasonal and interannual variability, which has been related both to Antarctic (e.g. polar ice) and low-latitude climate (e.g. El Niño-southern oscillation) parameters. Historical and recent studies suggest that, at its northern margins, variability in the ZWW also has a marked quasi-decadal component. Analysis of sea-level pressure and rainfall data for the Australian region, South Africa and South America confirms frequent indications of quasi-decadal variability in parameters associated with the ZWW, which appears to be in phase around the hemisphere. This variation broadly correlates with the sunspot cycle, and specifically appears to reflect sunspot-correlated, seasonally modulated shifts in the latitude range each year of the sub-tropical ridge over eastern Australia. Sunspot-correlated variability in the southern mid-latitudes is likely to have substantial effects on temperate climate and ecology and is consistent with recent models of solar effects on upper atmospheric climate, though the mechanisms that link these to winds and rainfall at sea level remain obscure.

  3. Solar forcing synchronizes decadal North Atlantic climate variability.

    PubMed

    Thiéblemont, Rémi; Matthes, Katja; Omrani, Nour-Eddine; Kodera, Kunihiko; Hansen, Felicitas

    2015-09-15

    Quasi-decadal variability in solar irradiance has been suggested to exert a substantial effect on Earth's regional climate. In the North Atlantic sector, the 11-year solar signal has been proposed to project onto a pattern resembling the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO), with a lag of a few years due to ocean-atmosphere interactions. The solar/NAO relationship is, however, highly misrepresented in climate model simulations with realistic observed forcings. In addition, its detection is particularly complicated since NAO quasi-decadal fluctuations can be intrinsically generated by the coupled ocean-atmosphere system. Here we compare two multi-decadal ocean-atmosphere chemistry-climate simulations with and without solar forcing variability. While the experiment including solar variability simulates a 1-2-year lagged solar/NAO relationship, comparison of both experiments suggests that the 11-year solar cycle synchronizes quasi-decadal NAO variability intrinsic to the model. The synchronization is consistent with the downward propagation of the solar signal from the stratosphere to the surface.

  4. Solar forcing synchronizes decadal North Atlantic climate variability

    PubMed Central

    Thiéblemont, Rémi; Matthes, Katja; Omrani, Nour-Eddine; Kodera, Kunihiko; Hansen, Felicitas

    2015-01-01

    Quasi-decadal variability in solar irradiance has been suggested to exert a substantial effect on Earth's regional climate. In the North Atlantic sector, the 11-year solar signal has been proposed to project onto a pattern resembling the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO), with a lag of a few years due to ocean-atmosphere interactions. The solar/NAO relationship is, however, highly misrepresented in climate model simulations with realistic observed forcings. In addition, its detection is particularly complicated since NAO quasi-decadal fluctuations can be intrinsically generated by the coupled ocean-atmosphere system. Here we compare two multi-decadal ocean-atmosphere chemistry-climate simulations with and without solar forcing variability. While the experiment including solar variability simulates a 1–2-year lagged solar/NAO relationship, comparison of both experiments suggests that the 11-year solar cycle synchronizes quasi-decadal NAO variability intrinsic to the model. The synchronization is consistent with the downward propagation of the solar signal from the stratosphere to the surface. PMID:26369503

  5. Variable climatic conditions dominate recent phytoplankton dynamics in Chesapeake Bay

    PubMed Central

    Harding, Jr., Lawrence W.; Mallonee, Michael E.; Perry, Elgin S.; Miller, W. David; Adolf, Jason E.; Gallegos, Charles L.; Paerl, Hans W.

    2016-01-01

    Variable climatic conditions strongly influence phytoplankton dynamics in estuaries globally. Our study area is Chesapeake Bay, a highly productive ecosystem providing natural resources, transportation, and recreation for nearly 16 million people inhabiting a 165,000-km2 watershed. Since World War II, nutrient over-enrichment has led to multiple ecosystem impairments caused by increased phytoplankton biomass as chlorophyll-a (chl-a). Doubled nitrogen (N) loadings from 1945–1980 led to increased chl-a, reduced water clarity, and low dissolved oxygen (DO), while decreased N loadings from 1981–2012 suggest modest improvement. The recent 30+ years are characterized by high inter-annual variability of chl-a, coinciding with irregular dry and wet periods, complicating the detection of long-term trends. Here, we synthesize time-series data for historical and recent N loadings (TN, NO2 + NO3), chl-a, floral composition, and net primary productivity (NPP) to distinguish secular changes caused by nutrient over-enrichment from spatio-temporal variability imposed by climatic conditions. Wet years showed higher chl-a, higher diatom abundance, and increased NPP, while dry years showed lower chl-a, lower diatom abundance, and decreased NPP. Our findings support a conceptual model wherein variable climatic conditions dominate recent phytoplankton dynamics against a backdrop of nutrient over-enrichment, emphasizing the need to separate these effects to gauge progress toward improving water quality in estuaries. PMID:27026279

  6. Variable climatic conditions dominate recent phytoplankton dynamics in Chesapeake Bay

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harding, Lawrence W., Jr.; Mallonee, Michael E.; Perry, Elgin S.; Miller, W. David; Adolf, Jason E.; Gallegos, Charles L.; Paerl, Hans W.

    2016-03-01

    Variable climatic conditions strongly influence phytoplankton dynamics in estuaries globally. Our study area is Chesapeake Bay, a highly productive ecosystem providing natural resources, transportation, and recreation for nearly 16 million people inhabiting a 165,000-km2 watershed. Since World War II, nutrient over-enrichment has led to multiple ecosystem impairments caused by increased phytoplankton biomass as chlorophyll-a (chl-a). Doubled nitrogen (N) loadings from 1945–1980 led to increased chl-a, reduced water clarity, and low dissolved oxygen (DO), while decreased N loadings from 1981–2012 suggest modest improvement. The recent 30+ years are characterized by high inter-annual variability of chl-a, coinciding with irregular dry and wet periods, complicating the detection of long-term trends. Here, we synthesize time-series data for historical and recent N loadings (TN, NO2 + NO3), chl-a, floral composition, and net primary productivity (NPP) to distinguish secular changes caused by nutrient over-enrichment from spatio-temporal variability imposed by climatic conditions. Wet years showed higher chl-a, higher diatom abundance, and increased NPP, while dry years showed lower chl-a, lower diatom abundance, and decreased NPP. Our findings support a conceptual model wherein variable climatic conditions dominate recent phytoplankton dynamics against a backdrop of nutrient over-enrichment, emphasizing the need to separate these effects to gauge progress toward improving water quality in estuaries.

  7. Late Holocene interdecadal climate variability in the Sahel: inferences from a marine dust record offshore Senegal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meyer, I.; Stuut, J.-B.; Mollenhauer, G.; Mulitza, S.; Zabel, M.

    2009-04-01

    Present-day climate in northwestern Africa strongly depends on the avaiability of water. At least since the Pliocene the Saharan Desert and the semiarid Sahel belt (tropical North Afrika) have been frequently affected by sudden shifts to more arid climate. The rate of change from arid to humid conditions is presently under heavy debate (e.g., deMenocal et al., 2001, Kröpelin et al., 2008). A recent example of abrupt droughts occurred in the early 70's and 80's of the last century. In this study we compare different high-resolution marine sediment records of Sahel climate variability from the Senegal mud belt, northwest Africa. Marine sediment cores show the variations of terrigenous input (both aeolian dust and fluvial matter) from the African continent. Due to their different distinctive grain-size distributions, aeolian dust and fluvial mud can be recognised and quantified in marine sediments (e.g., Stuut et al., 2002). Based on these variations in the grain-size distributions of the terrigenous sediment fraction, deconvolved with an end-member modelling algorithm (Weltje, 1997), are used to reconstruct rainfall variability and dust production on land for the last 4,000 years. References P. B. deMenocal, et al. (2001). Late Holocene Cultural Responses to Climate Change During the Holocene. Science 292, 667 S. Kröpelin, et al. (2008) Response to Comment on "Climate-Driven Ecosystem Succession in the Sahara: The Past 6000 Years" Science 322, 1326c G. J. Weltje (1997) End-member modeling of compositional data: Numerical-statistical algorithms for solving the explicit mixing problem. Mathematical Geology 9, 4

  8. Climatic variability, plasticity, and dispersal: A case study from Lake Tana, Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Grove, Matt; Lamb, Henry; Roberts, Helen; Davies, Sarah; Marshall, Mike; Bates, Richard; Huws, Dei

    2015-10-01

    The numerous dispersal events that have occurred during the prehistory of hominin lineages are the subject of longstanding and increasingly active debate in evolutionary anthropology. As well as research into the dating and geographic extent of such dispersals, there is an increasing focus on the factors that may have been responsible for dispersal. The growing body of detailed regional palaeoclimatic data is invaluable in demonstrating the often close relationship between changes in prehistoric environments and the movements of hominin populations. The scenarios constructed from such data are often overly simplistic, however, concentrating on the dynamics of cyclical contraction and expansion during severe and ameliorated conditions respectively. This contribution proposes a two-stage hypothesis of hominin dispersal in which populations (1) accumulate high levels of climatic tolerance during highly variable climatic phases, and (2) express such heightened tolerance via dispersal in subsequent low-variability phases. Likely dispersal phases are thus proposed to occur during stable climatic phases that immediately follow phases of high climatic variability. Employing high resolution palaeoclimatic data from Lake Tana, Ethiopia, the hypothesis is examined in relation to the early dispersal of Homo sapiens out of East Africa and into the Levant. A dispersal phase is identified in the Lake Tana record between c. 112,550 and c. 96,975 years ago, a date bracket that accords well with the dating evidence for H. sapiens occupation at the sites of Qafzeh and Skhul. Results are discussed in relation to the complex pattern of H. sapiens dispersal out of East Africa, with particular attention paid to the implications of recent genetic chronologies for the origin of non-African modern humans.

  9. Impacts of tectonic and orbital forcing on East African climate: A comparison based on global climate model simulations.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaspar, F.; Prömmel, K.; Cubasch, U.

    2009-04-01

    Tectonic uplift and erosional denudation can have drastic effects on global and regional climate patterns, which in turn have a significant impact on ecosystems and the distribution of biogeographic zones. The interdisciplinary Research Unit RiftLink (www.riftlink.de) addresses the causes of rift-flank uplift in the East African Rift, its impact on climate changes in equatorial Africa, and the possible connection to the evolution of hominids. Understanding the mechanisms and origin of atmospheric moisture transport is essential for the interpretation of paleoclimatic proxies. Here, we present results from the climate modelling component of RiftLink. The global atmosphere-ocean model ECHO-G has been forced with topographic and orbital scenarios in order to evaluate the relative role of both factors for the past climate of East Africa. The model consists of the ECHAM4 atmosphere model at approx. 3.75° resolution coupled to the HOPE-G ocean model at approx. 2.8°. Forcing the model with a significantly reduced topography in Eastern and Southern Africa leads to a distinct increase in moisture transport from the Indian ocean into the eastern part of the continent and increased precipitation in Eastern Africa. Simulations with step-wise reduced height show that this climate change occurs continuously with the change in topography, i.e. an abrupt change of local climatic features with a critical height is not found. If these results are used for the interpretation of proxy data, it has do be considered that other forcing factors can lead to comparable changes in moisture availability. As an example, we tested the impact of changes in the Earth's orbit around the Sun. For these simulations, we forced the same climate model with the orbital configuration of the last interglacial (at 125,000 years before present, i.e. the Eemian interglacial) and the last glacial inception (at 115,000 years before present). The induced changes in the seasonal and spatial structure of

  10. Disproportionate Climate-Induced Range Loss Forecast for the Most Threatened African Antelopes.

    PubMed

    Payne, Benjamin Luke; Bro-Jørgensen, Jakob

    2016-05-09

    Despite increasing evidence that climatic changes are having a widespread effect on the global distribution and abundance of wildlife [1, 2], the key question of whether the ranges of species that are already threat-listed are likely to be disproportionately affected lacks quantitative assessment. According to the "small-range climate-hypersensitivity hypothesis," we predict small range size to be directly linked to large climate-induced range reduction. Antelopes, an exemplary macroecological model due to their striking ecological diversity and species richness, present an ideal opportunity to test this. Here we provide the first empirical evidence that climate change will cause a disproportionate decline in African antelopes with small geographic ranges, which places the most threatened taxa in double jeopardy. This substantiates our theoretical expectation that the link between small range size and large climate-induced range reduction is a general phenomenon. Our empirically based models also allow specific recommendations for mitigating climate-induced species declines. Gap analysis shows high priorities for antelope conservation to include creation of new protected areas in the horn of Africa and Liberia, as well as improved connectivity between existing protected areas. Predicted extinction of four species unable to reach areas with suitable climatic conditions by 2080 moreover highlights a potentially important role for ex situ conservation. The study emphasizes the urgent need to incorporate climate change into the IUCN threat assessment by extending the timeframe over which population trends are assessed [3].

  11. Impacts of climate change and internal climate variability on french rivers streamflows

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dayon, Gildas; Boé, Julien; Martin, Eric

    2016-04-01

    The assessment of the impacts of climate change often requires to set up long chains of modeling, from the model to estimate the future concentration of greenhouse gases to the impact model. Throughout the modeling chain, sources of uncertainty accumulate making the exploitation of results for the development of adaptation strategies difficult. It is proposed here to assess the impacts of climate change on the hydrological cycle over France and the associated uncertainties. The contribution of the uncertainties from greenhouse gases emission scenario, climate models and internal variability are addressed in this work. To have a large ensemble of climate simulations, the study is based on Global Climate Models (GCM) simulations from the Coupled Model Intercomparison Phase 5 (CMIP5), including several simulations from the same GCM to properly assess uncertainties from internal climate variability. Simulations from the four Radiative Concentration Pathway (RCP) are downscaled with a statistical method developed in a previous study (Dayon et al. 2015). The hydrological system Isba-Modcou is then driven by the downscaling results on a 8 km grid over France. Isba is a land surface model that calculates the energy and water balance and Modcou a hydrogeological model that routes the surface runoff given by Isba. Based on that framework, uncertainties uncertainties from greenhouse gases emission scenario, climate models and climate internal variability are evaluated. Their relative importance is described for the next decades and the end of this century. In a last part, uncertainties due to internal climate variability on streamflows simulated with downscaled GCM and Isba-Modcou are evaluated against observations and hydrological reconstructions on the whole 20th century. Hydrological reconstructions are based on the downscaling of recent atmospheric reanalyses of the 20th century and observations of temperature and precipitation. We show that the multi-decadal variability

  12. A distal 140 kyr sediment record of Nile discharge and East African monsoon variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ehrmann, Werner; Schmiedl, Gerhard; Seidel, Martin; Krüger, Stefan; Schulz, Hartmut

    2016-03-01

    Clay mineral assemblages in a sediment core from the distal Nile discharge plume off Israel have been used to reconstruct the late Quaternary Nile sediment discharge into the eastern Mediterranean Sea (EMS). The record spans the last ca. 140 kyr. Smectite abundances indicate the influence of the Blue Nile and the Atbara River that have their headwaters in the volcanic rocks of the Ethiopian Highlands. Kaolinite abundances indicate the influence of wadis, which contribute periodically to the suspension load of the Nile. Due to the geographical position, the climate and the sedimentary framework of the EMS is controlled by two climate systems. The long-term climate regime was governed by the African monsoon that caused major African humid periods (AHPs) with enhanced sediment discharge at 132 to < 126 (AHP 5), 116 to 99 (AHP4), and 89 to 77 ka (AHP3). They lasted much longer than the formation of the related sapropel layers S5 (> 2 kyr), S4 (3.5 kyr), and S3 (5 kyr). During the last glacial period (Marine Isotope Stages (MISs) 4-2), the long-term changes in the monsoonal system were superimposed by millennial-scale changes in an intensified midlatitude glacial system. This climate regime caused short but pronounced drought periods in the Nile catchment, which are linked to Heinrich events and alternate with more humid interstadials. The clay mineral record further implies that feedback mechanisms between vegetation cover and sediment discharge of the Nile are detectable but of minor importance for the sedimentary record in the southeastern Mediterranean Sea during the investigated African humid periods.

  13. Variable Effects of Climate on Forest Growth in Relation to Climate Extremes, Disturbance, and Forest Dynamics.

    PubMed

    Itter, Malcolm S; Finley, Andrew O; D'Amato, Anthony W; Foster, Jane R; Bradford, John B

    2017-02-09

    Changes in the frequency, duration, and severity of climate extremes are forecast to occur under global climate change. The impacts of climate extremes on forest productivity and health remain difficult to predict due to potential interactions with disturbance events and forest dynamics-changes in forest stand composition, density, size and age structure over time. Such interactions may lead to non-linear forest growth responses to climate involving thresholds and lag effects. Understanding how forest dynamics influence growth responses to climate is particularly important given stand structure and composition can be modified through management to increase forest resistance and resilience to climate change. To inform such adaptive management, we develop a hierarchical Bayesian state space model in which climate effects on tree growth are allowed to vary over time and in relation to past climate extremes, disturbance events, and forest dynamics. The model is an important step toward integrating disturbance and forest dynamics into predictions of forest growth responses to climate extremes. We apply the model to a dendrochronology data set from forest stands of varying composition, structure, and development stage in northeastern Minnesota that have experienced extreme climate years and forest tent caterpillar defoliation events. Mean forest growth was most sensitive to water balance variables representing climatic water deficit. Forest growth responses to water deficit were partitioned into responses driven by climatic threshold exceedances and interactions with insect defoliation. Forest growth was both resistant and resilient to climate extremes with the majority of forest growth responses occurring after multiple climatic threshold exceedances across seasons and years. Interactions between climate and disturbance were observed in a subset of years with insect defoliation increasing forest growth sensitivity to water availability. Forest growth was particularly

  14. Partitioning interannual variability in net ecosystem exchange between climatic variability and functional change.

    PubMed

    Hui, Dafeng; Luo, Yiqi; Katul, Gabriel

    2003-05-01

    Interannual variability (IAV) in net ecosystem exchange of carbon (NEE) is a critical factor in projections of future ecosystem changes. However, our understanding of IAV is limited because of the difficulty in isolating its numerous causes. We proposed that IAV in NEE is primarily caused by climatic variability, through its direct effects on photosynthesis and respiration and through its indirect effects on carbon fluxes (i.e., the parameters that govern photosynthesis and respiration), hereafter called functional change. We employed a homogeneity-of-slopes model to identify the functional change contributing to IAV in NEE and nighttime ecosystem respiration (RE). The model uses multiple regression analysis to relate NEE and RE with climatic variables for individual years and for all years. If the use of different slopes for each year significantly improves the model fitting compared to the use of one slope for all years, we consider that functional change exists, at least on annual time scales. With the functional change detected, we then partition the observed variation in NEE or RE to four components, namely, the functional change, the direct effect of interannual climatic variability, the direct effect of seasonal climatic variation, and random error. Application of this approach to a data set collected at the Duke Forest AmeriFlux site from August 1997 to December 2001 indicated that functional change, interannual climatic variability, seasonal climatic variation and random error explained 9.9, 8.9, 59.9 and 21.3%, respectively, of the observed variation in NEE and 13.1, 5.0, 38.1 and 43.8%, respectively, of the observed variation in RE.

  15. Monthly means of selected climate variables for 1985 - 1989

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schubert, S.; Wu, C.-Y.; Zero, J.; Schemm, J.-K.; Park, C.-K.; Suarez, M.

    1992-01-01

    Meteorologists are accustomed to viewing instantaneous weather maps, since these contain the most relevant information for the task of producing short-range weather forecasts. Climatologists, on the other hand, tend to deal with long-term means, which portray the average climate. The recent emphasis on dynamical extended-range forecasting and, in particular measuring and predicting short term climate change makes it important that we become accustomed to looking at variations on monthly and longer time scales. A convenient toll for researchers to familiarize themselves with the variability which occurs in selected parameters on these time scales is provided. The format of the document was chosen to help facilitate the intercomparison of various parameters and highlight the year-to-year variability in monthly means.

  16. Tropical cloud feedbacks and natural variability of climate

    SciTech Connect

    Miller, R.L.; Del Genio, A.D. )

    1994-09-01

    Simulations of natural variability by two GCMs are examined. One GCM is a sector model, allowing relatively rapid integration without simplification of the model physics, which would potentially exclude mechanisms of variability. Two mechanisms are found in which tropical surface temperature and SST vary on interannual and longer timescales. Both are related to changes in cloud cover that modulate SST through the surface radiative flux. Over the equatorial ocean, SST and surface temperature vary on an interannual timescale, which is determined by the magnitude of the associated cloud cover anomalies. Over the subtropical ocean, variations in low cloud cover drive SST variations. In the sector model, the variability has no preferred timescale, but instead is characterized by a [open quotes]red[close quotes] spectrum with increasing power at longer periods. In the terrestrial GCM, SST variability associated with low cloud anomalies has a decadal timescale and is the dominant form of global temperature variability. Both GCMs are coupled to a mixed layer ocean model, where dynamical heat transports are prescribed, thus filtering out ENSO and thermohaline circulation variability. The occurrence of variability in the absence of dynamical ocean feedbacks suggests that climatic variability on long timescales can arise from atmospheric processes alone. 28 refs., 13 figs., 2 tabs.

  17. Tropical cloud feedbacks and natural variability of climate

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Miller, R. L.; Del Genio, A. D.

    1994-01-01

    Simulations of natural variability by two general circulation models (GCMs) are examined. One GCM is a sector model, allowing relatively rapid integration without simplification of the model physics, which would potentially exclude mechanisms of variability. Two mechanisms are found in which tropical surface temperature and sea surface temperature (SST) vary on interannual and longer timescales. Both are related to changes in cloud cover that modulate SST through the surface radiative flux. Over the equatorial ocean, SST and surface temperature vary on an interannual timescale, which is determined by the magnitude of the associated cloud cover anomalies. Over the subtropical ocean, variations in low cloud cover drive SST variations. In the sector model, the variability has no preferred timescale, but instead is characterized by a 'red' spectrum with increasing power at longer periods. In the terrestrial GCM, SST variability associated with low cloud anomalies has a decadal timescale and is the dominant form of global temperature variability. Both GCMs are coupled to a mixed layer ocean model, where dynamical heat transports are prescribed, thus filtering out El Nino-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) and thermohaline circulation variability. The occurrence of variability in the absence of dynamical ocean feedbacks suggests that climatic variability on long timescales can arise from atmospheric processes alone.

  18. Holocene Climatic Variability in the Indian Monsoon Domain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mishra, Praveen Kumar; Anoop, Ambili; Menzel, Philip; Gaye, Birgit; Basavaiah, Nathani; Jehangir, Arshid; Prasad, Sushma

    2013-04-01

    The available data on Holocene climate variability from Asia indicates spatio-temporal changes in the precipitation over this vast region. Detailed information on the timing, duration, regionality, and causes of these fluctuations is not well understood, especially over the Indian subcontinent. My work focuses on long core sediments from lake Tso Moriri (78°14'-78°25'N and 32°40'-33°02'E; altitude: 4500 m) situated in climatically sensitive zone of NW Himalayas affected by both mid-latitude westerlies and Indian summer monsoon. Two cores ca.7 m were retrieved from the lake at different water depths (ca. 40m and 105m) in July 2011. Investigations reveal marked changes in grain size, lamination quality, mineralogy, organic and carbonate content suggesting changes in lake level, direction of inflow, and biological productivity that in turn are influenced by regional climate. As the lake lies in a tectonically active region, I have also undertaken detailed geomorphometric (knick-point, Hack index), and drainage pattern analysis of the major inflowing streams to decipher the active tectonics in the region. Sharp changes in river course and slope gradient indicates the presence of an active N-S trending fault in western flank of the lake. The data from lake Tso Moriri will be compared with other high-resolution records from lake Lonar and stalagmites in NE India to reconstruct the forcing mechanism of Holocene climatic variability.

  19. Natural climate variabilities and Antarctic sea ice trend

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kohyama, T.; Hartmann, D. L.

    2015-12-01

    The interannual Antarctic sea ice variability in Indian Ocean shares a large portion of variance with Southern Annular Mode (SAM), and that in Ross Sea with El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO). If we regress out the influence of these climate modes from the sectorial sea ice extent time series, the expanding sea ice trends in the satellite era become insignificant at 95 %. Because SAM has a human-induced trend, the increasing sea ice extent in Indian Ocean may be explained by superposition of anthropogenic forcing and natural variability. On the other hand, because ENSO does not have a significant trend, the sea ice trend in Ross Sea might be produced purely by natural variability. In addition to SAM and ENSO, some residual sea ice variances can be explained by other modes, which are not simultaneously-correlated with SAM or ENSO. For instance, a wave-like mode that appears to be Rossby wave trains shares large variance with interannual sea ice variability in many longitudinal sectors. The spatial trend pattern reconstructed by the Rossby mode exhibits consistent features with the ice motion trend pattern shown by Holland and Kwok (2012). These results, based on observational and reanalysis data, suggest that a large portion of expanding trend of Antarctic sea ice may be explained by natural climate variability.

  20. Towards multi-resolution global climate modeling with ECHAM6-FESOM. Part II: climate variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rackow, T.; Goessling, H. F.; Jung, T.; Sidorenko, D.; Semmler, T.; Barbi, D.; Handorf, D.

    2016-06-01

    This study forms part II of two papers describing ECHAM6-FESOM, a newly established global climate model with a unique multi-resolution sea ice-ocean component. While part I deals with the model description and the mean climate state, here we examine the internal climate variability of the model under constant present-day (1990) conditions. We (1) assess the internal variations in the model in terms of objective variability performance indices, (2) analyze variations in global mean surface temperature and put them in context to variations in the observed record, with particular emphasis on the recent warming slowdown, (3) analyze and validate the most common atmospheric and oceanic variability patterns, (4) diagnose the potential predictability of various climate indices, and (5) put the multi-resolution approach to the test by comparing two setups that differ only in oceanic resolution in the equatorial belt, where one ocean mesh keeps the coarse ~1° resolution applied in the adjacent open-ocean regions and the other mesh is gradually refined to ~0.25°. Objective variability performance indices show that, in the considered setups, ECHAM6-FESOM performs overall favourably compared to five well-established climate models. Internal variations of the global mean surface temperature in the model are consistent with observed fluctuations and suggest that the recent warming slowdown can be explained as a once-in-one-hundred-years event caused by internal climate variability; periods of strong cooling in the model (`hiatus' analogs) are mainly associated with ENSO-related variability and to a lesser degree also to PDO shifts, with the AMO playing a minor role. Common atmospheric and oceanic variability patterns are simulated largely consistent with their real counterparts. Typical deficits also found in other models at similar resolutions remain, in particular too weak non-seasonal variability of SSTs over large parts of the ocean and episodic periods of almost absent

  1. The Climate-Population Nexus in the East African Horn: Emerging Degradation Trends in Rangeland and Pastoral Livelihood Zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pricope, N. G.; Husak, G. J.; Funk, C. C.; Lopez-Carr, D.

    2014-12-01

    Increasing climate variability and extreme weather conditions along with declining trends in both rainfall and temperature represent major risk factors affecting agricultural production and food security in many regions of the world. We identify regions where significant rainfall decrease from 1979-2011 over the entire continent of Africa couples with significant human population density increase. The rangelands of Ethiopia, Kenya, and Somalia in the East African Horn remain one of the world's most food insecure regions, yet have significantly increasing human populations predominantly dependent on pastoralist and agro-pastoralist livelihoods. Vegetation in this region is characterized by a variable mosaic of land covers, generally dominated by grasslands necessary for agro-pastoralism, interspersed by woody vegetation. Recent assessments indicate that widespread degradation is occurring, adversely impacting fragile ecosystems and human livelihoods. Using two underutilized MODIS products, we observe significant changes in vegetation patterns and productivity over the last decade all across the East African Horn. We observe significant vegetation browning trends in areas experiencing drying precipitation trends in addition to increasing population pressures. We also found that the drying precipitation trends only partially statistically explain the vegetation browning trends, further indicating that other factors such as population pressures and land use changes are responsible for the observed declining vegetation health. Furthermore, we show that the general vegetation browning trends persist even during years with normal rainfall conditions such as 2012, indicating potential long-term degradation of rangelands on which approximately 10 million people depend. These findings have serious implications for current and future regional food security monitoring and forecasting as well as for mitigation and adaptation strategies in a region where population is expected

  2. Smallholder agriculture in India and adaptation to current and future climate variability and climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murari, K. K.; Jayaraman, T.

    2014-12-01

    Modeling studies have indicated that global warming, in many regions, will increase the exposure of major crops to rainfall and temperature stress, leading to lower crop yields. Climate variability alone has a potential to decrease yield to an extent comparable to or greater than yield reductions expected due to rising temperature. For India, where agriculture is important, both in terms of food security as well as a source of livelihoods to a majority of its population, climate variability and climate change are subjects of serious concern. There is however a need to distinguish the impact of current climate variability and climate change on Indian agriculture, especially in relation to their socioeconomic impact. This differentiation is difficult to determine due to the secular trend of increasing production and yield of the past several decades. The current research in this aspect is in an initial stage and requires a multi-disciplinary effort. In this study, we assess the potential differential impacts of environmental stress and shock across different socioeconomic strata of the rural population, using village level survey data. The survey data from eight selected villages, based on the Project on Agrarian Relations in India conducted by the Foundation for Agrarian Studies, indicated that income from crop production of the top 20 households (based on the extent of operational land holding, employment of hired labour and asset holdings) is a multiple of the mean income of the village. In sharp contrast, the income of the bottom 20 households is a fraction of the mean and sometimes negative, indicating a net loss from crop production. The considerable differentials in output and incomes suggest that small and marginal farmers are far more susceptible to climate variability and climate change than the other sections. Climate change is effectively an immediate threat to small and marginal farmers, which is driven essentially by socioeconomic conditions. The impact

  3. Climate variability slows evolutionary responses of Colias butterflies to recent climate change.

    PubMed

    Kingsolver, Joel G; Buckley, Lauren B

    2015-03-07

    How does recent climate warming and climate variability alter fitness, phenotypic selection and evolution in natural populations? We combine biophysical, demographic and evolutionary models with recent climate data to address this question for the subalpine and alpine butterfly, Colias meadii, in the southern Rocky Mountains. We focus on predicting patterns of selection and evolution for a key thermoregulatory trait, melanin (solar absorptivity) on the posterior ventral hindwings, which affects patterns of body temperature, flight activity, adult and egg survival, and reproductive success in Colias. Both mean annual summer temperatures and thermal variability within summers have increased during the past 60 years at subalpine and alpine sites. At the subalpine site, predicted directional selection on wing absorptivity has shifted from generally positive (favouring increased wing melanin) to generally negative during the past 60 years, but there is substantial variation among years in the predicted magnitude and direction of selection and the optimal absorptivity. The predicted magnitude of directional selection at the alpine site declined during the past 60 years and varies substantially among years, but selection has generally been positive at this site. Predicted evolutionary responses to mean climate warming at the subalpine site since 1980 is small, because of the variability in selection and asymmetry of the fitness function. At both sites, the predicted effects of adaptive evolution on mean population fitness are much smaller than the fluctuations in mean fitness due to climate variability among years. Our analyses suggest that variation in climate within and among years may strongly limit evolutionary responses of ectotherms to mean climate warming in these habitats.

  4. Climate variability slows evolutionary responses of Colias butterflies to recent climate change

    PubMed Central

    Kingsolver, Joel G.; Buckley, Lauren B.

    2015-01-01

    How does recent climate warming and climate variability alter fitness, phenotypic selection and evolution in natural populations? We combine biophysical, demographic and evolutionary models with recent climate data to address this question for the subalpine and alpine butterfly, Colias meadii, in the southern Rocky Mountains. We focus on predicting patterns of selection and evolution for a key thermoregulatory trait, melanin (solar absorptivity) on the posterior ventral hindwings, which affects patterns of body temperature, flight activity, adult and egg survival, and reproductive success in Colias. Both mean annual summer temperatures and thermal variability within summers have increased during the past 60 years at subalpine and alpine sites. At the subalpine site, predicted directional selection on wing absorptivity has shifted from generally positive (favouring increased wing melanin) to generally negative during the past 60 years, but there is substantial variation among years in the predicted magnitude and direction of selection and the optimal absorptivity. The predicted magnitude of directional selection at the alpine site declined during the past 60 years and varies substantially among years, but selection has generally been positive at this site. Predicted evolutionary responses to mean climate warming at the subalpine site since 1980 is small, because of the variability in selection and asymmetry of the fitness function. At both sites, the predicted effects of adaptive evolution on mean population fitness are much smaller than the fluctuations in mean fitness due to climate variability among years. Our analyses suggest that variation in climate within and among years may strongly limit evolutionary responses of ectotherms to mean climate warming in these habitats. PMID:25631995

  5. Nonlinear dynamical modes of climate variability: from curves to manifolds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gavrilov, Andrey; Mukhin, Dmitry; Loskutov, Evgeny; Feigin, Alexander

    2016-04-01

    The necessity of efficient dimensionality reduction methods capturing dynamical properties of the system from observed data is evident. Recent study shows that nonlinear dynamical mode (NDM) expansion is able to solve this problem and provide adequate phase variables in climate data analysis [1]. A single NDM is logical extension of linear spatio-temporal structure (like empirical orthogonal function pattern): it is constructed as nonlinear transformation of hidden scalar time series to the space of observed variables, i. e. projection of observed dataset onto a nonlinear curve. Both the hidden time series and the parameters of the curve are learned simultaneously using Bayesian approach. The only prior information about the hidden signal is the assumption of its smoothness. The optimal nonlinearity degree and smoothness are found using Bayesian evidence technique. In this work we do further extension and look for vector hidden signals instead of scalar with the same smoothness restriction. As a result we resolve multidimensional manifolds instead of sum of curves. The dimension of the hidden manifold is optimized using also Bayesian evidence. The efficiency of the extension is demonstrated on model examples. Results of application to climate data are demonstrated and discussed. The study is supported by Government of Russian Federation (agreement #14.Z50.31.0033 with the Institute of Applied Physics of RAS). 1. Mukhin, D., Gavrilov, A., Feigin, A., Loskutov, E., & Kurths, J. (2015). Principal nonlinear dynamical modes of climate variability. Scientific Reports, 5, 15510. http://doi.org/10.1038/srep15510

  6. West African monsoon decadal variability and surface-related forcings: second West African Monsoon Modeling and Evaluation Project Experiment (WAMME II)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xue, Yongkang; De Sales, Fernando; Lau, William K.-M.; Boone, Aaron; Kim, Kyu-Myong; Mechoso, Carlos R.; Wang, Guiling; Kucharski, Fred; Schiro, Kathleen; Hosaka, Masahiro; Li, Suosuo; Druyan, Leonard M.; Sanda, Ibrah Seidou; Thiaw, Wassila; Zeng, Ning; Comer, Ruth E.; Lim, Young-Kwon; Mahanama, Sarith; Song, Guoqiong; Gu, Yu; Hagos, Samson M.; Chin, Mian; Schubert, Siegfried; Dirmeyer, Paul; Ruby Leung, L.; Kalnay, Eugenia; Kitoh, Akio; Lu, Cheng-Hsuan; Mahowald, Natalie M.; Zhang, Zhengqiu

    2016-12-01

    The second West African Monsoon Modeling and Evaluation Project Experiment (WAMME II) is designed to improve understanding of the possible roles and feedbacks of sea surface temperature (SST), land use land cover change (LULCC), and aerosols forcings in the Sahel climate system at seasonal to decadal scales. The project's strategy is to apply prescribed observationally based anomaly forcing, i.e., "idealized but realistic" forcing, in simulations by climate models. The goal is to assess these forcings' effects in producing/amplifying seasonal and decadal climate variability in the Sahel between the 1950s and the 1980s, which is selected to characterize the great drought period of the last century. This is the first multi-model experiment specifically designed to simultaneously evaluate such relative contributions. The WAMME II models have consistently demonstrated that SST forcing is a major contributor to the twentieth century Sahel drought. Under the influence of the maximum possible SST forcing, the ensemble mean of WAMME II models can produce up to 60 % of the precipitation difference during the period. The present paper also addresses the role of SSTs in triggering and maintaining the Sahel drought. In this regard, the consensus of WAMME II models is that both Indian and Pacific Ocean SSTs greatly contributed to the drought, with the former producing an anomalous displacement of the Intertropical Convergence Zone before the WAM onset, and the latter mainly contributes to the summer WAM drought. The WAMME II models also show that the impact of LULCC forcing on the Sahel climate system is weaker than that of SST forcing, but still of first order magnitude. According to the results, under LULCC forcing the ensemble mean of WAMME II models can produces about 40 % of the precipitation difference between the 1980s and the 1950s. The role of land surface processes in responding to and amplifying the drought is also identified. The results suggest that catastrophic

  7. Recurrence network-based time series analysis for identifying tipping points in Plio-Pleistocene African climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Donges, J. F.; Donner, R. V.; Trauth, M. H.; Marwan, N.; Schellnhuber, H. J.; Kurths, J.

    2012-04-01

    The analysis of paleoclimate time series is usually affected by severe methodological problems, resulting primarily from non-equidistant sampling and uncertain age models. As an alternative to existing methods of time series analysis, the statistical properties of recurrence networks are promising candidates for characterizing a system's nonlinear dynamics and quantifying structural changes in its reconstructed phase space as time evolves. The results of recurrence network analysis are robust under changes in the age model and are not directly affected by non-equidistant sampling of the data. Specifically, we investigate three marine records of African climate variability during the Plio-Pleistocene. We detect several statistically significant dynamical transitions or tipping points and show that the obtained results are qualitatively robust under changes of the relevant parameters of our method, including detrending, size of the running window used for analysis, and embedding delay. Finally, relating the identified tipping points in paleoclimate-variability to speciation and extinction events in the available fossil record of human ancestors contributes to the understanding of climatic mechanisms driving human evolution in Africa during the past 5 million years.

  8. Early Human Speciation, Brain Expansion and Dispersal Influenced by African Climate Pulses

    PubMed Central

    Shultz, Susanne; Maslin, Mark

    2013-01-01

    Early human evolution is characterised by pulsed speciation and dispersal events that cannot be explained fully by global or continental paleoclimate records. We propose that the collated record of ephemeral East African Rift System (EARS) lakes could be a proxy for the regional paleoclimate conditions experienced by early hominins. Here we show that the presence of these lakes is associated with low levels of dust deposition in both West African and Mediterranean records, but is not associated with long-term global cooling and aridification of East Africa. Hominin expansion and diversification seem to be associated with climate pulses characterized by the precession-forced appearance and disappearance of deep EARS lakes. The most profound period for hominin evolution occurs at about 1.9 Ma; with the highest recorded diversity of hominin species, the appearance of Homo (sensu stricto) and major dispersal events out of East Africa into Eurasia. During this period, ephemeral deep-freshwater lakes appeared along the whole length of the EARS, fundamentally changing the local environment. The relationship between the local environment and hominin brain expansion is less clear. The major step-wise expansion in brain size around 1.9 Ma when Homo appeared was coeval with the occurrence of ephemeral deep lakes. Subsequent incremental increases in brain size are associated with dry periods with few if any lakes. Plio-Pleistocene East African climate pulses as evinced by the paleo-lake records seem, therefore, fundamental to hominin speciation, encephalisation and migration. PMID:24146922

  9. Alternating high and low climate variability: The context of natural selection and speciation in Plio-Pleistocene hominin evolution.

    PubMed

    Potts, Richard; Faith, J Tyler

    2015-10-01

    Interaction of orbital insolation cycles defines a predictive model of alternating phases of high- and low-climate variability for tropical East Africa over the past 5 million years. This model, which is described in terms of climate variability stages, implies repeated increases in landscape/resource instability and intervening periods of stability in East Africa. It predicts eight prolonged (>192 kyr) eras of intensified habitat instability (high variability stages) in which hominin evolutionary innovations are likely to have occurred, potentially by variability selection. The prediction that repeated shifts toward high climate variability affected paleoenvironments and evolution is tested in three ways. In the first test, deep-sea records of northeast African terrigenous dust flux (Sites 721/722) and eastern Mediterranean sapropels (Site 967A) show increased and decreased variability in concert with predicted shifts in climate variability. These regional measurements of climate dynamics are complemented by stratigraphic observations in five basins with lengthy stratigraphic and paleoenvironmental records: the mid-Pleistocene Olorgesailie Basin, the Plio-Pleistocene Turkana and Olduvai Basins, and the Pliocene Tugen Hills sequence and Hadar Basin--all of which show that highly variable landscapes inhabited by hominin populations were indeed concentrated in predicted stages of prolonged high climate variability. Second, stringent null-model tests demonstrate a significant association of currently known first and last appearance datums (FADs and LADs) of the major hominin lineages, suites of technological behaviors, and dispersal events with the predicted intervals of prolonged high climate variability. Palynological study in the Nihewan Basin, China, provides a third test, which shows the occupation of highly diverse habitats in eastern Asia, consistent with the predicted increase in adaptability in dispersing Oldowan hominins. Integration of fossil, archeological

  10. Impacts of Austrian Climate Variability on Honey Bee Mortality

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Switanek, Matt; Brodschneider, Robert; Crailsheim, Karl; Truhetz, Heimo

    2015-04-01

    Global food production, as it is today, is not possible without pollinators such as the honey bee. It is therefore alarming that honey bee populations across the world have seen increased mortality rates in the last few decades. The challenges facing the honey bee calls into question the future of our food supply. Beside various infectious diseases, Varroa destructor is one of the main culprits leading to increased rates of honey bee mortality. Varroa destructor is a parasitic mite which strongly depends on honey bee brood for reproduction and can wipe out entire colonies. However, climate variability may also importantly influence honey bee breeding cycles and bee mortality rates. Persistent weather events affects vegetation and hence foraging possibilities for honey bees. This study first defines critical statistical relationships between key climate indicators (e.g., precipitation and temperature) and bee mortality rates across Austria, using 6 consecutive years of data. Next, these leading indicators, as they vary in space and time, are used to build a statistical model to predict bee mortality rates and the respective number of colonies affected. Using leave-one-out cross validation, the model reduces the Root Mean Square Error (RMSE) by 21% with respect to predictions made with the mean mortality rate and the number of colonies. Furthermore, a Monte Carlo test is used to establish that the model's predictions are statistically significant at the 99.9% confidence level. These results highlight the influence of climate variables on honey bee populations, although variability in climate, by itself, cannot fully explain colony losses. This study was funded by the Austrian project 'Zukunft Biene'.

  11. Southern African continental climate since the late Pleistocene: Insights from biomarker analyses of Kalahari salt pan sediments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Belz, Lukas; Schüller, Irka; Wehrmann, Achim; Wilkes, Heinz

    2016-04-01

    The climate system of sub-tropical southern Africa is mainly controlled by large scale atmospheric and marine circulation processes and, therefore, very sensitive to global climate change. This underlines the importance of paleoenvironmental reconstructions in order to estimate regional implications of current global changes. However, the majority of studies on southern African paleoclimate are based on the investigation of marine sedimentary archives and past climate development especially in continental areas is still poorly understood. This emphasizes the necessity of continental proxy-data from this area. Proxy datasets from local geoarchives especially of the southwestern Kalahari region are still scarce. A main problem is the absence of conventional continental climatic archives, due to the lack of lacustrine systems. In this study we are exploring the utility of sediments from western Kalahari salt pans, i.e. local depressions which are flooded temporarily during rainfall events. An age model based on 14C dating of total organic carbon (TOC) shows evidence that sedimentation predominates over erosional processes with respect to pan formation. Besides the analyses of basic geochemical bulk parameters including TOC, δ13CTOC, total inorganic carbon, δ13CTIC, δ18OTIC, total nitrogen and δ15N, our paleo-climatic approach focuses on reconstruction of local vegetation assemblages to identify changes in the ecosystem. This is pursued using plant biomarkers, particularly leaf wax n-alkanes and n-alcohols and their stable carbon and hydrogen isotopic signatures. Results show prominent shifts in n-alkane and n-alkanol distributions and compound specific carbon isotope values, pointing to changes to a more grass dominated environment during Heinrich Stadial 1 (18.5-14.6 ka BP), while hydrogen isotope values suggest wetter phases during Holocene and LGM. This high variability indicates the local vulnerability to global change.

  12. Range expansion through fragmented landscapes under a variable climate

    PubMed Central

    Bennie, Jonathan; Hodgson, Jenny A; Lawson, Callum R; Holloway, Crispin TR; Roy, David B; Brereton, Tom; Thomas, Chris D; Wilson, Robert J

    2013-01-01

    Ecological responses to climate change may depend on complex patterns of variability in weather and local microclimate that overlay global increases in mean temperature. Here, we show that high-resolution temporal and spatial variability in temperature drives the dynamics of range expansion for an exemplar species, the butterfly Hesperia comma. Using fine-resolution (5 m) models of vegetation surface microclimate, we estimate the thermal suitability of 906 habitat patches at the species' range margin for 27 years. Population and metapopulation models that incorporate this dynamic microclimate surface improve predictions of observed annual changes to population density and patch occupancy dynamics during the species' range expansion from 1982 to 2009. Our findings reveal how fine-scale, short-term environmental variability drives rates and patterns of range expansion through spatially localised, intermittent episodes of expansion and contraction. Incorporating dynamic microclimates can thus improve models of species range shifts at spatial and temporal scales relevant to conservation interventions. PMID:23701124

  13. Holocene Millennial-Scale Climate Variability in Western North America

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fawcett, P. J.; Castiglia, P. J.; Meyer, G. A.; Armour, J.

    2002-12-01

    We compare several high-resolution paleoclimatic records from western North America that indicate near-synchronous millennial-scale climate variability through much of the Holocene. A Holocene pluvial lake system in northern Chihuahua, Mexico alternates between lake highstands representing cooler and wetter conditions and dry playa conditions representing warmer, drier climates. Alpine lakes and bogs from the Sangre de Cristo Mountains of northern New Mexico record a series of glacial and periglacial events (colder, effectively wetter climates) that alternate with warmer, drier climates over the late Pleistocene and the Holocene. Forest fire-related sedimentation and alluvial activity from northeast Yellowstone National Park also shows a clear response to millennial-scale climate change during the Holocene. Pulses of fire-related debris flow activity occur during warmer, drier periods that are more prone to droughts. These alternate with cooler, effectively wetter conditions that produce more river discharge and form broad flood plains later preserved as terraces. Pluvial lake highstands in northern Mexico are centered at the following calendar ages: 230 yr B.P., 4.2 ka, 7.4 ka, and 9.3 ka. The northern New Mexico chronology shows cold, effectively wetter climates at the following calendar age midpoints: 200 yr B.P., 3.0 ka, 3.9 ka and 5.7 ka. The Yellowstone chronology shows cold, effectively wetter climates during the following age ranges: 300 to 600 yr B.P., 1.4 to 1.6 ka, 2.8 to 3.1 ka, 3.9 to 4.3 ka, and 5.5 to 6.0 ka. In the Rocky Mountain records, the millennial-scale events are more prominent during the late Holocene Neoglacial interval than during the early to middle Holocene. These climate events in western North America reflect widespread temperature anomalies and to a lesser extent, precipitation anomalies. The cold phases of these events correlate with a North Atlantic record of ice-rafting and cool events (Bond et al., 2001) and suggest that

  14. Climate change and climate variability: personal motivation for adaptation and mitigation

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Global climate change impacts on human and natural systems are predicted to be severe, far reaching, and to affect the most physically and economically vulnerable disproportionately. Society can respond to these threats through two strategies: mitigation and adaptation. Industry, commerce, and government play indispensable roles in these actions but so do individuals, if they are receptive to behavior change. We explored whether the health frame can be used as a context to motivate behavioral reductions of greenhouse gas emissions and adaptation measures. Methods In 2008, we conducted a cross-sectional survey in the United States using random digit dialing. Personal relevance of climate change from health threats was explored with the Health Belief Model (HBM) as a conceptual frame and analyzed through logistic regressions and path analysis. Results Of 771 individuals surveyed, 81% (n = 622) acknowledged that climate change was occurring, and were aware of the associated ecologic and human health risks. Respondents reported reduced energy consumption if they believed climate change could affect their way of life (perceived susceptibility), Odds Ratio (OR) = 2.4 (95% Confidence Interval (CI): 1.4 - 4.0), endanger their life (perceived severity), OR = 1.9 (95% CI: 1.1 - 3.1), or saw serious barriers to protecting themselves from climate change, OR = 2.1 (95% CI: 1.2 - 3.5). Perceived susceptibility had the strongest effect on reduced energy consumption, either directly or indirectly via perceived severity. Those that reported having the necessary information to prepare for climate change impacts were more likely to have an emergency kit OR = 2.1 (95% CI: 1.4 - 3.1) or plan, OR = 2.2 (95% CI: 1.5 -3.2) for their household, but also saw serious barriers to protecting themselves from climate change or climate variability, either by having an emergency kit OR = 1.6 (95% CI: 1.1 - 2.4) or an emergency plan OR = 1.5 (95%CI: 1.0 - 2.2). Conclusions Motivation for

  15. The Hydroclimate of East Africa: Seasonal cycle, Decadal Variability, and Human-induced Climate Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Wenchang

    The hydroclimate of East Africa shows distinctive variabilities on seasonal to decadal time scales and poses a great challenge to climatologists attempting to project its response to anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse gases (GHGs). Increased frequency and intensity of droughts over East Africa in recent decades raise the question of whether the drying trend will continue into the future. To address this question, we first examine the decadal variability of the East African rainfall during March--May (MAM, the major rainy season in East Africa) and assess how well a series of models simulate the observed features. Observational results show that the drying trend during MAM is associated with decadal natural variability of sea surface temperature (SST) variations over the Pacific Ocean. The multimodel mean of the SST-forced, Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP5) AMIP experiment models reproduces both the climatological annual cycle and the drying trend in recent decades. The fully coupled models from the CMIP5 historical experiment, however, have systematic errors in simulating the East African rainfall annual cycle by underestimating the MAM rainfall while overestimating the October--December (OND, the second rainy season in East Africa) rainfall. The multimodel mean of the historical coupled runs of the MAM rainfall anomalies, which is the best estimate of the radiatively-forced change, shows a weak wetting trend associated with anthropogenic forcing. However, the SST anomaly pattern associated with the MAM rainfall has large discrepancies with the observations. The errors in simulating the East African hydroclimate with coupled models raise questions about how reliable model projections of future East African climate are. This motivates a fundamental study of why East African climate is the way it is and why coupled models get it wrong. East African hydroclimate is characterized by a dry annual mean climatology compared to other deep tropical

  16. Relationship between Antarctic sea ice and southwest African climate during the late Quaternary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stuut, Jan-Berend W.; Crosta, Xavier; van der Borg, Klaas; Schneider, Ralph

    2004-10-01

    Here we compare late Quaternary southwest African climate records from the west coast of southern Africa (published winter rainfall and trade wind intensity records from a core off the coast of Namibia) to records of Antarctic sea-ice extent. This comparison reveals coherent changes between Antarctic sea-ice extent and the southwest African winter rain region since 45 k.y. B.P., with enhanced winter rainfall and trade-wind vigor during periods of increased sea-ice presence. We propose an oceanic and atmospheric coupling between Antarctic sea ice and the winter rainfall zone of southwest Africa that may lead to increased desertification in the region if global warming persists.

  17. Societal Adaptation to Decadal Climate Variability in the United States

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rosenberg, Norman J.; Mehta, Vikram M.; Olsen, J. Rolf; von Storch, Hans; Varady, Robert G.; Hayes, Michael J.; Wilhite, Donald

    2007-10-01

    CRCES Workshop on Societal Impacts of Decadal Climate Variability in the United States, 26-28 April 2007, Waikoloa, Hawaii The search for evidence of decadal climatic variability (DCV) has a very long history. In the past decade, a research community has coalesced around a series of roughly biennial workshops that have emphasized description of past DCV events; their causes and their ``teleconnections'' responsible for droughts, floods, and warm and cold spells around the world; and recently, the predictability of DCV events. Researchers studying climate change put great emphasis on prospective impacts, but the DCV community has yet to do so. To begin rectifying this deficiency, a short but ambitious workshop was convened in Waikoloa, near Kona, Hawaii, from 26-28 April 2007. This workshop, sponsored by the Center for Research on the Changing Earth System (CRCES), NOAA, the U.S. Geological Survey, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, brought together climatologists and sectoral specialists representing agriculture, water resources, economics, the insurance industry, and developing country interests.

  18. Intraseasonal and Interannual Variability of Mars Present Climate

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hollingsworth, Jeffery L.; Bridger, Alison F. C.; Haberle, Robert M.

    1996-01-01

    This is a Final Report for a Joint Research Interchange (JRI) between NASA Ames Research Center and San Jose State University, Department of Meteorology. The focus of this JRI has been to investigate the nature of intraseasonal and interannual variability of Mars'present climate. We have applied a three-dimensional climate model based on the full hydrostatic primitive equations to determine the spatial, but primarily, the temporal structures of the planet's large-scale circulation as it evolves during a given seasonal advance, and, over multi-annual cycles. The particular climate model applies simplified physical parameterizations and is computationally efficient. It could thus easily be integrated in a perpetual season or advancing season configuration, as well as over many Mars years. We have assessed both high and low-frequency components of the circulation (i.e., motions having periods of Omicron(2-10 days) or greater than Omicron(10 days), respectively). Results from this investigation have explored the basic issue whether Mars' climate system is naturally 'chaotic' associated with nonlinear interactions of the large-scale circulation-regardless of any allowance for year-to-year variations in external forcing mechanisms. Titles of papers presented at scientific conferences and a manuscript to be submitted to the scientific literature are provided. An overview of a areas for further investigation is also presented.

  19. Land - Ocean Climate Linkages and the Human Evolution - New ICDP and IODP Drilling Initiatives in the East African Rift Valley and SW Indian Ocean

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zahn, R.; Feibel, C.; Co-Pis, Icdp/Iodp

    2009-04-01

    The past 5 Ma were marked by systematic shifts towards colder climates and concomitant reorganizations in ocean circulation and marine heat transports. Some of the changes involved plate-tectonic shifts such as the closure of the Panamanian Isthmus and restructuring of the Indonesian archipelago that affected inter-ocean communications and altered the world ocean circulation. These changes induced ocean-atmosphere feedbacks with consequences for climates globally and locally. Two new ICDP and IODP drilling initiatives target these developments from the perspectives of marine and terrestrial palaeoclimatology and the human evolution. The ICDP drilling initiative HSPDP ("Hominid Sites and Paleolakes Drilling Project"; ICDP ref. no. 10/07) targets lacustrine depocentres in Ethiopia (Hadar) and Kenya (West Turkana, Olorgesailie, Magadi) to retrieve sedimentary sequences close to the places and times where various species of hominins lived over currently available outcrop records. The records will provide a spatially resolved record of the East African environmental history in conjunction with climate variability at orbital (Milankovitch) and sub-orbital (ENSO decadal) time scales. HSPDP specifically aims at (1) compiling master chronologies for outcrops around each of the depocentres; (2) assessing which aspects of the paleoenvironmental records are a function of local origin (hydrology, hydrogeology) and which are linked with regional or larger-scale signals; (3) correlating broad-scale patterns of hominin phylogeny with the global beat of climate variability and (4) correlating regional shifts in the hominin fossil and archaeological record with more local patterns of paleoenvironmental change. Ultimately the aim is to test hypotheses that link physical and cultural adaptations in the course of the hominin evolution to local environmental change and variability. The IODP initiative SAFARI ("Southern African Climates, Agulhas Warm Water Transports and Retroflection

  20. Mapping the climate: guidance on appropriate techniques to map climate variables and their uncertainty

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaye, N. R.; Hartley, A.; Hemming, D.

    2012-02-01

    Maps are a crucial asset in communicating climate science to a diverse audience, and there is a wealth of software available to analyse and visualise climate information. However, this availability makes it easy to create poor maps as users often lack an underlying cartographic knowledge. Unlike traditional cartography, where many known standards allow maps to be interpreted easily, there is no standard mapping approach used to represent uncertainty (in climate or other information). Consequently, a wide range of techniques have been applied for this purpose, and users may spend unnecessary time trying to understand the mapping approach rather than interpreting the information presented. Furthermore, communicating and visualising uncertainties in climate data and climate change projections, using for example ensemble based approaches, presents additional challenges for mapping that require careful consideration. The aim of this paper is to provide background information and guidance on suitable techniques for mapping climate variables, including uncertainty. We assess a range of existing and novel techniques for mapping variables and uncertainties, comparing "intrinsic" approaches that use colour in much the same way as conventional thematic maps with "extrinsic" approaches that incorporate additional geometry such as points or features. Using cartographic knowledge and lessons learned from mapping in different disciplines we propose the following 6 general mapping guidelines to develop a suitable mapping technique that represents both magnitude and uncertainty in climate data:

    - use a sensible sequential or diverging colour scheme;

    - use appropriate colour symbolism if it is applicable;

    - ensure the map is usable by colour blind people;

    - use a data classification scheme that does not misrepresent the data;

    - use a map

  1. European climate variability and human susceptibility over the past 2500 years

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buentgen, U.

    2010-09-01

    Climate variations including droughts in the western US and African Sahel, landfalls of Atlantic hurricanes, and shifts in the Asian monsoon have affected human societies throughout history mainly by modulating water supply and agricultural productivity, health risk and civil conflict. Yet, discriminations of environmental impacts from political, economical and technological drivers of societal shifts are may be hampered by the indirect effects of climate on society, but certainly by the paucity of high-resolution palaeoclimatic evidence. Here we present a tree-ring network of 7284 precipitation sensitive oak series from lower elevations in France and Germany, and a compilation of 1546 temperature responsive conifers from higher elevations in the Austrian Alps, both covering the past 2500 years. Temporal distribution of historical felling dates of construction timber refers to changes in settlement activity that mirror different stages of economic wealth. Variations in Central European summer precipitation and temperature are contrasted with societal benchmarks. Prolonged periods of generally wet and warm summers, favourable for cultural prosperity, appeared during the Roman epoch between ~200 BC and 200 AD and from ~700-1000 AD, with the latter facilitating the rapid economic, cultural and political growth of medieval Europe. Unprecedented climate variability from ~200-500 AD coincides with the demise of the Western Roman Empire and the subsequent Barbarian Migrations. This period was characterized by continental-scale political turmoil, cultural stagnation and socio-economic instability including settlement abandonment, population migration, and societal collapse. Driest and coldest summers of the Late Holocene concurred in the 6th century, during which regional consolidation began. The recent political, cultural and fiscal reluctance to adapt to and mitigate projected climate change reflects the common belief of societal insusceptibility to environmental

  2. Impacts of forced and unforced climate variability on extreme floods using a large climate ensemble

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martel, Jean-Luc; Brissette, François; Chen, Jie

    2016-04-01

    Frequency analysis has been widely used for the inference of flood magnitude and rainfall intensity required in engineering design. However, this inference is based on the concept of stationarity. How accurate is it when taking into account climate variability (i.e. both internal- and externally-forced variabilities)? Even in the absence of human-induced climate change, the short temporal horizon of the historical records renders this task extremely difficult to accomplish. To overcome this situation, large ensembles of simulations from a single climate model can be used to assess the impact of climate variability on precipitation and streamflow extremes. Thus, the objective of this project is to determine the reliability of return period estimates using the CanESM2 large ensemble. The spring flood annual maxima metric over snowmelt-dominated watersheds was selected to take into account the limits of global circulation models to properly simulate convective precipitation. The GR4J hydrological model coupled with the CemaNeige snow model was selected and calibrated using gridded observation datasets on snowmelt-dominated watersheds in Quebec, Canada. Using the hydrological model, streamflows were simulated using bias corrected precipitation and temperature data from the 50 members of CanESM2. Flood frequency analyses on the spring flood annual maxima were then computed using the Gumbel distribution with a 90% confidence interval. The 20-year return period estimates were then compared to assess the impact of natural climate variability over the 1971-2000 return period. To assess the impact of global warming, this methodology was then repeated for three time slices: reference period (1971-2000), near future (2036-2065) and far future (2071-2100). Over the reference period results indicate that the relative error between the return period estimates of two members can be up to 25%. Regarding the near future and far future periods, natural climate variability of extreme

  3. Predicting and attributing recent East African Spring droughts with dynamical-statistical climate model ensembles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Funk, C. C.; Shukla, S.; Hoerling, M. P.; Robertson, F. R.; Hoell, A.; Liebmann, B.

    2013-12-01

    During boreal spring, eastern portions of Kenya and Somalia have experienced more frequent droughts since 1999. Given the region's high levels of food insecurity, better predictions of these droughts could provide substantial humanitarian benefits. We show that dynamical-statistical seasonal climate forecasts, based on the latest generation of coupled atmosphere-ocean and uncoupled atmospheric models, effectively predict boreal spring rainfall in this area. Skill sources are assessed by comparing ensembles driven with full-ocean forcing with ensembles driven with ENSO-only sea surface temperatures (SSTs). Our analysis suggests that both ENSO and non-ENSO Indo-Pacific SST forcing have played an important role in the increase in drought frequencies. Over the past 30 years, La Niña drought teleconnections have strengthened, while non-ENSO Indo-Pacific convection patterns have also supported increased (decreased) Western Pacific (East African) rainfall. To further examine the relative contribution of ENSO, low frequency warming and the Pacific Decadal Oscillation, we present decompositions of ECHAM5, GFS, CAM4 and GMAO AMIP simulations. These decompositions suggest that rapid warming in the western Pacific and steeper western-to-central Pacific SST gradients have likely played an important role in the recent intensification of the Walker circulation, and the associated increase in East African aridity. A linear combination of time series describing the Pacific Decadal Oscillation and the strength of Indo-Pacific warming are shown to track East African rainfall reasonably well. The talk concludes with a few thoughts linking the potentially important interplay of attribution and prediction. At least for recent East African droughts, it appears that a characteristic Indo-Pacific SST and precipitation anomaly pattern can be linked statistically to support forecasts and attribution analyses. The combination of traditional AGCM attribution analyses with simple yet

  4. The effect of Congo River freshwater discharge on Tropical Atlantic and Africa climate variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Materia, Stefano; Gualdi, Silvio; Navarra, Antonio

    2010-05-01

    Eastern Tropical Atlantic (ETA) collects a huge quantity of freshwater due to discharge from several rivers. Every year, the Congo river alone releases 1270 km3 of freshwater into the ocean (Weldeab et al., 2007), which is the second-largest flow in the world second only to the Amazon River. This study aims to understand the role of Congo freshwater discharge in driving circulation over ETA. In particular, the effect of the secondary peak discharge at Brazzaville river station is here analysed. This maximum occurs in late spring and releases freshwater into the Gulf of Guinea (GG) during boreal summer, namely the season characterized by the greatest sea surface temperature (SST) variability in the Gulf. 50-year observations show that large peak discharge positive anomalies are preceded by anomalously high SSTs over north-eastern Tropical Atlantic, linked with wet springs over Congo river catchment. Intense freshwater amounts into the ocean provoke a water warming beginning at the African coast in May and extending over the GG during June and July. This SST anomaly is related to highly wet rainy season over western Africa. Conversely, low spring discharges are associated with noticeable positive SST anomalies over Tropical South Atlantic in winter, with maxima around 20-25° S, and warm temperatures persist through the summer. In these years, over April the African coast starts being subject to anomalously cold SSTs which extend to the GG during the succeeding months, with the coldest anomaly registered in June. Western Africa heads toward very dry summer, again suggesting a strong linkage with GG SSTs. The long-term objective of this study is a better understanding of Tropical Atlantic variability and climate variability over Africa, through the introduction of a forcing, the continental freshwater discharge, often neglected by previous studies.

  5. Understanding Potential Climate Variability Impacts on the Offshore Energy Industry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stear, J.

    2014-12-01

    Climate variability may have important implications for the offshore energy industry. Scenarios of increased storm activity and changes in sea level could require the retrofit of existing offshore platforms and coastal infrastructure, the decommissioning of facilities for which upgrade or relocation is not economically viable, and the development of new methods and equipment which are removed from or less sensitive to environmental loads. Over the past years the energy industry has been actively involved in collaborative research efforts with government and academia to identify the potential changes in the offshore operating environment, and corresponding risk implications. This presentation will review several of these efforts, and for several of the hypothetical climate variation scenarios, review the potential impacts on and possible mitigations for offshore and coastal energy infrastructure and operations.

  6. Adaptation strategies to climate change and climate variability: a comparative study between seven contrasting river basins.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Droogers, P.

    2003-04-01

    Climate change and climate variability is and will have a tremendous impact on hydrology and consequently on food security and environmental protection. From the four major components in climate change and climate variability studies, projection, mitigation, impact and adaptation, has the latter so far received less attention than the other three. An international collaboration of ten institutions is comparing adaptation strategies between contrasting basins ranging from wet to dry and from poor to rich. Basins included are: Mekong, Walawe (Sri Lanka), Rhine, Sacramento, Syr Darya, Volta, and Zayandeh (Iran). Simulation models at basin and field scale have been set up and possible adaptation strategies are explored by these models. Preliminary results indicate that appropriate adaptation strategies are different between these seven contrasting basins. It is also clear that these adaptation strategies should focus on increased variability rather than on the overall change of the mean. The focus was hereby not only on an increase in variation but especially on the number of successive dry and wet years. Results show that the studies on these adaptation strategies could not be performed only at one scale, but that a combination of field scale as well as basin scale analysis is essential.

  7. A distal 145 ka sediment record of Nile discharge and East African monsoon variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ehrmann, W.; Schmiedl, G.; Seidel, M.; Krüger, S.; Schulz, H.

    2015-09-01

    Clay mineral assemblages in a sediment core from the distal Nile discharge plume off Israel have been used to reconstruct the late Quaternary Nile sediment discharge into the Eastern Mediterranean Sea (EMS). The record spans the last ca. 145 ka. Smectite abundances indicate the influence of the Blue Nile and Atbara that have their headwaters in the volcanic rocks of the Ethiopian highlands. Kaolinite abundances indicate the influence of wadis, which contribute periodically to the suspension load of the Nile. Due to the geographical position, the climate and the sedimentary framework of the EMS is controlled by two climate systems. The long-term climate regime was governed by the African monsoon that caused major humid periods with enhanced sediment discharge at 132 to < 122 ka (AHP 5), 113 to 104 ka (AHP 4), and 86 to 74 ka (AHP 3). They lasted much longer than the formation of the related sapropel layers S5, S4 and S3. During the last glacial period (MIS 4-2) the long-term changes of the monsoonal system were superimposed by millennial-scale changes of an intensified mid-latitude glacial system. This climate regime caused short but pronounced drought periods in the Nile catchment, which are linked to Heinrich Events and alternate with more humid interstadials. The clay mineral record further implies that feedback mechanisms between vegetation cover and sediment discharge of the Nile are detectable but of minor importance for the sedimentary record in the southeastern Mediterranean Sea during the investigated African Humid Periods.

  8. Information transfer across the scales of climate data variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Palus, Milan; Jajcay, Nikola; Hartman, David; Hlinka, Jaroslav

    2015-04-01

    Multitude of scales characteristic of the climate system variability requires innovative approaches in analysis of instrumental time series. We present a methodology which starts with a wavelet decomposition of a multi-scale signal into quasi-oscillatory modes of a limited band-with, described using their instantaneous phases and amplitudes. Then their statistical associations are tested in order to search for interactions across time scales. In particular, an information-theoretic formulation of the generalized, nonlinear Granger causality is applied together with surrogate data testing methods [1]. The method [2] uncovers causal influence (in the Granger sense) and information transfer from large-scale modes of climate variability with characteristic time scales from years to almost a decade to regional temperature variability on short time scales. In analyses of daily mean surface air temperature from various European locations an information transfer from larger to smaller scales has been observed as the influence of the phase of slow oscillatory phenomena with periods around 7-8 years on amplitudes of the variability characterized by smaller temporal scales from a few months to annual and quasi-biennial scales [3]. In sea surface temperature data from the tropical Pacific area an influence of quasi-oscillatory phenomena with periods around 4-6 years on the variability on and near the annual scale has been observed. This study is supported by the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports of the Czech Republic within the Program KONTAKT II, Project No. LH14001. [1] M. Palus, M. Vejmelka, Phys. Rev. E 75, 056211 (2007) [2] M. Palus, Entropy 16(10), 5263-5289 (2014) [3] M. Palus, Phys. Rev. Lett. 112, 078702 (2014)

  9. Assessment of climate change impacts on climate variables using probabilistic ensemble modeling and trend analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Safavi, Hamid R.; Sajjadi, Sayed Mahdi; Raghibi, Vahid

    2016-08-01

    Water resources in snow-dependent regions have undergone significant changes due to climate change. Snow measurements in these regions have revealed alarming declines in snowfall over the past few years. The Zayandeh-Rud River in central Iran chiefly depends on winter falls as snow for supplying water from wet regions in high Zagrous Mountains to the downstream, (semi-)arid, low-lying lands. In this study, the historical records (baseline: 1971-2000) of climate variables (temperature and precipitation) in the wet region were chosen to construct a probabilistic ensemble model using 15 GCMs in order to forecast future trends and changes while the Long Ashton Research Station Weather Generator (LARS-WG) was utilized to project climate variables under two A2 and B1 scenarios to a future period (2015-2044). Since future snow water equivalent (SWE) forecasts by GCMs were not available for the study area, an artificial neural network (ANN) was implemented to build a relationship between climate variables and snow water equivalent for the baseline period to estimate future snowfall amounts. As a last step, homogeneity and trend tests were performed to evaluate the robustness of the data series and changes were examined to detect past and future variations. Results indicate different characteristics of the climate variables at upstream stations. A shift is observed in the type of precipitation from snow to rain as well as in its quantities across the subregions. The key role in these shifts and the subsequent side effects such as water losses is played by temperature.

  10. Bias reduction in decadal predictions of West African monsoon rainfall using regional climate models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Paxian, A.; Sein, D.; Panitz, H.-J.; Warscher, M.; Breil, M.; Engel, T.; Tödter, J.; Krause, A.; Cabos Narvaez, W. D.; Fink, A. H.; Ahrens, B.; Kunstmann, H.; Jacob, D.; Paeth, H.

    2016-02-01

    The West African monsoon rainfall is essential for regional food production, and decadal predictions are necessary for policy makers and farmers. However, predictions with global climate models reveal precipitation biases. This study addresses the hypotheses that global prediction biases can be reduced by dynamical downscaling with a multimodel ensemble of three regional climate models (RCMs), a RCM coupled to a global ocean model and a RCM applying more realistic soil initialization and boundary conditions, i.e., aerosols, sea surface temperatures (SSTs), vegetation, and land cover. Numerous RCM predictions have been performed with REMO, COSMO-CLM (CCLM), and Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) in various versions and for different decades. Global predictions reveal typical positive and negative biases over the Guinea Coast and the Sahel, respectively, related to a southward shifted Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ) and a positive tropical Atlantic SST bias. These rainfall biases are reduced by some regional predictions in the Sahel but aggravated by all RCMs over the Guinea Coast, resulting from the inherited SST bias, increased westerlies and evaporation over the tropical Atlantic and shifted African easterly waves. The coupled regional predictions simulate high-resolution atmosphere-ocean interactions strongly improving the SST bias, the ITCZ shift and the Guinea Coast and Central Sahel precipitation biases. Some added values in rainfall bias are found for more realistic SST and land cover boundary conditions over the Guinea Coast and improved vegetation in the Central Sahel. Thus, the ability of RCMs and improved boundary conditions to reduce rainfall biases for climate impact research depends on the considered West African region.

  11. Impacts of climate variability and future climate change on harmful algal blooms and human health.

    PubMed

    Moore, Stephanie K; Trainer, Vera L; Mantua, Nathan J; Parker, Micaela S; Laws, Edward A; Backer, Lorraine C; Fleming, Lora E

    2008-11-07

    Anthropogenically-derived increases in atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations have been implicated in recent climate change, and are projected to substantially impact the climate on a global scale in the future. For marine and freshwater systems, increasing concentrations of greenhouse gases are expected to increase surface temperatures, lower pH, and cause changes to vertical mixing, upwelling, precipitation, and evaporation patterns. The potential consequences of these changes for harmful algal blooms (HABs) have received relatively little attention and are not well understood. Given the apparent increase in HABs around the world and the potential for greater problems as a result of climate change and ocean acidification, substantial research is needed to evaluate the direct and indirect associations between HABs, climate change, ocean acidification, and human health. This research will require a multidisciplinary approach utilizing expertise in climatology, oceanography, biology, epidemiology, and other disciplines. We review the interactions between selected patterns of large-scale climate variability and climate change, oceanic conditions, and harmful algae.

  12. Impacts of climate variability and future climate change on harmful algal blooms and human health

    PubMed Central

    Moore, Stephanie K; Trainer, Vera L; Mantua, Nathan J; Parker, Micaela S; Laws, Edward A; Backer, Lorraine C; Fleming, Lora E

    2008-01-01

    Anthropogenically-derived increases in atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations have been implicated in recent climate change, and are projected to substantially impact the climate on a global scale in the future. For marine and freshwater systems, increasing concentrations of greenhouse gases are expected to increase surface temperatures, lower pH, and cause changes to vertical mixing, upwelling, precipitation, and evaporation patterns. The potential consequences of these changes for harmful algal blooms (HABs) have received relatively little attention and are not well understood. Given the apparent increase in HABs around the world and the potential for greater problems as a result of climate change and ocean acidification, substantial research is needed to evaluate the direct and indirect associations between HABs, climate change, ocean acidification, and human health. This research will require a multidisciplinary approach utilizing expertise in climatology, oceanography, biology, epidemiology, and other disciplines. We review the interactions between selected patterns of large-scale climate variability and climate change, oceanic conditions, and harmful algae. PMID:19025675

  13. North Pacific climate variability and Arctic sea ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Linkin, Megan E.

    Boreal winter North Pacific climate variability strongly influences North American hydroclimate and Arctic sea ice distribution in the marginal Arctic seas. Two modes of atmospheric variability explaining 53% of the variance in the Pacific Ocean sea level pressure (SLP) field are extracted and identified: the Pacific-North American (PNA) teleconnection and the North Pacific Oscillation/West Pacific (NPO/WP) teleconnection. The NPO/WP, a dipole in North Pacific SLP and geopotential heights, is affiliated with latitudinal displacements of the Asian Pacific jet and an intensification of the Pacific stormtrack. The North American hydroclimate impacts of the NPO/WP are substantial; its impact on Alaska, Pacific Northwest and Great Plains precipitation is more influential than both the PNA and the El Nino-Southern Oscillation (ENSO). The NPO/WP is also strongly associated with a contemporaneous extension of the marginal ice zone (MIZ) in the western Bering Sea and Sea of Okhotsk and MIZ retreat in the eastern Bering Sea. Wintertime climate variability also significantly impacts the distribution of Arctic sea ice during the subsequent summer months, due to the hysteretic nature of the ice cap. The North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) is known for its effects on summer sea ice distribution; this study extends into the Pacific and finds that circulation anomalies related to Pacific sea surface temperature (SST) variability also strongly impact summer Arctic sea ice. The NAO and ENSO are related to sea ice decline in the Eastern Siberian Sea, where the linear trend since 1979 is 25% per decade. PDV affects sea ice in the eastern Arctic, a region which displays no linear trend since 1979. The low frequency of PDV variability and the persistent positive NAO during the 1980s and 1990s results in natural variability being aliased into the total linear trend in summer sea ice calculated from satellite-based sea ice concentration. Since 1979, natural variability accounts for 30% of

  14. Decadal climatic variability and regional weather simulation: stochastic nature of forest fuel moisture and climatic forcing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsinko, Y.; Johnson, E. A.; Martin, Y. E.

    2014-12-01

    Natural range of variability of forest fire frequency is of great interest due to the current changing climate and seeming increase in the number of fires. The variability of the annual area burned in Canada has not been stable in the 20th century. Recently, these changes have been linked to large scale climate cycles, such as Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) phases and El Nino Southern Oscillation (ENSO). The positive phase of the PDO was associated with the increased probability of hot dry spells leading to drier fuels and increased area burned. However, so far only one historical timeline was used to assess correlations between the natural climate oscillations and forest fire frequency. To counteract similar problems, weather generators are extensively used in hydrological and agricultural modeling to extend short instrumental record and to synthesize long sequences of daily weather parameters that are different from but statistically similar to historical weather. In the current study synthetic weather models were used to assess effects of alternative weather timelines on fuel moisture in Canada by using Canadian Forest Fire Weather Index moisture codes and potential fire frequency. The variability of fuel moisture codes was found to increase with the increased length of simulated series, thus indicating that the natural range of variability of forest fire frequency may be larger than that calculated from available short records. It may be viewed as a manifestation of a Hurst effect. Since PDO phases are thought to be caused by diverse mechanisms including overturning oceanic circulation, some of the lower frequency signals may be attributed to the long term memory of the oceanic system. Thus, care must be taken when assessing natural variability of climate dependent processes without accounting for potential long-term mechanisms.

  15. Climate and species richness predict the phylogenetic structure of African mammal communities.

    PubMed

    Kamilar, Jason M; Beaudrot, Lydia; Reed, Kaye E

    2015-01-01

    We have little knowledge of how climatic variation (and by proxy, habitat variation) influences the phylogenetic structure of tropical communities. Here, we quantified the phylogenetic structure of mammal communities in Africa to investigate how community structure varies with respect to climate and species richness variation across the continent. In addition, we investigated how phylogenetic patterns vary across carnivores, primates, and ungulates. We predicted that climate would differentially affect the structure of communities from different clades due to between-clade biological variation. We examined 203 communities using two metrics, the net relatedness (NRI) and nearest taxon (NTI) indices. We used simultaneous autoregressive models to predict community phylogenetic structure from climate variables and species richness. We found that most individual communities exhibited a phylogenetic structure consistent with a null model, but both climate and species richness significantly predicted variation in community phylogenetic metrics. Using NTI, species rich communities were composed of more distantly related taxa for all mammal communities, as well as for communities of carnivorans or ungulates. Temperature seasonality predicted the phylogenetic structure of mammal, carnivoran, and ungulate communities, and annual rainfall predicted primate community structure. Additional climate variables related to temperature and rainfall also predicted the phylogenetic structure of ungulate communities. We suggest that both past interspecific competition and habitat filtering have shaped variation in tropical mammal communities. The significant effect of climatic factors on community structure has important implications for the diversity of mammal communities given current models of future climate change.

  16. Farmers' Perceptions of Climate Variability and Factors Influencing Adaptation: Evidence from Anhui and Jiangsu, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kibue, Grace Wanjiru; Liu, Xiaoyu; Zheng, Jufeng; zhang, Xuhui; Pan, Genxing; Li, Lianqing; Han, Xiaojun

    2016-05-01

    Impacts of climate variability and climate change are on the rise in China posing great threat to agriculture and rural livelihoods. Consequently, China is undertaking research to find solutions of confronting climate change and variability. However, most studies of climate change and variability in China largely fail to address farmers' perceptions of climate variability and adaptation. Yet, without an understanding of farmers' perceptions, strategies are unlikely to be effective. We conducted questionnaire surveys of farmers in two farming regions, Yifeng, Jiangsu and Qinxi, Anhui achieving 280 and 293 responses, respectively. Additionally, we used climatological data to corroborate the farmers' perceptions of climate variability. We found that farmers' were aware of climate variability such that were consistent with climate records. However, perceived impacts of climate variability differed between the two regions and were influenced by farmers' characteristics. In addition, the vast majorities of farmers were yet to make adjustments in their farming practices as a result of numerous challenges. These challenges included socioeconomic and socio-cultural barriers. Results of logit modeling showed that farmers are more likely to adapt to climate variability if contact with extension services, frequency of seeking information, household heads' education, and climate variability perceptions are improved. These results suggest the need for policy makers to understand farmers' perceptions of climate variability and change in order to formulate policies that foster adaptation, and ultimately protect China's agricultural assets.

  17. Farmers' Perceptions of Climate Variability and Factors Influencing Adaptation: Evidence from Anhui and Jiangsu, China.

    PubMed

    Kibue, Grace Wanjiru; Liu, Xiaoyu; Zheng, Jufeng; Zhang, Xuhui; Pan, Genxing; Li, Lianqing; Han, Xiaojun

    2016-05-01

    Impacts of climate variability and climate change are on the rise in China posing great threat to agriculture and rural livelihoods. Consequently, China is undertaking research to find solutions of confronting climate change and variability. However, most studies of climate change and variability in China largely fail to address farmers' perceptions of climate variability and adaptation. Yet, without an understanding of farmers' perceptions, strategies are unlikely to be effective. We conducted questionnaire surveys of farmers in two farming regions, Yifeng, Jiangsu and Qinxi, Anhui achieving 280 and 293 responses, respectively. Additionally, we used climatological data to corroborate the farmers' perceptions of climate variability. We found that farmers' were aware of climate variability such that were consistent with climate records. However, perceived impacts of climate variability differed between the two regions and were influenced by farmers' characteristics. In addition, the vast majorities of farmers were yet to make adjustments in their farming practices as a result of numerous challenges. These challenges included socioeconomic and socio-cultural barriers. Results of logit modeling showed that farmers are more likely to adapt to climate variability if contact with extension services, frequency of seeking information, household heads' education, and climate variability perceptions are improved. These results suggest the need for policy makers to understand farmers' perceptions of climate variability and change in order to formulate policies that foster adaptation, and ultimately protect China's agricultural assets.

  18. Catchments' hedging strategy on evapotranspiration for climatic variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Chi; Ding, Wei; Li, Yu; Tang, Yin; Wang, Dingbao

    2016-11-01

    In this paper, we test the hypothesis that natural catchments utilize hedging strategy for evapotranspiration and water storage carryover with uncertain future precipitation. The hedging strategy for evapotranspiration in catchments under different levels of water availability is analytically derived with marginal utility principle. It is found that there exists hedging between evapotranspiration for present and future only with a portion of water availability. Observation data sets of 160 catchments in the United States covering the period from 1983 to 2003 demonstrate the existence of hedging in catchment hydrology and validate the proposed hedging strategy. We also find that more water is allocated to carryover storage for hedging against the future evapotranspiration deficit in the catchments with larger aridity indexes or with larger variability in future precipitation, i.e., long-term climate and precipitation variability control the degree of hedging.

  19. On the role of climate variability on tropospheric ozone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lin, M.

    2014-12-01

    The response of tropospheric ozone to changing atmospheric circulation is poorly understood owing to a lack of reliable long-term observations. There is great current interest in quantifying the extent to which observed ozone trends over recent decades at northern mid-latitude sites are driven by changes in precursor emissions versus shifts in atmospheric circulation patterns. In this talk, I present a detailed analysis of the impact of interannual to decadal climate variability on tropospheric ozone, based on observations and a suite of chemistry-climate model hindcast simulations. Decadal shifts in circulation regimes modulate long-range transport of Asian pollution, leading to very different seasonal ozone trends at Mauna Loa Observatory in the subtropical Pacific Ocean. During autumn, the flow of ozone-rich air from Eurasia towards Hawaii strengthened in the mid-1990s onwards, as a result of the positive phase of the Pacific North American pattern, increasing ozone at Mauna Loa. During spring, weakening airflow from Asia in the 2000s, tied to La-Niña-like decadal cooling in the equatorial Pacific Ocean, offsets ozone increases at Mauna Loa that otherwise would have occurred due to rising Asian emissions. The circulation-driven variability in Asian pollution over the subtropical North Pacific regions manifests mainly as changes in the mean as opposed to in transport events. At high-elevation Western U.S. sites, intrusions of stratospheric ozone deep into the troposphere during spring exert a greater influence than Asian pollution, particularly on the high tail of observed surface ozone distribution. We show that year-to-year variability in springtime high-ozone episodes measured in Western U.S. surface air is tied to known modes of climate variability, which modulate meanders in the polar frontal jet conducive to deep stratospheric ozone intrusions. Specifically, the La Niña-related increase in the frequency of deep stratospheric intrusion events plays a

  20. Multidecadal climate variability of global lands and oceans

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McCabe, G.J.; Palecki, M.A.

    2006-01-01

    Principal components analysis (PCA) and singular value decomposition (SVD) are used to identify the primary modes of decadal and multidecadal variability in annual global Palmer Drought Severity Index (PDSI) values and sea-surface temperature (SSTs). The PDSI and SST data for 1925-2003 were detrended and smoothed (with a 10-year moving average) to isolate the decadal and multidecadal variability. The first two principal components (PCs) of the PDSI PCA explained almost 38% of the decadal and multidecadal variance in the detrended and smoothed global annual PDSI data. The first two PCs of detrended and smoothed global annual SSTs explained nearly 56% of the decadal variability in global SSTs. The PDSI PCs and the SST PCs are directly correlated in a pairwise fashion. The first PDSI and SST PCs reflect variability of the detrended and smoothed annual Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO), as well as detrended and smoothed annual Indian Ocean SSTs. The second set of PCs is strongly associated with the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO). The SVD analysis of the cross-covariance of the PDSI and SST data confirmed the close link between the PDSI and SST modes of decadal and multidecadal variation and provided a verification of the PCA results. These findings indicate that the major modes of multidecadal variations in SSTs and land-surface climate conditions are highly interrelated through a small number of spatially complex but slowly varying teleconnections. Therefore, these relations may be adaptable to providing improved baseline conditions for seasonal climate forecasting. Published in 2006 by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  1. Impact of spatial climate variability on catchment streamflow predictions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Patil, Sopan; Wigington, Jim; Leibowitz, Scott; Sproles, Eric; Comeleo, Randy

    2014-05-01

    The ability of hydrological models to predict a catchment's streamflow response serves several important needs of our society, such as flood protection, irrigation demand, domestic water supply, and preservation of fish habitat. However, spatial variability of climate within a catchment can negatively affect streamflow predictions if it is not explicitly accounted for in hydrological models. In this study, we examined the changes in streamflow predictability when a hydrological model is run with spatially variable (distributed) meteorological inputs instead of spatially uniform (lumped) meteorological inputs. Both lumped and distributed versions of the EXP-HYDRO model were implemented at 41 meso-scale (500 - 5000 km2) catchments in the Pacific Northwest region of USA (Oregon, Washington, and Idaho). We used two complementary metrics of long-term spatial climate variability, moisture homogeneity index (IM) and temperature variability index (ITV), to analyse the performance improvement with distributed model. Results showed that the distributed model performed better than the lumped model in 38 catchments, and noticeably better (>10% improvement) in 13 catchments. Furthermore, spatial variability of moisture distribution alone was insufficient to explain the observed patterns of model performance improvement. For catchments with low moisture homogeneity (IM < 80%), IM was a better predictor of model performance improvement than ITV; whereas for catchments with high moisture homogeneity (IM > 80%), ITV was a better predictor of performance improvement than IM. Based on the results, we conclude that: (1) catchments that have low homogeneity of moisture distribution are the obvious candidates for using spatially distributed meteorological inputs, and (2) catchments with homogeneous moisture distribution benefit from spatially distributed meteorological inputs if those catchments have high spatial variability of precipitation phase (rain vs. snow). Our use of spatially

  2. Surface Radiation Budget Variability at Climatic Time Scales

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pinker, R. T.; Ma, Y.; Nussbaumer, E.

    2014-12-01

    Information on Earth Radiation Balance is needed at climatic time scales for enabling assessment of variability and trends in the forcing functions of the climate system. Satellite observations have been instrumental for advancing the understanding of such balance at global scale; yet, the length of available records does not meet climatic needs. Major issues hindering such efforts are related to the frequent changes in satellite observing systems, including the specification of the satellite instruments, and changes in the quality of atmospheric inputs that drive the inference schemes. In this paper we report on an effort to synthesize estimates of shortwave, longwave and spectral surface radiative fluxes by fusing observations from numerous satellite platforms that include MODIS observations. This information was obtained in the framework of the MEaSURES and NEWS programs; it will be evaluated against ground observations and compared to independent satellite and model estimates. Attention will be given to updates on our knowledge on the radiative balance as compared to what is known from shorter time records.

  3. The Safe Yield and Climatic Variability: Implications for Groundwater Management.

    PubMed

    Loáiciga, Hugo A

    2016-10-25

    Methods for calculating the safe yield are evaluated in this paper using a high-quality and long historical data set of groundwater recharge, discharge, extraction, and precipitation in a karst aquifer. Consideration is given to the role that climatic variability has on the determination of a climatically representative period with which to evaluate the safe yield. The methods employed to estimate the safe yield are consistent with its definition as a long-term average extraction rate that avoids adverse impacts on groundwater. The safe yield is a useful baseline for groundwater planning; yet, it is herein shown that it is not an operational rule that works well under all climatic conditions. This paper shows that due to the nature of dynamic groundwater processes it may be most appropriate to use an adaptive groundwater management strategy that links groundwater extraction rates to groundwater discharge rates, thus achieving a safe yield that represents an estimated long-term sustainable yield. An example of the calculation of the safe yield of the Edwards Aquifer (Texas) demonstrates that it is about one-half of the average annual recharge.

  4. Last Millennium Climate and Its Variability in CCSM4

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Otto-Bliesner, B. L.; Landrum, L.; Conley, A.; Lawrence, P.; Rosenbloom, N. A.; Teng, H.

    2011-12-01

    The Last Millennium simulation of the Community Climate System Model version 4 (CCSM4) reproduces many large-scaled climate patterns suggested by historical and proxy-data records including cooling from the Medieval Climate Anomaly to the Little Ice Age, a "hockey-stick" pattern of surface temperature changes from 850-2005, and a broad cooling with a delayed La Niña-type of pattern in the tropical Pacific response to large volcanic events. Atmospheric modes, one oceanic mode (the Pacific Decadal Oscillation), and one ocean-atmosphere coupled mode (the El Niño-Southern Oscillation) of variability show little or no change in their variances, teleconnection patterns and spectra between the Last Millennium simulation and the 1850 non-transient control run. Two oceanic modes, the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation and the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation have higher variances and increased power at low frequencies in the Last Millennium simulation compared with the control run, suggesting long-term oceanic response to natural solar and volcanic forcings.

  5. Glacier response to North Atlantic climate variability during the Holocene

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Balascio, N. L.; D'Andrea, W. J.; Bradley, R. S.

    2015-12-01

    Small glaciers and ice caps respond rapidly to climate variations, and records of their past extent provide information on the natural envelope of past climate variability. Millennial-scale trends in Holocene glacier size are well documented and correspond with changes in Northern Hemisphere summer insolation. However, there is only sparse and fragmentary evidence for higher-frequency variations in glacier size because in many Northern Hemisphere regions glacier advances of the past few hundred years were the most extensive and destroyed the geomorphic evidence of ice growth and retreat during the past several thousand years. Thus, most glacier records have been of limited use for investigating centennial-scale climate forcing and feedback mechanisms. Here we report a continuous record of glacier activity for the last 9.5 ka from southeast Greenland derived from high-resolution measurements on a proglacial lake sediment sequence. Physical and geochemical parameters show that the glaciers responded to previously documented Northern Hemisphere climatic excursions, including the "8.2 ka" cooling event, the Holocene Thermal Maximum, Neoglacial cooling, and 20th century warming. In addition, the sediments indicate centennial-scale oscillations in glacier size during the late Holocene. Beginning at 4.1 ka, a series of abrupt glacier advances occurred, each lasting ~100 years and followed by a period of retreat, that were superimposed on a gradual trend toward larger glacier size. Thus, while declining summer insolation caused long-term cooling and glacier expansion during the late Holocene, climate system dynamics resulted in repeated episodes of glacier expansion and retreat on multi-decadal to centennial timescales. These episodes coincided with ice rafting events in the North Atlantic Ocean and periods of regional ice cap expansion, which confirms their regional significance and indicates that considerable glacier activity on these timescales is a normal feature of

  6. Climate variability and wildfire risk and occurrence in northern Spain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Garcia Codron, J. C.; Rasilla, D.; Diego, C.; Carracedo, V.

    2009-04-01

    In spite of their reputation of wetness, wildfires are a frequent event in Cantabria (Northern Spain), but their seasonality does not match the typical warm season maximum generalized in most of the Iberian Peninsula. They occur at the end of the winter and the beginning of the spring (January to March), being mostly anthropogenically triggered due to the necessity of preparing pastures in the uplands. However, catastrophic episodes of generalized burning are controlled by different atmospheric mechanisms, namely the occurrence of "Suradas", a downslope windstorms which combines high winds speeds and low humidities, and long periods of drought in late fall and winter. This contribution analyzes long term trends (1961 onwards) of several climatic variables during the highest wildfire risk period in order to assess to what extent the occurrence of wildfires may be linked to the recent climatic variability. Raw meteorological values of temperature, humidity, wind speed and precipitation are transformed into a well-known meteorological fire weather index, the Canadian Forest Fire Index (FWI). Besides, monthly values of the Palmer Drought Severity Index we used to assess the spatial and temporal magnitude and intensity of droughts. Our results show that the regional climate has become warmer and drier, due to the combined effects of increases in temperatures, sunshine duration, and the decrease in relative humidity and precipitation, variables that are likely to play an important role in drought. Unknown in the 60s, 70s and most of the 80s, drought has become a relatively frequent phenomenon during the last two decades, and, in fact, the two most extreme episodes of drought at century scale, during 1989-1990 and 1993, occur in the 90. However, both the frequency and the intensity of "Suradas" have reduced, and consequently, the high fire risk episodes are now less frequent, but their absolute maximum values remain unchanged. Those regional climate trends are strongly

  7. Decadal-Interdecadal SST Variability and Regional Climate Teleconnections

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lau, William K. M.; Weng, H.; Einaudi, Franco (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    Dominant modes of decadal and interdecadal SST variability and their impacts on summertime rainfall variability over East Asia and the North America are studied. Two dominant modes of interdecadal SST variability, one associated with El Nino-like warming in the global oceans and one with an east-west seesaw variation in the equatorial Pacific have been identified. The first mode is associated in part with a long-term warming trend in the topical oceans and cooling over the northern Pacific. The second mode suggests an westward shift and strengthening of the Walker circulation from 1960s to the 1980s. Over East Asian, the first SST mode is correlated with reduced rainfall in northern China and excessive rainfall in central China. This SST mode is also associated with the tendency for increased rainfall over the midwest region, and reduced rainfall over the east Coast of the US. The results suggest a teleconnection pattern which links the occurrences of drought and floods over the Asian monsoon and the US summertime time climate. This teleconnection is likely to be associated with decadal variability of the East Asian jetstream, which are affected by strong land surface heating over the Siberian region, as well as El Nino-like SST forcings. The occurrences of major droughts and floods in the East Asian and US continent in recent decades are discussed in light of the above teleconnection patterns.

  8. Climate variability around the first Pliocene time slice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Prescott, C.; Haywood, A.; Dolan, A. M.; Hunter, S. J.; Tindall, J.; Pope, J. O.; Pickering, S.

    2013-12-01

    and the mode of deep water formation and thus the strength of the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation over relatively short timescales (geologically). To place this predicted climate variability around MIS KM5c into context we have completed simulations 20 kyr either side of the 3.060 kyr PlioMAX peak, which is characterised by one of the lightest benthic oxygen isotope excursions evident in the entire PRISM time slab (Marine Isotope Stage K1; Raymo et al. 2004), and displays a radically different orbital forcing compared to present-day. The results show a 5°C change on global MAT, with some terrestrial areas showing changes of 10°C. Therefore, this larger climate variability at K1 would cause imperfect correlation to be much more harmful to data model comparisons than around the KM5c time slice. The results from this suite of simulations suggest that proxies producing MAT with imperfect correlation to the time slice up to 20,000 years before or after may still be representative of the conditions at the MIS KM5c time slice itself due to the subdued nature of orbital forcing at this time.

  9. Saharan dust, climate variability, and asthma in Grenada, the Caribbean

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Akpinar-Elci, Muge; Martin, Francis E.; Behr, Joshua G.; Diaz, Rafael

    2015-11-01

    Saharan dust is transported across the Atlantic and interacts with the Caribbean seasonal climatic conditions, becoming respirable and contributing to asthma presentments at the emergency department. This study investigated the relationships among dust, climatic variables, and asthma-related visits to the emergency room in Grenada. All asthma visits to the emergency room ( n = 4411) over 5 years (2001-2005) were compared to the dust cover and climatic variables for the corresponding period. Variation in asthma was associated with change in dust concentration ( R 2 = 0.036, p < 0.001), asthma was positively correlated with rainfall ( R 2 = 0.055, p < 0.001), and rainfall was correlated with dust ( R 2 = 0.070, p = 0.003). Despite the similarities and the short distance between Trinidad, Barbados, and Grenada, they have markedly different geographies, cultures, population sizes, industrialization level, and economies. Therefore, different than from the studies in Trinidad and Barbados, Grenada is a non-industrialized low-income small island without major industrialized air pollution addition; asthma visits were inversely related to mean sea level pressure ( R 2 = 0.123, p = 0.006) and positively correlated with relative humidity ( R 2 = 0.593, p = 0.85). Saharan dust in conjunction with seasonal humidity allows for inhalable particulate matter that exacerbates asthma among residents in the Caribbean island of Grenada. These findings contribute evidence suggesting a broader public health impact from Saharan dust. Thus, this research may inform strategic planning of resource allocation among the Caribbean public health agencies.

  10. Saharan dust, climate variability, and asthma in Grenada, the Caribbean.

    PubMed

    Akpinar-Elci, Muge; Martin, Francis E; Behr, Joshua G; Diaz, Rafael

    2015-11-01

    Saharan dust is transported across the Atlantic and interacts with the Caribbean seasonal climatic conditions, becoming respirable and contributing to asthma presentments at the emergency department. This study investigated the relationships among dust, climatic variables, and asthma-related visits to the emergency room in Grenada. All asthma visits to the emergency room (n = 4411) over 5 years (2001-2005) were compared to the dust cover and climatic variables for the corresponding period. Variation in asthma was associated with change in dust concentration (R(2) = 0.036, p < 0.001), asthma was positively correlated with rainfall (R(2) = 0.055, p < 0.001), and rainfall was correlated with dust (R(2) = 0.070, p = 0.003). Despite the similarities and the short distance between Trinidad, Barbados, and Grenada, they have markedly different geographies, cultures, population sizes, industrialization level, and economies. Therefore, different than from the studies in Trinidad and Barbados, Grenada is a non-industrialized low-income small island without major industrialized air pollution addition; asthma visits were inversely related to mean sea level pressure (R(2) = 0.123, p = 0.006) and positively correlated with relative humidity (R(2) = 0.593, p = 0.85). Saharan dust in conjunction with seasonal humidity allows for inhalable particulate matter that exacerbates asthma among residents in the Caribbean island of Grenada. These findings contribute evidence suggesting a broader public health impact from Saharan dust. Thus, this research may inform strategic planning of resource allocation among the Caribbean public health agencies.

  11. Precipitation variability and the sugarcane climate demand in Brazil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pereira, V. R.; de Avila, A. M. H.; Blain, G.; Zullo, J., Jr.

    2014-12-01

    This study presents the precipitation variability in São Paulo state/Brazil considering the climate demand for high sugarcane productivity. The Brazilian sugarcane and the bioethanol chain are facing an increase demand in response of the biofuel industry expansion. The productivity improvement is the key point to face the challenges about the land expansion in the Brazilian agriculture. The sugarcane phenology is climate dependent even being efficient in the decarboxylation process. The sprouting, growing, yield and the sugar content are determined by the climate. The accumulated rainy days during the pre harvest or more than 180 days of dry period can reduce the sugar content during the maturation process. Daily rainfall time series for the period 1960-2003 from 210 rain gauges at São Paulo state - the major Brazilian producer - are used. We subset the time series in the annual, seasonal, ten-day totals and dry and wet spells analysis. We used the mann- kendall non-parametric test to calculate the trends. The annual, the seasonal totals and the dry and wet spells did not showed a significant change in time. However, the ten-day total analysis in the beginning of the rainy season - i.e. in October - showed an interesting changing pattern - 24% of gauges showed a significant negative trend (p_value<0.1). These gauges are located in specific regions with the highest sugarcane production. Also, the October totals showed significant and negative trends (p_value<0.1) for more than 95% of precipitation gauges. These results are strongly indicating a longer dry season in the last twenty years. These changes in the precipitation variability can be related with the instability of the sugarcane market in Brazil in the last years.

  12. Influence of climate model variability on projected Arctic shipping futures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stephenson, Scott R.; Smith, Laurence C.

    2015-11-01

    Though climate models exhibit broadly similar agreement on key long-term trends, they have significant temporal and spatial differences due to intermodel variability. Such variability should be considered when using climate models to project the future marine Arctic. Here we present multiple scenarios of 21st-century Arctic marine access as driven by sea ice output from 10 CMIP5 models known to represent well the historical trend and climatology of Arctic sea ice. Optimal vessel transits from North America and Europe to the Bering Strait are estimated for two periods representing early-century (2011-2035) and mid-century (2036-2060) conditions under two forcing scenarios (RCP 4.5/8.5), assuming Polar Class 6 and open-water vessels with medium and no ice-breaking capability, respectively. Results illustrate that projected shipping viability of the Northern Sea Route (NSR) and Northwest Passage (NWP) depends critically on model choice. The eastern Arctic will remain the most reliably accessible marine space for trans-Arctic shipping by mid-century, while outcomes for the NWP are particularly model-dependent. Omitting three models (GFDL-CM3, MIROC-ESM-CHEM, and MPI-ESM-MR), our results would indicate minimal NWP potential even for routes from North America. Furthermore, the relative importance of the NSR will diminish over time as the number of viable central Arctic routes increases gradually toward mid-century. Compared to vessel class, climate forcing plays a minor role. These findings reveal the importance of model choice in devising projections for strategic planning by governments, environmental agencies, and the global maritime industry.

  13. Research issues in determining the effects of changing climate variability on crop yields

    SciTech Connect

    Mearns, L.O.

    1995-12-31

    The authors discusses three aspects of research necessary for investigating possible effects of changes in climatic variability on crop yields. Additional information on changed variability effects is needed to further elucidate uncertainties in the knowledge of possible impacts of climate change on agriculture. First, sensitivity analyses of crop responses to shifting change in variability must be performed. Second, investigations of how climatic variability may change under perturbed climate conditions should be undertaken. If one has some confidence in estimates of how variability may change, then a third research task is the formation of climate change scenarios that incorporate changes in climatic variability and their application to crop-climate models to determine crop responses. In this chapter, these research tasks are discussed regarding one climate variable, precipitation. The authors summarize two research projects that have been undertaken to investigate the sensitivity of the CERES-wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) crop model to changes in climatic variability, on daily to annual time scales, for sites in the central Great Plains. He also provides an example of determining possible changes in daily variability of precipitation through analysis of results from two regional climate model experiments, and then go on to describe an example of forming a climate change scenario that incorporates changes in daily precipitation variability estimated from the regional model runs. 27 refs., 9 figs., 1 tab.

  14. Water resources transfers through southern African food trade: resource efficiency and climate adaptation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dalin, Carole; Conway, Declan

    2015-04-01

    The connections between climate and the water-food nexus are strong and economically significant in southern Africa, yet the role of observed climate variability as a driver of production fluctuations is poorly understood. In addition, as regional collaboration strengthens through the SADC (Southern Africa Development Community) and trade with other regions increases, it is important to understand both how climate variability affects productivity and how intra- and extra-regional trade can contribute to the region's capacity to deal with climate-related productivity shocks. We use international food trade data (FAOSTAT) and a global hydrological model (H08) to quantify the water resources embedded in international food trade across southern Africa and with the rest of the world, from 1986-2011. We analyze the impacts of socio-economic, political and climatic changes on agricultural trade and embedded water resources during that period. In particular, the effects of climate variability on trade flows and crop yields are estimated, to provide insights on the potential of trade as a collaborative adaptation mechanism.

  15. Climate change sensitivity of the African ivory nut palm, Hyphaene petersiana Klotzsch ex Mart. (Arecaceae) - a keystone species in SE Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blach-Overgaard, A.; Svenning, J.-C.; Balslev, H.

    2009-11-01

    Africa is the most vulnerable continent to future climate change. Profound changes are projected for southwestern Africa with increased drying, notably with delayed onset of the rainy season in September-November, and temperature increases in all seasons. The projected climate changes combined with land-use changes are thought to constitute the main threats to biodiversity in the 21st century. To be able to predict the potential impact on biodiversity, it is crucial to achieve a better insight into the controls of contemporary species ranges. Using species distribution modeling, we assessed the climate sensitivity of the key-stone palm species Hyphaene petersiana (African ivory nut palm) in southern Africa. We tested the relative roles of climate vs. non-climatic range-controls and found that climate had a clear effect on the range of H. petersiana and that especially water-related variables (annual precipitation and precipitation driest quarter) were of high importance. Nevertheless, latitude was the overall most dominant variable, reflecting spatial constraints on the continental-scale distribution. Of the remaining non-climatic factors, soil type and human influence were as important as the climatic factors. A future decrease in annual precipitation below 400 mm and hydrological changes towards drier conditions could cause a dramatic decline in H. petersiana populations, while the influence of temperature changes is less clear. The ongoing, unsustainable utilization pressures on this palm species by humans and livestock are likely to exacerbate the negative effect of future climate changes on its populations, especially, given the expected human population increase in Africa.

  16. On how climate variability influences regional sea level change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brunnabend, Sandra-Esther; Kusche, Jürgen; Rietbroek, Roelof; Forootan, Ehsan

    2016-04-01

    Regional trends in sea level change are strongly influenced by climate variations, such as ENSO (El-Nino Southern Oscillation), the IOD (Indian Ocean Dipole), or the PDO (Pacific Decadal Oscillation). Hence, before computing long term regional sea level change, these sea level variations need to be taken into account as they lead to strong dependencies of computed regional sea level trends on the time period of the investigation. In this study, sea level change during the years 1993 to 2013 is analysed to identify the dominant modes of sea level change caused by climate variations. Here, two different gridded altimetry products are analysed, namely ESA's combined CCI SeaLevel v1.1 ECV product (doi: 10.5270/esa-sea_level_cci-1993_2013-v_1.1-201412), and absolute dynamic topography produced by Ssalto/Duacs and distributed by Aviso, with support from Cnes (http://www.aviso.altimetry.fr/duacs/). Reconstructions using the different decomposition techniques including the standard principle component analysis (PCA), rotated empirical orthogonal functions (REOF) and independent component analysis (ICA) method are analysed. They are compared with sea level change modelled with the global finite-element sea-ice ocean model (FESOM). The results indicate that from the applied methods, ICA is most suitable to separate the individual climate variability signals in independent modes of sea level change. This especially holds for extracting the ENSO contribution in sea level changes, which was better separated by applying ICA, from both altimetry and modelled sea level products. In addition, it is presented how modelled sea level change reflects climate variations compared to that identified in the altimetry products.

  17. Seasonal climate variability in Medieval Europe (1000 to 1499)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pfister, C.

    2009-04-01

    In his fundamental work on medieval climate Alexandre (1987) highlighted the significance of dealing with contemporary sources. Recently, long series of temperature indices for "summer" and "winter" were set up by Shabalova and van Engelen (2003) for the Low Countries, but the time resolution is not strictly seasonal. This paper worked out within the EU 6th Framework Project "Millennium" draws on critically reviewed documentary evidence from a spatially extensive area of Western and Central Europe (basically England, France, BENELUX, Western Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Poland, Hungary and todays Czech Republic. The narrative evidence is complemented with dendro-climatic series from the Alps (Büntgen et al. 2006). Each "climate observation" is georeferenced which allows producing spatial displays of the data for selected spaces and time-frames. The spatial distribution of the information charts can be used as a tool for the climatological verification of the underlying data. Reconstructions for winter (DJF) and summer (JJA) are presented in the form of time series and charts. Cold winters were frequent from 1205 to 1235 i.e. in the "Medieval Warm Period" and in the Little Ice Age (1306-1330; 1390-1470). Dry and warm summers prevailed in Western and Central Europe in the first half of the 13th century. During the Little Ice Age cold-wet summers (triggered by volcanic explosions in the tropics) were more frequent, though summer climate remained highly variable. Results are discussed with regard to the "Greenhouse Debate" and the relationship to glacier fluctuations in the Alps is explored. References -Alexandre, Pierre, 1987: Le Climat en Europe au Moyen Age. Contribution à l'histoire des variations climatiques de 1000 à 1425. Paris. -Büntgen, Ulf et al. 2006: Summer Temperature Variation in the European Alps, AD. 755-2004, J. of Climate 19 5606-5623. - Pfister, Christian et al. 1998: Winter air temperature variations in Central Europe during the Early and

  18. Simulation of the West African Monsoon using the MIT Regional Climate Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Im, Eun-Soon; Gianotti, Rebecca L.; Eltahir, Elfatih A. B.

    2013-04-01

    We test the performance of the MIT Regional Climate Model (MRCM) in simulating the West African Monsoon. MRCM introduces several improvements over Regional Climate Model version 3 (RegCM3) including coupling of Integrated Biosphere Simulator (IBIS) land surface scheme, a new albedo assignment method, a new convective cloud and rainfall auto-conversion scheme, and a modified boundary layer height and cloud scheme. Using MRCM, we carried out a series of experiments implementing two different land surface schemes (IBIS and BATS) and three convection schemes (Grell with the Fritsch-Chappell closure, standard Emanuel, and modified Emanuel that includes the new convective cloud scheme). Our analysis primarily focused on comparing the precipitation characteristics, surface energy balance and large scale circulations against various observations. We document a significant sensitivity of the West African monsoon simulation to the choices of the land surface and convection schemes. In spite of several deficiencies, the simulation with the combination of IBIS and modified Emanuel schemes shows the best performance reflected in a marked improvement of precipitation in terms of spatial distribution and monsoon features. In particular, the coupling of IBIS leads to representations of the surface energy balance and partitioning that are consistent with observations. Therefore, the major components of the surface energy budget (including radiation fluxes) in the IBIS simulations are in better agreement with observation than those from our BATS simulation, or from previous similar studies (e.g Steiner et al., 2009), both qualitatively and quantitatively. The IBIS simulations also reasonably reproduce the dynamical structure of vertically stratified behavior of the atmospheric circulation with three major components: westerly monsoon flow, African Easterly Jet (AEJ), and Tropical Easterly Jet (TEJ). In addition, since the modified Emanuel scheme tends to reduce the precipitation

  19. Streamflow projections for a Southwestern river: Climate change and climate variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gutzler, D. S.

    2013-12-01

    Climate projections for flows in the upper Gila River in southwestern New Mexico are assessed. The State of New Mexico is currently considering proposals for new consumptive uses of water extracted from the Gila, pursuant to a recent interstate stream settlement. Among the factors being considered is the prospect of decreasing flow in this snow-fed river associated with projected 21st Century climate change. Southwestern North America already exhibits a sustained and pronounced trend toward warmer temperature. Policymakers requested a projection for the next several decades as input to their ongoing deliberations over new extractions from the river. For lead times of several decades the predictability derived from current climatic conditions, the source of most prediction skill for seasonal forecasts, is minimal. On the other hand, the magnitude of the signal of greenhouse-gas forced long-term climate change in streamflow, driven largely by temperature change, is modest compared to the large natural decadal variability of flow. The upper Gila is known to exhibit tremendous decadal variability, driven largely by precipitation, as seen in a century of instrumental gage data and from a much longer dendrochronological reconstruction of flow. We have compared dynamical projections of flow in the upper Gila generated by the Bureau of Reclamation's West-Wide Climate Risk Assessment, with a statistical projection derived from a regression of observed precipitation and temperature onto historical flows. The latter approach assumes statistical stationarity. We show that the stationarity assumption will be violated by mid-century but is defensible on the time scale of interest set by policymakers. These two approaches yield consistent projections of 5-10% average decline in flow on the upper Gila for the period 2021-2050, if -- and only if -- a long historical period is chosen to represent baseline "average" flow. An averaging period much longer than the 30 year "climate

  20. Stratospheric variability of wave activity and parameters in equatorial coastal and tropical sites during the West African monsoon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kafando, P.; Chane-Ming, F.; Petitdidier, M.

    2016-12-01

    Recent numerical studies in stratospheric dynamics and its variability as well as climate, have highlighted the need of more observational analyses to improve simulation of the West African monsoon (WAM). In this paper, activity and spectral characteristics of short-scale vertical waves (wavelengths <4 km) are analysed in equatorial coastal and tropical lower stratosphere during the WAM. A first detailed description of such waves over West Africa is derived from high-resolution vertical profiles of temperature and horizontal wind obtained during Intensive Observation Period of the African Monsoon Multidisciplinary Analyses (AMMA) Campaign 2006. Monthly variation of wave energy density is revealed to trace the progression of the inter-tropical convergence zone (ITCZ) over West Africa. Mesoscale inertia gravity-waves structures with vertical and horizontal wavelengths of 1.5-2.5 and 400-1100 km respectively and intrinsic frequencies of 1.1-2.2 f or periods <2 days are observed in the tropical LS with intense activity during July and August when the WAM is installed over the tropical West Africa. Over equatorial region, gravity waves with intrinsic frequencies of 1.4-4 f or periods <5.2 days, vertical wavelength of 2.1 km and long horizontal wavelengths of 1300 km are intense during the WAM coastal phase. From July to October, gravity waves with intrinsic frequencies of 1.2-3.8 f or periods <6 days, vertical wavelength of 2.1 km and horizontal wavelengths of 1650 km are less intense during the WAM Sahelian phase of the WAM, March-June. Unlike potential energy density, kinetic energy density is observed to be a good proxy for the activity of short-scale vertical waves during the WAM because quasi-inertial waves are dominant. Long-term wave activity variation from January 2001 to December 2009, highlights strong year-to-year variation superimposed on convective activity and quasi-biennial oscillation-like variations especially above tropical stations.

  1. Investigation into regional climate variability using tree-ring reconstruction, climate diagnostics and prediction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barandiaran, Daniel A.

    This document is a summary of research conducted to develop and apply climate analysis tools toward a better understanding of the past and future of hydroclimate variability in the state of Utah. Two pilot studies developed data management and climate analysis tools subsequently applied to our region of interest. The first investigated the role of natural atmospheric forcing in the inter-annual variability of precipitation of the Sahel region in Africa, and found a previously undocumented link with the East Atlantic mode, which explains 29% of variance in regional precipitation. An analysis of output from an operational seasonal climate forecast model revealed a failure in the model to reproduce this linkage, thus highlighting a shortcoming in model performance. The second pilot study studied long-term trends in the strength of the Great Plains low-level jet, an driver of storm development in the region's wet spring season. Our analysis showed that since 1979 the low-level jet has strengthened as shifted the timing of peak activity, resulting in shifts both in time and location for peak precipitation, possibly the result of anthropogenic forcing. Our third study used a unique tree-ring dataset to create a reconstruction of April 1 snow water equivalent, an important measure of water supply in the Intermountain West, for the state of Utah to 1850. Analysis of the reconstruction shows the majority of snowpack variability occurs monotonically over the whole state at decadal to multidecadal frequencies. The final study evaluated decadal prediction performance of climate models participating in the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project 5. We found that the analyzed models exhibit modest skill in prediction of the Pacific Decadal Oscillation and better skill in prediction of global temperature trends post 1960.

  2. Atmospheric radiative feedbacks associated with transient climate change and climate variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Colman, Robert A.; Power, Scott B.

    2010-06-01

    climate change. Surface albedo feedback is, however, slightly stronger under interannual variability—partly due to regions of extremely weak, or even negative, feedback over Antarctic sea ice in the transient experiment. Both long and shortwave global cloud feedbacks are essentially zero on interannual timescales, with the shortwave term also being very weak under climate change, although cloud fraction and optical property components show correlation with global temperature both under interannual variability and transient climate change. The results of this modelling study, although for a single model only, suggest that the analogues provided by interannual variability may provide some useful pointers to some aspects of climate change feedback strength, particularly for water vapour and surface albedo, but that structural differences will need to be heeded in such an analysis.

  3. Long-term natural variability and 20th century climate change.

    PubMed

    Swanson, Kyle L; Sugihara, George; Tsonis, Anastasios A

    2009-09-22

    Global mean temperature at the Earth's surface responds both to externally imposed forcings, such as those arising from anthropogenic greenhouse gases, as well as to natural modes of variability internal to the climate system. Variability associated with these latter processes, generally referred to as natural long-term climate variability, arises primarily from changes in oceanic circulation. Here we present a technique that objectively identifies the component of inter-decadal global mean surface temperature attributable to natural long-term climate variability. Removal of that hidden variability from the actual observed global mean surface temperature record delineates the externally forced climate signal, which is monotonic, accelerating warming during the 20th century.

  4. Regional Climate Simulation and Data Assimilation with Variable-Resolution GCMs

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fox-Rabinovitz, Michael S.

    2002-01-01

    Variable resolution GCMs using a global stretched grid (SG) with enhanced regional resolution over one or multiple areas of interest represents a viable new approach to regional climateklimate change and data assimilation studies and applications. The multiple areas of interest, at least one within each global quadrant, include the major global mountains and major global monsoonal circulations over North America, South America, India-China, and Australia. They also can include the polar domains, and the European and African regions. The SG-approach provides an efficient regional downscaling to mesoscales, and it is an ideal tool for representing consistent interactions of globaYlarge- and regionallmeso- scales while preserving the high quality of global circulation. Basically, the SG-GCM simulations are no different from those of the traditional uniform-grid GCM simulations besides using a variable-resolution grid. Several existing SG-GCMs developed by major centers and groups are briefly described. The major discussion is based on the GEOS (Goddard Earth Observing System) SG-GCM regional climate simulations.

  5. A plant’s perspective of extremes: Terrestrial plant responses to changing climatic variability

    PubMed Central

    Reyer, C.; Leuzinger, S.; Rammig, A.; Wolf, A.; Bartholomeus, R. P.; Bonfante, A.; de Lorenzi, F.; Dury, M.; Gloning, P.; Abou Jaoudé, R.; Klein, T.; Kuster, T. M.; Martins, M.; Niedrist, G.; Riccardi, M.; Wohlfahrt, G.; de Angelis, P.; de Dato, G.; François, L.; Menzel, A.; Pereira, M.

    2013-01-01

    We review observational, experimental and model results on how plants respond to extreme climatic conditions induced by changing climatic variability. Distinguishing between impacts of changing mean climatic conditions and changing climatic variability on terrestrial ecosystems is generally underrated in current studies. The goals of our review are thus (1) to identify plant processes that are vulnerable to changes in the variability of climatic variables rather than to changes in their mean, and (2) to depict/evaluate available study designs to quantify responses of plants to changing climatic variability. We find that phenology is largely affected by changing mean climate but also that impacts of climatic variability are much less studied but potentially damaging. We note that plant water relations seem to be very vulnerable to extremes driven by changes in temperature and precipitation and that heatwaves and flooding have stronger impacts on physiological processes than changing mean climate. Moreover, interacting phenological and physiological processes are likely to further complicate plant responses to changing climatic variability. Phenological and physiological processes and their interactions culminate in even more sophisticated responses to changing mean climate and climatic variability at the species and community level. Generally, observational studies are well suited to study plant responses to changing mean climate, but less suitable to gain a mechanistic understanding of plant responses to climatic variability. Experiments seem best suited to simulate extreme events. In models, temporal resolution and model structure are crucial to capture plant responses to changing climatic variability. We highlight that a combination of experimental, observational and /or modeling studies have the potential to overcome important caveats of the respective individual approaches. PMID:23504722

  6. Influences of Social and Style Variables on Adult Usage of African American English Features

    PubMed Central

    Craig, Holly K.; Grogger, Jeffrey T.

    2013-01-01

    Purpose In this study, the authors examined the influences of selected social (gender, employment status, educational achievement level) and style variables (race of examiner, interview topic) on the production of African American English (AAE) by adults. Method Participants were 50 African American men and women, ages 20–30 years. The authors used Rapid and Anonymous Survey (RAS) methods to collect responses to questions on informal situational and formal message-oriented topics in a short interview with an unacquainted interlocutor. Results Results revealed strong systematic effects for academic achievement, but not gender or employment status. Most features were used less frequently by participants with higher educational levels, but sharp declines in the usage of 5 specific features distinguished the participants differing in educational achievement. Strong systematic style effects were found for the 2 types of questions, but not race of addressee. The features that were most commonly used across participants—copula absence, variable subject–verb agreement, and appositive pronouns—were also the features that showed the greatest style shifting. Conclusions The findings lay a foundation with mature speakers for rate-based and feature inventory methods recently shown to be informative for the study of child AAE and demonstrate the benefits of the RAS. PMID:22361105

  7. Climate Variability and Dengue Fever in Warm and Humid Mexico

    PubMed Central

    Colón-González, Felipe J.; Lake, Iain R.; Bentham, Graham

    2011-01-01

    Multiple linear regression models were fitted to look for associations between changes in the incidence rate of dengue fever and climate variability in the warm and humid region of Mexico. Data were collected for 12 Mexican provinces over a 23-year period (January 1985 to December 2007). Our results show that the incidence rate or risk of infection is higher during El Niño events and in the warm and wet season. We provide evidence to show that dengue fever incidence was positively associated with the strength of El Niño and the minimum temperature, especially during the cool and dry season. Our study complements the understanding of dengue fever dynamics in the region and may be useful for the development of early warning systems. PMID:21540386

  8. Stochastic investigation of temperature process for climatic variability identification

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lerias, Eleutherios; Kalamioti, Anna; Dimitriadis, Panayiotis; Markonis, Yannis; Iliopoulou, Theano; Koutsoyiannis, Demetris

    2016-04-01

    The temperature process is considered as the most characteristic hydrometeorological process and has been thoroughly examined in the climate-change framework. We use a dataset comprising hourly temperature and dew point records to identify statistical variability with emphasis on the last period. Specifically, we investigate the occurrence of mean, maximum and minimum values and we estimate statistical properties such as marginal probability distribution function and the type of decay of the climacogram (i.e., mean process variance vs. scale) for various time periods. Acknowledgement: This research is conducted within the frame of the undergraduate course "Stochastic Methods in Water Resources" of the National Technical University of Athens (NTUA). The School of Civil Engineering of NTUA provided moral support for the participation of the students in the Assembly.

  9. Stochastic investigation of wind process for climatic variability identification

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deligiannis, Ilias; Tyrogiannis, Vassilis; Daskalou, Olympia; Dimitriadis, Panayiotis; Markonis, Yannis; Iliopoulou, Theano; Koutsoyiannis, Demetris

    2016-04-01

    The wind process is considered one of the hydrometeorological processes that generates and drives the climate dynamics. We use a dataset comprising hourly wind records to identify statistical variability with emphasis on the last period. Specifically, we investigate the occurrence of mean, maximum and minimum values and we estimate statistical properties such as marginal probability distribution function and the type of decay of the climacogram (i.e., mean process variance vs. scale) for various time periods. Acknowledgement: This research is conducted within the frame of the undergraduate course "Stochastic Methods in Water Resources" of the National Technical University of Athens (NTUA). The School of Civil Engineering of NTUA provided moral support for the participation of the students in the Assembly.

  10. Impacts of Interannual Climate Variability on Agricultural and Marine Ecosystems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cane, M. A.; Zebiak, S.; Kaplan, A.; Chen, D.

    2001-01-01

    The El Nino - Southern Oscillation (ENSO) is the dominant mode of global interannual climate variability, and seems to be the only mode for which current prediction methods are more skillful than climatology or persistence. The Zebiak and Cane intermediate coupled ocean-atmosphere model has been in use for ENSO prediction for more than a decade, with notable success. However, the sole dependence of its original initialization scheme and the improved initialization on wind fields derived from merchant ship observations proved to be a liability during 1997/1998 El Nino event: the deficiencies of wind observations prevented the oceanic component of the model from reaching the realistic state during the year prior to the event, and the forecast failed. Our work on the project was concentrated on the use of satellite data for improving various stages of ENSO prediction technology: model initialization, bias correction, and data assimilation. Close collaboration with other teams of the IDS project was maintained throughout.

  11. Assessing Hurricane Vulnerability Changes Arising from Climate Variability and Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holland, G. J.; Done, J.; Bruyere, C.; NESL Regional Climate Research Group

    2011-12-01

    The vulnerability of a community to hurricane impacts depends on a diverse array of factors. At the community level these include: the quality of their infrastructure and its ability to withstand a hurricane impact, their level of preparedness and ability to respond appropriately to a threat, and their capacity to recover after an impact. Developing and maintaining these at an appropriate level requires a dedicated and sustained effort that results in considerable cost to the community. This cost must be balanced against the likely damage from an impact and its frequency of occurrence. And therein lies the rub; traditional assessment techniques use past cyclone data that: are subject to various levels of data deficiencies, cannot account for changes that might arise from climate change, may cover too short a time period to adequately account for long-term climate variability or to enable assessment of the very rare extreme events. This talk will address current approaches to assessing these deficiencies. We will first discuss the cyclone parameters that are important to assessing impact and show that intensity alone is only one part. For wind it is duration, extent and gustiness that are crucial, and often the rainfall is the dominant impact. These also depend on hurricane size, translation speed and local terrain; and the level of storm surge is also dependent on bathymetry and coastline details. Second, We will address how numerical models are becoming a valuable tool in assessing these features for future climate. The talk will conclude with a summary of the current state of agreement, and disagreement, on likely future changes.

  12. Climatic Variations in Tropical West African Rainfall and the Implications for Military Planners

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2008-06-01

    Climate Variability................................................................................ 24 4. Drought in Western Sahel...was generated in the early 1970s by the repeated years of drought -induced famine that ravaged many of the nations in TWA and beyond. Landmark...interactions and feedback cycles between risk factors. 4. Drought in Western Sahel The Sahel is a marginal environment for two of the three livelihoods

  13. Climate variability and campylobacter infection: an international study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sari Kovats, R.; Edwards, Sally J.; Charron, Dominique; Cowden, John; D'Souza, Rennie M.; Ebi, Kristie L.; Gauci, Charmaine; Gerner-Smidt, Peter; Hajat, Shakoor; Hales, Simon; Hernández Pezzi, Gloria; Kriz, Bohumir; Kutsar, Kuulo; McKeown, Paul; Mellou, Kassiani; Menne, Bettina; O'Brien, Sarah; Pelt, Wilfrid; Schmid, Hans

    2005-03-01

    Campylobacter is among the most important agents of enteritis in developed countries. We have described the potential environmental determinants of the seasonal pattern of infection with campylobacter in Europe, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. Specifically, we investigated the role of climate variability on laboratory-confirmed cases of campylobacter infection from 15 populations. Regression analysis was used to quantify the associations between timing of seasonal peaks in infection in space and time. The short-term association between weekly weather and cases was also investigated using Poisson regression adapted for time series data. All countries in our study showed a distinct seasonality in campylobacter transmission, with many, but not all, populations showing a peak in spring. Countries with milder winters have peaks of infection earlier in the year. The timing of the peak of infection is weakly associated with high temperatures 3 months previously. Weekly variation in campylobacter infection in one region of the UK appeared to be little affected by short-term changes in weather patterns. The geographical variation in the timing of the seasonal peak suggests that climate may be a contributing factor to campylobacter transmission. The main driver of seasonality of campylobacter remains elusive and underscores the need to identify the major serotypes and routes of transmission for this disease.

  14. Developing climate data records and essential climate variables from landsat data

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Dwyer, John; Dinardo, Thomas P.; Muchoney, Douglas M.

    2011-01-01

    The series of Landsat missions has compiled the longest record of satellite observation of the Earth’s land surface, extending for more than 38 years for most areas of the globe. Landsat data are particularly important as long term climate data records because the scale of observation is sufficient to differentiate between natural and human drivers of land cover change. The USGS has established consistent radiometric calibration across the Landsat TM and ETM+ sensors, and have extended the calibration back to the earlier MSS sensors. The USGS is developing capabilities to create fundamental climate data records (FCDRs), thematic climate data records (TCDRs), and essential climate variables (ECVs) from the Landsat data archive. Two high priority TCDRs were identified: surface reflectance and land surface temperature because they have direct application or are required as input to the generation of ECVs. We will focus development on a few of the terrestrial ECVs that have a high potential for being derived from Landsat data, that include land cover, albedo, fire disturbance, surface water, snow and ice, and leaf area index (LAI). We are collaborating with scientists who have demonstrated successful algorithm development and application of these science products to develop a framework of processing capabilities to support research projects and land management applications, along with an independent strategy for product validation. Our goal is to scale the creation and validation of these products from specific sites in the conterminous U.S. and Alaska, for extension to continental and global scales.

  15. Assessment of Human Health Vulnerability to Climate Variability and Change in Cuba

    PubMed Central

    Bultó, Paulo Lázaro Ortíz; Rodríguez, Antonio Pérez; Valencia, Alina Rivero; Vega, Nicolás León; Gonzalez, Manuel Díaz; Carrera, Alina Pérez

    2006-01-01

    In this study we assessed the potential effects of climate variability and change on population health in Cuba. We describe the climate of Cuba as well as the patterns of climate-sensitive diseases of primary concern, particularly dengue fever. Analyses of the associations between climatic anomalies and disease patterns highlight current vulnerability to climate variability. We describe current adaptations, including the application of climate predictions to prevent disease outbreaks. Finally, we present the potential economic costs associated with future impacts due to climate change. The tools used in this study can be useful in the development of appropriate and effective adaptation options to address the increased climate variability associated with climate change. PMID:17185289

  16. Analysis of the Relationship Between Climate and NDVI Variability at Global Scales

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zeng, Fan-Wei; Collatz, G. James; Pinzon, Jorge; Ivanoff, Alvaro

    2011-01-01

    interannual variability in modeled (CASA) C flux is in part caused by interannual variability in Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) Fraction of Photosynthetically Active Radiation (FPAR). This study confirms a mechanism producing variability in modeled NPP: -- NDVI (FPAR) interannual variability is strongly driven by climate; -- The climate driven variability in NDVI (FPAR) can lead to much larger fluctuation in NPP vs. the NPP computed from FPAR climatology

  17. Insights on Antarctic climate variability from paleo-temperature proxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Orsi, A. J.; Landais, A.; Stenni, B.; Severinghaus, J. P.

    2015-12-01

    Few direct meteorological observations exist in Antarctica, which limits our understanding of the modes of climate variability in this region. In particular, atmospheric reanalyses do not produce a coherent picture of the known warming trend since 1979. Here we analyze a suite of paleo-temperature proxies to gain insight into both the recent temperature trend and the multi-decadal climate variability in Antarctica over the last 1000 years. We present temperature records from two sites in Antarctica: WAIS Divide (79°S, 112°W, 1766 m a.s.l), and Talos Dome (72°S, 159°E, 2315 m a.s.l), reconstructed from the combination of inert gas isotopes from the ice core and borehole temperature measurements. Borehole temperature provides an absolute estimate of long-term trends, while noble gases track decadal to centennial scale changes. In addition, we use water isotopes to infer information about circulation changes. We find a strong warming trend in West Antarctica over the last 50 years (+0.23°C/decade), which is accelerating (+0.8°C/decade since 1980). The longer temperature record shows that such a trend has analogs happening about every 200 years. However, the study of other climate proxies suggests that the recent trend is due to a different mechanism than the previous events. We also find a long term cooling trend over the last 1000 years, which is stronger in East Antarctica (Talos Dome) than in West Antarctica (WAIS-Divide). At WAIS Divide, we find that "Little Ice Age" cold period of 1400-1800 was 0.52°C colder than the last century. Overall, both records are consistent with the idea that the solar minima and persistent volcanic activity of the Little Ice Age (1400-1850 A.D.) had a significant impact on the surface temperature in Antarctica. The feedbacks amplifying the forcing were likely stronger on the East Antarctic plateau than on the more marine-influenced West Antarctica.

  18. Seasonal Evolution and Variability Associated with the West African Monsoon System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gu, Guojun; Adler, Robert F.

    2003-01-01

    In this study, we investigate the seasonal variations in surface rainfall and associated large-scale processes in the tropical eastern Atlantic and West African region. The 5-yr (1998-2002) high-quality TRMM rainfall, sea surface temperature (SST), water vapor and cloud liquid water observations are applied along with the NCEP/NCAR reanalysis wind components and a 3-yr (2000-2002) Quickscat satellite-observed surface wind product. Major mean rainfall over West Africa tends to be concentrated in two regions and is observed in two different seasons, manifesting an abrupt shift of the mean rainfall zone during June-July. (i) Near the Gulf of Guinea (about 5 degN), intense convection and rainfall are seen during April-June and roughly follow the seasonality of SST in the tropical eastern Atlantic. (ii) Along the latitudes of about 10 deg. N over the interior West African continent, a second intense rain belt begins to develop from July and remains there during the later summer season. This belt co-exists with a northwardmoved African Easterly Jet (AEJ) and its accompanying horizonal and vertical shear zones, the appearance and intensification of an upper tropospheric Tropical Easterly Jet (TEJ), and a strong low-level westerly flow. Westward-propagating wave signals [ i e . , African easterly waves (AEWs)] dominate the synoptic-scale variability during July-September, in contrast to the evident eastward-propagating wave signals during May- June. The abrupt shift of mean rainfall zone thus turns out to be a combination of two different physical processes: (i) Evident seasonal cycles in the tropical eastern Atlantic ocean which modulate convection and rainfall in the Gulf of Guinea by means of SST thermal forcing and SST-related meridional gradient; (ii) The interaction among the AEJ, TEJ, low-level westerly flow, moist convection and AEWs during July-September which modulates rainfall variability in the interior West Africa, primarily within the ITCZ rain band. Evident

  19. Future agricultural water demand under climate change: regional variability and uncertainties arising from CMIP5 climate projections

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schewe, J.; Wada, Y.; Wisser, D.

    2012-12-01

    The agricultural sector (irrigation and livestock) uses by far the largest amount of water among all sectors and is responsible for 70% of the global water withdrawal. At a country scale, irrigation water withdrawal often exceeds 90% of the total water used in many of emerging and developing countries such as India, Pakistan, Iran and Mexico, sustaining much of food production and the livelihood of millions of people. The livestock sector generally accounts less than 1-2% of total water withdrawal, yet exceeds 10-30% of the total water used in many of the African countries. Future agricultural water demand is, however, subject to large uncertainties due to anticipated climate change, i.e. warming temperature and changing precipitation variability, in various regions of the world. Here, we use a global hydrological and water resources model to quantify the impact of climate change on regional irrigation and livestock water demand, and the resulting uncertainties arsing from newly available CMIP5 climate projections obtained through Inter-Sectoral Impact Model Intercomparison Project (ISI-MIP; http://www.isi-mip.org/). Irrigation water requirement per unit crop area is estimated by simulating daily soil water balance with crop-related data. Livestock water demand is calculated by combining livestock densities with their drinking water requirements that is a function of air temperature. The results of the ensemble mean show that global irrigation and livestock water demand increased by ~6% and ~12% by 2050 respectively primarily due to higher evaporative demand as a result of increased temperature. At a regional scale, agricultural water demand decreased over some parts of Europe (e.g., Italy, Germany) and Southeast Asia (e.g., the Philippines, Malaysia), but increased over South Asia, the U.S., the Middle East and Africa. However, the projections are highly uncertain over many parts of the world. The results of the ensemble projections in agricultural water demand

  20. Climate, herbivory, and fire controls on tropical African forest for the last 60ka

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ivory, Sarah J.; Russell, James

    2016-09-01

    The Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) in Africa was drier than today and was followed by rapid step-wise climate changes during the last deglacial period. In much of Africa, these changes led to a drastic reduction of lowland forest area during the LGM, followed by recolonization of the lowlands by forest and woodland in concert with regional warming and wetting. However, the history of southeastern African vegetation contrasts with that observed further north. In particular, forest expansion appears to have occurred in southeastern Africa during episodes of high-latitude northern hemisphere cooling. Although vegetation history in Africa is generally assumed to relate purely to climate, previous studies have not addressed potential feedbacks between climate, vegetation, and disturbance regimes (fire, herbivory) that may create tipping points in ecosystems. This climate-vegetation history has profound implications for our understanding of the modern architecture of lowland and highland forests, both thought to be at risk from future climate change. Here we present analyses of fossil pollen, charcoal, and Sporormiella (dung fungus) on a continuous 60 kyr record from central Lake Tanganyika, Southeast Africa, that illustrates the interplay of climate and disturbance regimes in shaping vegetation composition and structure. We observe that extensive forests dominated the region during the last glacial period despite evidence of decreased rainfall. At the end of the LGM, forest opening at ∼17.5 ka followed warming temperatures but preceded rising precipitation, suggesting that temperature-induced water stress and disturbance from fire and herbivory affected initial landscape transformation. Our Sporormiella record indicates that mega-herbivore populations increased at the early Holocene. This higher animal density increased plant species richness and encouraged landscape heterogeneity until the mid-Holocene. At this time, regional drying followed by the onset of the Iron Age

  1. Diagnosis of precipitation variability in nested regional climate models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arritt, R.; PIRCS Participants

    2003-04-01

    In order to assess reasons for model-to-model variability of precipitation in regional climate models (RCMs) we have evaluated 60-day simulations over the continental U.S. in June-July 1993 from thirteen simulations using different RCMs. The hydrologic cycles in the simulations were compared both to each other and to observations for a subregion of the upper Mississippi River Basin (UMRB), containing the region of maximum 60-day accumulated precipitation in all RCMs and station reports. All RCMs produced positive precipitation (P) minus evaporation (E) and recycling ratios that were within the range estimated from observations. RCM E was sensitive to radiation parameterization, but inter-model variability of E was spread evenly about estimates of observed E. In contrast, most RCMs produced P that was below the range of P from observations, accounting for the low values of simulated P-E compared to observations. Nine of the 13 RCMs reproduced qualitatively the observed daily cycles of P and moisture flux convergence (C), with maximum P and C occurring simultaneously at night. Three of the four driest RCMs had maximum precipitation in the afternoon, suggesting that in these RCMs afternoon destabilization by insolation had excessive influence on production of precipitation. Thus a key indicator of the ability of RCMs in this collection to properly simulate P is their ability to simulate the observed nocturnal maximum of P, indicating that the failure to resolve the diurnal cycle is closely related to overall bias in precipitation.

  2. Climate-vegetation interaction and amplification of Australian dust variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Evans, Stuart; Ginoux, Paul; Malyshev, Sergey; Shevliakova, Elena

    2016-11-01

    Observations show that Australian dust activity varies by a factor of 4 on decadal timescales. General circulation models, however, typically fail to simulate this variability. Here we introduce a new dust parameterization into the NOAA/Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory climate model CM3 that represents land surface processes controlling dust sources including soil water and ice, snow cover, vegetation characteristics, and land type. In an additional novel step, we couple this new dust parameterization to the dynamic vegetation model LM3. In Australia, the new parameterization amplifies the magnitude and timescale of dust variability and better simulates the El Niño-Southern Oscillation-dust relationship by more than doubling its strength. We attribute these improvements primarily to the slow response time of vegetation to precipitation anomalies and show that vegetation changes account for approximately 50% of enhanced dust emission during El Niño events. The amplified dust leads to radiative forcing over Australia greater than -1 and -20 W/m2 at top of atmosphere and surface, respectively.

  3. Exploring the climate response to the 1815 Tambora eruption with respect to natural climate variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lorenz, Stephan J.; Timmreck, Claudia; Jungclaus, Johann H.

    2010-05-01

    The largest historic volcanic eruption with known origin was the explosion of Mount Tambora in Indonesia in April 1815. In the aftermath of this devastating eruption, the following year 1816 came to be known as the "year without a summer", in particular in USA, Canada, and Europe, where the worst famine over a century as well as typhus epidemics accompanied by enhanced emigration from Europe were recorded. The stratospheric aerosol mass load was estimated to be about three times that of the Pinatubo eruption in 1991, leading to strong impact on the Earth's climate system. In a series of ensemble simulations of the last Millennium we applied our Earth system model, based on the ECHAM5/MPIOM model family, to investigate the climate signal of the Tambora eruption with respect to natural and forced variability. This event contributed to one of the strongest cooling periods during the last Millennium in the ensemble of simulations. However, this period is associated with a large ensemble spread in simulated air temperature on a hemispheric and global as well as on a regional scale, with limited to very strong atmospheric response. The unique path of the climate evolution through the Earth's history yielding the extreme summer in 1816 in North America and Europe is compared with the simulations. A special focus of our analysis is Tambora's impact on climate and its relationship with the status of the climate system, e.g. the ENSO state, at the time of the eruption. Additionally, the contribution of the large volcanic eruption with tropical but unknown location about six years prior to the Tambora in 1809 will be discussed.

  4. Climate Variability and Oceanographic Settings Associated with Interannual Variability in the Initiation of Dinophysis acuminata Blooms

    PubMed Central

    Díaz, Patricio A.; Reguera, Beatriz; Ruiz-Villarreal, Manuel; Pazos, Yolanda; Velo-Suárez, Lourdes; Berger, Henrick; Sourisseau, Marc

    2013-01-01

    In 2012, there were exceptional blooms of D. acuminata in early spring in what appeared to be a mesoscale event affecting Western Iberia and the Bay of Biscay. The objective of this work was to identify common climatic patterns to explain the observed anomalies in two important aquaculture sites, the Galician Rías Baixas (NW Spain) and Arcachon Bay (SW France). Here, we examine climate variability through physical-biological couplings, Sea Surface Temperature (SST) anomalies and time of initiation of the upwelling season and its intensity over several decades. In 2012, the mesoscale features common to the two sites were positive anomalies in SST and unusual wind patterns. These led to an atypical predominance of upwelling in winter in the Galician Rías, and increased haline stratification associated with a southward advection of the Gironde plume in Arcachon Bay. Both scenarios promoted an early phytoplankton growth season and increased stability that enhanced D. acuminata growth. Therefore, a common climate anomaly caused exceptional blooms of D. acuminata in two distant regions through different triggering mechanisms. These results increase our capability to predict intense diarrhetic shellfish poisoning outbreaks in the early spring from observations in the preceding winter. PMID:23959151

  5. Climate variability and Dinophysis acuta blooms in an upwelling system.

    PubMed

    Díaz, Patricio A; Ruiz-Villarreal, Manuel; Pazos, Yolanda; Moita, Teresa; Reguera, Beatriz

    2016-03-01

    Dinophysis acuta is a frequent seasonal lipophilic toxin producer in European Atlantic coastal waters associated with thermal stratification. In the Galician Rías, populations of D. acuta with their epicentre located off Aveiro (northern Portugal), typically co-occur with and follow those of Dinophysis acuminata during the upwelling transition (early autumn) as a result of longshore transport. During hotter than average summers, D. acuta blooms also occur in August in the Rías, when they replace D. acuminata. Here we examined a 30-year (1985-2014) time series of D. acuta from samples collected by the same method in the Galician Rías. Our main objective was to identify patterns of distribution and their relation with climate variability, and to explain the exceptional summer blooms of D. acuta in 1989-1990. A dome-shaped relationship was found between summer upwelling intensity and D. acuta blooms; cell maxima were associated with conditions where the balance between upwelling intensity and heating, leading to deepened thermoclines, combined with tidal phase (3 days after neap tides) created windows of opportunity for this species. The application of a generalized additive model based on biological (D. acuta inoculum) and environmental predictors (Cumulative June-August upwelling CUIJJA, average June-August SSTJJA and tidal range) explained more than 70% of the deviance for the exceptional summer blooms of D. acuta, through a combination of moderate (35,000-50,000m(3)s(-1)km(-1)) summer upwelling (CUIJJA), thermal stratification (SSTJJA>17°C) and moderate tidal range (∼2.5m), provided D. acuta cells (inoculum) were present in July. There was no evidence of increasing trends in D. acuta bloom frequency/intensity nor a clear relationship with NAO or other long-term climatic cycles. Instead, the exceptional summer blooms of 1989-1990 appeared linked to extreme hydroclimatic anomalies (high positive anomalies in SST and NAO index), which affected most of the

  6. Simulation of Snow Dynamics in Response to Climate Variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Y.; Wang, S.; Trishchenko, A.

    2004-05-01

    to climate variability were investigated through model simulations.

  7. Incorporating Climate Variability into Precipitation Isoscapes for Interpreting Animal Migration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vander Zanden, H.; Hobson, K. A.; Wassenaar, L. I.; Wunder, M. B.; Welker, J. M.; Bowen, G. J.

    2013-12-01

    Large-scale continental gradients in δ2H and δ18O values of precipitation lead to predictable isotopic patterns across the landscape. These light isotopes are thus useful endogenous markers in tracing long-distance movements of animals. Hydrogen in water is assimilated into tissues that are inert after synthesis, such as chitin or keratin, that are not altered when the animal moves so that the tissue reflects the environment or region from which it originated at the time when the tissue was synthesized. Models to predict the patters of δ2H in precipitation with the Global Network of Isotopes in Precipitation (GNIP) use long-term averages because models allowing estimation of isotopic values in more specific time periods have often not been available. Yet, inter-annual variation in precipitation and other climate variables may lead to large deviations from the mean values modeled over four decades, and particular regions may be more susceptible to higher departures from long-term average δ2H values. We examine whether incorporating such variation offers an improvement over static isoscapes to understand patterns of animal movement and geographic origin. Here we investigate the accuracy of Bayesian geographic assignments to predict the origin of two migratory species (monarch butterflies in the eastern United States and reed warblers in western Europe) using time-specific isoscapes. We use known-origin data from these organisms to provide calibration and validation datasets to compare the sensitivity of predictions from both year-specific and long-term isoscapes developed in IsoMAP, a freely available online workspace for modeling and predicting isotope ratio variation in precipitation. Determining how to incorporate climate and inter-annual variation into models that predict isotopic values of animal tissues can aid in improving geospatial assignments across a wide range of taxa.

  8. Impact of climate change on vegetation dynamics in a West African river basin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sawada, Y.; Koike, T.

    2012-12-01

    Future changes in terrestrial biomass distribution under climate change will have a tremendous impact on water availability and land productivity in arid and semi-arid regions. Assessment of future change of biomass distribution in the regional or the river basin scale is strongly needed. An eco-hydrological model that fully couples a dynamic vegetation model (DVM) with a distributed biosphere hydrological model is applied to multi-model assessment of climate change impact on vegetation dynamics in a West African river basin. In addition, a distributed and auto optimization system of parameters in DVM is developed to make it possible to model a diversity of phonologies of plants by using different parameters in the different model grids. The simple carbon cycle modeling in a distributed hydrological model shows reliable accuracy in simulating the seasonal cycle of vegetation on the river basin scale. Model outputs indicate that generally, an extension of dry season duration and surface air temperature rising caused by climate change may cause a dieback of vegetation in West Africa. However, we get different seasonal and spatial changes of leaf area index and different mechanisms of the degradation when we used different general circulation models' outputs as meteorological forcing of the eco-hydrological model. Therefore, multi-model analysis like this study is important to deliver meaningful information to the society because we can discuss the uncertainties of our prediction by this methodology. This study makes it possible to discuss the impact of future change of terrestrial biomass on climate and water resources in the regional or the river basin scale although we need further sophistications of the system. Performance of the eco-hydrological model (WEB-DHM+DVM) in Volta River Basin, with basin-averaged leaf area index from model (blue solid line) and AVHRR satellite-derived product (red rectangles).

  9. The value of seasonal forecasting and crop mix adaptation to climate variability for agriculture under climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Choi, H. S.; Schneider, U.; Schmid, E.; Held, H.

    2012-04-01

    Changes to climate variability and frequency of extreme weather events are expected to impose damages to the agricultural sector. Seasonal forecasting and long range prediction skills have received attention as an option to adapt to climate change because seasonal climate and yield predictions could improve farmers' management decisions. The value of seasonal forecasting skill is assessed with a crop mix adaptation option in Spain where drought conditions are prevalent. Yield impacts of climate are simulated for six crops (wheat, barely, cotton, potato, corn and rice) with the EPIC (Environmental Policy Integrated Climate) model. Daily weather data over the period 1961 to 1990 are used and are generated by the regional climate model REMO as reference period for climate projection. Climate information and its consequent yield variability information are given to the stochastic agricultural sector model to calculate the value of climate information in the agricultural market. Expected consumers' market surplus and producers' revenue is compared with and without employing climate forecast information. We find that seasonal forecasting benefits not only consumers but also producers if the latter adopt a strategic crop mix. This mix differs from historical crop mixes by having higher shares of crops which fare relatively well under climate change. The corresponding value of information is highly sensitive to farmers' crop mix choices.

  10. Interannual climate variability and snowpack in the western United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cayan, Daniel R.

    1996-01-01

    An important part of the water supply in the western United States is derived from runoff fed by mountain snowmelt Snow accumulation responds to both precipitation and temperature variations, and forms an interesting climatic index, since it integrates these influences over the entire late fall-spring period. Here, effects of cool season climate variability upon snow water equivalent (SWE) over the western part of the conterminous United States are examined. The focus is on measurements on/and 1 April, when snow accumulation is typically greatest. The primary data, from a network of mountainous snow courses, provides a good description of interannual fluctuations in snow accumulations, since many snow courses have records of five decades or more. For any given year, the spring SWE anomaly at a particular snow course is likely to be 25%–60% of its long-term average. Five separate regions of anomalous SWE variability are distinguished, using a rotated principal components analysis. Although effects vary with region and with elevation, in general, the anomalous winter precipitation has the strongest influence on spring SWE fluctuations. Anomalous temperature has a weaker effect overall, but it has great influence in lower elevations such as in the coastal Northwest, and during spring in higher elevations. The regional snow anomaly patterns are associated with precipitation and temperature anomalies in winter and early spring. Patterns of the precipitation, temperature, and snow anomalies extend over broad regional areas, much larger than individual watersheds. These surface anomalies are organized by the atmospheric circulation, with primary anomaly centers over the North Pacific Ocean as well as over western North America. For most of the regions, anomalously low SWE is associated with a winter circulation resembling the PNA pattern. With a strong low in the central North Pacific and high pressure over the Pacific Northwest, this pattern diverts North Pacific

  11. Climatic variability between SST and river discharge at Amazon region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Silva, M. E.; Silva, E. R. L.

    2012-04-01

    Climatic variability, related both to precipitation and river discharge, has been associated to ocean variability. Authors commonly relate Pacific sea surface temperature (SST) variation to South America (SA) precipitation. Zonal displacement of Walker cell, with intensified subsidence over northern portion of SA, Subtropical Jet strengthening/weakening over extratropical latitudes of SA are, respectively, dynamical reasons scientifically accepted for increasing and depletion of precipitation at the respective areas. Many studies point out the influence of tropical Atlantic SST anomalies in relation to precipitation/river discharge variability over northeast of Brazil. Aliseos variability at tropical Atlantic is also a physic process that contributes to explain precipitation and river flow variability over SA, mainly over the north portion. In this study, we aim to investigate the temporal correlation between SST, mainly from Pacific and Atlantic oceans, and rivers discharge at the Amazon region. Ji-Parana, Madeira and Tapajós river discharge in monthly and annual scale, between 1968 and 2008, were the time series selected to reach the purpose. Time series for river discharge were obtained from Agência Nacional de Águas (ANA, in Portuguese) and, SST data were obtained from CDC/NOAA. Before linear correlation computations between river discharge and SST have been made, seasonal cycle and linear tendency were removed from all original time series. Areas better correlated to river discharge at Amazon region show oceanic patterns apparently associated to PDO (Pacific Decadal Oscillation) and ENSO (El Niño-South Oscillation) variability, with absolute values greater than 0.3 and reaching 0.5 or 0.6. The spatial pattern observed at Pacific basin is similar to that showed by the first mode of PCA (Principal Component Analysis), such seen in many studies (the "horse shoe" pattern). In general, negative correlation values appear far more to the west of Pacific basin

  12. Variability and predictability of the North Atlantic wave climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Woolf, D. K.; Challenor, P. G.; Cotton, P. D.

    2002-10-01

    Wave climate across the ocean basins can be described using satellite altimetry; here, we concentrate on the North Atlantic region. Waves in the North Atlantic are strongly seasonal and peak in the winter season. The northeastern sector of the Atlantic and adjoining shelf seas also exhibit exceptionally high interannual variability in the winter, with monthly average significant wave height varying by up to a factor of 2 from one year to the next. The strength and geographical distribution of variability is broadly consistent throughout the winter months (December-March). A large fraction of these wave height anomalies is associated with a single pattern of pressure anomalies that resembles the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO). A predictor based on NAO dependence is "trained" from relatively recent satellite data and then tested against earlier satellite and in situ data. The predictor is successful in large areas of the North Atlantic, confirming a robust relationship between wave height anomalies and the NAO over the last few decades. A substantial rise (up to 0.6 m) in monthly mean wave heights on the northeastern Atlantic during the latter part of the twentieth century is attributable to changes in the NAO. Substantial residual anomalies in wave heights exist after the influence of the NAO has been subtracted; these are partly explained by a second pair of North Atlantic patterns in wave height anomalies and sea level pressure anomalies. This "East Atlantic" pattern is particularly influential in midwinter and affects the southern part of the northeastern sector (including the region of Seven Stones Light Vessel).

  13. How does complex terrain influence responses of carbon and water cycle processes to climate variability and climate change?

    EPA Science Inventory

    We are pursuing the ambitious goal of understanding how complex terrain influences the responses of carbon and water cycle processes to climate variability and climate change. Our studies take place in H.J. Andrews Experimental Forest, an LTER (Long Term Ecological Research) site...

  14. The impact of the African Great Lakes on the regional climate in a dynamically downscaled CORDEX simulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thiery, Wim; Panitz, Hans-Jürgen; Davin, Edouard; van Lipzig, Nicole

    2014-05-01

    Owing to the strong contrast in albedo, roughness and heat capacity between land and water, lakes significantly influence the exchange of moisture, heat and momentum between the surface and the boundary layer. To investigate this two-way interaction, a correct representation of lakes within regional climate models is essential. To this end, the one-dimensional lake parameterisation scheme FLake was recently coupled to the regional climate model COSMO-CLM (CCLM). One region where lakes constitute a key component of the climate system is the African Great Lakes region. In this study, the CCLM CORDEX-Africa evaluation simulation is dynamically downscaled from 0.44° (50 km) to 0.0625° (7 km) over East-Africa, an unprecedented resolution for this region. The performance of different CCLM configurations are compared for the period 1999-2008: in particular, CCLM is tested for its sensitivity to the choice of the lake surface temperature description (SST, FLake, an improved version of FLake and Hostetler) and the land surface model (Terra and Community Land Model). Model results are evaluated in a three-step procedure. First, the atmospheric state variables near-surface temperature, precipitation, surface energy fluxes, fractional cloud cover and column precipitable water are evaluated using in-situ based and satellite-derived products. Second, a comprehensive set of in-situ water temperature profile observations serves to evaluate the temporal evolution of water temperatures at three sites: Lake Kivu (Ishungu), Lake Tanganyika's northern basin (Kigoma) and southern basin (Mpulungu). Finally, spatial variability of surface temperatures in Lake Kivu and Lake Tanganyika are evaluated on the basis of satellite-derived lake surface temperatures. Subsequently, the preferred model configuration is used to quantify and understand effects by lakes reported for other regions in the world, such as a dampened diurnal temperature range, enhanced evaporation, modified surface layer

  15. Extensive genetic variability of simian immunodeficiency virus from African green monkeys.

    PubMed Central

    Li, Y; Naidu, Y M; Daniel, M D; Desrosiers, R C

    1989-01-01

    Serological surveys have revealed that 30 to 50% of wild-caught African green monkeys have antibodies reactive to simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV), a retrovirus related to human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). Although the nucleotide sequence of one SIVagm isolate, Tyo1, was recently reported, the extent of genetic variability among SIVagm isolates remains to be determined. Restriction endonuclease mapping of infectious molecular clones of two SIVagm isolates (266 and 385), described in this note, revealed conservation of only 4 of 39 sites across the genome. Partial sequence analysis of the molecular clones revealed only 80% amino acid sequence conservation in the pol gene. Although the three Kenyan SIVagm isolates, Tyo1, 385, and 266, are more closely related to each other than to other primate lentiviruses, genetic variation among these three isolates is much greater than that observed previously among individual HIV type 1 (HIV-1), HIV-2, or SIVmac isolates. Less variability among HIV-1 and HIV-2 isolates could be explained by recent entry into the human population. The extensive genetic variation in these Kenyan SIVagm isolates should prompt continued examination of SIVagm variability from dispersed geographic regions; SIVagm strains much more closely related to HIV-1, HIV-2, or SIVmac which would be reasonable candidates for recent cross-species transmission may be found. PMID:2467010

  16. Long-term ERP time series as indicators for global climate variability and climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lehmann, E.; Grötzsch, A.; Ulbrich, U.; Leckebusch, G. C.; Nevir, P.; Thomas, M.

    2009-04-01

    This study assesses whether variations in observed Earth orientation parameters (EOPs, IERS) such as length-of day (LOD EOP C04) and polar motion (PM EOP C04) can be applied as climate indicators. Data analyses suggest that observed EOPs are differently affected by parameters associated with the atmosphere and ocean. On interannual time scales the varying ocean-atmosphere effects on EOPs are in particular pronounced during episodes of the coupled ocean-atmosphere phenomenon El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO). Observed ENSO anomalies of spatial patterns of parameters affected by atmosphere and ocean (climate indices and sea surface temperatures) are related to LOD and PM variability and associated with possible physical background processes. Present time analyses (1962 - 2000) indicate that the main source of the varying ENSO signal on observed LOD can be associated with anomalies of the relative angular momentum (AAM) related to variations in location and strength of jet streams of the upper troposphere. While on interannual time scales observed LOD and AAM are highly correlated (r=0.75), results suggest that strong El Niño events affect the observed LOD - AAM relation differently strong (explained variance 71%- 98%). Accordingly, the relation between AAM and ocean sea surface temperatures (SST) in the NIÑO 3.4 region differs (explained variances 15%-73%). Corresponding analysis is conducted on modelled EOPs (ERA40 reanalysis, ECHAM5-OM1) to obtain Earth rotation parameters undisturbed by core-mantle activities, and to study rotational variations under climate variability and change. A total of 91 strong El Niño events are analysed in coupled ocean-atmosphere ECHAM5-OM1 scenarios concerning the 20th century (20C), climate warming (A1B) and pre-industrial climate variability. Analyses on a total of 61 strong El Niño events covering a time period of 505 simulation years under pre-industrial climate conditions indicate a range of El Niño events with a strong or

  17. Decadal modulation of global surface temperature by internal climate variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dai, Aiguo; Fyfe, John C.; Xie, Shang-Ping; Dai, Xingang

    2015-06-01

    Despite a steady increase in atmospheric greenhouse gases (GHGs), global-mean surface temperature (T) has shown no discernible warming since about 2000, in sharp contrast to model simulations, which on average project strong warming. The recent slowdown in observed surface warming has been attributed to decadal cooling in the tropical Pacific, intensifying trade winds, changes in El Niño activity, increasing volcanic activity and decreasing solar irradiance. Earlier periods of arrested warming have been observed but received much less attention than the recent period, and their causes are poorly understood. Here we analyse observed and model-simulated global T fields to quantify the contributions of internal climate variability (ICV) to decadal changes in global-mean T since 1920. We show that the Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation (IPO) has been associated with large T anomalies over both ocean and land. Combined with another leading mode of ICV, the IPO explains most of the difference between observed and model-simulated rates of decadal change in global-mean T since 1920, and particularly over the so-called `hiatus' period since about 2000. We conclude that ICV, mainly through the IPO, was largely responsible for the recent slowdown, as well as for earlier slowdowns and accelerations in global-mean T since 1920, with preferred spatial patterns different from those associated with GHG-induced warming or aerosol-induced cooling. Recent history suggests that the IPO could reverse course and lead to accelerated global warming in the coming decades.

  18. Decadal Modulation of Global Surface Temperature By Internal Climate Variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dai, A.; Fyfe, J. C.; Xie, S. P.; Dai, X.

    2014-12-01

    Despite a steady increase in atmospheric greenhouse gases (GHGs), global-mean surface temperature (T) has shown no discernable warming since about 2000, in sharp contrast to model simulations which on average project strong warming. The recent slowdown in observed surface warming has been attributed to decadal cooling in the tropical Pacific, intensifying trade winds, changes in El Niño activity, increasing volcanic activity and decreasing solar irradiance. Earlier periods of arrested warming have been observed but received much less attention than the recent period, and their causes are poorly understood. Here we analyze observed and model-simulated global T fields to quantify the contributions of internal climate variability (ICV) to decadal changes in global-mean T since 1920. We show that the Inter-decadal Pacific Oscillation (IPO) has been associated with large T anomalies over both ocean and land since 1920. Combined with another leading mode of ICV, the IPO explains most of the difference between observed and model-simulated rates of decadal change in global-mean T since 1920, and particularly over the so-called "hiatus" period since about 2000. We conclude that ICV, mainly through the IPO, was largely responsible for the recent slowdown, as well as for earlier slowdowns and accelerations in global-mean T since 1920, with preferred spatial patterns different from GHG-induced warming. Recent history suggests that the IPO could reverse course and lead to accelerated global warming in the coming decades.

  19. Climate variability and wine quality over Portuguese regions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gouveia, Célia M.; Gani, Érico A.; Liberato, Margarida L. R.

    2015-04-01

    characterized in each region by high/low quality wines. Finally, we also investigated how climate variability is related to DOC wine quality for different regions using North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) index. Results reveal a strong dependence of wine quality for all regions on maximum temperature and precipitation during spring and summer (the growing season) as expected. However the role of temperature on wine quality seems to be distinct among the diverse regions probably due to their different climate zoning. Moreover, it is shown that the differences associated with high/low quality wine are in agreement with different synoptic fields patterns. Our results suggest that this type of analysis may be used in developing a tool that may help anticipating a vintage/high quality year, based on already available seasonal climate outlooks. Santo F.E., de Lima M.I.P., Ramos A.M., Trigo R.M., Trends in seasonal surface air temperature in mainland Portugal, since 1941, International Journal Climatolology, 34: 1814-1837, doi: 10.1002/joc.3803 (2014) de Lima M.I.P., Santo F.E., Ramos A.M. , Trigo, R.M., Trends and correlations in annual extreme precipitation indices for mainland Portugal, 1941-2007, Theoretical and Applied Climatology, DOI:10.1007/s00704-013-1079-6 (2014) Acknowledgements: This work was partially supported by national funds through FCT (Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia, Portugal) under project QSECA (PTDC/AAGGLO/4155/2012).

  20. Fire-Induced Variation of Essential Climate Variables in Northern Sub-Saharan Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ichoku, C. M.; Ellison, L.; Willmot, K. E.; Gatebe, C. K.; Matsui, T.; Wang, J.; Okonkwo, C.; Damoah, R.; Lee, J.; Adegoke, J. O.; Bolten, J. D.; Policelli, F. S.; Wilcox, E. M.; Habib, S.

    2014-12-01

    The northern sub-Saharan African (NSSA) region, bounded on the north and south by the Sahara and the Equator, respectively, and stretching East-West across Africa, is very vulnerable because of the highly active environmental and meteorological processes associated with its unique location and human activities. Over the years, this region has suffered frequent severe droughts that have caused tremendous hardship and loss of life to millions of its inhabitants due to the rapid depletion of the regional water resources. On the other hand, the NSSA region shows one of the highest biomass-burning rates per unit land area among all regions of the world. Because of the high concentration and frequency of fires in this region, with the associated abundance of heat release and gaseous and particulate smoke emissions, biomass-burning activity is believed to be one of the drivers of the regional carbon and energy cycles, with serious implications for the water cycle and climate. An interdisciplinary research effort sponsored by NASA is presently being focused on the NSSA region, to better understand possible connections between the intense biomass burning observed from satellite year after year across the region and the water cycle, through associated changes in certain essential climate variables (ECVs) including land-cover, albedo, soil moisture, evapotranspiration, and atmospheric composition, which can drive changes in additional ECVs such as atmospheric water vapor and wind patterns, precipitation, surface runoff, and groundwater recharge. A combination of remote sensing and modeling approaches is being utilized to investigate these multiple processes to clarify possible links between them. We are finding significant relationships between biomass burning and many of the above-listed ECVs. In this presentation, we will discuss interesting results as well as the path toward improved understanding of the interrelationships and feedbacks between the water cycle components

  1. A modeling study of climate variability over western and eastern Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, Liqiang

    1997-09-01

    This dissertation is composed of six separate papers linked by a common purpose: to investigate the physical mechanisms associated with the climate variability over western and eastern Africa. This study is carried out on both monthly and seasonal time-scales. In Chapter 2, the NASA GEOS-1 GCM was adopted to investigate the role of orography in determining the western African climate. The moist southwesterlies emanating from the Atlas-Ahaggar orographic trough and the dry hot northeasterlies originating from the corresponding orographic windward ridge tend to converge thus re-enforcing the ITCZ over the Sahel. A zonal orographic ridge is generated along the coastal region of West Africa. Thus a permanent orographic induced rainfall dipole pattern over western Africa is produced. A weaker orographic induced rainfall dipole pattern across West Africa is simulated in response to the 1973 SST anomaly pattern. Consequently, wetter conditions along the coastal region and rainfall deficits over the Sahel are produced, which are consistent with observations. In Chapter 3, we customized the NCAR Regional Climate Model (RegCM2) for eastern Africa. The physics of RegCM2 has been improved. In Chapter 4, the model simulated both large-scale and mesoscale features during the autumn rains of 1988. In Chapter 5, we simulated the interannual variability of precipitation during autumn rains between 1982 and 1993. The stronger Arabian High appears to be responsible for earlier onset of rains, and the enhanced St. Helena and weaker Mascarene Highs lead to positive precipitation anomalies over Tanzania. The enhanced St. Helena High also leads to positive precipitation anomalies over Angola plateau. Strong connection between precipitation anomalies over Lake Victoria and ENSO exists. El Nino events usually lead to positive precipitation anomalies over the Turkana Channel. Precipitation over western Kenya Highlands is significantly affected by Lake Victoria and the Arabian High. The

  2. Water resources transfers through southern African food trade: water efficiency and climate signals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dalin, Carole; Conway, Declan

    2016-01-01

    Temporal and spatial variability of precipitation in southern Africa is particularly high. The associated drought and flood risks, combined with a largely rain-fed agriculture, pose a challenge for water and food security in the region. As regional collaboration strengthens through the Southern Africa Development Community and trade with other regions increases, it is thus important to understand both how climate variability affects agricultural productivity and how food trade (regional and extra-regional) can contribute to the region's capacity to deal with climate-related shocks. We combine global hydrological model simulations with international food trade data to quantify the water resources embedded in international food trade in southern Africa and with the rest of the world, from 1986-2011. We analyze the impacts of socio-economic changes and climatic variability on agricultural trade and embedded water resources during this period. We find that regional food trade is efficient in terms of water use but may be unsustainable because water-productive exporters, like South Africa, rely on increasingly stressed water resources. The role of imports from the rest of the world in the region's food supply is important, in particular during severe droughts. This reflects how trade can efficiently redistribute water resources across continents in response to a sudden gap in food production. In a context of regional and global integration, our results highlight opportunities for improved water-efficiency and sustainability of the region's food supply via trade.

  3. Some Examples Of Water Resources Variability In The Context Of Climatic Fluctuations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Laignel, B.; Massei, N.; Rossi, A.; Mesquita, J.; Slimani, S.

    2008-12-01

    The determination of the impact of climate change on hydrological systems and their water resource constitutes a major stake of the 21st century to which the scientists must answer. First of all, it is necessary to understand how climate are expressed in the hydrosystems. For several years, the M2C laboratory of the University of Rouen has tried to answer this question by working within the framework of many regional, national and international programs as well as PhD works. Those studies involve analyses of hydrological systems located: (1) in various climatic and geomorphological contexts on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean, (2) in various hydrological compartments (surface and ground water), (3) at various spatial scales (watersheds smaller than 1000 km2 and large rivers). The approach consists in studying the long-term changes, oscillations and fluctuations of hydrologic variables by the analysis of time series (precipitation, discharge, piezometry), in particular by means of signal analysis and processing methods. The studied hydrosystems are small watersheds and aquifer in Haute- Normandie, the Seine river (NW France), north-african watersheds (W Morocco and N Algeria), small watersheds and aquifer in Texas, the Colorado river (Texas) and the Mississippi river. Although the identification of structured variations might be uneasy - sometimes just impossible - in raw data, wavelet analysis, for instance, makes it possible to detect localized energetic structures and possible periodicities in all the studied hydrosystems and to quantify them. In many surface hydrosystems we note an intensification of the annual energy band which corresponds to the hydrological cycle. In the NW of France and North Africa, we observe 2-3-year and 5-7-year modes which could be linearly related to fluctuations in the NAO using wavelet coherence. In the USA, we notice similar 2- 3-year and 5-7-year modes that might be possibly related to the characteristic 2-4-year and 4-8-year of

  4. Experimental climate warming decreases photosynthetic efficiency of lichens in an arid South African ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Maphangwa, Khumbudzo Walter; Musil, Charles F; Raitt, Lincoln; Zedda, Luciana

    2012-05-01

    Elevated temperatures and diminished precipitation amounts accompanying climate warming in arid ecosystems are expected to have adverse effects on the photosynthesis of lichen species sensitive to elevated temperature and/or water limitation. This premise was tested by artificially elevating temperatures (increase 2.1-3.8°C) and reducing the amounts of fog and dew precipitation (decrease 30.1-31.9%), in an approximation of future climate warming scenarios, using transparent hexagonal open-top warming chambers placed around natural populations of four lichen species (Xanthoparmelia austroafricana, X. hyporhytida , Xanthoparmelia. sp., Xanthomaculina hottentotta) at a dry inland site and two lichen species (Teloschistes capensis and Ramalina sp.) at a humid coastal site in the arid South African Succulent Karoo Biome. Effective photosynthetic quantum yields ([Formula: see text]) were measured hourly throughout the day at monthly intervals in pre-hydrated lichens present in the open-top warming chambers and in controls which comprised demarcated plots of equivalent open-top warming chamber dimensions constructed from 5-cm-diameter mesh steel fencing. The cumulative effects of the elevated temperatures and diminished precipitation amounts in the open-top warming chambers resulted in significant decreases in lichen [Formula: see text]. The decreases were more pronounced in lichens from the dry inland site (decline 34.1-46.1%) than in those from the humid coastal site (decline 11.3-13.7%), most frequent and prominent in lichens at both sites during the dry summer season, and generally of greatest magnitude at or after the solar noon in all seasons. Based on these results, we conclude that climate warming interacting with reduced precipitation will negatively affect carbon balances in endemic lichens by increasing desiccation damage and reducing photosynthetic activity time, leading to increased incidences of mortality.

  5. Climate variability effects on urban recharge beneath low impact development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Newcomer, M. E.; Gurdak, J. J.

    2012-12-01

    Groundwater resources in urban and coastal environments are highly vulnerable to human pressures and climate variability and change, and many communities face water shortages and need to find alternative water supplies. Therefore, understanding how low impact development (LID) site planning and integrated/best management practices (BMPs) affect recharge rates and volumes is important because of the increasing use of LID and BMP to reduce stormwater runoff and improve surface-water quality. Often considered a secondary management benefit, many BMPs may also enhance recharge to local aquifers; however these hypothesized benefits have not been thoroughly tested or quantified. In this study, we quantify stormwater capture and recharge enhancement beneath a BMP infiltration trench of the LID research network at San Francisco State University, San Francisco, California. Stormwater capture and retention was analyzed using the SCS TR-55 curve number method and in-situ infiltration rates to assess LID storage. Recharge was quantified using vadose zone monitoring equipment, a detailed water budget analysis, and a Hydrus-2D model. Additionally, the effects of historical and predicted future precipitation on recharge rates were examined using precipitation from the Geophysical Fluid Dynamic Laboratory (GFDL) A1F1 climate scenario. Observed recharge rates beneath the infiltration trench range from 1,600 to 3,700 mm/year and are an order of magnitude greater than recharge beneath an irrigated grass lawn and a natural setting. The Hydrus-2D model results indicate increased recharge under the GFDL A1F1 scenario compared with historical and GFDL modeled 20th century rates because of the higher frequency of large precipitation events that induce runoff into the infiltration trench. However, under a simulated A1F1 El Niño year, recharge calculated by a water budget does not increase compared with current El Niño recharge rates. In comparison, simulated recharge rates were

  6. Changing Seasonality of Tundra Vegetation and Associated Climatic Variables

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bhatt, U. S.; Walker, D. A.; Raynolds, M. K.; Bieniek, P.; Epstein, H. E.; Comiso, J. C.; Pinzon, J.; Tucker, C. J.; Steele, M.; Ermold, W. S.; Zhang, J.

    2014-12-01

    This study documents changes in the seasonality of tundra vegetation productivity and its associated climate variables using long-term data sets. An overall increase of Pan-Arctic tundra greenness potential corresponds to increased land surface temperatures and declining sea ice concentrations. While sea ice has continued to decline, summer land surface temperature and vegetation productivity increases have stalled during the last decade in parts of the Arctic. To understand the processes behind these features we investigate additional climate parameters. This study employs remotely sensed weekly 25-km sea ice concentration, weekly surface temperature, and bi-weekly NDVI from 1982 to 2013. Maximum NDVI (MaxNDVI, Maximum Normalized Difference Vegetation Index), Time Integrated NDVI (TI-NDVI), Summer Warmth Index (SWI, sum of degree months above freezing during May-August), ocean heat content (PIOMAS, model incorporating ocean data assimilation), and snow water equivalent (GlobSnow, assimilated snow data set) are explored. We analyzed the data for the full period (1982-2013) and for two sub-periods (1982-1998 and 1999-2013), which were chosen based on the declining Pan-Arctic SWI since 1998. MaxNDVI has increased from 1982-2013 over most of the Arctic but has declined from 1999 to 2013 over western Eurasia, northern Canada, and southwest Alaska. TI-NDVI has trends that are similar to those for MaxNDVI for the full period but displays widespread declines over the 1999-2013 period. Therefore, as the MaxNDVI has continued to increase overall for the Arctic, TI-NDVI has been declining since 1999. SWI has large relative increases over the 1982-2013 period in eastern Canada and Greenland and strong declines in western Eurasia and southern Canadian tundra. Weekly Pan-Arctic tundra land surface temperatures warmed throughout the summer during the 1982-1998 period but display midsummer declines from 1999-2013. Weekly snow water equivalent over Arctic tundra has declined over

  7. Bahamian speleothems reveal Atlantic climate variability during Heinrich Events

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arienzo, M. M.; Swart, P. K.; Broad, K.; Clement, A. C.; Eisenhauer, A.; Kakuk, B.

    2010-12-01

    During the last glacial period there is confounding evidence for global millennial scale variability in climate, dominated by Heinrich events and Dansgaard-Oeschger (D/O) events. These events have been documented in the ice core records, deep-sea sediment records and speleothems. Speleothem records have been studied from diverse localities such as South and Central America, Continental United States, Europe, and China, however, there is a significant lack of paleoclimate data from the subtropical Atlantic. Our analyses of stalagmites from the Bahamas reveal that Heinrich events are preserved in the geochemical signature of our samples. To date, over 15 stalagmites have been collected and dated from Blue Holes in the Bahamas. Currently submerged, the speleothems are collected using advanced diving technologies at depths ranging from 10-40 meters below sea level. Sample DC-09 was collected at 16.5 meters below sea level from Dan’s Cave, Abaco Island, Bahamas and was forming from approximately 13,700 to 30,000 ybp, determined from U/Th age dates. Sample DC-14 was collected at 23.5 meters below sea level from the same cave and was dated from 13,800 to 54,000 ybp. These samples provide a continuous record and replicate records from the same cave aid in the interpretation of the geochemical data. These samples have been analyzed for stable carbon and oxygen isotopes as well as trace elements at a 20 μm resolution. Preliminary analysis reveals enrichment in the carbon and oxygen isotope values with amplitudes as large as 4.5‰ associated with Heinrich events. This reflects a change from relatively arid to wetter conditions, which occur over periods as short as 50 years. When comparing the record from DC-09 to DC-14, DC-09 consists of a greater C and O change associated with each Heinrich Event. This is possibly driven in part by the differences in depth at which the samples were forming. There is a greater amount of material overlying the deeper sample, therefore

  8. Delayed detection of climate mitigation benefits due to climate inertia and variability.

    PubMed

    Tebaldi, Claudia; Friedlingstein, Pierre

    2013-10-22

    Climate change mitigation acts by reducing greenhouse gas emissions, and thus curbing, or even reversing, the increase in their atmospheric concentration. This reduces the associated anthropogenic radiative forcing, and hence the size of the warming. Because of the inertia and internal variability affecting the climate system and the global carbon cycle, it is unlikely that a reduction in warming would be immediately discernible. Here we use 21st century simulations from the latest ensemble of Earth System Model experiments to investigate and quantify when mitigation becomes clearly discernible. We use one of the scenarios as a reference for a strong mitigation strategy, Representative Concentration Pathway (RCP) 2.6 and compare its outcome with either RCP4.5 or RCP8.5, both of which are less severe mitigation pathways. We analyze global mean atmospheric CO2, and changes in annually and seasonally averaged surface temperature at global and regional scales. For global mean surface temperature, the median detection time of mitigation is about 25-30 y after RCP2.6 emissions depart from the higher emission trajectories. This translates into detection of a mitigation signal by 2035 or 2045, depending on whether the comparison is with RCP8.5 or RCP4.5, respectively. The detection of climate benefits of emission mitigation occurs later at regional scales, with a median detection time between 30 and 45 y after emission paths separate. Requiring a 95% confidence level induces a delay of several decades, bringing detection time toward the end of the 21st century.

  9. « Younger-Dryas / African Humid Period »: a notable climatic transition over West Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Skonieczny, C.; Bory, A. J.; Bout-Roumazeilles, V.; Malaizé, B.; Grousset, F. E.; Abouchami, W.; Galer, S. J.; Francois, R. H.

    2013-05-01

    Every year, several hundreds teragrams of dust are emitted from the Sahara and Sahel regions. These mineral particles sensitively track variations in atmospheric circulation and continental aridity. Sediments of the Northeastern Atlantic Tropical Ocean (NEATO) are fed by this intense dust supply and comprise unique long-term archives of past dust emissions. Past modifications of dust characteristics in these sedimentary archives can provide precious information on changes in environmental conditions in source areas (aridity, weathering), as well as on changes in the characteristics of their atmospheric transport (pathways and strength). Over Africa, gradual increases in local insolation due to changes in the Earth's orbit are accompanied by a migration of the precipitation monsoon-system (associated with the InterTropical Convergence Zone, ITCZ) toward the North. This displacement leads to decrease in West African mineral dust emission. Consequently, Saharan and Sahelian dust deposited in the NEATO sedimentary archives represent an exceptional opportunity to document the environmental and climatic changes that have taken place in West Africa throughout the Quaternary and beyond (Rea, 1994). Here we document changes in the terrigenous supplies to the NETAO throughout the last deglaciation using the marine sediment core MD03-2705 located off Mauritania (18°05N; 21°09W; 3085m water depth) and retrieved from a bathymetric dome, 300 meters above the surrounding seafloor. Considering this particular environmental setting, the terrigenous fraction in this record is assumed to be predominantly of aeolian origin. Multi-proxy analyses of the carbonate-free fraction of the sediment were carried-out, including dust fluxes, grain-size, clay mineralogy and geochemical measurements (major and trace elements as well as Sr & Nd isotopes). We will discuss the most significant changes recorded over the studied period: levels dated from the Younger Dryas and the subsequent African

  10. Impact of racial perspectives and contextual variables on marital trust and adjustment for African American couples.

    PubMed

    Kelly, Shalonda; Floyd, Frank J

    2006-03-01

    This study examined the associations of racial perspectives that represent pro-African American, anti-African American, or a mixture of these beliefs with marital trust and adjustment for African American couples (N = 93). Religious well-being and socioeconomic status (SES) were examined as contextual moderators. For husbands only, the anti-African American perspective was inversely associated with couple functioning, the mixed perspective was inversely associated with marital trust, and the pro-African American perspective predicted marital trust only for husbands having relatively low religious well-being and relatively high SES. The limited effects of pro-African American attitudes suggest the need to evaluate a wider range of these attitudes in future research. Also, findings corroborate suggestions for therapists to routinely assess and address both cultural pride and shame issues relevant to African American couple relationships.

  11. Australia: Climate-Ecosystem Variability and Impacts on Disease

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gustafson, K. C.; Diabate, M.; Anyamba, A.

    2012-12-01

    Climate variability in Australia is largely driven by an atmospheric phenomenon called the Southern Oscillation (SO), which involves a see-saw like behavior between low and high pressure systems within the equatorial Pacific regions. The interaction of SO with abnormally high sea surface temperatures (SSTs) - El Niño - or abnormally low SSTs - La Niña ("anti-El Niño") - creates extreme drought or extreme flooding respectively throughout the Australian continent. These El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) events have significant impacts on Australia's landscape, ecosystems, agriculture production, and, as this report show, human health. The teleconnection between ENSO and human health is straight forward but not obvious. During La Niña years, when ENSO events are characterized by increased rainfall and consequential flooding, Australia's tropical, warm climate in addition to an associated increase in vegetation growth from the increased rainfall creates an ideal habitat for mosquito population increase. Certain species of Australian mosquitoes [Culux annulirostris] are carriers of Murray Valley Encephalitis (MVE) virus which is a rare but potentially fatal infection that attacks neurological and muscular functioning. It is hypothesized that a widespread increase in vegetation indicates an expansion of ideal mosquito production habitats and will translate to an increased risk of MVE contraction. The objective of this research is to show if a correlation exists between the ENSO-driven climate- and consequential ecosystem- changes and MVE outbreaks throughout Australia. To do so, this study makes use of the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) sensor operating on NASA's Terra satellite to obtain monthly Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) data. It is assumed in this research that an anomalous increase in NDVI values - indicative of vegetation growth - occurs as a result of increased rainfall. Due to Australia's tropical positioning and

  12. Deconstructing interdecadal climate variability using a network of paleoclimate proxy records

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Young, S. K.; Okumura, Y.; Partin, J. W.

    2015-12-01

    Interdecadal climate variability is of marked socioeconomic importance around the world and recent studies suggest that it may also affect the rate of global warming (Here, interdecadal variability refers broadly to variability on time scales of 10-100 years.) Our understanding of interdecadal climate variability is at present limited by a short instrumental record constituting only a few cycles. To improve climate prediction over the coming decades, a better understanding of interdecadal climate variability is critical. An increasing number of annually resolved paleoclimate proxy records present a means to extend the temporal coverage of the record of interdecadal variability. In so doing, we may begin to address the following questions. What were the amplitudes and timescales of known modes of interdecadal variability, such as the Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation (IPO) or the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO), before the instrumental era? Is interdecadal variability in different ocean basins related? Are there any yet undiscovered modes of interdecadal variability? To answer these questions we construct a network of annually-resolved proxy records collected from the NOAA paleoclimatology data archive and perform various statistical analyses without any a priori assumptions about modes of variability. During the instrumental period, this network reasonably captures the observed interdecadal variability in the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. We are currently extending these analyses beyond the instrumental record to reconstruct past variability. The new insight gained from the proxies will be assessed through the analysis of CMIP5 climate model simulations.

  13. Incorporating climate change trends to near future variability of crop yields in Iberia Peninsula

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Capa-Morocho, Mirian; Baethgen, Walter E.; Fernandes, Kátia; Rodríguez-Fonseca, Belén; Ruiz-Ramos, Margarita

    2016-04-01

    In this study, we analyze the effects of near future climate variability on cropping systems in Iberian Peninsula (IP). For this purpose, we generated climate sequences that simulate realistic variability on annual to decadal time scales. The sequences incorporate nonlinear climate change trends, using statistical methods and and an ensemble of global climate models from the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP5). Then, the climate sequences are temporal downscaled into daily weather data and used as inputs to crop models. As case study, we evaluate the impacts of plausible future climate scenarios on rain-fed wheat yield two agricultural locations in IP. We adapted the method by Greene et al., (2012 and 2015) for informing climate projections for the coming decades with a combination of seasonal to interannual and anthropogenically forced climate change information for accounting the Near-term Climate Change. Long-term data containing solar radiation, maximum and minimum temperature and rainfall are needed to apply this method. The climate variability observed was decomposed into long-range trend, decadal and interannual variability to understand the relative importance of each time scale. The interannual variability was modeled based on the observational records. The results of this study may have important implications on public and private sectors to analyze the probabilistic projections of impacts and agronomic adaptations of near future climate variability in Iberian Peninsula. This study has been funded by MACSUR project from FACCE-JPI. References Greene, A.M., Goddard, L., Gonzalez, P.L., Ines, A.V. and Chryssanthacopoulos, J., 2015.A climate generator for agricultural planning in southeastern South America.Agricultural and Forest Meteorology, 203: 217-228. Greene, A.M., Hellmuth, M. and Lumsden, T., 2012. Stochastic decadal climate simulations for the Berg and Breede water management areas, western Cape province, South Africa. Water Resources

  14. Impact of Mascarene High variability on the East African `short rains'

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manatsa, Desmond; Morioka, Yushi; Behera, Swadhin K.; Matarira, Caxston H.; Yamagata, Toshio

    2014-03-01

    The interannual variability of East African `short rains' (EASR) and its link with the Mascarene High (MH) variation are explored, using observations and reanalysis data. Correlation and composite analyses for flood and drought events reveal that the EASR variability is strongly linked to the MH zonal displacement, in particular, the zonal movement of the MH eastern ridge. When the MH eastern ridge is anomalously displaced to the west (east) of its normal position, the south east (SE) trade winds over the South Indian Ocean (SIO) anomalously strengthen (weaken). This enhances (reduces) the relatively cool and dry SE trade winds and induces cold (warm) sea surface temperature anomaly in the SIO. As a result, convection over the western equatorial SIO is suppressed (enhanced) and leads to rainfall deficits (excess) over East Africa. Droughts in East Africa are associated with a westward migration of the MH eastern ridge, while the relationship is less clear for flood events and their link to an eastward migration of the MH. Therefore, the zonal migration of the MH eastern ridge provides a novel indicator for the EASR extremes especially droughts. This revelation has immense social application for rainfall forecast over East Africa where rainfall deficits have become more prevalent against the background of deteriorating conventional forecasts for EASR droughts.

  15. [Integration of demographic variables in development planning: the case of Central African Republic].

    PubMed

    Bm'niyat Bangamboulou-te-niya, D

    1989-06-01

    maternal-child health project created in 1978, and the 2nd national population census is underway. These positive actions have not been integrated into a framework for population and development planning. 4 phases are viewed as necessary if integration of population and development planning is to be achieved in the Central African Republic. These phases are provision of population education to all sectors; research on population variables and links between population and development especially in employment, education, and population distribution; training and integration of skills between political authorities, planners, and researchers; and development of data bases and modelling capabilities.

  16. Comparison of temperature variability in observations and sixteen climate model simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    CMIP Investigators; Bell, J.; Duffy, P.; Covey, C.; Sloan, L.

    2000-01-01

    Understanding how much, if any, of observed climate changes are anthropogenic depends upon understanding the magnitude and spatial patterns of natural climate variability. We have compared simulated surface air temperature (SAT) variability in 16 coupled ocean-atmosphere-sea ice climate model simulations to observed temperature variability. The majority of the simulations exhibit excessive air temperature variability over land while simulated temperature variability over oceans is generally too low. The ratio of variability over land to over oceans is too high in all the simulations, relative to observations. We have identified several factors which may contribute to the differences in temperature variability. In particular, many of the models use ”bucket” land surface schemes which produce greater temperature variability over land, due to lower levels of soil moisture, than more realistic land surface schemes produce.

  17. Comparison of temperature variability in observations and sixteen climate model simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bell, J.; Duffy, P.; Covey, C.; Sloan, L.

    2000-01-01

    Understanding how much, if any, of observed climate changes are anthropogenic depends upon understanding the magnitude and spatial patterns of natural climate variability. We have compared simulated surface air temperature (SAT) variability in 16 coupled ocean-atmosphere-sea ice climate model simulations to observed temperature variability. The majority of the simulations exhibit excessive air temperature variability over land while simulated temperature variability over oceans is generally too low. The ratio of variability over land to over oceans is too high in all the simulations, relative to observations. We have identified several factors which may contribute to the differences in temperature variability. In particular, many of the models use "bucket" land surface schemes which produce greater temperature variability over land, due to lower levels of soil moisture, than more realistic land surface schemes produce.

  18. Beyond a climate-centric view of plant distribution: edaphic variables add value to distribution models.

    PubMed

    Beauregard, Frieda; de Blois, Sylvie

    2014-01-01

    Both climatic and edaphic conditions determine plant distribution, however many species distribution models do not include edaphic variables especially over large geographical extent. Using an exceptional database of vegetation plots (n = 4839) covering an extent of ∼55,000 km2, we tested whether the inclusion of fine scale edaphic variables would improve model predictions of plant distribution compared to models using only climate predictors. We also tested how well these edaphic variables could predict distribution on their own, to evaluate the assumption that at large extents, distribution is governed largely by climate. We also hypothesized that the relative contribution of edaphic and climatic data would vary among species depending on their growth forms and biogeographical attributes within the study area. We modelled 128 native plant species from diverse taxa using four statistical model types and three sets of abiotic predictors: climate, edaphic, and edaphic-climate. Model predictive accuracy and variable importance were compared among these models and for species' characteristics describing growth form, range boundaries within the study area, and prevalence. For many species both the climate-only and edaphic-only models performed well, however the edaphic-climate models generally performed best. The three sets of predictors differed in the spatial information provided about habitat suitability, with climate models able to distinguish range edges, but edaphic models able to better distinguish within-range variation. Model predictive accuracy was generally lower for species without a range boundary within the study area and for common species, but these effects were buffered by including both edaphic and climatic predictors. The relative importance of edaphic and climatic variables varied with growth forms, with trees being more related to climate whereas lower growth forms were more related to edaphic conditions. Our study identifies the potential

  19. Abrupt or not abrupt - biodiversity affects climate-vegetation interaction at the end of the African Humid Period

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Claussen, Martin; Bathiany, Sebastian; Brovkin, Victor; Kleinen, Thomas

    2014-05-01

    Palaeo-climate and ecosystem data derived from the sediment record from Lake Yoa (Ounianga Kebir, North-East Tchad) have been interpreted as support for a weak interaction between climate and vegetation without abrupt changes in precipitation climate and vegetation coverage over the last 6000 years. However, interpretation of these data has neglected potential effects of plant diversity on the stability of the climate - vegetation system. Here, we use a conceptual model that represents plant diversity in terms of moisture requirement; some plant types are sensitive to changes in precipitation thereby leading to an unstable system with the possibility of abrupt changes, while other plant types are more resilient with gradual system changes. We demonstrate that plant diversity tends to attenuate the instability of the interaction between climate and sensitive plant types, while it reduces the stability of the interaction between climate and less sensitive plant types. Hence, despite large sensitivities of individual plant types to precipitation, a gradual decline in precipitation and mean vegetation cover can occur. The present study offers a new interpretation for reconstructed shifts in vegetation and climate in northern Africa at the end of the African Humid Period. It focusses on the ecosystems in semi-arid climate, but the principle that plant diversity can affect the stability of climate-vegetation interaction may generally apply.

  20. Water resources transfers through southern African food trade: water efficiency and climate signals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dalin, C.; Conway, D.

    2015-12-01

    Temporal and spatial variability of precipitation in Southern Africa is particularly high. The associated drought and flood risks, combined with a largely rainfed agriculture, pose a challenge for water and food security in this region. It is thus important to understand both how climate variability affects agricultural productivity and how intra- and extra-regional trade can contribute to the region's capacity to deal with climate-related shocks. We combine international food trade data and a global hydrological model to quantify the water resources embedded in international food trade in southern Africa and with the rest of the world, from 1986-2011. We analyze the impacts of socio-economic, political and climatic changes on agricultural trade and embedded water resources during that period. We find that regional food trade is efficient in terms of water resources but may be unsustainable because water-productive exporters, like South Africa, rely on increasingly scarce water resources. The role of imports from the rest of the world in the region's food supply is important, in particular during severe droughts. This reflects how trade can efficiently redistribute water resources across continents in response to a sudden gap in food production and water productivity. As regional collaboration strengthens through the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) and trade with other regions increases, our results point out opportunities for improved water-efficiency and sustainability of the region's food production via trade.

  1. Satellite-derived interannual variability of West African rainfall during 1983-88

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ba, Mamoudou B.; Frouin, Robert; Nicholson, Sharon E.

    1995-01-01

    Two satellite algorithms for rain estimation are used to study the interannual variability of West African rainfall during contrasting years of the period 1983-88. The first algorithm uses a frequency of occurrence index quantifying the number of times Meteosat thermal infrared radiance below 2.107 W/sq m/sr/micrometer (-40 C) occurs during the rainy season. The second algorithm uses the average Meteosat thermal infrared radiance over the period of interest. Appropriate calibrations are performed using these satellite parameters and ground-based rainfall observations. Separate calibration and equations are considered for each of three suggested subrainfall zones in West Africa: two Sahelian zones located just north of 9 deg N (one east and one west of 5 deg W) and the region extending south from 9 deg N to the coast. Over 80% of the variance in the ground-based rainfall data is explained by both algorithms in regions located north of 9 deg N, but poor correlations between observed and estimated rainfall exist south of 9 deg N. The interannual variability of rainfall in the Sahel is well described by that of cold clouds and average radiances. The satellite estimates also reveal substantial longitudinal variability in the anomaly fields, indicating that some Sahelo-Soudanian areas may receive above average rainfall during a year cataloged as dry. The latitudinal displacement and the extent of the cloud band associated with the intertropical convergence zone (ITCZ), as derived from cold cloud indices, indicate a northward displacement of the ITCZ in some, but not all, wet years in the Sahel. No systematic anomalous southward displacement of the ITCZ is evident in dry years. Drought in the Sahel appears to be more closely linked to the lattitudinal extent and the intensity of the convection within the ITCZ.

  2. Natural variability of the climate as predicted by a simple ocean model with parameterized thermohaline circulation

    SciTech Connect

    Watts, R.G.; Li, S.

    1995-12-31

    Variability of the Earth`s climate can take place on many time scales as a result of internal features. This natural variability is important to humans since it affects such important human enterprises as agriculture, floods, droughts, etc. The authors investigate natural variability within a simple ocean model.

  3. Slowing down of North Pacific climate variability and its implications for abrupt ecosystem change.

    PubMed

    Boulton, Chris A; Lenton, Timothy M

    2015-09-15

    Marine ecosystems are sensitive to stochastic environmental variability, with higher-amplitude, lower-frequency--i.e., "redder"--variability posing a greater threat of triggering large ecosystem changes. Here we show that fluctuations in the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) index have slowed down markedly over the observational record (1900-present), as indicated by a robust increase in autocorrelation. This "reddening" of the spectrum of climate variability is also found in regionally averaged North Pacific sea surface temperatures (SSTs), and can be at least partly explained by observed deepening of the ocean mixed layer. The progressive reddening of North Pacific climate variability has important implications for marine ecosystems. Ecosystem variables that respond linearly to climate forcing will have become prone to much larger variations over the observational record, whereas ecosystem variables that respond nonlinearly to climate forcing will have become prone to more frequent "regime shifts." Thus, slowing down of North Pacific climate variability can help explain the large magnitude and potentially the quick succession of well-known abrupt changes in North Pacific ecosystems in 1977 and 1989. When looking ahead, despite model limitations in simulating mixed layer depth (MLD) in the North Pacific, global warming is robustly expected to decrease MLD. This could potentially reverse the observed trend of slowing down of North Pacific climate variability and its effects on marine ecosystems.

  4. Characterization of Climate Change and Variability with GPS

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kursinski, R.

    1999-01-01

    influence of natural climate variability. S. Leroy concludes that the signal-to-noise ratio of global warming detection increases by unity approximately every 10 years if a single oceanic region is chosen. Less time for detection is likely when many global regions are considered simultaneously. GPS occultation constellations allow the possibility of detecting small changes in upper air temperature with inconsequential calibration errors, making occultation an ideal data type for global warming detection studies. Our initial study of a 22-GHz satellite-satellite occultation system predicts upper troposphere moisture sensitivities of 3-5 ppmv and 1-2 percent in the middle and lower troposphere. Additional information contained in original.

  5. Solar variability and climate change: An historical perspective

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Feldman, Theodore S.

    There is nothing new about the debate over the Sun's influence on terrestrial climate.As early as the late 18th century, widespread concern for the deterioration of the Earth's climate led to speculation about the Sun's role in climate change [Feldman, 1993; Fleming, 1990]. Drawing analogies with variations in the brightness of stars, the British astronomer William Herschel suggested that greater sunspot activity would result in warmer terrestrial climates. Herschel supported his hypothesis by referring to price series for wheat published in Adam Smiths Wealth of Nations [Hufbauer, 1991]. Later, the eminent American physicist Joseph Henry demonstrated by thermopile measurements that, contrary to Herschel's assumption, sunspots were cooler than the unblemished portions of the solar disk.

  6. Impacts of Climatic Variability on Vibrio parahaemolyticus Outbreaks in Taiwan

    PubMed Central

    Hsiao, Hsin-I; Jan, Man-Ser; Chi, Hui-Ju

    2016-01-01

    This study aimed to investigate and quantify the relationship between climate variation and incidence of Vibrio parahaemolyticus in Taiwan. Specifically, seasonal autoregressive integrated moving average (ARIMA) models (including autoregression, seasonality, and a lag-time effect) were employed to predict the role of climatic factors (including temperature, rainfall, relative humidity, ocean temperature and ocean salinity) on the incidence of V. parahaemolyticus in Taiwan between 2000 and 2011. The results indicated that average temperature (+), ocean temperature (+), ocean salinity of 6 months ago (+), maximum daily rainfall (current (−) and one month ago (−)), and average relative humidity (current and 9 months ago (−)) had significant impacts on the incidence of V. parahaemolyticus. Our findings offer a novel view of the quantitative relationship between climate change and food poisoning by V. parahaemolyticus in Taiwan. An early warning system based on climate change information for the disease control management is required in future. PMID:26848675

  7. Linking global climate and temperature variability to widespread amphibian declines putatively caused by disease

    PubMed Central

    Rohr, Jason R.; Raffel, Thomas R.

    2010-01-01

    The role of global climate change in the decline of biodiversity and the emergence of infectious diseases remains controversial, and the effect of climatic variability, in particular, has largely been ignored. For instance, it was recently revealed that the proposed link between climate change and widespread amphibian declines, putatively caused by the chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd), was tenuous because it was based on a temporally confounded correlation. Here we provide temporally unconfounded evidence that global El Niño climatic events drive widespread amphibian losses in genus Atelopus via increased regional temperature variability, which can reduce amphibian defenses against pathogens. Of 26 climate variables tested, only factors associated with temperature variability could account for the spatiotemporal patterns of declines thought to be associated with Bd. Climatic predictors of declines became significant only after controlling for a pattern consistent with epidemic spread (by temporally detrending the data). This presumed spread accounted for 59% of the temporal variation in amphibian losses, whereas El Niño accounted for 59% of the remaining variation. Hence, we could account for 83% of the variation in declines with these two variables alone. Given that global climate change seems to increase temperature variability, extreme climatic events, and the strength of Central Pacific El Niño episodes, climate change might exacerbate worldwide enigmatic declines of amphibians, presumably by increasing susceptibility to disease. These results suggest that changes to temperature variability associated with climate change might be as significant to biodiversity losses and disease emergence as changes to mean temperature. PMID:20404180

  8. Political determinants of variable aetiology resonance: explaining the African AIDS epidemics.

    PubMed

    Hunsmann, M

    2009-12-01

    Notwithstanding the massive social and economic disruptions caused by HIV/AIDS in many sub-Saharan countries, the epidemic does not pose a serious political threat to African governments. Based on an analysis of today's dominant aetiologic framing of HIV/AIDS in sub-Saharan Africa, this paper argues that the behaviour-centred explanatory approach contributes to the political domestication of the epidemic. The behavioural aetiology suffers from a double reductionism: It concentrates on sexual transmission only and, within sexual transmission, it focuses exclusively on the immediate cause of transmission (unprotected sex), omitting that biological co-factors increase populations' vulnerability to infection. By overlooking these non-behaviour-related determinants of sexual HIV transmission, this explanatory approach implicitly blames individual behaviours for the spread of the virus. Conversely, the likely underestimation (if not the outright denial) of iatrogenic HIV transmission exonerates governments and donor agencies. The variable political resonance of different explanatory approaches is not random and the translation of the available bio-medical and epidemiological evidence into prevention measures is politically mediated.

  9. The relationship between African easterly waves and daily rainfall over West Africa: observations and regional climate simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Crétat, Julien; Vizy, Edward K.; Cook, Kerry H.

    2015-01-01

    The relationship between summer African easterly waves (AEWs) and daily rainfall is assessed in West Africa for 1998-2008 using various reanalyses, satellite-derived rainfall products, and a regional climate model (RCM) run at 90- and 30-km resolutions. 3-5 and 6-9 day AEWs are extracted by filtering daily 700 hPa meridional wind time series at 1°W and 11.5°N, and 1°W and 17.5°N, respectively. Both observed and simulated rainfall anomalies are of larger magnitude over West Africa during 3-5-d than 6-9-d AEWs. The RCM simulates larger rainfall rates in phase with the 3-5-d wave trough instead of ahead, unlike the observations, and overestimates the intensity and spatial coverage of rainfall associated with 6-9-d AEWs. The observed and simulated co-variability between 3-5-d (6-9-d) AEW activity and daily rainfall is strong (weak) and mostly located south (north) of 15°N. However, the RCM overestimates the spatial coverage of the AEW-rainfall relationship in the longitudinal (latitudinal) direction in the case of 3-5-d (6-9-d) AEWs. Observed and simulated daily intense rainfall events, extracted using a percentile threshold approach, are mostly located south of 15°N during summer. The observed relationship between their frequency of occurrence and active 3-5-d AEWs is maximal west of 8°E, while extends up to southern Chad in both RCM simulations. Their magnitude is also largely overestimated by the RCM, indicating an exaggerated coupling between the wave activity and the convection. Finally, observed and simulated 3-5-d AEWs establish the most favorable synoptic conditions for the development of intense rainfall events over West Africa.

  10. Molecular records of climate variability and vegetation response since the Late Pleistocene in the Lake Victoria basin, East Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berke, Melissa A.; Johnson, Thomas C.; Werne, Josef P.; Grice, Kliti; Schouten, Stefan; Sinninghe Damsté, Jaap S.

    2012-11-01

    New molecular proxies of temperature and hydrology are helping to constrain tropical climate change and elucidate possible forcing mechanisms during the Holocene. Here, we examine a ˜14,000 year record of climate variability from Lake Victoria, East Africa, the world's second largest freshwater lake by surface area. We determined variations in local hydroclimate using compound specific δD of terrestrial leaf waxes, and compared these results to a new record of temperature utilizing the TEX86 paleotemperature proxy, based on aquatic Thaumarchaeotal membrane lipids. In order to assess the impact of changing climate on the terrestrial environment, we generated a record of compound specific δ13C from terrestrial leaf waxes, a proxy for ecosystem-level C3/C4 plant abundances, and compared the results to previously published pollen-inferred regional vegetation shifts. We observe a general coherence between temperature and rainfall, with a warm, wet interval peaking ˜10-9 ka and subsequent gradual cooling and drying over the remainder of the Holocene. These results, particularly those of rainfall, are in general agreement with other tropical African climate records, indicating a somewhat consistent view of climate over a wide region of tropical East Africa. The δ13C record from Lake Victoria leaf waxes does not appear to reflect changes in regional climate or vegetation. However, palynological analyses document an abrupt shift from a Poaceae (grasses)-dominated ecosystem during the cooler, arid late Pleistocene to a Moraceae-dominated (trees/shrubs) landscape during the warm, wet early Holocene. We theorize that these proxies are reflecting vegetation in different locations around Lake Victoria. Our results suggest a predominantly insolation-forced climate, with warm, wet conditions peaking at the maximum interhemispheric seasonal insolation contrast, likely intensifying monsoonal precipitation, while maximum aridity coincides with the rainy season insolation and the

  11. Revisiting the role of global SST anomalies and their effects on West African monsoon variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pomposi, Catherine; Kushnir, Yochanan; Giannini, Alessandra

    2016-04-01

    The West African Monsoon is a significant component of the global monsoon system, delivering the majority of annual precipitation for the Sahel and varying on timescales from seasons to decades and beyond. Much of the internal variability of this system is driven by sea surface temperature (SST) anomalies and their resulting atmospheric teleconnections linking oceanic changes to land-based precipitation. Previous idealized studies have identified the role of particular ocean basins in driving monsoon variations on a number of key timescales, including the Atlantic basin as the main driver behind decadal-scale changes and the Pacific basin for interannual variability. However, understanding of how the monsoon responds to global SSTs remains incomplete because the system can be affected by moisture availability locally as well as tropical atmospheric stability, both of which are influenced by ocean temperatures. Furthermore, the complexity of how the global ocean basins change in relation to one another (what we refer to as superposition of anomalies) can result in Sahel precipitation anomalies that are contrary to what one might posit when considering the state of a single basin alone (e.g. the 2015 El Niño event and a relatively wet Sahel). The aim of this work is to revisit the role of global SSTs in driving Sahel rainfall variability over the recent past using a blending of observations and new model output. We seek to disentangle the state of various basins in combination with each other in driving normal or anomalously dry or wet years, resolving the ways that remote and local ocean forcings affect the movement of convection from the Guinea coast inland and northward into the Sahel, and include the study of circulation and stability components of the atmosphere. Preliminary diagnostic work suggests that varying SST conditions across ocean basins could imprint distinctly different precipitation responses in the Sahel. For example, precipitation anomalies are

  12. Estimating the climate variability of the last millennium on the East Antarctic plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Münch, Thomas; Laepple, Thomas

    2016-04-01

    Quantitative knowledge about the climate variability on the Antarctic continent is crucial to attribute and detect the anthropogenic influence, and to understand the past and future evolution of the Antarctic ice sheet. Isotope records from firn and ice cores provide information about Holocene climate variability but strong non-climate effects hamper their quantitative interpretation, especially in low-accumulation regions. So far, the magnitude and time-scale dependency of both the climate signal and the noise is largely unknown. Here, we combine 16 annually-resolved firn cores spanning the last 200 years, three records covering the last millennium as well as surface snow data from the Amundsenisen region on the East Antarctic plateau. By means of a spectral correction technique we can separate the climate signal from noise and derive, for the first time, a time-scale dependent estimate of East-Antarctic temperature variability. Our preliminary results indicate that, unlike the raw isotope data, the obtained temperature variability for our study region shows a scaling behavior with more variability on longer time scales, similar to estimates from marine SST records. The noise levels we find are in accordance with the independent surface snow sampling results from Kohnen station. An analysis of the variability in current climate models on the other hand suggests less variability on centennial time scales. The discrepancy between the model and data-based results indicates either deficiencies in the model simulations, or further unknown processes affecting the ice-core records. Our estimate of East-Antarctic climate variability thus highlights the importance of an improved understanding of Holocene climate and ice-core derived variability.

  13. Skilful multi-year predictions of tropical trans-basin climate variability

    PubMed Central

    Chikamoto, Yoshimitsu; Timmermann, Axel; Luo, Jing-Jia; Mochizuki, Takashi; Kimoto, Masahide; Watanabe, Masahiro; Ishii, Masayoshi; Xie, Shang-Ping; Jin, Fei-Fei

    2015-01-01

    Tropical Pacific sea surface temperature anomalies influence the atmospheric circulation, impacting climate far beyond the tropics. The predictability of the corresponding atmospheric signals is typically limited to less than 1 year lead time. Here we present observational and modelling evidence for multi-year predictability of coherent trans-basin climate variations that are characterized by a zonal seesaw in tropical sea surface temperature and sea-level pressure between the Pacific and the other two ocean basins. State-of-the-art climate model forecasts initialized from a realistic ocean state show that the low-frequency trans-basin climate variability, which explains part of the El Niño Southern Oscillation flavours, can be predicted up to 3 years ahead, thus exceeding the predictive skill of current tropical climate forecasts for natural variability. This low-frequency variability emerges from the synchronization of ocean anomalies in all basins via global reorganizations of the atmospheric Walker Circulation. PMID:25897996

  14. Variable Production of African American English across Oracy and Literacy Contexts

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Thompson, Connie A.; Craig, Holly K.; Washington, Julie A.

    2004-01-01

    Many African American students produce African American English (AAE) features that are contrastive to Standard American English (SAE). The AAE-speaking child who is able to dialect shift, that is, to speak SAE across literacy contexts, likely will perform better academically than the student who is not able to dialect shift. Method: This…

  15. Noncognitive Variables and Their Impact on Enrollment of African American Males in Higher Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brown, Alanka P.

    2009-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to identify the nonacademic reasons that preclude African American males from enrolling in college after high school completion. The examination of this study evolved as a result of an abundance of African American males choosing not to enroll in college after completing high school. A mixed-methods research design…

  16. African American High School Students and Variability in Behavior across Classrooms

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gregory, Anne; Thompson, Aisha R.

    2010-01-01

    Many African American adolescents who enter high school with low achievement are at-risk for being perceived as defiant and uncooperative by their classroom teachers. This generalized view of risk, however, offers little understanding of the differentiated behavior these students have with their teachers. The study followed 35 African American…

  17. Intra-interglacial climate variability: model simulations of Marine Isotope Stages 1, 5, 11, 13, and 15

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rachmayani, Rima; Prange, Matthias; Schulz, Michael

    2016-03-01

    Using the Community Climate System Model version 3 (CCSM3) including a dynamic global vegetation model, a set of 13 time slice experiments was carried out to study global climate variability between and within the Quaternary interglacials of Marine Isotope Stages (MISs) 1, 5, 11, 13, and 15. The selection of interglacial time slices was based on different aspects of inter- and intra-interglacial variability and associated astronomical forcing. The different effects of obliquity, precession, and greenhouse gas (GHG) forcing on global surface temperature and precipitation fields are illuminated. In most regions seasonal surface temperature anomalies can largely be explained by local insolation anomalies induced by the astronomical forcing. Climate feedbacks, however, may modify the surface temperature response in specific regions, most pronounced in the monsoon domains and the polar oceans. GHG forcing may also play an important role for seasonal temperature anomalies, especially at high latitudes and early Brunhes interglacials (MIS 13 and 15) when GHG concentrations were much lower than during the later interglacials. High- versus low-obliquity climates are generally characterized by strong warming over the Northern Hemisphere extratropics and slight cooling in the tropics during boreal summer. During boreal winter, a moderate cooling over large portions of the Northern Hemisphere continents and a strong warming at high southern latitudes is found. Beside the well-known role of precession, a significant role of obliquity in forcing the West African monsoon is identified. Other regional monsoon systems are less sensitive or not sensitive at all to obliquity variations during interglacials. Moreover, based on two specific time slices (394 and 615 ka), it is explicitly shown that the West African and Indian monsoon systems do not always vary in concert, challenging the concept of a global monsoon system on astronomical timescales. High obliquity can also explain

  18. Effect of Climate Change on Invasion Risk of Giant African Snail (Achatina fulica Férussac, 1821: Achatinidae) in India.

    PubMed

    Sarma, Roshmi Rekha; Munsi, Madhushree; Ananthram, Aravind Neelavara

    2015-01-01

    The Giant African Snail (Achatina fulica) is considered to be one the world's 100 worst invasive alien species. The snail has an impact on native biodiversity, and on agricultural and horticultural crops. In India, it is known to feed on more than fifty species of native plants and agricultural crops and also outcompetes the native snails. It was introduced into India in 1847 and since then it has spread all across the country. In this paper, we use ecological niche modeling (ENM) to assess the distribution pattern of Giant African Snail (GAS) under different climate change scenarios. The niche modeling results indicate that under the current climate scenario, Eastern India, peninsular India and the Andaman and Nicobar Islands are at high risk of invasion. The three different future climate scenarios show that there is no significant change in the geographical distribution of invasion prone areas. However, certain currently invaded areas will be more prone to invasion in the future. These regions include parts of Bihar, Southern Karnataka, parts of Gujarat and Assam. The Andaman and Nicobar and Lakshadweep Islands are highly vulnerable to invasion under changed climate. The Central Indian region is at low risk due to high temperature and low rainfall. An understanding of the invasion pattern can help in better management of this invasive species and also in formulating policies for its control.

  19. Effect of Climate Change on Invasion Risk of Giant African Snail (Achatina fulica Férussac, 1821: Achatinidae) in India

    PubMed Central

    Rekha Sarma, Roshmi; Munsi, Madhushree; Neelavara Ananthram, Aravind

    2015-01-01

    The Giant African Snail (Achatina fulica) is considered to be one the world’s 100 worst invasive alien species. The snail has an impact on native biodiversity, and on agricultural and horticultural crops. In India, it is known to feed on more than fifty species of native plants and agricultural crops and also outcompetes the native snails. It was introduced into India in 1847 and since then it has spread all across the country. In this paper, we use ecological niche modeling (ENM) to assess the distribution pattern of Giant African Snail (GAS) under different climate change scenarios. The niche modeling results indicate that under the current climate scenario, Eastern India, peninsular India and the Andaman and Nicobar Islands are at high risk of invasion. The three different future climate scenarios show that there is no significant change in the geographical distribution of invasion prone areas. However, certain currently invaded areas will be more prone to invasion in the future. These regions include parts of Bihar, Southern Karnataka, parts of Gujarat and Assam. The Andaman and Nicobar and Lakshadweep Islands are highly vulnerable to invasion under changed climate. The Central Indian region is at low risk due to high temperature and low rainfall. An understanding of the invasion pattern can help in better management of this invasive species and also in formulating policies for its control. PMID:26618637

  20. Assessing the relative effects of emissions, climate means, and variability on large water supply systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Whateley, Sarah; Brown, Casey

    2016-11-01

    Some of the greatest societal risks of climate change rise from the potential impacts to water supply. Yet prescribing adaptation policies in the near term is made difficult by the uncertainty in climate projections at relevant spatial scales and the conflating effects of uncertainties in emissions, model error, and internal variability. In this work, a new framework is implemented to explore the vulnerability of reservoir systems in the northeastern U.S. to climate change and attribute vulnerabilities to changes in mean climate, natural variability, or emission scenarios. Analysis of variance is used to explore the contributions of uncertainties to system performance. Diagnosing the relative risks to water supply will help water resource engineers better adapt to uncertain future conditions. The results indicate that uncertainty in water supply system performance can be attributed mostly to uncertainty in internal variability over policy-relevant planning horizons, and thus, adaptation efforts should focus on managing variability.

  1. Intraseasonal Variability in the Atmosphere-Ocean Climate System. Second Edition

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lau, William K. M.; Waliser, Duane E.

    2011-01-01

    Understanding and predicting the intraseasonal variability (ISV) of the ocean and atmosphere is crucial to improving long-range environmental forecasts and the reliability of climate change projections through climate models. This updated, comprehensive and authoritative second edition has a balance of observation, theory and modeling and provides a single source of reference for all those interested in this important multi-faceted natural phenomenon and its relation to major short-term climatic variations.

  2. Sliding window correlation analysis for dengue-climate variable relationship

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thiruchelvam, Loshini; Asirvadam, Vijanth S.; Dass, Sarat C.; Daud, Hanita; Gill, Balvinder S.

    2016-11-01

    This study discussed building of sliding windows to analyze the relationship between dengue incidences and weather variables of mean temperature, relative humidity and rainfall, across the timeline. A window sized of 20 was selected and applied to find correlation between dengue incidences and each of the weather variable. A few time lag of zero, two, four, six, and eight is compared and the time lag with best correlation is selected for each weather variable. Study did not found a good insight for analysis using mean temperature and relative humidity. For both these variables, it was suggested dengue incidences is better measured using fluctuation of maximum and minimum values. Analysis using rainfall variable was found to vary across the timeline in magnitude and direction of the correlation. Time lag of eight was found to be the most significant explaining the relationship between dengue incidences and rainfall variable.

  3. Land use and climate variability amplify carbon, nutrient, and contaminant pulses: a review with management implications

    EPA Science Inventory

    Nonpoint source pollution from agriculture and urbanization is increasing globally at the same time that climate extremes have increased in frequency and intensity. We review over 160 studies and show how the interaction between land use and climate variability alters the magnit...

  4. Novel Modeling Tools for Propagating Climate Change Variability and Uncertainty into Hydrodynamic Forecasts

    EPA Science Inventory

    Understanding impacts of climate change on hydrodynamic processes and ecosystem response within the Great Lakes is an important and challenging task. Variability in future climate conditions, uncertainty in rainfall-runoff model forecasts, the potential for land use change, and t...

  5. Linking the uncertainty of low frequency variability in tropical forcing in regional climate change

    SciTech Connect

    Forest, Chris E.; Barsugli, Joseph J.; Li, Wei

    2015-02-20

    The project utilizes multiple atmospheric general circulation models (AGCMs) to examine the regional climate sensitivity to tropical sea surface temperature forcing through a series of ensemble experiments. The overall goal for this work is to use the global teleconnection operator (GTO) as a metric to assess the impact of model structural differences on the uncertainties in regional climate variability.

  6. Sub-decadal North Atlantic Oscillation variability in observations and the Kiel Climate Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reintges, Annika; Latif, Mojib; Park, Wonsun

    2016-07-01

    The North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) is the dominant mode of winter climate variability in the North Atlantic sector. The corresponding index varies on a wide range of timescales, from days and months to decades and beyond. Sub-decadal NAO variability has been well documented, but the underlying mechanism is still under discussion. Other indices of North Atlantic sector climate variability such as indices of sea surface and surface air temperature or Arctic sea ice extent also exhibit pronounced sub-decadal variability. Here, we use sea surface temperature and sea level pressure observations, and the Kiel Climate Model to investigate the dynamics of the sub-decadal NAO variability. The sub-decadal NAO variability is suggested to originate from dynamical large-scale air-sea interactions. The adjustment of the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation to previous surface heat flux variability provides the memory of the coupled mode. The results stress the role of coupled feedbacks in generating sub-decadal North Atlantic sector climate variability, which is important to multiyear climate predictability in that region.

  7. Trends and Variability in Pastoral Resources in the West African Sahel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hanan, N. P.

    2014-12-01

    The geography of water and nutrients in the savannas of West Africa has shaped the development of a system of migratory cattle movements ("transhumance") in which herds travel north during the rainy season to graze the nutritious grasslands of the Sahel and return south in the dry season to graze in fallow lands and on agricultural residue. Cattle in this system gain most of their body mass while grazing in the Sahel and frequently lose mass on their dry season range. The Sahel is, therefore, at the heart of extensive livestock production systems in West Africa. However, there is increasing concern regarding how climate change will impact the region, while human population growth and economic development require increased agricultural and livestock production. The future for pastoral production systems in West Africa is, therefore, uncertain. This presentation combines remote sensing of vegetation structure and phenology with a watershed-scale tree-grass ecohydrology model, to explore how key resources for Sahelian pastoralist communities (forage and surface water for livestock, woody biomass for fuel) respond to climate variability and extreme events, conditioned by human management of grazing, fire and fuel-wood harvest. Mortality of woody species and loss of herbaceous cover during the Sahelian droughts of the 1970's and 1980's significantly perturbed vegetation dynamics and ecohydrological interactions, perturbations from which the region is still recovering. The re-greening and reforestation of the Sahel reported by many authors is, in part, an expression of this recovery. Future trajectories of change in pastoral resources in the Sahel, in particular forage availability and drinking water, are explored using climate change ensembles.

  8. Climate variability in the Carpathian Mountains Region over 1961-2010

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cheval, Sorin; Birsan, Marius-Victor; Dumitrescu, Alexandru

    2014-07-01

    The Carpathian Mountains Region (CMR) lies over parts of the territories of seven Central and Southeastern European countries, and the mountain chain induces major changes in the temperate climate specific to the latitudes between 43° and 49°N. Different administrations govern the long-term meteorological networks; the infrastructure, collection protocols, and storage capacities are specific to each country, so that a comprehensive study on the climate of the area has met considerable difficulties along time. Climate of the Carpathian Region (CARPATCLIM) is a regional initiative developed between 2010 and 2013 aiming to enhance the climatic information in the area by providing comprehensive, temporally and spatially homogenous data sets of the main meteorological variables. Based on daily data aggregated to a monthly scale at 10-km resolution, this study exploits and promotes the results of the CARPATCLIM project, documenting the variability of the main climatic variables over 1961-2010. For each month, the significant increasing or decreasing trends were identified, mapped and placed in the context of previous studies and climate change perspectives. The study has revealed several patterns in the climatic variability, i.e., positive or negative trends prevailing over the entire area, very distinct delineation between various trends induced by the Carpathian Mountain chain, and pledges for further scientific approaches, i.e., causes of the variability and applications in other domains.

  9. Disease and thermal acclimation in a more variable and unpredictable climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Raffel, Thomas R.; Romansic, John M.; Halstead, Neal T.; McMahon, Taegan A.; Venesky, Matthew D.; Rohr, Jason R.

    2013-02-01

    Global climate change is shifting the distribution of infectious diseases of humans and wildlife with potential adverse consequences for disease control. As well as increasing mean temperatures, climate change is expected to increase climate variability, making climate less predictable. However, few empirical or theoretical studies have considered the effects of climate variability or predictability on disease, despite it being likely that hosts and parasites will have differential responses to climatic shifts. Here we present a theoretical framework for how temperature variation and its predictability influence disease risk by affecting host and parasite acclimation responses. Laboratory experiments conducted in 80 independent incubators, and field data on disease-associated frog declines in Latin America, support the framework and provide evidence that unpredictable temperature fluctuations, on both monthly and diurnal timescales, decrease frog resistance to the pathogenic chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis. Furthermore, the pattern of temperature-dependent growth of the fungus on frogs was opposite to the pattern of growth in culture, emphasizing the importance of accounting for the host-parasite interaction when predicting climate-dependent disease dynamics. If similar acclimation responses influence other host-parasite systems, as seems likely, then present models, which generally ignore small-scale temporal variability in climate, might provide poor predictions for climate effects on disease.

  10. The Influence of Negative School Climate Factors on African American Adolescent Males' Academic Outcomes: The Mediating Role of Internalizing and Externalizing Behaviors

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Herring, Melvin H.

    2013-01-01

    This study explores the relationship between negative school climate factors (i.e., teacher neglect, peer rejection, discrimination) and academic outcomes amongst a sample of adolescent African American males. Specifically, this study directly examines a) the influence of negative school climate perceptions on the students' academic…

  11. Untapped genetic variability in Herefords: implications for climate change

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Global climate change (CC) has the potential to significantly alter US cattle productivity. As a result, the creation of genetic resources for a specific environment may be necessary, given that genetic-environmental interactions are present and may become more important. Molecular evaluation of a s...

  12. Climate variability in Oklahoma - get ready for more

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Our climate is changing relatively rapidly now, with the most critical changes for agriculture in Oklahoma manifesting as increases in the number of intense rainfall events and prolonged droughts, wild swings in the winter and early spring between "too cold" and "too hot", and higher-than-previous o...

  13. Long-term successional forest dynamics: species and community responses to climatic variability

    SciTech Connect

    Kardol, Paul; Todd Jr, Donald E; Hanson, Paul J; Mulholland, Patrick J

    2010-01-01

    Question: Are tree dynamics sensitive to climatic variability, and do tree species differ in their responses to climatic variability? Hence, is vulnerability of forest communities to climatic variability depending on stand composition? Location: Mixed young forest at Walker Branch Watershed near Oak Ridge, East-Tennessee, USA. Methods: Using a long-term data set (1967-2006), we analyzed temporal forest dynamics at the tree and species level, and we analyzed community dynamics for forest stands that different in their initial species composition (i.e., Chestnut Oak, Oak-Hickory, Pine, and Yellow poplar stands). Using summer drought and growing season temperature as defined climate drivers, we evaluated relationships between forest dynamics and climate across levels of organization. Results: Over the 4-decade studied period, forest communities underwent successional change and substantially increased their biomass. Variation in summer drought and growing season temperature contributed to temporal biomass dynamics for some tree species, but not for others. Stand-level responses to climatic variability were shown to be related to responses of specific component species; however, not for Pine stands. Pinus echinata, the dominant species in stands initially identified as Pine stands, decreased over time due to periodical outbreaks of the pine bark beetle (Dendroctonus frontalis). The outbreaks on Walker Branch could not be directly related to climatic conditions. Conclusions: Our results imply that vulnerability of developing forests to predicted climate conditions is stand-type dependent, and hence, is a function of species composition. Autogenic successional processes (or insect outbreaks) were found to prevail over climatic variability in determining long-term forest dynamics for stands dominated by sensitive species, emphasizing the importance of studying interactions between forest succession and climate change.

  14. Rainfall variability and extremes over southern Africa: assessment of a climate model to reproduce daily extremes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Williams, C.; Kniveton, D.; Layberry, R.

    2009-04-01

    It is increasingly accepted that that any possible climate change will not only have an influence on mean climate but may also significantly alter climatic variability. A change in the distribution and magnitude of extreme rainfall events (associated with changing variability), such as droughts or flooding, may have a far greater impact on human and natural systems than a changing mean. This issue is of particular importance for environmentally vulnerable regions such as southern Africa. The subcontinent is considered especially vulnerable to and ill-equipped (in terms of adaptation) for extreme events, due to a number of factors including extensive poverty, famine, disease and political instability. Rainfall variability and the identification of rainfall extremes is a function of scale, so high spatial and temporal resolution data are preferred to identify extreme events and accurately predict future variability. The majority of previous climate model verification studies have compared model output with observational data at monthly timescales. In this research, the assessment of ability of a state of the art climate model to simulate climate at daily timescales is carried out using satellite derived rainfall data from the Microwave Infra-Red Algorithm (MIRA). This dataset covers the period from 1993-2002 and the whole of southern Africa at a spatial resolution of 0.1 degree longitude/latitude. The ability of a climate model to simulate current climate provides some indication of how much confidence can be applied to its future predictions. In this paper, simulations of current climate from the UK Meteorological Office Hadley Centre's climate model, in both regional and global mode, are firstly compared to the MIRA dataset at daily timescales. This concentrates primarily on the ability of the model to simulate the spatial and temporal patterns of rainfall variability over southern Africa. Secondly, the ability of the model to reproduce daily rainfall extremes will

  15. Climate variability of the Great Barrier Reef in relation to the Tropical Pacific

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Redondo Rodriguez, A.; Lough, J.; Weeks, S.

    2010-12-01

    The Great Barrier Reef (GBR) is a large and complex system encompassing a range of meteorological and oceanographic conditions that operate on different temporal and spatial scales. Superimposed on mean conditions are seasonal cycles of differing magnitudes along with inter-annual and longer time-scale variations of climate. The complexity of these conditions increases from broad scale global circulation patterns to regional and local reef scales. Many inferences about reef processes rely on isolated (in space and time) collections of observations. These need to be interpreted against the background of natural variability of the physical environment. In particular, how does GBR climate variability relate to that of the Tropical Pacific Ocean? This study expands upon earlier studies of climatic conditions near the GBR by examining temperature, pressure, winds and currents for a common 61-year period. It focuses on how the dynamics of the different physical environmental variables are related to larger-scale climate variability of the Tropical Pacific. The impact of El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) events on climate anomalies in the GBR is also re-assessed. Average surface climate conditions for the tropical Pacific Ocean and near the GBR, including average seasonal cycles, are presented with a brief description of the dynamics of the different variables over the period 1948 to 2009. This provides the necessary background for considering the nature of the anomalous climatic conditions that prevail in the GBR and Coral Sea region. Understanding the nature and causes of recent climate variability of the GBR is fundamental to assessing the impacts of future climate changes on this complex ecosystem.

  16. Characterization of the impact of land degradation in the Sahel on the West African monsoon using an ensemble of climate models from the WAMME project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boone, A. A.; Xue, Y.; Ruth, C.; De Sales, F.; Hagos, S.; Mahanama, S. P. P.; Schiro, K.; Song, G.; Wang, G.; Koster, R. D.; Mechoso, C. R.

    2014-12-01

    There is increasing evidence from numerical studies that anthropogenic land-use and land-cover changes (LULCC) can potentially induce significant variations on the regional scale climate. However, the magnitude of these variations likely depends on the local strength of the coupling between the surface and the atmosphere, the magnitude of the surface biophysical changes and how the key processes linking the surface with the atmosphere are parameterized within a particular model framework. One key hot-spot which has received considerable attention is the Sahelian region of West Africa, for which numerous studies have reported a significant increase in anthropogenic pressure on the already limited natural resources in this region, notably in terms of land use conversion and degradation. Thus, there is a pressing need to better understand the impacts of potential land degradation on the West African Monsoon (WAM) system. One of the main goals of the West African Monsoon Modeling andEvaluation project phase 2 (WAMMEII) is to provide basic understandingof LULCC on the regional climate over West Africa, and to evaluate thesensitivity of the seasonal variability of the WAM to LULCC. Theprescribed LULCC is based on recent 50 year period which represents amaximum feasible degradation scenario. In the current study, the LULCCis applied to five state of the art global climate models over afive-year period. The imposed LULCC results in a model-average 5-7%increase in surface albedo: the corresponding lower surface netradiation mainly results in a significant reduction in surfaceevaporation (upwards of 1 mm per day over a large part of the Sahel)which leads to less convective heating of the atmosphere, lowermoisture convergence, increased subsidence and reduced cloud coverover the LULCC zone. The overall impact can be characterized as asubstantial drought effect resulting in a reduction in annual rainfallof 20-40% in the Sahel and a southward shift of the monsoon. In

  17. Utilizing Satellite Precipitation Products to Understand the Link Between Climate Variability and Malaria

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maggioni, V.; Mousam, A.; Delamater, P. L.; Cash, B. A.; Quispe, A.

    2015-12-01

    Malaria is a public health threat to people globally leading to 198 million cases and 584,000 deaths annually. Outbreaks of vector borne diseases such as malaria can be significantly impacted by climate variables such as precipitation. For example, an increase in rainfall has the potential to create pools of water that can serve as breeding locations for mosquitos. Peru is a country that is currently controlling malaria, but has not been able to completely eliminate the disease. Despite the various initiatives in order to control malaria - including regional efforts to improve surveillance, early detection, prompt treatment, and vector management - malaria cases in Peru have risen between 2011 and 2014. The purpose of this study is to test the hypothesis that climate variability plays a fundamental role in malaria occurrence over a 12-year period (2003-2014) in Peru. When analyzing climate variability, it is important to obtain high-quality, high-resolution data for a time series long enough to draw conclusion about how climate variables have been and are changing. Remote sensing is a powerful tool for measuring and monitoring climate variables continuously in time and space. A widely used satellite-based precipitation product, the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) Multi-satellite Precipitation Analysis (TMPA), available globally since 1998, was used to obtain 3-hourly data with a spatial resolution of 0.25° x 0.25°. The precipitation data was linked to weekly (2003-2014) malaria cases collected by health centers and available at a district level all over Peru to investigate the relationship between precipitation and the seasonal and annual variations in malaria incidence. Further studies will incorporate additional climate variables such as temperature, humidity, soil moisture, and surface pressure from remote sensing data products and climate models. Ultimately, this research will help us to understand if climate variability impacts malaria incidence

  18. The Impact of Climate and Its Variability on Crop Yield and Irrigation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, X.; Troy, T.

    2014-12-01

    As the global population grows and the climate changes, having a secure food supply is increasingly important especially under water stressed-conditions. Although irrigation is a positive climate adaptation mechanism for agriculture, it has a potentially negative effect on water resources. It is therefore important to understand how crop yields due to irrigation are affected by climate variability and how irrigation may buffer against climate, allowing for more resilient agricultural systems. Efforts to solve these barely exposed questions can benefit from comprehending the influence of climate variability on crop yield and irrigation water use in the past. To do this, we use historical climate data,irrigation water use data and rainfed and irrigated crop yields over the US to analyze the relationship among climate, irrigation and delta crop yields, gained by subtracting rainfed yield from irrigated yield since 1970. We find that the increase in delta crop yield due to irrigation is larger for certain climate conditions, such that there are optimal climate conditions where irrigation provides a benefit and other conditions where irrigation proves to have marginal benefits when temperature increased to certain degrees. We find that crop water requirements are linked to potential evapotranspiration, yet actual irrigation water use is largely decoupled from the climate conditions but related with other causes. This has important implications for agricultural and water resource system planning, as it implies there are optimal climate zones where irrigation is productive and that changes in water use, both temporally and spatially, could lead to increased water availability without negative impacts on crop yields. Furthermore, based on the exposed relationship between crop yield gained by irrigation and climate variability, those models predicting the global harvest will be redress to estimate crop production in the future more accurately.

  19. Crop models capture the impacts of climate variability on corn yield

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Niyogi, Dev; Liu, Xing; Andresen, Jeff; Song, Yang; Jain, Atul K.; Kellner, Olivia; Takle, Eugene S.; Doering, Otto C.

    2015-05-01

    We investigate the ability of three different crop models of varying complexity for capturing El Niño-Southern Oscillation-based climate variability impacts on the U.S. Corn Belt (1981-2010). Results indicate that crop models, irrespective of their complexity, are able to capture the impacts of climate variability on yield. Multiple-model ensemble analysis provides best results. There was no significant difference between using on-site and gridded meteorological data sets to drive the models. These results highlight the ability of using simpler crop models and gridded regional data sets for crop-climate assessments.

  20. Pacific Decadal Variability and Central Pacific Warming El Niño in a Changing Climate

    SciTech Connect

    Di Lorenzo, Emanuele

    2015-02-27

    This research aimed at understanding the dynamics controlling decadal variability in the Pacific Ocean and its interactions with global-scale climate change. The first goal was to assess how the dynamics and statistics of the El Niño Southern Oscillation and the modes of Pacific decadal variability are represented in global climate models used in the IPCC. The second goal was to quantify how decadal dynamics are projected to change under continued greenhouse forcing, and determine their significance in the context of paleo-proxy reconstruction of long-term climate.

  1. Investigation of factors affecting intra-annual variability of evapotranspiration and streamflow under different climate conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Dan; Liu, Xiaomang; Zhang, Qi; Liang, Kang; Liu, Changming

    2016-12-01

    Investigating the factors that affect intra-annual evapotranspiration (ET) and streamflow variability is important to regional hydrological cycles and energy balance research. In this study, ET and streamflow variability (defined as their standard deviations) are attributed to precipitation, potential evapotranspiration (ET0) and total water storage change (TWSC) based on a Budyko-based approach at 282 catchments in China. The results show that the Budyko-based approach satisfactorily simulates the intra-annual ET and streamflow variability (R2 of 0.63-0.84). The dominant contributor to ET variability is ET0 under energy-limited condition (aridity index ⩽ 0.76), whereas the dominant contributor is precipitation under equitant (0.76 < aridity index ⩽ 1.35) and water-limited conditions (aridity index ⩾ 1.35). The contribution of ET0 to ET variability decreases with the aridity index, whereas the contribution of precipitation to ET variability increases with the aridity index. However, the dominant contributor to streamflow variability is precipitation under all the three climate conditions, which is unaffected by the aridity index. TWSC enhances ET variability under energy-limited condition and inhibits ET variability under water-limited and equitant conditions. However, TWSC inhibits streamflow variability under all the three climate conditions. In addition, geography and vegetation also influence the contributors to ET and streamflow variability. The effects of geography on the contributors to streamflow variability are larger than that to ET variability. In contrast, the impacts of vegetation on the contributors to ET variability are larger than that to streamflow variability. This study demonstrates that the mechanism of ET variability under different climate conditions is much more complex than that of streamflow variability, suggesting that more attention should be given to ET for water-energy modeling, hydrological predictions and local water management.

  2. From Lake Malawi Drilling: East African Climate May Have Caused Major Evolutionary Turnover in Mammalian Species During MIS 14

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson, Thomas; Werne, Josef

    2016-04-01

    Hominin evolution underwent important changes in the last 1.3 million years, including the extinction of Paranthropus at about 1.2 Ma, leaving Homo as the sole hominin genus. Our genus experienced a major increase in cranial capacity at about 500 ka, and our species, H. sapiens, first appeared at ~200 ka. There was a major turnover in mammalian species in East Africa between 540 and 400 ka, favoring descendants of smaller size and less specialized diet. An understanding of what drove evolution in these directions is fundamental to understanding the development of modern H. sapiens. Climate certainly played a role, for it is the principal factor that influences the distribution of vegetation and habitability on the landscape. We present a 1.3 million year record of temperature and hydroclimate in the basin of Lake Malawi, the second deepest lake in Africa, derived from a 380 m sediment sequence taken from a water depth of 590 m by the Lake Malawi Drilling Project. Seismic reflection profiles used to select the site portray an undisturbed sedimentary section that was not impacted by erosion, turbidity currents or mass wasting events. Sediment samples were analyzed to produce records of temperature (TEX86) and aridity (Ca content and leaf wax δ13C). The temperature record displays progressively larger amplitude glacial-interglacial variations from MIS 13 (~500 ka) to MIS 5 (~125 ka). Intervals of low Ca abundance, which reflect lake high stands, correlate with times of depleted δ13Cwax and relatively warm temperatures. The Malawi basin experienced warm, wet interglacials and cooler (by about 2 - 4°C), dry glacial periods, with roughly a 100 ky periodicity since the Mid-Pleistocene Transition (MPT), about 900 ka. The paleoclimate record from Lake Malawi sediments portrays a transition from a highly variable and predominantly arid climate prior to 900 ka to a progressively more humid environment after the MPT dominated by 100 ky cycles consisting of warm, wet

  3. Planning for Production of Freshwater Fish Fry in a Variable Climate in Northern Thailand.

    PubMed

    Uppanunchai, Anuwat; Apirumanekul, Chusit; Lebel, Louis

    2015-10-01

    Provision of adequate numbers of quality fish fry is often a key constraint on aquaculture development. The management of climate-related risks in hatchery and nursery management operations has not received much attention, but is likely to be a key element of successful adaptation to climate change in the aquaculture sector. This study explored the sensitivities and vulnerability of freshwater fish fry production in 15 government hatcheries across Northern Thailand to climate variability and evaluated the robustness of the proposed adaptation measures. This study found that hatcheries have to consider several factors when planning production, including: taking into account farmer demand; production capacity of the hatchery; availability of water resources; local climate and other area factors; and, individual species requirements. Nile tilapia is the most commonly cultured species of freshwater fish. Most fry production is done in the wet season, as cold spells and drought conditions disrupt hatchery production and reduce fish farm demand in the dry season. In the wet season, some hatcheries are impacted by floods. Using a set of scenarios to capture major uncertainties and variability in climate, this study suggests a couple of strategies that should help make hatchery operations more climate change resilient, in particular: improving hatchery operations and management to deal better with risks under current climate variability; improving monitoring and information systems so that emerging climate-related risks are known sooner and understood better; and, research and development on alternative species, breeding programs, improving water management and other features of hatchery operations.

  4. Cropping frequency and area response to climate variability can exceed yield response

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cohn, Avery S.; Vanwey, Leah K.; Spera, Stephanie A.; Mustard, John F.

    2016-06-01

    The sensitivity of agricultural output to climate change has often been estimated by modelling crop yields under climate change scenarios or with statistical analysis of the impacts of year-to-year climatic variability on crop yields. However, the area of cropland and the number of crops harvested per growing season (cropping frequency) both also affect agricultural output and both also show sensitivity to climate variability and change. We model the change in agricultural output associated with the response of crop yield, crop frequency and crop area to year-to-year climate variability in Mato Grosso (MT), Brazil, a key agricultural region. Roughly 70% of the change in agricultural output caused by climate was determined by changes in frequency and/or changes in area. Hot and wet conditions were associated with the largest losses and cool and dry conditions with the largest gains. All frequency and area effects had the same sign as total effects, but this was not always the case for yield effects. A focus on yields alone may therefore bias assessments of the vulnerability of agriculture to climate change. Efforts to reduce climate impacts to agriculture should seek to limit production losses not only from crop yield, but also from changes in cropland area and cropping frequency.

  5. Planning for Production of Freshwater Fish Fry in a Variable Climate in Northern Thailand

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Uppanunchai, Anuwat; Apirumanekul, Chusit; Lebel, Louis

    2015-10-01

    Provision of adequate numbers of quality fish fry is often a key constraint on aquaculture development. The management of climate-related risks in hatchery and nursery management operations has not received much attention, but is likely to be a key element of successful adaptation to climate change in the aquaculture sector. This study explored the sensitivities and vulnerability of freshwater fish fry production in 15 government hatcheries across Northern Thailand to climate variability and evaluated the robustness of the proposed adaptation measures. This study found that hatcheries have to consider several factors when planning production, including: taking into account farmer demand; production capacity of the hatchery; availability of water resources; local climate and other area factors; and, individual species requirements. Nile tilapia is the most commonly cultured species of freshwater fish. Most fry production is done in the wet season, as cold spells and drought conditions disrupt hatchery production and reduce fish farm demand in the dry season. In the wet season, some hatcheries are impacted by floods. Using a set of scenarios to capture major uncertainties and variability in climate, this study suggests a couple of strategies that should help make hatchery operations more climate change resilient, in particular: improving hatchery operations and management to deal better with risks under current climate variability; improving monitoring and information systems so that emerging climate-related risks are known sooner and understood better; and, research and development on alternative species, breeding programs, improving water management and other features of hatchery operations.

  6. The effects of variable biome distribution on global climate

    SciTech Connect

    Noever, D.A.; Brittain, A.; Matsos, H.C.; Baskaran, S.; Obenhuber, D.

    1996-12-31

    In projecting climatic adjustments to anthropogenically elevated atmospheric carbon dioxide, most global climate models fix biome distribution to current geographic conditions. The authors develop a model that examines the albedo-related effects of biome distribution on global temperature. The model was tested on historical biome changes since 1860 and the results fit both the observed trend and order of magnitude change in global temperature. Once backtested in this way on historical data, the model is then used to generate an optimized future biome distribution which minimizes projected greenhouse effects on global temperature. Because of the complexity of this combinatorial search an artificial intelligence method, the genetic algorithm, was employed. The genetic algorithm assigns various biome distributions to the planet, then adjusts their percentage area and albedo effects to regulate or moderate temperature changes.

  7. Local air temperature tolerance: a sensible basis for estimating climate variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kärner, Olavi; Post, Piia

    2016-11-01

    The customary representation of climate using sample moments is generally biased due to the noticeably nonstationary behaviour of many climate series. In this study, we introduce a moment-free climate representation based on a statistical model fitted to a long-term daily air temperature anomaly series. This model allows us to separate the climate and weather scale variability in the series. As a result, the climate scale can be characterized using the mean annual cycle of series and local air temperature tolerance, where the latter is computed using the fitted model. The representation of weather scale variability is specified using the frequency and the range of outliers based on the tolerance. The scheme is illustrated using five long-term air temperature records observed by different European meteorological stations.

  8. Capturing subregional variability in regional-scale climate change vulnerability assessments of natural resources.

    PubMed

    Buotte, Polly C; Peterson, David L; McKelvey, Kevin S; Hicke, Jeffrey A

    2016-03-15

    Natural resource vulnerability to climate change can depend on the climatology and ecological conditions at a particular site. Here we present a conceptual framework for incorporating spatial variability in natural resource vulnerability to climate change in a regional-scale assessment. The framework was implemented in the first regional-scale vulnerability assessment conducted by the US Forest Service. During this assessment, five subregional workshops were held to capture variability in vulnerability and to develop adaptation tactics. At each workshop, participants answered a questionnaire to: 1) identify species, resources, or other information missing from the regional assessment, and 2) describe subregional vulnerability to climate change. Workshop participants divided into six resource groups; here we focus on wildlife resources. Participants identified information missing from the regional assessment and multiple instances of subregional variability in climate change vulnerability. We provide recommendations for improving the process of capturing subregional variability in a regional vulnerability assessment. We propose a revised conceptual framework structured around pathways of climate influence, each with separate rankings for exposure, sensitivity, and adaptive capacity. These revisions allow for a quantitative ranking of species, pathways, exposure, sensitivity, and adaptive capacity across subregions. Rankings can be used to direct the development and implementation of future regional research and monitoring programs. The revised conceptual framework is equally applicable as a stand-alone model for assessing climate change vulnerability and as a nested model within a regional assessment for capturing subregional variability in vulnerability.

  9. Interannual and spatial variability of maple syrup yield as related to climatic factors.

    PubMed

    Duchesne, Louis; Houle, Daniel

    2014-01-01

    Sugar maple syrup production is an important economic activity for eastern Canada and the northeastern United States. Since annual variations in syrup yield have been related to climate, there are concerns about the impacts of climatic change on the industry in the upcoming decades. Although the temporal variability of syrup yield has been studied for specific sites on different time scales or for large regions, a model capable of accounting for both temporal and regional differences in yield is still lacking. In the present study, we studied the factors responsible for interregional and interannual variability in maple syrup yield over the 2001-2012 period, by combining the data from 8 Quebec regions (Canada) and 10 U.S. states. The resulting model explained 44.5% of the variability in yield. It includes the effect of climatic conditions that precede the sapflow season (variables from the previous growing season and winter), the effect of climatic conditions during the current sapflow season, and terms accounting for intercountry and temporal variability. Optimal conditions for maple syrup production appear to be spatially restricted by less favourable climate conditions occurring during the growing season in the north, and in the south, by the warmer winter and earlier spring conditions. This suggests that climate change may favor maple syrup production northwards, while southern regions are more likely to be negatively affected by adverse spring conditions.

  10. Interannual and spatial variability of maple syrup yield as related to climatic factors

    PubMed Central

    Houle, Daniel

    2014-01-01

    Sugar maple syrup production is an important economic activity for eastern Canada and the northeastern United States. Since annual variations in syrup yield have been related to climate, there are concerns about the impacts of climatic change on the industry in the upcoming decades. Although the temporal variability of syrup yield has been studied for specific sites on different time scales or for large regions, a model capable of accounting for both temporal and regional differences in yield is still lacking. In the present study, we studied the factors responsible for interregional and interannual variability in maple syrup yield over the 2001–2012 period, by combining the data from 8 Quebec regions (Canada) and 10 U.S. states. The resulting model explained 44.5% of the variability in yield. It includes the effect of climatic conditions that precede the sapflow season (variables from the previous growing season and winter), the effect of climatic conditions during the current sapflow season, and terms accounting for intercountry and temporal variability. Optimal conditions for maple syrup production appear to be spatially restricted by less favourable climate conditions occurring during the growing season in the north, and in the south, by the warmer winter and earlier spring conditions. This suggests that climate change may favor maple syrup production northwards, while southern regions are more likely to be negatively affected by adverse spring conditions. PMID:24949244

  11. The Women's Role in the Adaptation to Climate Variability and Climate Change: Its Contribution to the Risk Management

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Quintero Angel, M.; Carvajal Escobar, Y.; Garcia Vargas, M.

    2007-05-01

    Recently, there is evidence of an increase in the amount of severity in extreme events associated with the climate variability or climate change; which demonstrates that climate in this planet is changing. There is an observation of increasing damages, and of social economical cost associated with these phenomena's, mostly do to more people are living in hazard vulnerable conditions. The victims of natural disasters have increase from 147 to 211 million between 1991 and 2000. In same way more than 665.000 people have died in 2557 natural disasters, which 90% are associated with water and climate. (UNESCO & WWAP, 2003). The actual tendency and the introduction of new factors of risk, suggest lost increase in the future, obligating actions to manage and reduce risk of disaster. Bind work, health, poverty, education, water, climate, and disasters is not an error, is an obligation. Vulnerability of society to natural hazards and to poverty are bond, to reduce the risk of disasters is frequently united with the reduction of poverty and in the other way too (Sen, 2000). In this context, extreme events impact societies in all the world, affecting differently men and women, do to the different roles they play in the society, the different access in the control of resources, the few participation that women have in taking decisions with preparedness, mitigation, rehabilitation of disasters, impacting more women in developing countries. Although, women understand better the causes and local consequences in changes of climate conditions. They have a pile of knowledge and abilities for guiding adaptation, playing a very important role in vulnerable communities. This work shows how these topics connect with the millennium development goals; particularly how it affects its accomplishment. It also describes the impact of climate variability and climate change in developing countries. Analyzing adaptation responses that are emerging; especially from women initiation.

  12. Long-range variability and predictability of the Ozark Highlands climate elements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Jae-Won

    Interannual variations and intraannual variation of regional-scale and global-scale climate variables are characterized by principal component analysis (PCA). Climate consistency is detected among the entire United States, the North Central states, and the Ozark Highlands (OZHI). The regional-scale modes of the OZHI climate are classified as the predictands of the statistical climate model. Characteristic patterns and time coefficients are examined in global-scale climate variables as the predictor of the models. Relationships between regional-scale and global-scale climate variables are identified by the month lead cross- correlation analysis. The OZHI temperatures in January and July are highly correlated to lead time global-scale climate variables in the tropical and subtropical Pacific and Atlantic and those of lead time in the eastern subtropical and midlatitude Pacific, respectively. The OZHI precipitation levels in January and May are highly correlated to lead time global-scale climate variables in the western tropical Pacific and in the western tropical Indian, and South Pacific Convergence Zone (SPCZ), respectively. From multiple linear regression (MLR) and principal components regression (PCR) analysis, the predictability of OZHI regional temperature and precipitation are discussed with model diagnostics and measurements of forecasting performance. This study suggests that PCR can clearly eliminate the multicollinearity among predictors. For the purpose of building the statistical climate model, the sensitivities of the main predictors (i.e., temperature and precipitation) are investigated, and relatively long-memory and short-memory predictors are uncovered. The sea surface temperatures have a relatively long-memory effect.

  13. Climatic variability effects on summer cropping systems of the Iberian Peninsula

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Capa-Morocho, M.; Rodríguez-Fonseca, B.; Ruiz-Ramos, M.

    2012-04-01

    Climate variability and changes in the frequency of extremes events have a direct impact on crop yield and damages. Climate anomalies projections at monthly and yearly timescale allows us for adapting a cropping system (crops, varieties and management) to take advantage of favorable conditions or reduce the effect of adverse conditions. The objective of this work is to develop indices to evaluate the effect of climatic variability in summer cropping systems of Iberian Peninsula, in an attempt of relating yield variability to climate variability, extending the work of Rodríguez-Puebla (2004). This paper analyses the evolution of the yield anomalies of irrigated maize in several representative agricultural locations in Spain with contrasting temperature and precipitation regimes and compare it to the evolution of different patterns of climate variability, extending the methodology of Porter and Semenov (2005). To simulate maize yields observed daily data of radiation, maximum and minimum temperature and precipitation were used. These data were obtained from the State Meteorological Agency of Spain (AEMET). Time series of simulated maize yields were computed with CERES-maize model for periods ranging from 22 to 49 years, depending on the observed climate data available for each location. The computed standardized anomalies yields were projected on different oceanic and atmospheric anomalous fields and the resulting patterns were compared with a set of documented patterns from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). The results can be useful also for climate change impact assessment, providing a scientific basis for selection of climate change scenarios where combined natural and forced variability represent a hazard for agricultural production. Interpretation of impact projections would also be enhanced.

  14. Adaptation to climate variability: The role of the USDA Southern Plains Climate Hub

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The Southern Plains USDA Climate Hub was established in 2014 in El Reno, Oklahoma to develop and deliver science-based, information and technologies to agricultural and natural resource land managers that enable climate-informed decision-making, and to provide access to assistance to implement those...

  15. Anxiety Disorders in Caucasian and African American Children: A Comparison of Clinical Characteristics, Treatment Process Variables, and Treatment Outcomes

    PubMed Central

    Gordon-Hollingsworth, Arlene T.; Becker, Emily M.; Keeton, Courtney; Compton, Scott N.; Birmaher, Boris B.; Sakolsky, Dara J.; Piacentini, John; Albano, Anne M.; Kendall, Philip C.; Suveg, Cynthia M.; March, John S.

    2014-01-01

    This study examined racial differences in anxious youth using data from the Child/Adolescent Anxiety Multimodal Study (CAMS) [1]. Specifically, the study aims addressed whether African American (n = 44) versus Caucasian (n = 359) children varied on (1) baseline clinical characteristics, (2) treatment process variables, and (3) treatment outcomes. Participants were ages 7–17 and met DSM-IV-TR criteria for generalized anxiety disorder, social phobia, and/or separation anxiety disorder. Baseline data, as well as outcome data at 12 and 24 weeks, were obtained by independent evaluators. Weekly treatment process variables were collected by therapists. Results indicated no racial differences on baseline clinical characteristics. However, African American participants attended fewer psychotherapy and pharmacotherapy sessions, and were rated by therapists as less involved and compliant, in addition to showing lower mastery of CBT. Once these and other demographic factors were accounted for, race was not a significant predictor of response, remission, or relapse. Implications of these findings suggest African American and Caucasian youth are more similar than different with respect to the manifestations of anxiety and differences in outcomes are likely due to treatment barriers to session attendance and therapist engagement. PMID:25293650

  16. Anxiety Disorders in Caucasian and African American Children: A Comparison of Clinical Characteristics, Treatment Process Variables, and Treatment Outcomes.

    PubMed

    Gordon-Hollingsworth, Arlene T; Becker, Emily M; Ginsburg, Golda S; Keeton, Courtney; Compton, Scott N; Birmaher, Boris B; Sakolsky, Dara J; Piacentini, John; Albano, Anne M; Kendall, Philip C; Suveg, Cynthia M; March, John S

    2015-10-01

    This study examined racial differences in anxious youth using data from the Child/Adolescent Anxiety Multimodal Study (CAMS) [1]. Specifically, the study aims addressed whether African American (n = 44) versus Caucasian (n = 359) children varied on (1) baseline clinical characteristics, (2) treatment process variables, and (3) treatment outcomes. Participants were ages 7-17 and met DSM-IV-TR criteria for generalized anxiety disorder, social phobia, and/or separation anxiety disorder. Baseline data, as well as outcome data at 12 and 24 weeks, were obtained by independent evaluators. Weekly treatment process variables were collected by therapists. Results indicated no racial differences on baseline clinical characteristics. However, African American participants attended fewer psychotherapy and pharmacotherapy sessions, and were rated by therapists as less involved and compliant, in addition to showing lower mastery of CBT. Once these and other demographic factors were accounted for, race was not a significant predictor of response, remission, or relapse. Implications of these findings suggest African American and Caucasian youth are more similar than different with respect to the manifestations of anxiety and differences in outcomes are likely due to treatment barriers to session attendance and therapist engagement.

  17. Effect of climate variables on cocoa black pod incidence in Sabah using ARIMAX model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ling Sheng Chang, Albert; Ramba, Haya; Mohd. Jaaffar, Ahmad Kamil; Kim Phin, Chong; Chong Mun, Ho

    2016-06-01

    Cocoa black pod disease is one of the major diseases affecting the cocoa production in Malaysia and also around the world. Studies have shown that the climate variables have influenced the cocoa black pod disease incidence and it is important to quantify the black pod disease variation due to the effect of climate variables. Application of time series analysis especially auto-regressive moving average (ARIMA) model has been widely used in economics study and can be used to quantify the effect of climate variables on black pod incidence to forecast the right time to control the incidence. However, ARIMA model does not capture some turning points in cocoa black pod incidence. In order to improve forecasting performance, other explanatory variables such as climate variables should be included into ARIMA model as ARIMAX model. Therefore, this paper is to study the effect of climate variables on the cocoa black pod disease incidence using ARIMAX model. The findings of the study showed ARIMAX model using MA(1) and relative humidity at lag 7 days, RHt - 7 gave better R square value compared to ARIMA model using MA(1) which could be used to forecast the black pod incidence to assist the farmers determine timely application of fungicide spraying and culture practices to control the black pod incidence.

  18. Interannual and long-term climate variability over the Zaire River Basin during the last 30 years

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kazadi, Sanga-Ngoie; Kaoru, Fukuyama

    1996-09-01

    Climatological data records of temperature, rainfall, and number of rainy days provided by the Zaire Meteorological Agency (METTELSAT) at seven Zairian stations for the 1960-1992 period are analyzed for the first time since the 1970s. Our investigations focus on climate variability as related with environmental changes over the Zaire River Basin, which is climatologically and biogenetically one of the most important regions in the world. On the basis of the 30-year monthly mean climatologies, it is shown that the solar annual cycle dominates the seasonal changes of both the temperature and rainfall over this region. On the interannual time-scales, the variability of these climatic variables is characterized by (1) a 2-to 5-year oscillation strongly correlated to the southern oscillation index, thus to the ENSO phenomenon, and (2) a nearly 10-year oscillation (called here the quasi-decadal oscillation, QDO) with a very remarkable correlationship with the solar activity (sunspots number). On the long-term timescale, a remarkable decreasing trend in rainfall and number of rainy days, as well as increasing temperatures over the 30-year period, has been detected as the most dominant climatological features all over the basin. The magnitudes of temperature increase are by far larger than those reported in previous works for both the global mean and hemispherical mean warmings. We postulate that this trend of regional warming and desiccation from within the heart of the African rainforests is due to the increase in surface albedo, itself triggered by uncontrolled land-use policies and forests development over this area (logging, slash and burn, bushfire, fuelwood, farming, ranching, urbanization, etc.).

  19. Spatial Structure and Climatic Adaptation in African Maize Revealed by Surveying SNP Diversity in Relation to Global Breeding and Landrace Panels

    PubMed Central

    Westengen, Ola T.; Berg, Paul R.; Kent, Matthew P.; Brysting, Anne K.

    2012-01-01

    Background Climate change threatens maize productivity in sub-Saharan Africa. To ensure food security, access to locally adapted genetic resources and varieties is an important adaptation measure. Most of the maize grown in Africa is a genetic mix of varieties introduced at different historic times following the birth of the trans-Atlantic economy, and knowledge about geographic structure and local adaptations is limited. Methodology A panel of 48 accessions of maize representing various introduction routes and sources of historic and recent germplasm introductions in Africa was genotyped with the MaizeSNP50 array. Spatial genetic structure and genetic relationships in the African panel were analysed separately and in the context of a panel of 265 inbred lines representing global breeding material (based on 26,900 SNPs) and a panel of 1127 landraces from the Americas (270 SNPs). Environmental association analysis was used to detect SNPs associated with three climatic variables based on the full 43,963 SNP dataset. Conclusions The genetic structure is consistent between subsets of the data and the markers are well suited for resolving relationships and admixture among the accessions. The African accessions are structured in three clusters reflecting historical and current patterns of gene flow from the New World and within Africa. The Sahelian cluster reflects original introductions of Meso-American landraces via Europe and a modern introduction of temperate breeding material. The Western cluster reflects introduction of Coastal Brazilian landraces, as well as a Northeast-West spread of maize through Arabic trade routes across the continent. The Eastern cluster most strongly reflects gene flow from modern introduced tropical varieties. Controlling for population history in a linear model, we identify 79 SNPs associated with maximum temperature during the growing season. The associations located in genes of known importance for abiotic stress tolerance are

  20. The Role of Low-Level Jets in Regional Climate Variability and Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weaver, S. J.

    2015-12-01

    Low Level Jets are ubiquitous features of the global climate system. These "rivers of air" in the lower atmosphere act as a scale transfer mechanism, bridging the larger scale climate variability and change to regionally focused impacts. During the boreal spring and summer, the North American low-level jet (NALLJ) transports copious amounts of momentum, heat, and moisture into central and eastern United States, with significant impacts on regional hydroclimate variability (drought and pluvial), extreme events (tornadic activity), ecology (jellyfish and bird migration), atmospheric constituent transport (ozone), and energy development (wind power). Given the interdisciplinary importance of the NALLJ, its mean state and variability on seasonal to multidecadal timescales will be discussed in a simple framework to stimulate cross-disciplinary thought and discussion with regard to warm season regional climate variability and change.

  1. Assessing Portuguese Guadiana Basin water management impacts under climate change and paleoclimate variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maia, Rodrigo; Oliveira, Bruno; Ramos, Vanessa; Brekke, Levi

    2014-05-01

    indicates an increase in temperatures and a reduction of the precipitation values which go well beyond the observed values and, therefore, must be forcefully included in any realistic proactive water resource management decision. Using the results of this study it is possible to estimate future water availability and consumption satisfaction allowing for the elaboration of informed management decisions. In this study, the CMIP 3 Global Climate Models were considered for the definition of the effects of climate change, using the median and extreme tendencies based on the range of variation of the multiple climate projection scenarios. The observed climate variability, along with these model-derived tendencies, were used to inform the hydrology and water management models for the historical and future periods, respectively. Additionally, for a more comprehensive analysis on climate variability, a stochastic model was implemented based on the paleoclimate variability obtained from tree-ring records.

  2. Climate Variability and Impact at NASA's Marshal Space Flight Center

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smoot, James L.; Jedlovec, Gary; Williams, Brett

    2013-01-01

    Climate analysis for the Southeast U. S. has indicated that inland regions have experienced an average temperature increase of 2F since 1970. This trend is generally characterized by warmer winters with an indication of increased precipitation in the Fall season. Extended periods of limited rainfall in the Spring and Summer periods have had greater areal coverage and, at other times the number of precipitation events has been increasing. Climate model projections for the next 10-70 years indicate warmer temperatures for the Southeast U.S., particularly in the Spring and Summer, with some indication of more extremes in temperature and precipitation as shown in the table below. The realization of these types of regional climate changes in the form of extended heat waves and droughts and their subsequent stress on facilities, infrastructure, and workforce could have substantial impact on the activities and functions of NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) in Huntsville, Alabama. This presentation will present the results of an examination of the 100 year temperature and precipitation record for MSFC. Local warming has cause an increase in daily maximum and minimum temperatures by nearly 3F, with a substantial increase in the number of maximum temperatures exceeding 90F and a decrease in the number of days with minimum temperatures below freezing. These trends have substantial impact of the number of heating / cooling degree days for the area. Yearly precipitation totals are inversely correlated with the change in mean temperature and the frequency of heavy rain events has remain consistent with the changes in yearly totals. An extended heat wave index was developed which shows an increase in frequency of heat waves over the last 35 years and a subsequent reduction in precipitation during the heat waves. This trend will contribute to more intense drought conditions over the northern Alabama region, increasing the potential of destructive wildfires in and around

  3. Identification of a tryptophan-like epitope borne by the variable surface glycoprotein (VSG) of African trypanosomes.

    PubMed

    Semballa, S; Okomo-Assoumou, M C; Holzmuller, P; Büscher, P; Magez, S; Lemesre, J L; Daulouede, S; Courtois, P; Geffard, M; Vincendeau, P

    2007-02-01

    Antibodies (Ab) directed against a tryptophan-like epitope (WE) were previously detected in patients with human African trypanosomiasis (HAT). We investigated whether or not these Ab resulted from immunization against trypanosome antigen(s) expressing a WE. By Western blotting, we identified an antigen having an apparent molecular weight ranging from 60 to 65 kDa, recognized by purified rabbit anti-WE Ab. This antigen, present in trypomastigote forms, was absent in procyclic forms and Trypanosoma cruzi trypomastigotes. Using purified variable surface glycoproteins (VSG) from various trypanosomes, we showed that VSG was the parasite antigen recognized by these rabbit Ab. Anti-WE and anti-VSG Ab were purified from HAT sera by affinity chromatography. Immunoreactivity of purified antibodies eluted from affinity columns and of depleted fractions showed that WE was one of the epitopes borne by VSG. These data underline the existence of an invariant WE in the structure of VSG from several species of African trypanosomes.

  4. Modeling effects of inter-annual variability in meteorological and land use conditions on coupled water and energy cycling in the cultivated African Sahel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Velluet, C.; Demarty, J.; Cappelaere, B.; Braud, I.; Boulain, N.; Favreau, G.; Charvet, G.; Ramier, D.; Issoufou, H.; Boucher, M.; Mainassara, I.; Chazarin, J.; Oï, M.; Yahou, H.; Benarrosh, N.; Ibrahim, M.

    2012-12-01

    In the dry tropics in general and in the African Sahel in particular, hydro-ecosystems are very sensitive to climate variability and land management. In the Niamey region of South-West Niger, a severe multi-decadal drought together with large-scale vegetation clearing coincided with an unexpected increase in surface and ground water resources. Such an apparent paradoxical situation illustrates the complex way in which climate and land cover interactions control the Sahelian water cycle dynamics. This stresses the importance of understanding and reliably modeling water/energy transfers in the local soil-plant-atmosphere system, under contrasted meteorological and surface conditions. This study investigates the effects of the inter-annual variability of meteorological and land use conditions on the coupled water and energy cycles in the cultivated Sahel over a 5-year period. This is based on a comprehensive multi-year field dataset acquired for a millet crop field and a fallow savannah, the two main land cover types of South-West Niger (Wankama catchment in the mesoscale AMMA-CATCH Niger observatory, part of the French-initiated RBV network). It includes atmospheric forcing, seasonal course of vegetation phenology, soil properties and model validation variables (net radiation, turbulent fluxes, soil heat/water profiles), for the two fields. The study area is typical of Central Sahel conditions, with 400-600 mm annual rainfall concentrated in the 4-5 month wet season. Soils are mainly sandy and prone to surface crusting, leading to a strong vertical contrast in hydrodynamic properties. The SiSPAT process-based model used solves the 1D mass and heat transfer system of equations in the soil, including vapor phase and coupled with a two-component (bare soil and vegetation) water and energy budget at the surface-atmosphere interface. The study explores whether such a model can be accurately calibrated and validated for the two sites using realistic-parameter values. The

  5. Holocene climate and climate variability of the northern Gulf of Mexico and adjacent northern Gulf Coast: A review

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Poore, Richard Z.

    2008-01-01

    Marine records from the northern Gulf of Mexico indicate that significant multidecadal- and century-scale variability was common during the Holocene. Mean annual sea-surface temperature (SST) during the last 1,400 years may have varied by 3°C, and excursions to cold SST coincide with reductions in solar output. Broad trends in Holocene terrestrial climate and environmental change along the eastern portion of the northern Gulf Coast are evident from existing pollen records, but the high-frequency details of climate variability are not well known. Continuous and well-dated records of climate change and climate variability in the western portion of the northern Gulf Coast are essentially lacking.Information on Holocene floods, droughts, and storm frequency along the northern Gulf Coast is limited. Records of floods may be preserved in continental shelf sediments, but establishing continuity and chronologies for sedimentary sequences on the shelf presents challenges due to sediment remobilization and redeposition during storms. Studies of past storm deposits in coastal lakes and marshes show promise for constructing records of past storm frequency. A recent summary of sea-level history of the northern Gulf Coast indicates sea level was higher than modern sea level several times during the last few thousand years.

  6. Field study of variable rate irrigation management in humid climates

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Soil physical properties in the Mississippi Delta can vary considerably within a single field resulting in differing water storage capabilities, amounts of water available to the crop, and crop yield potential. Variable rate irrigation (VRI) technologies are able to site-specifically apply irrigatio...

  7. Flexible stocking strategies for adapting to climatic variability

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    As a result of precipitation-induced variability on forage production, ranchers have difficulty matching animal demand with forage availability in their operations. Flexible stocking strategies could more effectively use extra forage in highly productive years and limit risk of overgrazing during dr...

  8. Impacts of Climate Trends and Variability on Livestock Production in Brazil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cohn, A.; Munger, J.; Gibbs, H.

    2015-12-01

    Cattle systems of Brazil are of major economic and environmental importance. They occupy ¼ of the land surface of the country, account for over 15 billion USD of annual revenue through the sale of beef, leather, and milk, are closely associated with deforestation, and have been projected to substantially grow in the coming decades. Sustainable intensification of production in the sector could help to limit environmental harm from increased production, but productivity growth could be inhibited by climate change. Gauging the potential future impacts of climate change on the Brazilian livestock sector can be aided by examining past evidence of the link between climate and cattle production and productivity. We use statistical techniques to investigate the contribution of climate variability and climate change to variability in cattle system output in Brazil's municipalities over the period 1974 to 2013. We find significant impacts of both temperature and precipitation variability and temperature trends on municipality-level exports and the production of both milk and beef. Pasture productivity, represented by a vegetation index, also varies significantly with climate shocks. In some regions, losses from exposure to climate trends were of comparable magnitude to technology and/or market-driven productivity gains over the study period.

  9. The Climate Variability & Predictability (CVP) Program at NOAA - Recent Program Advancements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lucas, S. E.; Todd, J. F.

    2015-12-01

    The Climate Variability & Predictability (CVP) Program supports research aimed at providing process-level understanding of the climate system through observation, modeling, analysis, and field studies. This vital knowledge is needed to improve climate models and predictions so that scientists can better anticipate the impacts of future climate variability and change. To achieve its mission, the CVP Program supports research carried out at NOAA and other federal laboratories, NOAA Cooperative Institutes, and academic institutions. The Program also coordinates its sponsored projects with major national and international scientific bodies including the World Climate Research Programme (WCRP), the International and U.S. Climate Variability and Predictability (CLIVAR/US CLIVAR) Program, and the U.S. Global Change Research Program (USGCRP). The CVP program sits within NOAA's Climate Program Office (http://cpo.noaa.gov/CVP). The CVP Program currently supports multiple projects in areas that are aimed at improved representation of physical processes in global models. Some of the topics that are currently funded include: i) Improved Understanding of Intraseasonal Tropical Variability - DYNAMO field campaign and post -field projects, and the new climate model improvement teams focused on MJO processes; ii) Climate Process Teams (CPTs, co-funded with NSF) with projects focused on Cloud macrophysical parameterization and its application to aerosol indirect effects, and Internal-Wave Driven Mixing in Global Ocean Models; iii) Improved Understanding of Tropical Pacific Processes, Biases, and Climatology; iv) Understanding Arctic Sea Ice Mechanism and Predictability;v) AMOC Mechanisms and Decadal Predictability Recent results from CVP-funded projects will be summarized. Additional information can be found at http://cpo.noaa.gov/CVP.

  10. Global Upper Ocean Heat Content and Climate Variability

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2011-01-01

    References Ashok K, Behera S, Rao A. S, Weng H., and Yamagata, T., 2007. El Nino Modoki and...2027–2033. Rao, S. A., S. K. Behera , Y. Masumoto, and T. Yamagata, 2002. Interannual subsurface variability in the tropical Indian Ocean with a...W., 1937. World weather VI. Mem. Roy. Meteor. Soc., 4, 119–139. Weng, H., Ashok, S. K., Behera , S., . Rao, A., Yamagata, T., 2007

  11. Winter Eurasian Climate Variability: Role of Cyclone and Anticyclone Activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lu, C.; Zhang, X.; Guan, Z.

    2012-12-01

    This study investigates variability of extratropical Eurasian cyclone and anticyclone activity by using a modified automated cyclone and anticyclone identification and tracking algorithm. The cyclone and anticyclone activities are quantified by their regionally integrated intensity (CI and ACI) during 1978/79-2011/2012 winter seasons. We found that the time evolutions of the CI and ACI exhibit a general negative correlation of -0.7 between them at a significant level of 99.99%. This anticyclone (cyclone) variability contributes to the substantially large-scale sea level pressure variability over extratropical Eurasian continent, and explains the interannual fluctuation of surface air temperature over mid latitude Eurasia as well as the adjacent continents. The ACI swings from one phase to another, also producing large changes in snow cover extend, snow equivalent water as well as frequency of extreme cold events over the Eurasian continent. The strengthening of anticyclone intensity is preceded by retreated of the October sea-ice extent over Barents-Kara Sea, which associates tightly with an increasing stability at lower troposphere around the Ural Mountains and induces strengthening Eurasian anticyclones activity in the subsequent winter.

  12. Impact of explosive volcanic eruptions on the main climate variability modes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Swingedouw, Didier; Mignot, Juliette; Ortega, Pablo; Khodri, Myriam; Menegoz, Martin; Cassou, Christophe; Hanquiez, Vincent

    2017-03-01

    Volcanic eruptions eject largeamounts of materials into the atmosphere, which can have an impact on climate. In particular, the sulphur dioxide gas released in the stratosphere leads to aerosol formation that reflects part of the incoming solar radiation, thereby affecting the climate energy balance. In this review paper, we analyse the regional climate imprints of large tropical volcanic explosive eruptions. For this purpose, we focus on the impact on three major climatic modes, located in the Atlantic (the North Atlantic Oscillation: NAO and the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation: AMO) and Pacific (the El Niño Southern Oscillation, ENSO) sectors. We present an overview of the chain of events that contributes to modifying the temporal variability of these modes. Our literature review is complemented by new analyses based on observations of the instrumental era as well as on available proxy records and climate model simulations that cover the last millennium. We show that the impact of volcanic eruptions of the same magnitude or weaker than 1991 Mt. Pinatubo eruption on the NAO and ENSO is hard to detect, due to the noise from natural climate variability. There is however a clear impact of the direct radiative forcing resulting from tropical eruptions on the AMO index both in reconstructions and climate model simulations of the last millennium, while the impact on the ocean circulation remains model-dependent. To increase the signal to noise ratio and better evaluate the climate response to volcanic eruptions, improved reconstructions of these climatic modes and of the radiative effect of volcanic eruptions are required on a longer time frame than the instrumental era. Finally, we evaluate climate models' capabilities to reproduce the observed and anticipated impacts and mechanisms associated with volcanic forcing, and assess their potential for seasonal to decadal prediction. We find a very large spread in the simulated responses across the different climate

  13. Workshop 4 (synthesis): securing food production under climate variability--exploring the options.

    PubMed

    Björklund, G

    2004-01-01

    Climate variabilities may result in different types of dry spells, droughts or flood situations, having harmful effects on agricultural productivity and food security. Long-term trends in climate variabilities and climate extremes may be a consequence of an on-going climate change and would thus result in a more permanent change in the pre-conditions for food production. The presentations and discussion during the workshop concentrated on some different measures to be taken in addressing these kind of situations and in particularly on the adverse effects of dry spells, droughts and to some extent also floods. The different areas presented were examples from Bangladesh, the indus river and delta region, examples from India (Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh), Israel, Sri Lanka and Uzbekistan.

  14. Ecology and the ratchet of events: Climate variability, niche dimensions, and species distributions

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Jackson, S.T.; Betancourt, J.L.; Booth, R.K.; Gray, S.T.

    2009-01-01

    Climate change in the coming centuries will be characterized by interannual, decadal, and multidecadal fluctuations superimposed on anthropogenic trends. Predicting ecological and biogeographic responses to these changes constitutes an immense challenge for ecologists. Perspectives from climatic and ecological history indicate that responses will be laden with contingencies, resulting from episodic climatic events interacting with demographic and colonization events. This effect is compounded by the dependency of environmental sensitivity upon life-stage for many species. Climate variables often used in empirical niche models may become decoupled from the proximal variables that directly influence individuals and populations. Greater predictive capacity, and morefundamental ecological and biogeographic understanding, will come from integration of correlational niche modeling with mechanistic niche modeling, dynamic ecological modeling, targeted experiments, and systematic observations of past and present patterns and dynamics.

  15. Ecology and the ratchet of events: Climate variability, niche dimensions, and species distributions

    PubMed Central

    Jackson, Stephen T.; Betancourt, Julio L.; Booth, Robert K.; Gray, Stephen T.

    2009-01-01

    Climate change in the coming centuries will be characterized by interannual, decadal, and multidecadal fluctuations superimposed on anthropogenic trends. Predicting ecological and biogeographic responses to these changes constitutes an immense challenge for ecologists. Perspectives from climatic and ecological history indicate that responses will be laden with contingencies, resulting from episodic climatic events interacting with demographic and colonization events. This effect is compounded by the dependency of environmental sensitivity upon life-stage for many species. Climate variables often used in empirical niche models may become decoupled from the proximal variables that directly influence individuals and populations. Greater predictive capacity, and more-fundamental ecological and biogeographic understanding, will come from integration of correlational niche modeling with mechanistic niche modeling, dynamic ecological modeling, targeted experiments, and systematic observations of past and present patterns and dynamics. PMID:19805104

  16. Ecology and the ratchet of events: climate variability, niche dimensions, and species distributions.

    PubMed

    Jackson, Stephen T; Betancourt, Julio L; Booth, Robert K; Gray, Stephen T

    2009-11-17

    Climate change in the coming centuries will be characterized by interannual, decadal, and multidecadal fluctuations superimposed on anthropogenic trends. Predicting ecological and biogeographic responses to these changes constitutes an immense challenge for ecologists. Perspectives from climatic and ecological history indicate that responses will be laden with contingencies, resulting from episodic climatic events interacting with demographic and colonization events. This effect is compounded by the dependency of environmental sensitivity upon life-stage for many species. Climate variables often used in empirical niche models may become decoupled from the proximal variables that directly influence individuals and populations. Greater predictive capacity, and more-fundamental ecological and biogeographic understanding, will come from integration of correlational niche modeling with mechanistic niche modeling, dynamic ecological modeling, targeted experiments, and systematic observations of past and present patterns and dynamics.

  17. Ecology and the ratchet of events: climate variability, niche dimensions, and species distributions

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Jackson, Stephen T.; Betancourt, Julio L.; Booth, Robert K.; Gray, Stephen T.

    2009-01-01

    Climate change in the coming centuries will be characterized by interannual, decadal, and multidecadal fluctuations superimposed on anthropogenic trends. Predicting ecological and biogeographic responses to these changes constitutes an immense challenge for ecologists. Perspectives from climatic and ecological history indicate that responses will be laden with contingencies, resulting from episodic climatic events interacting with demographic and colonization events. This effect is compounded by the dependency of environmental sensitivity upon life-stage for many species. Climate variables often used in empirical niche models may become decoupled from the proximal variables that directly influence individuals and populations. Greater predictive capacity, and more-fundamental ecological and biogeographic understanding, will come from integration of correlational niche modeling with mechanistic niche modeling, dynamic ecological modeling, targeted experiments, and systematic observations of past and present patterns and dynamics.

  18. Stable isotopes provide independent support for the use of mesowear variables for inferring diets in African antelopes.

    PubMed

    Louys, Julien; Ditchfield, Peter; Meloro, Carlo; Elton, Sarah; Bishop, Laura C

    2012-11-07

    We examine the relationship between mesowear variables and carbon and nitrogen isotopes in 16 species of African antelope (Mammalia: Bovidae). We show significant differences in carbon and nitrogen isotope values between individuals exhibiting sharp versus round cusps, and high versus low occlusal relief. We show significant correlations between mesowear variables and both carbon and nitrogen isotopes. We find significant correlations between mesowear score and nitrogen, but not carbon isotopes. Finally, we find no significant correlations between hypsodonty index and either isotope examined. Our results provide strong support for the use of mesowear variables in palaeodietary reconstructions of antelopes. Our results further suggest that for the antelopes examined here, mesowear signals are a direct result of diet, while hyposodonty may be the result of phylogenetic legacy.

  19. Future water availability in North African dams simulated by high-resolution regional climate models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tramblay, Yves; Jarlan, Lionel; Hanich, Lahoucine; Somot, Samuel

    2016-04-01

    In North Africa, the countries of Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia are already experiencing water scarcity and a strong interannual variability of precipitation. To better manage their existing water resources, several dams and reservoirs have been built on most large river catchments. The objective of this study is to provide quantitative scenarios of future changes in water availability for the 47 major dams and reservoirs catchments located in North Africa. An ensemble of regional climate models (RCM) with a spatial resolution of 12km, driven by different general circulation models (GCM), from the EuroCORDEX experiment have been considered to analyze the projected changes on temperature, precipitation and potential evapotranspiration (PET) for two scenarios (RCP4.5 and RCP8.5) and two time horizons (2040-2065 and 2065-2090). PET is estimated from RCM outputs either with the FAO-Penman-Monteith (PM) equation, requiring air temperature, relative humidity, net radiation and wind, or with the Hargreave Samani (HS) equation, requiring only air temperature. The water balance is analyzed by comparing the climatic demand and supply of water, considering that for most of these catchments groundwater storage is negligible over long time periods. Results indicated a future temperature increase for all catchments between +1.8° and +4.2°, depending on the emission scenario and the time period considered. Precipitation is projected to decrease between -14% to -27%, mainly in winter and spring, with a strong East to West gradient. PET computed from PM or HS formulas provided very similar estimates and projections, ranging between +7% to +18%. Changes in PET are mostly driven by rising temperatures and are greatest during dry summer months than for the wet winter season. Therefore the increased PET has a lower impact than declining precipitation on future water availability, which is expected to decrease by -19% to -33% on average.

  20. Observations of Saharan dust in the Caribbean and Implications for Regional Climate Variability

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Remer, L.; Einaudi, Franco

    2001-01-01

    Massive quantities of dust aerosol, originating at source locations in the Saharan desert are frequently transported westward across the Atlantic. Saharan dust has been frequently identified at ground-based stations in South America, on Barbados, in Florida and in Texas. Recently, in July of 2000, the Puerto Rican Dust Experiment (PRiDE), consisting of researchers from the U.S. Navy, NASA, the University of Miami and the University of Puerto Rico joined together to study this important phenomenon. Numerical forecast models tracked each dust event as the dust left the African continent and transversed the Atlantic. Ground-based, ship-based, airborne and satellite sensors were used to characterize the physical and radiative properties of the dust aerosol. The dust plays an important role in terms of radiative forcing of regional climate. Satellite sensors such as NASA's EOS-MODIS aboard the Terra satellite will provide important continuing information on the dust aerosol and its climatic effects.

  1. Variability and trends of local/regional scale surface climate in northern Africa during the twentieth century

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Djomou, Zéphirin Yepdo; Monkam, David; Woafo, Paul

    2014-08-01

    Four regions are detected in northern Africa (20° W-40° E, 0-30° N) by applying the cluster analysis method on the annual rainfall anomalies of the period 1901-2000. The first region (R1), an arid land, covers essentially the north of 17.75° N from west to east of the study zone. The second region (R2), a semiarid land with a Sahelian climate, less warm than the dry climate of R1, is centred on Chad, with almost regular extension to the west towards Mauritania, and to the east, including the north of the Central African Republic and the Sudan. The region 3 (R3), a wet land, is centred on the Ivory Coast and covers totally Liberia, the south part of Ghana, Togo, Benin and the southwest of Nigeria. The fourth region (R4), corresponding to the wet equatorial forest, covers a part of Senegal, the Central Africa, the south of Sudan and a part of Ethiopia. An analysis of observed temperature and precipitation variability and trends throughout the twentieth century over these regions is presented. Summer, winter and annual data are examined using a range of variability measures. Statistically, significant warming trends are found over the majority of regions. The trends have a magnitude of up to 1.5 K per century. Only a few precipitation trends are statistically significant. Regional temperature and precipitation show pronounced variability at scales from interannual to multi-decadal. The interannual variability shows significant variations and trends throughout the century, the latter being mostly negative for precipitation and both positive and negative for temperature. Temperature and precipitation anomalies show a chaotic-type behaviour in which the regional conditions oscillate around the long-term mean trend and occasionally fall into long-lasting (up to 10 years or more) anomaly regimes. A generally modest temporal correlation is found between anomalies of different regions and between temperature and precipitation anomalies for the same region. This

  2. Future projection of Indian summer monsoon variability under climate change scenario: An assessment from CMIP5 climate models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sharmila, S.; Joseph, S.; Sahai, A. K.; Abhilash, S.; Chattopadhyay, R.

    2015-01-01

    In this study, the impact of enhanced anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions on the possible future changes in different aspects of daily-to-interannual variability of Indian summer monsoon (ISM) is systematically assessed using 20 coupled models participated in the Coupled Model Inter-comparison Project Phase 5. The historical (1951-1999) and future (2051-2099) simulations under the strongest Representative Concentration Pathway have been analyzed for this purpose. A few reliable models are selected based on their competence in simulating the basic features of present-climate ISM variability. The robust and consistent projections across the selected models suggest substantial changes in the ISM variability by the end of 21st century indicating strong sensitivity of ISM to global warming. On the seasonal scale, the all-India summer monsoon mean rainfall is likely to increase moderately in future, primarily governed by enhanced thermodynamic conditions due to atmospheric warming, but slightly offset by weakened large scale monsoon circulation. It is projected that the rainfall magnitude will increase over core monsoon zone in future climate, along with lengthening of the season due to late withdrawal. On interannual timescales, it is speculated that severity and frequency of both strong monsoon (SM) and weak monsoon (WM) might increase noticeably in future climate. Substantial changes in the daily variability of ISM are also projected, which are largely associated with the increase in heavy rainfall events and decrease in both low rain-rate and number of wet days during future monsoon. On the subseasonal scale, the model projections depict considerable amplification of higher frequency (below 30 day mode) components; although the dominant northward propagating 30-70 day mode of monsoon intraseasonal oscillations may not change appreciably in a warmer climate. It is speculated that the enhanced high frequency mode of monsoon ISOs due to increased GHG induced warming

  3. Land surface phenological response to decadal climate variability across Australia using satellite remote sensing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Broich, M.; Huete, A.; Tulbure, M. G.; Ma, X.; Xin, Q.; Paget, M.; Restrepo-Coupe, N.; Davies, K.; Devadas, R.; Held, A.

    2014-05-01

    Land surface phenological cycles of vegetation greening and browning are influenced by variability in climatic forcing. Quantitative information on phenological cycles and their variability is important for agricultural applications, wildfire fuel accumulation, land management, land surface modeling, and climate change studies. Most phenology studies have focused on temperature-driven Northern Hemisphere systems, where phenology shows annually reoccurring patterns. Yet, precipitation-driven non-annual phenology of arid and semi-arid systems (i.e. drylands) received much less attention, despite the fact that they cover more than 30% of the global land surface. Here we focused on Australia, the driest inhabited continent with one of the most variable rainfall climates in the world and vast areas of dryland systems. Detailed and internally consistent studies investigating phenological cycles and their response to climate variability across the entire continent designed specifically for Australian dryland conditions are missing. To fill this knowledge gap and to advance phenological research, we used existing methods more effectively to study geographic and climate-driven variability in phenology over Australia. We linked derived phenological metrics with rainfall and the Southern Oscillation Index (SOI). We based our analysis on Enhanced Vegetation Index (EVI) data from the MODerate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) from 2000 to 2013, which included extreme drought and wet years. We conducted a continent-wide investigation of the link between phenology and climate variability and a more detailed investigation over the Murray-Darling Basin (MDB), the primary agricultural area and largest river catchment of Australia. Results showed high inter- and intra-annual variability in phenological cycles. Phenological cycle peaks occurred not only during the austral summer but at any time of the year, and their timing varied by more than a month in the interior of the

  4. Sensitivity of ground - water recharge estimates to climate variability and change, Columbia Plateau, Washington

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Vaccaro, John J.

    1992-01-01

    The sensitivity of groundwater recharge estimates was investigated for the semiarid Ellensburg basin, located on the Columbia Plateau, Washington, to historic and projected climatic regimes. Recharge was estimated for predevelopment and current (1980s) land use conditions using a daily energy-soil-water balance model. A synthetic daily weather generator was used to simulate lengthy sequences with parameters estimated from subsets of the historical record that were unusually wet and unusually dry. Comparison of recharge estimates corresponding to relatively wet and dry periods showed that recharge for predevelopment land use varies considerably within the range of climatic conditions observed in the 87-year historical observation period. Recharge variations for present land use conditions were less sensitive to the same range of historical climatic conditions because of irrigation. The estimated recharge based on the 87-year historical climatology was compared with adjustments to the historical precipitation and temperature records for the same record to reflect CO2-doubling climates as projected by general circulation models (GCMs). Two GCM scenarios were considered: an average of conditions for three different GCMs with CO2 doubling, and a most severe “maximum” case. For the average GCM scenario, predevelopment recharge increased, and current recharge decreased. Also considered was the sensitivity of recharge to the variability of climate within the historical and adjusted historical records. Predevelopment and current recharge were less and more sensitive, respectively, to the climate variability for the average GCM scenario as compared to the variability within the historical record. For the maximum GCM scenario, recharge for both predevelopment and current land use decreased, and the sensitivity to the CO2-related climate change was larger than sensitivity to the variability in the historical and adjusted historical climate records.

  5. Spatiotemporal variability of reference evapotranspiration and contributing climatic factors in China during 1961-2013

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Zhaoli; Xie, Peiwei; Lai, Chengguang; Chen, Xiaohong; Wu, Xushu; Zeng, Zhaoyang; Li, Jun

    2017-01-01

    Reference evapotranspiration (ETo) is an important parameter for characterization of the hydrological cycle, and it is also important for agricultural, environmental and other studies. The ETo for 4189 grid points in China from 1961 to 2013 was calculated in this study utilizing the FAO Penman-Monteith method (P-M) based on an updated high-resolution (0.5° × 0.5°) gridded dataset. Five climatic variables including wind speed (WS), sunlight duration (SD), relative humidity (RH), maximum daily temperature (Tm) and minimum daily temperature (Tn), were selected to identify the contribution to variability of ETo. The temporal evolution and spatial distribution of each climatic variable was also investigated. Results indicate that (1) ETo distribution in China differed significantly both in seasonal and spatial scale in general, and annual ETo significantly decreased 6.84 mm/decade (P < 0.05); a turning point occurred in 1982 for the temporal variability of ETo and the fluctuation periods of 2.4- and 3.4-years existed in the ETo series. (2) WS was the most influential climatic variable related to ETo variability with relative contribution of 32.31%, followed by Tm (26.65%), SD (19.70%), RH (14.33%) and Tn (7.02%); significant declines (P < 0.05) of WS and SD were indicated in the decrease of ETo while the increase of Tm and Tn and the decrease of RH contributed to enhancing ETo. (3) Relative contributions of climatic variables to ETo were temporally unstable and varied considerably in the nine agricultural regions and the whole China; spatial distribution for relative contribution of various climatic variables showed significant diversity among various agricultural regions. The results have the potential to provide a reference for agricultural production and management in China.

  6. Impacts of Climate and Management Variables on the Contamination of Preharvest Leafy Greens with Escherichia coli.

    PubMed

    Liu, Cheng; Hofstra, Nynke; Franz, Eelco

    2016-01-01

    The observed seasonality of foodborne disease suggests that climatic conditions play a role and that changes in the climate may affect the presence of pathogens. However, it is hard to determine whether this effect is direct or whether it works indirectly through other factors, such as farm management. This study aimed to identify the climate and management variables that are associated with the contamination (presence and concentration) of leafy green vegetables with E. coli. This study used data about E. coli contamination from 562 leafy green vegetables (lettuce and spinach) samples taken between 2011 and 2013 from 23 open-field farms in Belgium, Brazil, Egypt, Norway, and Spain. Mixed-effect logistic and linear regression models were used to study the statistical relationship between the dependent and independent variables. Climate variables and agricultural management practices together had a systematic influence on E. coli presence and concentration. The variables important for E. coli presence included the minimum temperature of the sampling day (odds ratio = 1.47), region, and application of inorganic fertilizer. The variables important for concentration (R(2) = 0.75) were the maximum temperature during the 3 days before sampling and the region. Temperature had a stronger influence (had a significant parameter estimate and the highest R(2)) than did management practices on E. coli presence and concentration. Region was a variable that masked many management variables, including rainwater, surface water, manure, inorganic fertilizer, and spray irrigation. Climate variables had a positive relationship with E. coli presence and concentration. Temperature, irrigation water type, fertilizer type, and irrigation method should be systematically considered in future studies of fresh produce safety.

  7. Retrieving daily global solar radiation from routine climate variables

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moradi, Isaac; Mueller, Richard; Perez, Richard

    2014-05-01

    Solar radiation is an important variable for studies related to solar energy applications, meteorology, climatology, hydrology, and agricultural meteorology. However, solar radiation is not routinely measured at meteorological stations; therefore, it is often required to estimate it using other techniques such as retrieving from satellite data or estimating using other geophysical variables. Over the years, many models have been developed to estimate solar radiation from other geophysical variables such as temperature, rainfall, and sunshine duration. The aim of this study was to evaluate six of these models using data measured at four independent worldwide networks. The dataset included 13 stations from Australia, 25 stations from Germany, 12 stations from Saudi Arabia, and 48 stations from the USA. The models require either sunshine duration hours (Ångstrom) or daily range of air temperature (Bristow and Campbell, Donatelli and Bellocchi, Donatelli and Campbell, Hargreaves, and Hargreaves and Samani) as input. According to the statistical parameters, Ångstrom and Bristow and Campbell indicated a better performance than the other models. The bias and root mean square error for the Ångstrom model were less than 0.25 MJ m2 day-1 and 2.25 MJ m2 day-1, respectively, and the correlation coefficient was always greater than 95 %. Statistical analysis using Student's t test indicated that the residuals for Ångstrom, Bristow and Campbell, Hargreaves, and Hargreaves and Samani are not statistically significant at the 5 % level. In other words, the estimated values by these models are statistically consistent with the measured data. Overall, given the simplicity and performance, the Ångstrom model is the best choice for estimating solar radiation when sunshine duration measurements are available; otherwise, Bristow and Campbell can be used to estimate solar radiation using daily range of air temperature.

  8. Evaluating the variability in surface water reservoir planning characteristics during climate change impacts assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Soundharajan, Bankaru-Swamy; Adeloye, Adebayo J.; Remesan, Renji

    2016-07-01

    This study employed a Monte-Carlo simulation approach to characterise the uncertainties in climate change induced variations in storage requirements and performance (reliability (time- and volume-based), resilience, vulnerability and sustainability) of surface water reservoirs. Using a calibrated rainfall-runoff (R-R) model, the baseline runoff scenario was first simulated. The R-R inputs (rainfall and temperature) were then perturbed using plausible delta-changes to produce simulated climate change runoff scenarios. Stochastic models of the runoff were developed and used to generate ensembles of both the current and climate-change-perturbed future runoff scenarios. The resulting runoff ensembles were used to force simulation models of the behaviour of the reservoir to produce 'populations' of required reservoir storage capacity to meet demands, and the performance. Comparing these parameters between the current and the perturbed provided the population of climate change effects which was then analysed to determine the variability in the impacts. The methodology was applied to the Pong reservoir on the Beas River in northern India. The reservoir serves irrigation and hydropower needs and the hydrology of the catchment is highly influenced by Himalayan seasonal snow and glaciers, and Monsoon rainfall, both of which are predicted to change due to climate change. The results show that required reservoir capacity is highly variable with a coefficient of variation (CV) as high as 0.3 as the future climate becomes drier. Of the performance indices, the vulnerability recorded the highest variability (CV up to 0.5) while the volume-based reliability was the least variable. Such variabilities or uncertainties will, no doubt, complicate the development of climate change adaptation measures; however, knowledge of their sheer magnitudes as obtained in this study will help in the formulation of appropriate policy and technical interventions for sustaining and possibly enhancing

  9. Climatic and terrestrial storage control on evapotranspiration temporal variability: Analysis of river basins around the world

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zeng, Ruijie; Cai, Ximing

    2016-01-01

    Knowledge of the temporal variability of evapotranspiration (ET) is fundamental to a comprehensive understanding of hydroclimatologic processes under a changing climate and anthropogenic interferences. This study applies a variance decomposition framework to assessing ET interannual and intra-annual variance in 32 large river basins. It is found that climate (precipitation and potential ET) and terrestrial storage play different roles in ET variance with different time scales. At the interannual scale, ET variance is primarily controlled by climatic variability and dampened/enhanced by terrestrial storage change. At the intra-annual scale, the sources of ET variance exhibit a geographic pattern: ET variance is controlled by terrestrial storage change in Middle Asia, by seasonality in the Indian monsoon region, by precipitation and terrestrial storage in low altitude arid regions, and by potential ET and terrestrial storage in boreal regions. Quantifying the components of ET variability will help scientists understand the factors on ET processes under various natural and anthropogenic conditions.

  10. Effects of climate oscillations on wind resource variability in the United States

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hamlington, B. D.; Hamlington, P. E.; Collins, S. G.; Alexander, S. R.; Kim, K.-Y.

    2015-01-01

    Natural climate variations in the United States wind resource are assessed by using cyclostationary empirical orthogonal functions (CSEOFs) to decompose wind reanalysis data. Compared to approaches that average climate signals or assume stationarity of the wind resource on interannual time scales, the CSEOF analysis isolates variability associated with specific climate oscillations, as well as their modulation from year to year. Contributions to wind speed variability from the modulated annual cycle (MAC) and the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) are quantified, and information provided by the CSEOF analysis further allows the spatial variability of these effects to be determined. The impacts of the MAC and ENSO on the wind resource are calculated at existing wind turbine locations in the United States, revealing variations in the wind speed of up to 30% at individual sites. The results presented here have important implications for predictions of wind plant power output and siting.

  11. Climate variability and ocean fertility during the Aptian Stage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bottini, C.; Erba, E.; Tiraboschi, D.; Jenkyns, H. C.; Schouten, S.; Sinninghe Damsté, J. S.

    2015-03-01

    Several studies have been conducted to reconstruct temperature variations across the Aptian Stage, particularly during early Aptian Oceanic Anoxic Event (OAE) 1a. There is a general consensus that a major warming characterized OAE 1a, although some studies have provided evidence for transient "cold snaps" or cooler intervals during the event. The climatic conditions for the middle-late Aptian are less constrained, and a complete record through the Aptian is not available. Here we present a reconstruction of surface-water palaeotemperature and fertility based on calcareous nannofossil records from the Cismon and Piobbico cores (Tethys) and DSDP Site 463 (Pacific Ocean). The data, integrated with oxygen-isotope and TEX86 records, provide a detailed picture of climatic and ocean fertility changes during the Aptian Stage, which are discussed in relation to the direct/indirect role of volcanism. Warm temperatures characterized the pre-OAE 1a interval, followed by a maximum warming (of ~ 1.5-2 °C) during the early phase of anoxia under intense volcanic activity of the Ontong Java Plateau (OJP). A short-lived cooling episode interrupted the major warming, following a rapid increase in weathering rates. Nannofossils indicate that mesotrophic conditions were reached when temperatures were at their highest and OJP volcanism most intense, thus suggesting that continental runoff, together with increased input of hydrothermal metals, increased nutrient supply to the oceans. The latter part of OAE 1a was characterized by cooling events, probably promoted by CO2 sequestration during burial of organic matter. In this phase, high productivity was probably maintained by N2-fixing cyanobacteria, while nannofossil taxa indicating higher fertility were rare. The end of anoxia coincided with the cessation of volcanism and a pronounced cooling. The mid-Aptian was characterized by highest surface-water fertility and progressively decreasing temperatures, probably resulting from intense

  12. Impact of GCM boundary forcing on regional climate modeling of West African summer monsoon precipitation and circulation features

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kebe, Ibourahima; Sylla, Mouhamadou Bamba; Omotosho, Jerome Adebayo; Nikiema, Pinghouinde Michel; Gibba, Peter; Giorgi, Filippo

    2017-03-01

    In this study, the latest version of the International Centre for Theoretical Physics Regional Climate Model (RegCM4) driven by three CMIP5 Global Climate Models (GCMs) is used at 25 km grid spacing over West Africa to investigate the impact of lateral boundary forcings on the simulation of monsoon precipitation and its relationship with regional circulation features. We find that the RegCM4 experiments along with their multimodel ensemble generally reproduce the location of the main precipitation characteristics over the region and improve upon the corresponding driving GCMs. However, the provision of different forcing boundary conditions leads to substantially different precipitation magnitudes and spatial patterns. For instance, while RegCM4 nested within GFDL-ESM-2M and HadGEM2-ES exhibits some underestimations of precipitation and an excessively narrow Intertropical Convergence Zone, the MPI-ESM-MR driven run produces precipitation spatial distribution and magnitudes more similar to observations. Such a superior performance originates from a much better simulation of the interactions between baroclinicity, temperature gradient and African Easterly Jet along with an improved connection between the Isentropic Potential Vorticity, its gradient and the African Easterly Waves dynamics. We conclude that a good performing GCM in terms of monsoon dynamical features (in this case MPI-ESM-MR) is needed to drive RCMs in order to achieve a better representation of the West Africa summer monsoon precipitation.

  13. Solar cycles or random processes? Evaluating solar variability in Holocene climate records.

    PubMed

    Turner, T Edward; Swindles, Graeme T; Charman, Dan J; Langdon, Peter G; Morris, Paul J; Booth, Robert K; Parry, Lauren E; Nichols, Jonathan E

    2016-04-05

    Many studies have reported evidence for solar-forcing of Holocene climate change across a range of archives. These studies have compared proxy-climate data with records of solar variability (e.g. (14)C or (10)Be), or have used time series analysis to test for the presence of solar-type cycles. This has led to some climate sceptics misrepresenting this literature to argue strongly that solar variability drove the rapid global temperature increase of the twentieth century. As proxy records underpin our understanding of the long-term processes governing climate, they need to be evaluated thoroughly. The peatland archive has become a prominent line of evidence for solar forcing of climate. Here we examine high-resolution peatland proxy climate data to determine whether solar signals are present. We find a wide range of significant periodicities similar to those in records of solar variability: periods between 40-100 years, and 120-140 years are particularly common. However, periodicities similar to those in the data are commonly found in random-walk simulations. Our results demonstrate that solar-type signals can be the product of random variations alone, and that a more critical approach is required for their robust interpretation.

  14. Solar cycles or random processes? Evaluating solar variability in Holocene climate records

    PubMed Central

    Turner, T. Edward; Swindles, Graeme T.; Charman, Dan J.; Langdon, Peter G.; Morris, Paul J.; Booth, Robert K.; Parry, Lauren E.; Nichols, Jonathan E.

    2016-01-01

    Many studies have reported evidence for solar-forcing of Holocene climate change across a range of archives. These studies have compared proxy-climate data with records of solar variability (e.g. 14C or 10Be), or have used time series analysis to test for the presence of solar-type cycles. This has led to some climate sceptics misrepresenting this literature to argue strongly that solar variability drove the rapid global temperature increase of the twentieth century. As proxy records underpin our understanding of the long-term processes governing climate, they need to be evaluated thoroughly. The peatland archive has become a prominent line of evidence for solar forcing of climate. Here we examine high-resolution peatland proxy climate data to determine whether solar signals are present. We find a wide range of significant periodicities similar to those in records of solar variability: periods between 40–100 years, and 120–140 years are particularly common. However, periodicities similar to those in the data are commonly found in random-walk simulations. Our results demonstrate that solar-type signals can be the product of random variations alone, and that a more critical approach is required for their robust interpretation. PMID:27045989

  15. Spatial Patterns of Sea Level Variability Associated with Natural Internal Climate Modes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Han, Weiqing; Meehl, Gerald A.; Stammer, Detlef; Hu, Aixue; Hamlington, Benjamin; Kenigson, Jessica; Palanisamy, Hindumathi; Thompson, Philip

    2017-01-01

    Sea level rise (SLR) can exert significant stress on highly populated coastal societies and low-lying island countries around the world. Because of this, there is huge societal demand for improved decadal predictions and future projections of SLR, particularly on a local scale along coastlines. Regionally, sea level variations can deviate considerably from the global mean due to various geophysical processes. These include changes of ocean circulations, which partially can be attributed to natural, internal modes of variability in the complex Earth's climate system. Anthropogenic influence may also contribute to regional sea level variations. Separating the effects of natural climate modes and anthropogenic forcing, however, remains a challenge and requires identification of the imprint of specific climate modes in observed sea level change patterns. In this paper, we review our current state of knowledge about spatial patterns of sea level variability associated with natural climate modes on interannual-to-multidecadal timescales, with particular focus on decadal-to-multidecadal variability. Relevant climate modes and our current state of understanding their associated sea level patterns and driving mechanisms are elaborated separately for the Pacific, the Indian, the Atlantic, and the Arctic and Southern Oceans. We also discuss the issues, challenges and future outlooks for understanding the regional sea level patterns associated with climate modes. Effects of these internal modes have to be taken into account in order to achieve more reliable near-term predictions and future projections of regional SLR.

  16. Depletion and response of deep groundwater to climate-induced pumping variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Russo, Tess A.; Lall, Upmanu

    2017-01-01

    Groundwater constitutes a critical component of our water resources. Widespread groundwater level declines have occurred in the USA over recent decades, including in regions not typically considered water stressed, such as areas of the Northwest and mid-Atlantic Coast. This loss of water storage reflects extraction rates that exceed natural recharge and capture. Here, we explore recent changes in the groundwater levels of deep aquifers from wells across the USA, and their relation to indices of interannual to decadal climate variability and to annual precipitation. We show that groundwater level changes correspond to selected global climate variations. Although climate-induced variations of deep aquifer natural recharge are expected to have multi-year time lags, we find that deep groundwater levels respond to climate over timescales of less than one year. In irrigated areas, the annual response to local precipitation in the deepest wells may reflect climate-induced pumping variability. An understanding of how the human response to drought through pumping leads to deep groundwater changes is critical to manage the impacts of interannual to decadal and longer climate variability on the nation’s water resources.

  17. Spatial Patterns of Sea Level Variability Associated with Natural Internal Climate Modes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Han, Weiqing; Meehl, Gerald A.; Stammer, Detlef; Hu, Aixue; Hamlington, Benjamin; Kenigson, Jessica; Palanisamy, Hindumathi; Thompson, Philip

    2016-10-01

    Sea level rise (SLR) can exert significant stress on highly populated coastal societies and low-lying island countries around the world. Because of this, there is huge societal demand for improved decadal predictions and future projections of SLR, particularly on a local scale along coastlines. Regionally, sea level variations can deviate considerably from the global mean due to various geophysical processes. These include changes of ocean circulations, which partially can be attributed to natural, internal modes of variability in the complex Earth's climate system. Anthropogenic influence may also contribute to regional sea level variations. Separating the effects of natural climate modes and anthropogenic forcing, however, remains a challenge and requires identification of the imprint of specific climate modes in observed sea level change patterns. In this paper, we review our current state of knowledge about spatial patterns of sea level variability associated with natural climate modes on interannual-to-multidecadal timescales, with particular focus on decadal-to-multidecadal variability. Relevant climate modes and our current state of understanding their associated sea level patterns and driving mechanisms are elaborated separately for the Pacific, the Indian, the Atlantic, and the Arctic and Southern Oceans. We also discuss the issues, challenges and future outlooks for understanding the regional sea level patterns associated with climate modes. Effects of these internal modes have to be taken into account in order to achieve more reliable near-term predictions and future projections of regional SLR.

  18. Social vulnerability and climate variability in southern Brazil: a TerraPop case study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adamo, S. B.; Fitch, C. A.; Kugler, T.; Doxsey-Whitfield, E.

    2014-12-01

    Climate variability is an inherent characteristic of the Earth's climate, including but not limited to climate change. It affects and impacts human society in different ways, depending on the underlying socioeconomic vulnerability of specific places, social groups, households and individuals. This differential vulnerability presents spatial and temporal variations, and is rooted in historical patterns of development and relations between human and ecological systems. This study aims to assess the impact of climate variability on livelihoods and well-being, as well as their changes over time and across space, and for rural and urban populations. The geographic focus is Southern Brazil-the states of Parana, Santa Catarina and Rio Grande do Sul-- and the objectives include (a) to identify and map critical areas or hotspots of exposure to climate variability (temperature and precipitation), and (b) to identify internal variation or differential vulnerability within these areas and its evolution over time (1980-2010), using newly available integrated data from the Terra Populus project. These data include geo-referenced climate and agricultural data, and data describing demographic and socioeconomic characteristics of individuals, households and places.

  19. Methodological discussion for interdisciplinary project on the effects of climatic variability on cropping systems.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Capa-Morocho, M.; Ruiz-Ramos, M.; Rodríguez-Fonseca, B.

    2012-04-01

    The Campus of International Excellence Moncloa (CEI, 2009) is a joint project of the Universities Complutense (UCM) and Politécnica of Madrid (UPM) which aims to promote connectivity between both of them in a context of scientific excellence. Within this framework an interdisciplinary doctoral Thesis is being developed, whose methodological line is presented here to collect the comments from the international scientific community. The aim of the Thesis is to assess the effect of the climatic variability in the agricultural systems of the Iberian Peninsula. It takes place between the group of agricultural systems (AgSystems) of the UPM and the TROPA group of Climatic Variability of the UCM. The provisional methodology consists on using time series of simulated crop yields and to correlate the monthly deviations with different atmospheric and oceanic anomalous fields in order to characterize the climate variability patterns affecting the fluctuations in productivity. We use observed data of climate reanalysis, general circulation models and crop simulation models. We have identified a common tool to connect both modeling disciplines: MATLAB software is used to program the functions used in data processing, for both climate and agricultural data. In this paper the methodological scheme will be shown. Both the potentials and synergies that we are finding between the group of modelers of climate and cropping systems, as well as the problems and methodological points to be resolved will be specified. We invite researchers with similar experiences to contribute to this discussion.

  20. Rainfall variability and extremes over southern Africa: Assessment of a climate model to reproduce daily extremes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Williams, C. J. R.; Kniveton, D. R.; Layberry, R.

    2009-04-01

    It is increasingly accepted that that any possible climate change will not only have an influence on mean climate but may also significantly alter climatic variability. A change in the distribution and magnitude of extreme rainfall events (associated with changing variability), such as droughts or flooding, may have a far greater impact on human and natural systems than a changing mean. This issue is of particular importance for environmentally vulnerable regions such as southern Africa. The subcontinent is considered especially vulnerable to and ill-equipped (in terms of adaptation) for extreme events, due to a number of factors including extensive poverty, famine, disease and political instability. Rainfall variability and the identification of rainfall extremes is a function of scale, so high spatial and temporal resolution data are preferred to identify extreme events and accurately predict future variability. The majority of previous climate model verification studies have compared model output with observational data at monthly timescales. In this research, the assessment of ability of a state of the art climate model to simulate climate at daily timescales is carried out using satellite derived rainfall data from the Microwave Infra-Red Algorithm (MIRA). This dataset covers the period from 1993-2002 and the whole of southern Africa at a spatial resolution of 0.1 degree longitude/latitude. The ability of a climate model to simulate current climate provides some indication of how much confidence can be applied to its future predictions. In this paper, simulations of current climate from the UK Meteorological Office Hadley Centre's climate model, in both regional and global mode, are firstly compared to the MIRA dataset at daily timescales. This concentrates primarily on the ability of the model to simulate the spatial and