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Sample records for african climate variability

  1. Sensitivity of the East African rift lakes to climate variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Olaka, L.; Trauth, M. H.

    2009-04-01

    Lakes in the East African Rift have provided excellent proxies to reconstruct past climate changes in the low latitudes. The lakes occupy volcano-tectonic depressions with highly variable climate and hydrological setting, that present a good opportunity to study the climatic and hydrogeological influences on the lake water budget. Previous studies have used lake floor sediments to establish the sensitivity of the East African rift lakes. This study focuses on geomorphology and climate to offer additional or alternative record of lake history that are key to quantifying sensitivity of these lakes as archives to external and internal climatic forcings. By using the published Holocene lake areas and levels, we analyze twelve lakes on the eastern arm of the East African rift; Ziway, Awassa, Turkana, Suguta, Baringo, Nakuru, Elmenteita, Naivasha, Natron, Manyara and compare with Lake Victoria, that occupies the plateau between the east and the western arms of the rift. Using the SRTM data, Hypsometric (area-altitude) analysis has been used to compare the lake basins between latitude 80 North and 30 South. The mean elevation for the lakes, is between 524 and 2262 meters above sea level, the lakes' hypsometric integrals (HI), a measure of landmass volume above the reference plane, vary from 0.31 to 0.76. The aridity index (Ai), defined as Precipitation/ Evapotranspiration, quantifies the water available to a lake, it encompasses land cover and climatic effects. It is lowest (arid) in the basin between the Ethiopian rift and the Kenyan rift and at the southern termination of the Kenyan Rift in the catchments of lake Turkana, Suguta, Baringo and Manyara with values of 0.55, 0.43, 0.43 and 0.5 respectively. And it is highest (wet) in the catchments of, Ziway, Awassa, Nakuru and Naivasha as 1.33,1.03 and 1.2 respectively, which occupy the highest points of the rift. Lake Victoria has an index of 1.42 the highest of these lakes and receives a high precipitation. We use a

  2. 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

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. Understanding the influence of global scale climate modes on inter-annual variability of African precipitation using CMIP5 simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bhattacharjee, P. S.; Zaitchik, B.

    2013-12-01

    Continental Africa is characterized by considerable spatio-temporal variability of precipitation, which is associated with extreme events such as droughts and floods, that have serious impacts on environment, economy and society. Such variability in precipitation distribution, both in temporal and spatial scale, exerts a profound influence on local and regional water budget and on human and natural systems sensitive to climate variations at timescales of seasons to decades. The present study aims to quantify the large-scale processes that drive rainfall variability over Africa at seasonal and inter-annual timescales. We examine how well these processes are represented in the present generation of climate models for historical conditions and examine projection for mid-21st century. Ten coupled models in Climate Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP5) along with observational datasets of precipitation (Climate Research Unit (CRU)) and Reynolds sea surface temperature (SST) analysis are used to study and compare annual and seasonal variation of precipitation over Africa (between 1960-2005 time period). Principal component and correlation analysis performed on observational datasets show that El Niño/Southern Oscillation (ENSO) variability and global SST have a dominant impact on rainfall variability over Africa. As expected, models performing in CMIP5 vary greatly in their representation of SST variability, including that related to ENSO, as well as in the strength of association between SST variability and precipitation over various regions of Africa. Some models resemble the observed relationships while others associate African precipitation variability with other remote drivers. Under future conditions (RCP8.5 scenario, averaged between 2060-2099), some models project a maintenance or intensification of current associations while others project nonstationary change. We consider the implications of this diversity for climate impact studies and future model

  8. 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. PMID:26611969

  9. The Role of Vegetation-Climate Interaction and Interannual Variability in Shaping the African Savanna.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zeng, Ning; Neelin, J. David

    2000-08-01

    Using a coupled atmosphere-land-vegetation model of intermediate complexity, the authors explore how vegetation-climate interaction and internal climate variability might influence the vegetation distribution in Africa. When the model is forced by observed climatological sea surface temperature (SST), positive feedbacks from vegetation changes tend to increase the spatial gradient between desert regions and forest regions at the expense of savanna regions. When interannual variation of SST is included, the climate variability tends to reduce rainfall and vegetation in the wetter regions and to increase them in the drier regions along this gradient, resulting in a smoother desert-forest transition. This effect is most dramatically demonstrated in a model parameter regime for which multiple equilibria (either a desertlike or a forestlike Sahel) can exist when strong vegetation-climate feedbacks are allowed. However, the presence of a variable SST drives the desertlike state and the forestlike state toward an intermediate grasslike state, because of nonlinearities in the coupled system. Both vegetation and interannual variability thus play active roles in shaping the subtropical savanna ecosystem.

  10. Southern African Ozone Trends (1990-2007): Influences of Climate Variability and Anthropogenic Sources

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thompson, A. M.; Balashov, N. V.; Witte, J. C.; Piketh, S.; Coetzee, G. J.; Thouret, V.

    2014-12-01

    Studies of tropospheric ozone trends over the southern African Highveld in the 1990-2007 period present a paradox. We used monthly averaged surface ozone data from 5 South African monitoring stations east of Johannesburg in a linear regression model to show that the cycles associated with the El Niño/La Niña make a considerable contribution to interannual ozone variability through perturbations in cloud cover, temperature and precipitation that interact with photochemistry (see Figure). During El Niño periods, typically sunnier and drier, summertime ozone is enhanced, whereas wetter, cloudier conditions of a La Niña are associated with lower ozone. Interestingly, the 5 stations show very little evidence of a statistically significant trend from 1990 through 2007. Over the same time period, the regression model shows that free tropospheric ozone, from 5-11 km, taken from monthly averaged SHADOZ (Southern Hemisphere ADditional OZonesondes) and MOZAIC (Measurement of Ozone and Water Vapour on Airbus in-service Aircraft) profiles, increased significantly (+20-25%/decade) in late autumn and early winter (May-July). There is also a positive ozone trend near the tropopause in summer (Nov.-Dec.) but none during the oft-studied months of biomass fires (Sept.-Oct.). It is difficult to interpret the seemingly contradictory trends in terms of emissions of ozone precursors that are not well characterized over the Highveld and larger southern African region. However, we ran a series of back-trajectories at 500 and 300 hPa to coincide with the profile sampling times in May-August 1990-2007. Regional contributions are implicated by recirculation in the Johannesburg region. Trajectories also point to long-range transport from the greater African continent, south Atlantic and South America, all known regions of high ozone and in the case of South America, growing pollution from emerging mega-cities.

  11. 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

  12. A Variable Resolution Gcm Simulation of The Impact of Future Land-use Changes On African Climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maynard, K.; Royer, J. F.; Chauvin, F.

    Simulations with atmospheric general circulation models (GCM) have generally shown a significant impact of large-scale anthropogenic changes in land cover, on the regional surface climate, particularly for the case of massive tropical deforesta- tion. However these simulations have usually been performed with idealized land- surface changes, and with horizontal resolutions of several hundred kilometers, which does not allow to represent in detail the geographical variations of the land surface processes and their possible feedbacks. To achieve a higher spatial resolution over a selected region, a variable resolution version of the ARPEGE-Climat model, with a zooming technique based on a conformal transformation of the sphere, has been ap- plied to time-slice simulations allowing to reach a resolution of about 100 km over Africa. For the validation of the model a control simulation for the current climate has been performed using a new vegetation database based on satellite data. A time-slice simulation for the middle of the 21-rst century has been performed using the SST anomaly patterns from a coupled atmosphere-ocean transient climate simulation per- formed with a lower resolution version of the ARPEGE-Climat under the conditions of the SRES-B2 scenario of IPCC. In order to specify realistic land cover changes the results of the integrated impact assessment model IMAGE 2.2 from RIVM (Bilthoven) have been used to compute land surface properties on a 0.5 grid over the conti- nents. The impact on the African monsoon of the expected land surface changes in a greenhouse-warmed climate simulated by the high resolution GCM will be illustrated and discussed in this presentation.

  13. 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

  14. 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

  15. 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.

  16. Climate Variability Program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Halpern, David (Editor)

    1999-01-01

    The Annual Report of the Climate Variability Program briefly describes research activities of 40 Principal Investigators who are funded by NASA's Earth Science Enterprise Research Division. The report is focused on the year 1998. Utilization of satellite observations is a singularity of research on climate science and technology at JPL. Research at JPL has two foci: generate new knowledge and develop new technology.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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. PMID:19120241

  20. 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.

  1. 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

  2. Climate Variability and Change

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    U.S. Geological Survey

    2007-01-01

    In 2007, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) developed a science strategy outlining the major natural science issues facing the Nation in the next decade. The science strategy consists of six science directions of critical importance, focusing on areas where natural science can make a substantial contribution to the well-being of the Nation and the world. This fact sheet focuses on climate variability and change and how USGS research can strengthen the Nation with information needed to meet the challenges of the 21st century.

  3. 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).

  4. 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.

  5. African agriculture especially vulnerable to warming climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wendel, JoAnna

    2014-09-01

    Malnourishment across Africa could jump 40% by 2050 due to climate change, according to the Africa Agriculture Status Report 2014 (AASR), released on 2 September. With temperatures predicted to rise 1.5°C-2.5°C by midcentury, African smallholder farms, which are generally run by one family, are more vulnerable than ever, the report finds.

  6. 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.

  7. Natural Climate Variability and Future Climate Policy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ricke, K.; Caldeira, K.

    2013-12-01

    Individual beliefs about climate change and willingness-to-pay for its mitigation are influenced by local weather and climate. Large ensemble climate modeling experiments have demonstrated the large role natural variability plays in local weather and climate on a multidecadal timescale. Here we illustrate how if support for global climate policies and subsequent implementation of those policies are determined by citizens' local experiences, natural variability could influence the timeline for implementation of emissions reduction policies by decades. The response of complex social systems to local and regional changes in weather and climate cannot be quantitatively predicted with confidence. Both the form and timing of the societal response can be affected by interactions between social systems and the physical climate system. Here, to illustrate one type of influence decadal natural variability can have on climate policy, we consider a simple example in which the only question is when, if ever, the different parties will support emissions reduction. To analyze the potential effect that unpredictable extreme events may have on the time to reach a global agreement on climate policy, we analyzed the output from a 40-member Community Climate System Model version 3 simulation ensemble to illustrate how local experiences might affect the timing of acceptance of strong climate policy measures. We assume that a nation's decision to take strong actions to abate emissions is contingent upon the local experiences of its citizens and then examine how the timelines for policy action may be influenced by variability in local weather. To illustrate, we assume that a social 'tipping point' is reached at the national level occurs when half of the population of a nation has experienced a sufficiently extreme event. If climate policies are driven by democratic consensus then variability in weather could result in significantly disparate times-to-action. For the top six CO2 emitters

  8. Climate not to blame for African civil wars.

    PubMed

    Buhaug, Halvard

    2010-09-21

    Vocal actors within policy and practice contend that environmental variability and shocks, such as drought and prolonged heat waves, drive civil wars in Africa. Recently, a widely publicized scientific article appears to substantiate this claim. This paper investigates the empirical foundation for the claimed relationship in detail. Using a host of different model specifications and alternative measures of drought, heat, and civil war, the paper concludes that climate variability is a poor predictor of armed conflict. Instead, African civil wars can be explained by generic structural and contextual conditions: prevalent ethno-political exclusion, poor national economy, and the collapse of the Cold War system. PMID:20823241

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. African easterly wave activity in a variable resolution GCM

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moustaoui, M.; Royer, J.-F.; Chauvin, F.

    2002-03-01

    The role of large-scale conditions on African easterly waves' variability and associated rainfall is investigated in simulations with the variable resolution version of the Arpege-Climat General Circulation Model (GCM). Easterly waves are identified from the 850 hPa meridional winds. The simulated waves' characteristics and their frequency response are compared with that in the reanalyses of the European Center for Medium-range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF) during summer 1992. The zonal wavelength of the simulated waves increases toward the equator. This increase, found also in previous works, is explained by the increase in 850-hPa mean zonal winds toward the equator as a result of low-level monsoon flow. A pronounced seasonal variability indicating a late summer enhancement of wave activity and related precipitation is found in both simulations and reanalyses. This feature, which has been found from observation campaigns, is explained by the variability of the large-scale circulation, which gives favorable conditions for the penetration of the easterly waves into the moist layer in the late summer. A shift of the spectra towards low frequencies is found in the simulated waves when compared to the reanalysis. The shift is explained by the relatively weak westward winds within the African Easterly Jet in the model, which tend to generate waves with low phase speed and frequency. We suggest that the weakness of the winds in the jet is caused by the strong eastward monsoon flow in the model, which may be due to surface condition parameterizations.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. Solar variability and Earth's climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rozelot, J. P.; Lefebvre, S.

    2003-04-01

    The purpose of this lecture is to investigate whether it is possible to found a solar signature on the Earth’s climatic changes over long period of times. Recent studies indicate that small but persistent variations in solar energy flux may play a role in climatic changes; one of the most important concerns are the changes in the irradiance. If it is known that the irradiance variability have an effect on the upper UV layers on the atmosphere of the Earth, the mechanisms that redistribute this variability on the lower layers, seat of the climate, are not well known. We will discuss here some aspects which are currently at the basis of some interesting scientific debates. The first one points out the irradiance modeling, for which it is not exclude that small variations (but temporally unrelenting) of the solar radius may contribute for a non negligible part of the irradiance changes. We will show how recent measurements of the solar shape (the helioid), well explained theoretically, affect solar luminosity models. Such valuable models of the irradiance are obviously valuable inputs on the stratosphere. To this respect, a remarkable new correlation, between irradiance and the stratospheric temperature, will be presented. The second point will address new indications of the solar origin in the total atmospheric angular momentum (AAM) of the entire Earth. It is not impossible that solar-AAM-climate connections are possible in modulating solar effects on flow interactions in the atmosphere. These could, for example, account for mechanisms by which climate system can amplify a weak solar input. In the last section of this lecture, we will present how future space measurements (PICARD satellite) will contribute to set up new insights into the problem of climate variability, mainly by accurately measuring the so-called W parameter (ratio between irradiance and diameter relative variations).

  16. 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

  17. 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.

  18. 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). PMID:20471674

  19. Diagnostic studies of climate variability

    SciTech Connect

    Bradley, R.S. ); Diaz, H.F. )

    1992-01-01

    This paper reports on the progress on the first year of the diagnostic studies of climate variability project. The objectives were as follows: to initiate studies of long-term climatic variability, using long instrumental data sets, and proxy records; to examine regional changes of temperature and precipitation over the past century in relation to changes at the hemispheric and global scale; and to produce a map-based archive of monthly and seasonal temperature, precipitation and pressure data fore display on PCs. Significant progress has been made in all of these areas. This paper summarizes results of the work accomplished. Part A summarizes results of the work accomplished. Part A summarizes the work accomplished primarily at the University of Massachusetts. Part B summarizes work primarily conducted at NOAA/ERL. A list of papers published, in press, or in preparation then follows. Appendix 1 is a description of the proposed research in 1992--93, and a proposed budget.

  20. Reanalyses and Essential Climate Variables

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bosilovich, Michael

    2011-01-01

    Reanalyses are a potentially powerful climate data collection driven by observations but also subjected to model bias. Additionally, reanalyses can produce and use essential climate variables in a consistent method. For example, snow cover and soil moisture (among other variables) will eventually be assimilated into the reanalyses, but also provide crucial validation data. Sea surface temperature can be prescribed or assimilated in a coupled reanalysis. The strength of reanalysis lies in the ancillary data that is produced from the modeling components but not routinely observed thereby providing more complete Earth system information. The weakness in this concept is that the model derived data can be affected by model bias and may also change relative to the available observing system. Here, we will review the status of existing reanalyses and the ECVs being considered for the workshop. Purpose of Michael Bosilovich's contribution to the workshop: Michael Bosilovich will represent US reanalysis community in this international discussion of Essential Climate Variables (ECVs) and the relative nature of reanalyses to ECVs.

  1. 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

  2. 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

  3. Tropical deforestation and climate variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Voldoire, A.; Royer, J. F.

    A new tropical deforestation experiment has been performed, with the ARPEGE-Climat atmospheric global circulation model associated with the ISBA land surface scheme. Simulations are forced with observed monthly mean sea surface temperatures and thus inter-annual variability of the ocean system is taken into account. The local mean response to deforestation over Amazonia and Africa is relatively weak compared with most published studies and compensation effects are particularly important. However, a large increase in daily maximum temperatures is obtained during the dry season when soil water stress dominates. The analysis of daily variability shows that the distributions of daily minimum and maximum temperatures are noticeably modified with an increase in extreme temperatures. Daily precipitation amounts also indicate a weakening of the convective activity. Conditions for the onset of convection are less frequently gathered, particularly over southern Amazonia and western equatorial Africa. At the same time, the intensity of convective events is reduced, especially over equatorial deforested regions. The inter-annual variability is also enhanced. For instance, El Niño events generally induce a large drying over northern Amazonia, which is well reproduced in the control simulation. In the deforested experiment, a positive feedback effect leads to a strong intensification of this drying and a subsequent increase in surface temperature. The change in variability as a response to deforestation can be more crucial than the change of the mean climate since more intense extremes could be more detrimental for agriculture than an increase in mean temperatures.

  4. Projections of African drought extremes in CORDEX regional climate simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gbobaniyi, Emiola; Nikulin, Grigory; Jones, Colin; Kjellström, Erik

    2013-04-01

    We investigate trends in drought extremes for different climate regions of the African continent over a combined historical and future period 1951-2100. Eight CMIP5 coupled atmospheric global climate models (CanESM2, CNRM-CM5, HadGEM2-ES, NorESM1-M, EC-EARTH, MIROC5, GFDL-ESM2M and MPI-ESM-LR) under two forcing scenarios, the relative concentration pathways (RCP) 4.5 and 8.5, with spatial resolution varying from about 1° to 3° are downscaled to 0.44° resolution by the Rossby Centre (SMHI) regional climate model RCA4. We use data from the ensuing ensembles of CORDEX-Africa regional climate simulations to explore three drought indices namely: standardized precipitation index (SPI), moisture index (MI) and difference in precipitation and evaporation (P-E). Meteorological and agricultural drought conditions are assessed in our analyses and a climate change signal is obtained for the SPI by calculating gamma functions for future SPI with respect to a baseline present climate. Results for the RCP4.5 and RCP8.5 scenarios are inter-compared to assess uncertainties in the future projections. We show that there is a pronounced sensitivity to the choice of forcing GCM which indicates that assessments of future drought conditions in Africa would benefit from large model ensembles. We also note that the results are sensitive to the choice of drought index. We discuss both spatial and temporal variability of drought extremes for different climate zones of Africa and the importance of the ensemble mean. Our study highlights the usefulness of CORDEX simulations in identifying possible future impacts of climate at local and regional scales.

  5. 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.

  6. 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

  7. Cyclical konzo epidemics and climate variability.

    PubMed

    Oluwole, Olusegun Steven A

    2015-03-01

    Konzo epidemics have occurred during droughts in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DR Congo) for >70 years, but also in Mozambique, Tanzania, and the Central African Republic. The illness is attributed to exposure to cyanide from cassava foods, on which the population depends almost exclusively during droughts. Production of cassava, a drought-resistant crop, has been shown to correlate with cyclical changes in precipitation in konzo-affected countries. Here we review the epidemiology of konzo as well as models of its pathogenesis. A spectral analysis of precipitation and konzo is performed to determine whether konzo epidemics are cyclical and whether there is spectral coherence. Time series of environmental temperature, precipitation, and konzo show cyclical changes. Periodicities of dominant frequencies in the spectra of precipitation and konzo range from 3 to 6 years in DR Congo. There is coherence of the spectra of precipitation and konzo. The magnitude squared coherence of 0.9 indicates a strong relationship between variability of climate and konzo epidemics. Thus, it appears that low precipitation phases of climate variability reduce the yield of food crops except cassava, upon which the population depends for supply of calories during droughts. Presence of very high concentrations of thiocyanate (SCN(-) ), the major metabolite of cyanide, in the bodily fluids of konzo subjects is a consequence of dietary exposure to cyanide, which follows intake of poorly processed cassava roots. Because cyanogens and minor metabolites of cyanide have not induced konzo-like illnesses, SCN(-) remains the most likely neurotoxicant of konzo. Public health control of konzo will require food and water programs during droughts. [Correction added on 26 February 2015, after first online publication: abstract reformatted per journal style] PMID:25523348

  8. 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.

  9. 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. PMID:23325220

  10. 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.

  11. 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

  12. Sensitivity of Asian and African climate to variations in seasonal insolation, glacial ice cover, sea surface temperature, and Asian orography

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Demenocal, Peter B.; Rind, David

    1993-01-01

    A general circulation model was used to investigate the sensitivity of Asian and African climate to prescribed changes in boundary conditions with the objective of identifying the relative importance of individual high-latitude glacial boundary conditions on seasonal climate and providing a physical basis for interpreting the paleoclimate record. The circulation model is described and results are presented. Insolation forcing increased summer Asian monsoon winds, while increased high-latitude ice cover strengthened winter Asian trade winds causing decreased precipitation. These factors had little effect on African climate. Cooler North Atlantic sea surface temperatures enhanced winter trade winds over North Africa, southern Asian climate was relatively unaffected. Reducing Asian orography enhanced Asian winter circulation while decreasing the summer monsoon. These model results suggest that African and southern Asian climate respond differently to separate elements of high-latitude climate variability.

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-11-01

    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

  14. 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

  15. Timing of climate variability and grassland productivity

    PubMed Central

    Craine, Joseph M.; Nippert, Jesse B.; Elmore, Andrew J.; Skibbe, Adam M.; Hutchinson, Stacy L.; Brunsell, Nathaniel A.

    2012-01-01

    Future climates are forecast to include greater precipitation variability and more frequent heat waves, but the degree to which the timing of climate variability impacts ecosystems is uncertain. In a temperate, humid grassland, we examined the seasonal impacts of climate variability on 27 y of grass productivity. Drought and high-intensity precipitation reduced grass productivity only during a 110-d period, whereas high temperatures reduced productivity only during 25 d in July. The effects of drought and heat waves declined over the season and had no detectable impact on grass productivity in August. If these patterns are general across ecosystems, predictions of ecosystem response to climate change will have to account not only for the magnitude of climate variability but also for its timing. PMID:22331914

  16. Mesoscale flows and climate variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ólafsson, Haraldur; Pálmason, Bolli; Vary, Anne; Schettino, Camille; Thomas, Aurelien; Nína Petersen, Guðrún; Ágústsson, Hálfdán

    2016-04-01

    Thermally driven mesoscale flows, in particular the sea breeze, and their importance for the climate of a mid-latitude island is assessed by observations from Iceland and numerical simulations over idealized and real topography. Subsequently, an extended summertime period is simulated with surface conditions that correspond to current climate as well as surface conditions that are plausible in a future warmer climate with increased vegetation. A change in the albedo and the Bowen ratio results in changes in the sea breeze, leading to mean temperature changes whose magnitude is more than half the predicted temperature increase in the 21st Century by some GCMs.

  17. Trends in African dust transport to the Caribbean: African sources, changing climate, and future scenarios

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Prospero, J. M.

    2012-12-01

    Aerosol studies were begun on Barbados in 1965 and in Miami in 1974 and they continue to this day. This continuous record of daily measurements shows great variability in dust concentrations on time scales ranging from days to decades. Most notable was the great increase in dust concentrations in the early 1970s, apparently in response to drought in West Africa. Increased dust could impact a number of climate processes and human health in the Caribbean Basin. Indeed, in recent decades the dust concentrations over the Caribbean often exceed the US EPA standards for respirable particles. Thus there is concern over possible health impacts in the present day and how these might change in the future in response to climate change in Africa. It is logical to link of increased dust with drought. Indeed, over much of the Barbados record there was a strong negative correlation between dust concentrations and rainfall in the Sahel-Soudano (SS) region of North Africa. However, in retrospect this correlation was largely driven by three distinct periods in the early record: the period of high rainfall and low dust transport in the mid-to-late 1960s; the first drought in the early 1970s; and the extremely intense drought of the early 1980s. During this period, there seemed to be promising relationships between transport and various climate indices: e.g., El Niño, NAO, AMO. However, since the early 1990s there have been large year-to-year changes in SS rainfall but there is no consistent relationship to dust on Barbados or between dust and common climate indices. Furthermore, over the entire record there is a strong shift in seasonal dust transport, most notably, a great increase in winter and spring transport compared to the pre-drought and early drought period. These trends seem to suggest that there have been profound long-term changes in dust emissions and transport. A possible contributing factor could be increased population and land use in the SS region where over the past

  18. 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…

  19. Processes Understanding of Decadal Climate Variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Prömmel, Kerstin; Cubasch, Ulrich

    2016-04-01

    The realistic representation of decadal climate variability in the models is essential for the quality of decadal climate predictions. Therefore, the understanding of those processes leading to decadal climate variability needs to be improved. Several of these processes are already included in climate models but their importance has not yet completely been clarified. The simulation of other processes requires sometimes a higher resolution of the model or an extension by additional subsystems. This is addressed within one module of the German research program "MiKlip II - Decadal Climate Predictions" (http://www.fona-miklip.de/en/) with a focus on the following processes. Stratospheric processes and their impact on the troposphere are analysed regarding the climate response to aerosol perturbations caused by volcanic eruptions and the stratospheric decadal variability due to solar forcing, climate change and ozone recovery. To account for the interaction between changing ozone concentrations and climate a computationally efficient ozone chemistry module is developed and implemented in the MiKlip prediction system. The ocean variability and air-sea interaction are analysed with a special focus on the reduction of the North Atlantic cold bias. In addition, the predictability of the oceanic carbon uptake with a special emphasis on the underlying mechanism is investigated. This addresses a combination of physical, biological and chemical processes.

  20. Impacts of Climate Change and Climate Variability on Hydrological Regimes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Dam, Jan C.

    2003-10-01

    Water is going to be one of the key, if not the most critical, environmental issues in the twenty-first century because of the escalation in socio-economic pressures on the environment in general. Any future climate change or climate variability will only accentuate such pressures. This volume initially follows the perspective of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) to infer possible changes in hydrological regimes and water quality based on the outputs from various scenarios of General Circulation Models (GCMs). In subsequent chapters, the possible effects of climate change on the hydrology of each of the continents is examined. The book concludes with an overview of hydrological models for use in the evaluation of the impacts of climate change. It will provide a valuable guide for environmental planners and policy-makers, and will also be of use to all students and researchers interested in the possible effects of climate change.

  1. 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

    2015-10-01

    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).

  2. 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

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. 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

  6. 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.

  7. Interannual variability and predictability of African easterly waves in a GCM

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chauvin, Fabrice; Royer, Jean-François; Douville, Hervé

    2005-04-01

    The interannual variability of African Easterly Waves (AEWs) is assessed with the help of spatio-temporal spectral analysis (STSA) and complex empirical orthogonal functions methods applied to the results of ten-member multiyear ensemble simulations. Two sets of experiments were conducted with the Météo-France ARPEGE-Climat GCM, one with interactive soil moisture (control), and the other with soil moisture relaxed towards climatological monthly means calculated from the control. Composites of Soudano-Sahelian AEWs were constructed and associated physical processes and dynamics were studied in the frame of the waves. It is shown that the model is able to simulate realistically some interannual variability in the AEWs, and that this dynamical aspect of the West African climate is potentially predictable (i.e. signal can be extracted from boundary conditions relatively to internal error of the GCM), especially along the moist Guinean coast. Compared with ECMWF 15-year reanalysis (ERA15), the maximum activity of AEWs is located too far to the South and is somewhat too zonal, but the main characteristics of the waves are well represented. The major impact of soil moisture relaxation in the GCM experiments is to reduce the seasonal potential predictability of AEWs over land by enhancing their internal variability.

  8. 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

  9. 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

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. Prioritizing Global Observations Along Essential Climate Variables

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bojinski, Stephan; Richter, Carolin

    2010-12-01

    The Global Climate Observing System (GCOS) Secretariat, housed within the World Meteorological Organization, released in August 2010 updated guidance for priority actions worldwide in support of observations of GCOS Essential Climate Variables (ECVs). This guidance states that full achievement of the recommendations in the 2010 Implementation Plan for the Global Observing System for Climate in Support of the UNFCCC (http://www.wmo.int/pages/prog/gcos/Publications/gcos­138.pdf) is required to ensure that countries are able to understand and predict climate change and its impacts and manage their response throughout the 21st century and beyond. GCOS is sponsored by the United Nations and the International Council for Science (ICSU) and is an internationally coordinated network of observing systems and a program of activities that support and improve the network, which is designed to meet evolving national and international requirements for climate observations. One of the main objectives of GCOS is to sustain observations into the future to allow evaluation of how climate is changing, so that informed decisions can be made on prevention, mitigation, and adaptation strategies. GCOS priorities are based on the belief that observations are crucial to supporting the research needed to refine understanding of the climate system and its changes, to initialize predictions on time scales out to decades, and to develop the models used to make these predictions and longer­term scenario-based projections. Observations are also needed to assess social and economic vulnerabilities and to support related actions needed across a broad range of societal sectors by underpinning emerging climate services.

  13. Space-time structure of climate variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Laepple, Thomas; Reschke, Maria; Huybers, Peter; Rehfeld, Kira

    2016-04-01

    The spatial scale of climate variability is closely linked to the temporal scale. Whereas fast variations such as weather are regional, glacial-interglacial cycles appear to be globally coherent. Quantifying the relationship between local and large-scale climate variations is essential for mapping the extent of past climate changes. Larger spatial scales of climate variations on longer time scales are expected if one views the atmosphere and oceans as primarily diffusive with respect to heat. On the other hand, the interaction of a dynamical system with spatially variable boundary conditions --- for example: topography, gradients in insolation, and variations in rotational effects --- will lead to spatially heterogeneous structures that are largely independent of time scale. It has been argued that the increase in spatial scales continues across all time scales [Mitchell, 1976], but up to now, the space-time structure of variations beyond the decadal scale is basically unexplored. Here, we attempt to estimate the spatial extent of temperature changes up to millennial time-scales using instrumental observations, paleo-observations and climate model simulations. Although instrumental and climate model data show an increase in spatial scale towards slower variations, paleo-proxy data, if interpreted as temperature signals, lead to ambiguous results. An analysis of a global Holocene stack [Marcott et al., 2013], for example, suggests a jump towards more localized patterns when leaving the instrumental time scale. Localization contradicts physical expectations and may instead reflect the presence of various types of noise. Turning the problem around, and imposing a consistent space-time structure across instruments and proxy records allows us to constrain the interpretation of the climate signal in proxy records. In the case of the Holocene stack, preliminary results suggest that the time-uncertainty on the Holocene records would have to be much larger than published in

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. Study of the Space-Time Variability of the Precipitations in the semi Arid Tropics Areas like African Sahel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ladoy, P.

    2003-12-01

    One of the difficulty of decision making in the matter of climate in semi arid tropics areas like African Sahel, is to manage the high time space variability of the atmospheric fields. For example, the high time space variability of the rain fields (intermittency) is explained by the multiplicity of time space scales which involves. A multifractal approach of the field is assumed. Some aspects of the study are related to : o Down scaling adaptations of the outputs of global climate models to regional and local scales; o Prediction of extremes events : floods, droughts or "dry spells". Studies are developed by the African Centre for Meteorological Application for Development (ACMAD) This Centre, located in Niamey, Niger, acts as an African institution for weather and climate. Its long term goals are to : - reduce the dryness effects or any other catastrophe related to the climatic conditions such as the tropical cyclone, the floods and the storms; - to develop methodologies and techniques for weather and climate application at the national and sub-regional level; The basic activities to realize this objectives are: - the collection and analysis of hydrometeorological data; - the dissemination of climatic information for the early alarm in the fields related to the agriculture or the management of resources in water and energy; - the dissemination in due time of useful information on the weather and climate; - the connected of the variability and of the climatic change, and such as their impact upon the economy, - the development of strategies of appropriate responses to the impact of the desertification, floods, tropical cyclones,

  19. 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.

  20. Predictability of Pacific Decadal Climate Variability and Climate Impacts (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Newman, M.

    2013-12-01

    Predictability of Pacific sea surface temperature (SST) climate variations and climate impacts on time scales of 1-10 years is discussed, using a global linear inverse model (LIM) as an empirical benchmark for decadal surface temperature forecast skill. Constructed from the observed simultaneous and 1-yr lag covariability statistics of annually averaged sea surface temperature (SST) and surface (2 m) land temperature global anomalies during 1901-2009, the LIM has hindcast skill for leads of 2-5 yr and 6-9 yr comparable to and sometimes even better than skill of the phase 5 of the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP5) model hindcasts initialized annually over the period 1960-2000 and has skill far better than damped persistence (e.g., a local univariate AR1 process). Pronounced similarity in geographical variations of skill between LIM and CMIP5 hindcasts suggests similarity in their sources of skill as well, supporting additional evaluation of LIM predictability. For forecast leads above 1-2 yr, LIM skill almost entirely results from three nonorthogonal patterns: one corresponding to the secular trend and two more, each with about 10-yr decorrelation time scales but no trend, that represent most of the predictable portions of the Atlantic multidecadal oscillation (AMO) and Pacific decadal oscillation (PDO) indices, respectively. In contrast, for forecasts greater than about two years, ENSO acts as noise and degrades forecast skill. These results suggest that current coupled model decadal forecasts may not yet have much skill beyond that captured by multivariate, predictably linear dynamics. A particular focus will be on the predictability of the PDO, which represents the dominant mode of Pacific decadal SST variability. The PDO is shown to represent a few different physical processes, including wind-driven changes of SSTs that can occur either due to daily weather variability or to tropical forcing, and variations in the North Pacific western boundary

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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. PMID:23878329

  4. Solar Variability in the Context of Other Climate Forcing Mechanisms

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hansen, James E.

    1999-01-01

    I compare and contrast climate forcings due to solar variability with climate forcings due to other mechanisms of climate change, interpretation of the role of the sun in climate change depends upon climate sensitivity and upon the net forcing by other climate change mechanisms. Among the potential indirect climate forcings due to solar variability, only that due to solar cycle induced ozone changes has been well quantified. There is evidence that the sun has been a significant player in past climate change on decadal to century time scales, and that it has the potential to contribute to climate change in the 21st century.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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

  9. 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

  10. Decadal climate variability in the eastern Caribbean

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jury, Mark R.; Gouirand, Isabelle

    2011-11-01

    Rainfall variability in the eastern Caribbean during the 20th century is analyzed using principal component analysis and singular value decomposition. In contrast to earlier studies that used seasonal data, here we employ continuous signal processing. The leading mode is a decadal oscillation related to third and fourth modes of sea level pressure (SLP) and sea surface temperatures (SST) which together identify three zones of action in the Atlantic: 35°N-20°N, 20°N-5°N, and 5°N-20°S. The ability of the ECHAM4.5 model to simulate this signal is investigated. Its decadal variability is also represented through lower-order SLP and SST modes that comprise an Atlantic tripole pattern with lower pressure east of the Caribbean. Composite analysis of high and low phases of the decadal mode reflects a cool east Pacific and a more active Atlantic Intertropical Convergence Zone during boreal summer, conditions that favor the intensification of African easterly waves. The decadal signal has strengthened since 1970, yet the three centers of action in Atlantic SST are relatively unsynchronized.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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

  15. Interannual variability of rainfall over the Sahel based on multiple regional climate models simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Diallo, Ismaila; Sylla, Mouhamadou B.; Camara, Moctar; Gaye, Amadou T.

    2013-07-01

    We analyse the interannual variability of the averaged summer monsoon rainfall over the Sahel from multiple regional climate models driven by the ERA-interim reanalysis and seek to provide effective information for future modelling work. We find that the majority of the models are able to reproduce the rainfall variability with correlation coefficient exceeding 0.5 compared with observations. This is due to a good representation of the dynamics of the main monsoon features of the West African climate such as the monsoon flux, African Easterly Jet (AEJ) and Tropical Easterly Jet (TEJ). Among the models, only HIRHAM fails to reproduce the rainfall variability exhibiting hence a correlation coefficient of -0.2. This deficiency originates from the fact that HIRHAM does not properly capture the variability of monsoon flow and the relationship between rainfall and the AEJ dynamic. We conclude that a good performance of a regional climate model in simulating the monsoon dynamical features variability is of primary importance for a better representation of the interannual variability of rainfall over the Sahel.

  16. 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

  17. Principal nonlinear dynamical modes of climate variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2015-10-01

    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.

  18. 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

  19. Tufted puffin reproduction reveals ocean climate variability.

    PubMed

    Gjerdrum, Carina; Vallée, Anne M J; St Clair, Colleen Cassady; Bertram, Douglas F; Ryder, John L; Blackburn, Gwylim S

    2003-08-01

    Anomalously warm sea-surface temperatures (SSTs) are associated with interannual and decadal variability as well as with long-term climate changes indicative of global warming. Such oscillations could precipitate changes in a variety of oceanic processes to affect marine species worldwide. As global temperatures continue to rise, it will be critically important to be able to predict the effects of such changes on species' abundance, distribution, and ecological relationships so as to identify vulnerable populations. Off the coast of British Columbia, warm SSTs have persisted through the last two decades. Based on 16 years of reproductive data collected between 1975 and 2002, we show that the extreme variation in reproductive performance exhibited by tufted puffins (Fratercula cirrhata) was related to changes in SST both within and among seasons. Especially warm SSTs corresponded with drastically decreased growth rates and fledging success of puffin nestlings. Puffins may partially compensate for within-season changes associated with SST by adjusting their breeding phenology, yet our data also suggest that they are highly vulnerable to the effects of climate change at this site and may serve as a valuable indicator of biological change in the North Pacific. Further and prolonged increases in ocean temperature could make Triangle Island, which contains the largest tufted puffin colony in Canada, unsuitable as a breeding site for this species. PMID:12871995

  20. Climatic variability, plant phenology, and northern ungulates

    SciTech Connect

    Post, E.; Stenseth, N.C.

    1999-06-01

    Models of climate change predict that global temperatures and precipitation will increase within the next century, with the most pronounced changes occurring in northern latitudes and during winter. A large-scale atmospheric phenomenon, the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO), is a strong determinant of both interannual variation and decadal trends in temperatures and precipitation during winter in northern latitudes, and its recent persistence in one extreme phase may be a substantial component of increases in global temperatures. Hence, the authors investigated the influences of large-scale climatic variability on plant phenology and ungulate population ecology by incorporating the NAO in statistical analyses of previously published data on: (1) the timing of flowering by plants in Norway, and (2) phenotypic and demographic variation in populations of northern ungulates. The authors analyzed 137 time series on plant phenology for 13 species of plants in Norway spanning up to 50 yr and 39 time series on phenotypic and demographic traits of 7 species of northern ungulates from 16 populations in North America and northern Europe spanning up to 30 yr.

  1. 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

  2. African American Counselor Educators' Job Satisfaction and Perceptions of Departmental Racial Climate

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Holcomb-McCoy, Cheryl; Addison-Bradley, Carla

    2005-01-01

    Forty-eight African American counselor educators completed the Minnesota Satisfaction Questionnaire-Short Form (D. J. Weiss, R. V. Dawis, G. W. England, & L. H. Lofquist, 1967), the Racial Climate Scale (R. J. Watts & R. T. Carter, 1991), and a biodata questionnaire. Results indicated that African American counselor educators' perceptions of…

  3. Climate Variability and the Settlement of Oceania

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Avis, C.; Montenegro, A.; Weaver, A. J.

    2007-12-01

    The initial discovery and settlement of the islands of Oceania is an important issue in Pacific anthropology. Settlement of this region generally proceeded against the direction of the dominant trade winds leading to questions concerning the degree of maritime skill possessed by early Pacific mariners. We use a computer simulation to test two basic exploration strategies: drift voyages and downwind sailing, focusing on the region of the initial eastward expansion into Oceania by the Lapita people. Simulations are driven by high resolution surface wind and current data from atmosphere and ocean models forced by real observations and which capture the high degree of seasonal and interannual variability in the region. We find that climatic variability associated with the Australian monsoon circulation and El Nino plays a key role in facilitating eastward crossings. Both drift and sailing voyages can account for the discovery of all the islands in the Lapita region based on initial starting points in the Bismarck and Solomon archipelagos. Many of our findings differ from an important, earlier modeling study performed by Levison et al. (1973).

  4. Half-precessional climate forcing of Indian Ocean monsoon dynamics on the East African equator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Verschuren, D.; Sinninghe Damste, J. S.; Moernaut, J.; Kristen, I.; Fagot, M.; Blaauw, M.; Haug, G. H.; Project Members, C.

    2008-12-01

    The EuroCLIMATE project CHALLACEA produced a detailed multi-proxy reconstruction of the climate history of equatorial East Africa, based on the sediment record of Lake Challa, a 4.2 km2, 92-m deep crater lake on the lower East slope of Mt. Kilimanjaro (Kenya/Tanzania). Relatively stable sedimentation dynamics over the past 25,000 years resulted in a unique combination of high temporal resolution, excellent radiometric (210Pb, 14C) age control, and confidence that recording parameters of the climatic proxy signals extracted from the sediment have remained constant through time. The equatorial (3 deg. S) location of our study site in East Africa, where seasonal migration of convective activity spans the widest latitude range worldwide, produced unique information on how varying rainfall contributions from the northeasterly and southeasterly Indian Ocean monsoons shaped regional climate history. The Challa proxy records for temperature (TEX86) and moisture balance (reflection-seismic stratigraphy and the BIT index of soil bacterial input) uniquely weave together tropical climate variability at orbital and shorter time scales. The temporal pattern of reconstructed moisture balance bears the clear signature of half- precessional insolation forcing of Indian Ocean monsoon dynamics, modified by northern-latitude influence on moisture-balance variation at millennial and century time scales. During peak glacial time (but not immediately before) and the Younger Dryas, NH ice sheet influences overrode local insolation influence on monsoon intensity. After the NH ice sheets had melted and a relatively stable interglacial temperature regime developed, precession-driven summer insolation became the dominant determinant of regional moisture balance, with anti-phased patterns of Holocene hydrological change in the northern and southern (sub)tropics, and a uniquely hybrid pattern on the East African equator. In the last 2-3000 years a series of multi-century droughts with links to

  5. Climate Research and Seasonal Forecasting for West Africans: Perceptions, Dissemination, and Use?.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tarhule, Aondover; Lamb, Peter J.

    2003-12-01

    Beginning in response to the disastrous drought of 1968 73, considerable research and monitoring have focused on the characteristics, causes, predictability, and impacts of West African Soudano Sahel (10° 18°N) rainfall variability and drought. While these efforts have generated substantial information on a range of these topics, very little is known of the extent to which communities, activities at risk, and policy makers are aware of, have access to, or use such information. This situation has prevailed despite Glantz&;s provocative BAMS paper on the use and value of seasonal forecasts for the Sahel more than a quarter century ago. We now provide a systematic reevaluation of these issues based on questionnaire responses of 566 participants (in 13 communities) and 26 organizations in Burkina Faso, Mali, Niger, and Nigeria. The results reveal that rural inhabitants have limited access to climate information, with nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) being the most important source. Moreover, the pathways for information flow are generally weakly connected and informal. As a result, utilization of the results of climate research is very low to nonexistent, even by organizations responsible for managing the effects of climate variability. Similarly, few people have access to seasonal climate forecasts, although the vast majority expressed a willingness to use such information when it becomes available. Those respondents with access expressed great enthusiasm and satisfaction with seasonal forecasts. The results suggest that inhabitants of the Soudano Sahel savanna are keen for changes that improve their ability to cope with climate variability, but the lack of information on alternative courses of action is a major constraint. Our study, thus, essentially leaves unchanged both Glantz&;s negative “tentative conclusion” and more positive “preliminary assessment” of 25 years ago. Specifically, while many of the infrastructural deficiencies and socioeconomic

  6. 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...

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

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Craig, Holly K.; Grogger, Jeffrey T.

    2012-01-01

    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…

  8. 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…

  9. 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.

  10. Antarctic role in multi-centennial climate variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bakker, Pepijn; Clark, Peter U.; Golledge, Nicolas R.; Schmittner, Andreas

    2016-04-01

    Proxy-based reconstructions have revealed an important lack of multi-centennial climate variability in global climate models. Here we use a high-resolution ice-sheet model in combination with global climate simulations to show that internal variability in discharge of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet is a potentially important driver of multi-centennial climate variability. Variations in discharge impact the formation of Antarctic Bottom Water, that in turn impacts the climate at the earth's surface and in the deep ocean, in both near-field and far-field regions, through variations in the strength of the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation. If indeed interactions between the West Antarctic Ice Sheet and the climate on multi-centennial timescales are important, studying them in high resolution climate records has good potential to provide constraints on the dynamics of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet and its contribution to future sea-level rise.

  11. The West African Monsoon simulated by global and regional climate models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nikulin, Grigory; Jones, Colin; Kjellström, Erik; Gbobaniyi, Emiola

    2013-04-01

    We present results from two ensembles of global and regional climate simulations with a focus on the West African Monsoon (WAM). The first ensemble includes eight coupled atmosphere ocean general circulation models (AOGCMs) from the CMIP5 project, namely: CanESM2, CNRM-CM5, HadGEM2-ES, NorESM1-M, EC-EARTH, MIROC5, GFDL-ESM2M and MPI-ESM-LR. The second ensemble consists of corresponding downscaling of all 8 AOGCMs by a regional climate model - RCA4 produced at the Rossby Centre (SMHI) in the Africa-CORDEX activities. Spatial resolution varies from about 1° to 3° in the AOGCM ensemble while all regional simulations are at the same 0.44° resolution. To see what added value higher resolution can provide ability of the eight AOGCMs and the downscaled RCA4(AOGCMs) to simulate the key characteristics of the WAM rainy season are evaluated and then inter-compared between the global and regional ensembles. The main focus in our analysis is on the WAM rainy season onset, cessation, length, total precipitation, its mean intensity and intraseasonal variability. Future climate projections under the RCP45 and RCP85 scenarios are analyzed and again inter-compared for both ensembles in order to assess uncertainties in the future projections of the WAM rainy season from the global and regional ensembles.

  12. Multi-decadal climate variability, New South Wales, Australia.

    PubMed

    Franks, S W

    2004-01-01

    Traditional hydrological risk estimation has treated the observations of hydro-climatological extremes as being independent and identically distributed, implying a static climate risk. However, recent research has highlighted the persistence of multi-decadal epochs of distinct climate states across New South Wales (NSW), Australia. Climatological studies have also revealed multi-decadal variability in the magnitude and frequency of El Niño/Southern Oscillation (ENSO) impacts. In this paper, examples of multi-decadal variability are presented with regard to flood and drought risk. The causal mechanisms for the observed variability are then explored. Finally, it is argued that the insights into climate variability provide (a) useful lead time for forecasting seasonal hydrological risk, (b) a strong rationale for a new framework for hydrological design and (c) a strong example of natural climate variability for use in the testing of General Circulation Models of climate change. PMID:15195429

  13. 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.

  14. Sst and Ghg Impacts On The West African Monsoon Climate: A Superensemble Approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Paeth, H.; Hense, A.

    West African rainfall has been subject to large interdecadal variations during the 20th century. The most prominent feature is a negative trend in annual precipitation after 1960, causing severe drought in the Sahel region and the southern part of West Africa, with some recoverage in recent years. We examine and quantify the influence of ob- served SST changes on low-frequency variability over the subcontinent and compare it with the additional impact of increasing GHG concentrations, as revealed by a su- perensemble of SST-driven experiments. SST is largely responsible for decadal and longer-term variability over the southern part of West Africa, accounting for almost 80 % of monsoonal rainfall variance. The additional impact of the enhanced green- house effect is weak but statistically significant by the year 1980, obviously associ- ated with a positive trend in annual precipitation. This positive trend is also found in GHG-induced coupled climate model projection into the future. The CO2 signal is again weak but statistically significant and consistent with different climate models, as revealed by a superensemble of coupled experiments.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. 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

  19. 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. PMID:24942250

  20. Interannual to interdecadal variability of winter and summer southern African rainfall, and their teleconnections

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dieppois, Bastien; Pohl, Benjamin; Rouault, Mathieu; New, Mark; Lawler, Damian; Keenlyside, Noel

    2016-06-01

    This study examines for the first time the changing characteristics of summer and winter southern African rainfall and their teleconnections with large-scale climate through the dominant time scales of variability. As determined by wavelet analysis, the austral summer and winter rainfall indices exhibit three significant time scales of variability over the twentieth century: interdecadal (15-28 years), quasi-decadal (8-13 years), and interannual (2-8 years). Teleconnections with global sea surface temperature and atmospheric circulation anomalies are established here but are different for each time scale. Tropical/subtropical teleconnections emerge as the main driver of austral summer rainfall variability. Thus, shifts in the Walker circulation are linked to the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) and, at decadal time scales, to decadal ENSO-like patterns related to the Pacific Decadal Oscillation and the Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation. These global changes in the upper zonal circulation interact with asymmetric ocean-atmospheric conditions between the South Atlantic and South Indian Oceans; together, these lead to a shift in the South Indian Convergence Zone and a modulation of the development of convective rain-bearing systems over southern Africa in summer. Such regional changes, embedded in quasi-annular geopotential patterns, consist of easterly moisture fluxes from the South Indian High, which dominate southerly moisture fluxes from the South Atlantic High. Austral winter rainfall variability is more influenced by midlatitude atmospheric variability, in particular the Southern Annular Mode. The rainfall changes in the southwestern regions of southern Africa are determined by asymmetrical changes in the midlatitude westerlies between the Atlantic and Indian Oceans.

  1. Observed decadal variability of southern African rainfall, their teleconnections, and uncertainties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dieppois, Bastien; Pohl, Benjamin; Rouault, Mathieu; New, Mark; Lawler, Damian; Keenlyside, Noel

    2016-04-01

    This study examines for the first time the changing characteristics of summer and winter southern African rainfall, and their teleconnections with large-scale climate through the dominant timescales of variability. The summer and winter rainfall indices exhibit three significant timescales of variability over the 20th century: interdecadal (15-28 year), quasi-decadal (8-13 year) and interannual (2-8 year). Teleconnections with global sea-surface temperature and atmospheric circulation anomalies, which have been established here using different data sets, are different for each timescale. Uncertainty related to the choice of observed-based SST and reanalysis data sets appears stronger over the winter rainfall region and at the interdecadal timescale. However, only SST and atmospheric anomalies which show an agreement greater than 90% between data sets, or between the members of the reanalysis, have been described. Tropical/subtropical teleconnections emerge as the main driver of summer rainfall variability. Thus, shifts in the Walker circulation are linked to the El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) and, at decadal timescales, to decadal ENSO-like patterns related to the Pacific Decadal Oscillation and the Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation. These global changes in the upper-zonal circulation interact with asymmetric ocean-atmospheric modifications between the South Atlantic and South Indian Oceans; together these lead to shift in the South Indian Convergence Zone, and a modulation of the development of convective rain bearing systems over southern Africa in summer. Such regional changes, embedded in quasi-annular geopotential patterns, consist of easterly moisture fluxes from the Mascarene High, which dominate southerly moisture fluxes from the St Helena High. Winter rainfall variability is more influenced by mid-latitude atmospheric variability, in particular the Southern Annular Mode, but interactions with ENSO remain, especially in the subtropics. Asymmetrical

  2. 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.

  3. Diagnosing GCM errors over West Africa using relaxation experiments. Part II: intraseasonal variability and African easterly waves

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pohl, Benjamin; Douville, Hervé

    2011-10-01

    A near-global grid-point nudging of the Arpege-Climat atmospheric General Circulation Model towards ECMWF reanalyses is used to diagnose the regional versus remote origin of the summer model biases and variability over West Africa. First part of this study revealed a limited impact on the monsoon climatology compared to a control experiment without nudging, but a significant improvement of interannual variability, although the amplitude of the seasonal anomalies remained underestimated. Focus is given here on intraseasonal variability of monsoon rainfall and dynamics. The reproducible part of these signals is investigated through 30-member ensemble experiments computed for the 1994 rainy season, a year abnormally wet over the Sahel but representative of the model systematic biases. In the control experiment, Arpege-Climat simulates too few rainy days that are associated with too low rainfall amounts over the central and western Sahel, in line with the seasonal dry biases. Nudging the model outside Africa tends to slightly increase the number of rainy days over the Sahel, but has little effect on associated rainfall amounts. However, results do indicate that a significant part of the monsoon intraseasonal variability simulated by Arpege-Climat is controlled by lateral boundary conditions. Parts of the wet/dry spells over the Sahel occur in phase in the 30 members of the nudging experiment, and are therefore embedded in larger-scale variability patterns. Inter-member spread is however not constant across the selected summer season. It is partly controlled by African Easterly Waves, which show dissimilar amplitude from one member to another, but a coherent phasing in all members. A lowpass filtering of the nudging fields suggests that low frequency variations in the lateral boundary conditions can lead to eastward extensions of the African Easterly Jet, creating a favorable environment for easterly waves, while high frequency perturbations seem to control their

  4. Climate variability and change: a perspective from the oceania region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beer, Tom

    2014-12-01

    This brief review identifies seven key science questions in relation to climate variability and change and examines recent research within the Australian and Pacific context: 1. How do the key processes controlling climate variability and predictability operate? 2. What are the nature and causes of regional climate anomalies, past variations in regional climate and extreme weather events and how will they change in the future? 3. How can we provide improved seasonal-to-interannual climate predictions? 4. What are the best projection methods? 5. What are the sea-level changes now and in the future; and how will these impact the coasts? 6. How to have significant benefits on climate service delivery and environmental management? 7. What are the best methods for assessing climate change risks, vulnerability and adaptation options?

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-12-01

    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 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

  10. 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)

  11. 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

  12. 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

  13. How EC-EARTH simulates the Earth's climate and it's variabilities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Xueli

    2010-05-01

    Recently an Earth system named EC-Earth has been developed at KNMI in collaboration with a number of EU country's meteorological institutes. It is a coupled model with IFS (Integrated Forecasting System) from ECMWF as the atmospheric model, NEMO as ocean model. H-Tessel land scheme is used as land model and LIM as thermodynamic ice model. It will be shown that the model produces the mean climate better or equal to the CMIP3 mean climate models and the major climate variabilities are reproduced by the model fairly well. In particular the ENSO and NAO are very well simulated. Just as most climate models have difficulties to simulate variabilities in the Atlantic, EC-Earth simulates well North Tropical Atlantic SST both for seasonal cycle and variability, it simulates less good equatorial SST variabilities. The SST seasonal cycle is correctly simulated but the equatorial cold tongue is too weak comparing to the observation, up to 3 degrees. Nevertheless the model simulates reasonably good west African monsoon distribution and seasonal cycle although it's a bit to week and not penetrating north enough compare to CMAP data. Experiment with future CO2 concentration shows that the rainfall at the coastal area of Guinea increased as result of increasing CO2 concentration while no or little change in the Sahel area.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  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.

    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.

  17. 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...

  18. 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...

  19. 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...

  20. The Variable Climate Impact of Volcanic Eruptions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Graf, H.

    2011-12-01

    The main effect of big volcanic eruptions in the climate system is due to their efficient transport of condensable gases and their precursors into the stratosphere. There the formation of aerosols leads to effects on atmospheric radiation transfer inducing a reduction of incoming solar radiation by reflection (i.e. cooling of the Earth surface) and absorption of near infrared radiation (i.e. heating) in the aerosol laden layers. In the talk processes determining the climate effect of an eruption will be illustrated by examples, mainly from numerical modelling. The amount of gases released from a magma during an eruption and the efficiency of their transport into very high altitudes depends on the geological setting (magma type) and eruption style. While mid-sized eruption plumes of Plinian style quickly can develop buoyancy by entrainment of ambient air, very large eruptions with high magma flux rates often tend to collapsing plumes and co-ignimbrite style. These cover much bigger areas and are less efficient in entraining ambient air. Vertical transport in these plumes is chaotic and less efficient, leading to lower neutral buoyancy height and less gas and particles reaching high stratospheric altitudes. Explosive energy and amount of released condensable gases are not the only determinants for the climatic effect of an eruption. The effect on shortwave radiation is not linear with the amount of aerosols formed since according to the Lambert-Beer Law atmospheric optical depth reaches a saturation limit with increased absorber concentration. In addition, if more condensable gas is available for aerosol growth, particles become larger and this affects their optical properties to less reflection and more absorption. Larger particles settle out faster, thus reducing the life time of the aerosol disturbance. Especially for big tropical eruptions the strong heating of the stratosphere in low latitudes leads to changes in atmospheric wave propagation by strengthened

  1. Does internal climate variability impact radiative feedback estimates?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jonko, A. K.

    2013-12-01

    A lot of attention has been focussed on the inter-model spread in equilibrium climate sensitivity and the radiative feedbacks that contribute to it as a measure of our uncertainty of the climate system's response to external forcing. But how accurate is an estimate of this uncertainty derived purely from model-to-model differences? Recent work has highlighted the importance of factors such as differences resulting from methodology (Klocke et al., 2013) as well as internal climate variability (Deser et al., 2012), which have historically not been included in multi-model assessments. While an increasing number of models participating in Coupled Model Intercomparison Projects (CMIP) provide several ensemble members for certain simulations, the ensemble sizes are generally not large enough to fully sample climate's intrinsic variability. Here we use a large 40 member ensemble of simulations performed with the National Center for Atmospheric Research Community Climate System Model Version 3 to asses the impact of internal variability on radiative feedback estimates. We find that the spread in individual feedbacks among ensemble members corresponds to 25% of CMIP3 inter-model spread. Deser, C., A. Phillips, V. Bourdette and H. Teng (2012): Uncertainty in climate change projections: the role of internal variability, Clim. Dyn., 38, 527-546. Klocke, D., J. Quaas and B. Stevens (2013): Assessment of different metrics for physical climate feedbacks, Clim. Dyn., DOI 10.1007/s00382-013-1757-1

  2. Women's role in adapting to climate change and variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carvajal-Escobar, Y.; Quintero-Angel, M.; García-Vargas, M.

    2008-04-01

    Given that women are engaged in more climate-related change activities than what is recognized and valued in the community, this article highlights their important role in the adaptation and search for safer communities, which leads them to understand better the causes and consequences of changes in climatic conditions. It is concluded that women have important knowledge and skills for orienting the adaptation processes, a product of their roles in society (productive, reproductive and community); and the importance of gender equity in these processes is recognized. The relationship among climate change, climate variability and the accomplishment of the Millennium Development Goals is considered.

  3. A Normal Mode Perspective of Intrinsic Ocean-Climate Variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dijkstra, Henk

    2016-01-01

    Observations of the sea surface temperature field over more than a century indicate that there is pronounced variability in the climate system. Understanding the mechanisms of this variability is crucial to determine the role of variations in ocean heat content in past and future climate changes. When a steady background state in an ocean-climate model is slightly perturbed, the long-time response is determined by the spatial patterns of the normal modes. Here, the type and patterns of normal modes for a range of different equilibrium states in a hierarchy of ocean-climate models are reviewed. The rather elegant organization of these normal modes is demonstrated, and prototype physical mechanisms explaining patterns of sea surface temperature variability based on these normal modes are provided.

  4. 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.

  5. 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

  6. 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.

  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. 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

  9. Future Warming Patterns Linked to Today’s Climate Variability

    PubMed Central

    Dai, Aiguo

    2016-01-01

    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. They support the notion that models that simulate present-day climate variability better are likely to make more reliable predictions of future climate change. PMID:26750759

  10. Future Warming Patterns Linked to Today’s Climate Variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dai, Aiguo

    2016-01-01

    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. They support the notion that models that simulate present-day climate variability better are likely to make more reliable predictions of future climate change.

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

    PubMed

    Dai, Aiguo

    2016-01-01

    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. PMID:26750759

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

    DOE PAGESBeta

    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

  13. Pacific Decadal Climate Variability and Predictability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kirtman, B.

    2006-12-01

    The current understanding of decadal variability in both the tropical and extra-tropical Pacific is presented. Modeling studies into causes of mid-latitude ocean variability often focus on to what extent the variability involves coupled ocean-atmosphere feedbacks versus the uncoupled response to atmospheric stochastic white noise forcing. The coupled feedbacks are either viewed as a generalization of the Hasselman (1976) theory to include local air-sea interactions, which could amplify the low frequency response without any preferred time scale or as involving a "delayed oscillator" due to ocean memory whereby the variability has some preferred time scale. Generally, the coupled air-sea feedbacks are stable requiring atmospheric stochastic forcing, and the inclusion of ocean dynamics is thought to enhance the variability. The uncoupled stochastic forcing of the ocean includes a number of proposed physical mechanisms for the preferred low frequency. These mechanisms include oceanic advection processes associated with the mid-latitude gyre, an atmospheric pattern of forcing with a preferred length scale or position, the dynamical adjustment of the extra-tropical ocean circulation via long baroclinic Rossby waves, and Ekman pumping. Another possibility is that tropical forcing via some atmospheric "bridge" acts as a source of North Pacific decadal variations, which may or may not be amplified by coupled feedbacks. The amplitude and frequency of ENSO exhibits variations on decadal timescales. Whether these variations are driven by low frequency variability in the tropical Pacific mean state or are just sampling issues associated with some sort of random walk process has been the subject of some debate. Accordingly, the current literature includes a number of studies proposing mechanisms for the decadal variability of the tropical Pacific, and, as a counter argument, studies examining the null hypothesis that the amplitude and frequency variations are simply related to

  14. 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

  15. The projected timing of climate departure from recent variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

    2013-10-01

    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 (+/-18years s.d.) for near-surface air temperature under an emissions stabilization scenario and 2047 (+/-14years 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. 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

  19. 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 (

  20. 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.

  1. Randomness and Earth’s Climate Variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Levinshtein, Michael; Dergachev, Valentin; Dmitriev, Alexander; Shmakov, Pavel

    2016-02-01

    Paleo-Sciences including palaeoclimatology and palaeoecology have accumulated numerous records related to climatic changes. The researchers have usually tried to identify periodic and quasi-periodic processes in these paleoscientific records. In this paper, we show that this analysis is incomplete. As follows from our results, random processes, namely processes with a single-time-constant τ0 (noise with a Lorentzian noise spectrum), play a very important and, perhaps, a decisive role in numerous natural phenomena. For several of very important natural phenomena the characteristic time constants τ0 are very similar and equal to (5‑8) × 103 years. However, this value of τ0 is not universal. For example, the spectral density fluctuations of the atmospheric radiocarbon δ14C are characterized by a Lorentzian with τ0 ≈ 300 years. The frequency dependence of spectral density fluctuations for benthic δ18O records contains two Lorentzians with τ0 ≈ 8000 years and τ0 > 105 years.

  2. 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.

    2016-02-01

    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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

    2014-12-01

    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.

  6. 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.

  7. Earth System Science Education Centered on Natural Climate Variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ramirez, P. C.; Ladochy, S.; Patzert, W. C.; Willis, J. K.

    2009-12-01

    Several new courses and many educational activities related to climate change are available to teachers and students of all grade levels. However, not all new discoveries in climate research have reached the science education community. In particular, effective learning tools explaining natural climate change are scarce. For example, the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) is a main cause of natural climate variability spanning decades. While most educators are familiar with the shorter-temporal events impacting climate, El Niño and La Niña, very little has trickled into the climate change curriculum on the PDO. We have developed two online educational modules, using an Earth system science approach, on the PDO and its role in climate change and variability. The first concentrates on the discovery of the PDO through records of salmon catch in the Pacific Northwest and Alaska. We present the connection between salmon abundance in the North Pacific to changing sea surface temperature patterns associated with the PDO. The connection between sea surface temperatures and salmon abundance led to the discovery of the PDO. Our activity also lets students explore the role of salmon in the economy and culture of the Pacific Northwest and Alaska and the environmental requirements for salmon survival. The second module is based on the climate of southern California and how changes in the Pacific Ocean , such as the PDO and ENSO (El Niño-Southern Oscillation), influence regional climate variability. PDO and ENSO signals are evident in the long-term temperature and precipitation record of southern California. Students are guided in the module to discover the relationships between Pacific Ocean conditions and southern California climate variability. The module also provides information establishing the relationship between climate change and variability and the state's water, energy, agriculture, wildfires and forestry, air quality and health issues. Both modules will be

  8. Chaos, dynamical structure and climate variability

    SciTech Connect

    Stewart, H.B.

    1995-09-01

    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 the authors 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. The atmospheric circulation model, originally proposed by Lorenz, has 27 principal unknowns; they establish that the chaotic attractor can be embedded in a subspace of eight dimensions by exhibiting a specific subset of eight unknowns which pass multichannel tests for false nearest neighbors. They also show that one of the principal unknowns in the 27-variable model--the global mean sea surface temperature--is of no discernible usefulness in making short-term forecasts.

  9. Quantifying the sources of uncertainty in upper air climate variables

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eghdamirad, Sajjad; Johnson, Fiona; Woldemeskel, Fitsum; Sharma, Ashish

    2016-04-01

    Future estimates of precipitation and streamflow are of utmost interest in hydrological climate change impact assessments. Just as important as the estimate itself, is the variance around the ensemble mean of the projections, this variance being defined as uncertainty in the context of this study. This uncertainty in the hydrological variables of interest is affected by uncertainty in upper air climate variables which are used in statistical downscaling of precipitation or streamflow. Here the extent of uncertainty in upper air climate variables has been assessed for a selection of commonly used atmospheric variables for downscaling, namely, geopotential height and its difference in the north-south direction, specific humidity, and eastward and northward wind speeds. Generally, in statistical downscaling, no consideration is usually given to the uncertainty of different individual variables, which can result in biases in future climate simulations. The approach of quantifying uncertainty presented here has the potential to enable modelers to better formulate downscaling approaches, leading to more accurate characterization of future precipitation and its associated uncertainty. Based on the spread of multiple-model outputs, an uncertainty measure called square root of error variance has been used to quantify the contribution of different sources of uncertainty (i.e., models, scenarios, and ensembles) in monthly future climate projections in the 21st century at the 500 hPa and 850 hPa pressure levels. It has been shown that the different climate variables and levels of the atmosphere have distinct patterns in terms of their total future uncertainty and the contributions from the three sources. Scenario and model uncertainties in general contribute reasonably evenly to total uncertainty, with smaller contributions from the initial condition ensembles.

  10. Vegetation Interaction Enhances Interdecadal Climate Variability in the Sahel

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zeng, Ning; Neelin, J. David; Lau, William K.-M.

    1999-01-01

    The role of naturally varying vegetation in influencing the climate variability in the Sahel is explored in a coupled atmosphere-land-vegetation model. The Sahel rainfall variability is influenced by sea surface temperature (SST) variations in the oceans. Land-surface feedback is found to increase this variability both on interannual and interdecadal time scales. Interactive vegetation enhances the interdecadal variation significantly, but can reduce year to year variability due to a phase lag introduced by the relatively slow vegetation adjustment time. Variations in vegetation accompany the changes in rainfall, in particular, the multi-decadal drying trend from the 1950s to the 80s.

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. Performance of climate field reconstruction methods over multiple seasons and climate variables

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dannenberg, Matthew P.; Wise, Erika K.

    2013-09-01

    Studies of climate variability require long time series of data but are limited by the absence of preindustrial instrumental records. For such studies, proxy-based climate reconstructions, such as those produced from tree-ring widths, provide the opportunity to extend climatic records into preindustrial periods. Climate field reconstruction (CFR) methods are capable of producing spatially-resolved reconstructions of climate fields. We assessed the performance of three commonly used CFR methods (canonical correlation analysis, point-by-point regression, and regularized expectation maximization) over spatially-resolved fields using multiple seasons and climate variables. Warm- and cool-season geopotential height, precipitable water, and surface temperature were tested for each method using tree-ring chronologies. Spatial patterns of reconstructive skill were found to be generally consistent across each of the methods, but the robustness of the validation metrics varied by CFR method, season, and climate variable. The most robust validation metrics were achieved with geopotential height, the October through March temporal composite, and the Regularized Expectation Maximization method. While our study is limited to assessment of skill over multidecadal (rather than multi-centennial) time scales, our findings suggest that the climate variable of interest, seasonality, and spatial domain of the target field should be considered when assessing potential CFR methods for real-world applications.

  15. ASSESSMENT OF THE POTENTIAL EFFECTS OF CLIMATE CHANGE AND CLIMATE VARIABILITY ON WEATHER-RELATED MORBIDITY

    EPA Science Inventory

    The potential effects of climate change and climate variability on weather-related morbidity are assessed. Heat-related and cold-related morbidity in children are analyzed. The impact of inclement weather on accidental injuries is evaluated. The relationship of violent crime to w...

  16. Effects of interannual climate variability on tropical tree cover

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holmgren, Milena; Hirota, Marina; van Nes, Egbert H.; Scheffer, Marten

    2013-08-01

    Climatic warming is substantially intensifying the global water cycle and is projected to increase rainfall variability. Using satellite data, we show that higher climatic variability is associated with reduced tree cover in the wet tropics globally. In contrast, interannual variability in rainfall can have neutral or even positive effects on tree cover in the dry tropics. In South America, tree cover in dry lands is higher in areas with high year-to-year variability in rainfall. This is consistent with evidence from case studies suggesting that in these areas rare wet episodes are essential for opening windows of opportunity where massive tree recruitment can overwhelm disturbance effects, allowing the establishment of extensive woodlands. In Australia, wet extremes have similar effects, but the net effect of rainfall variability is overwhelmed by negative effects of extreme dry years. In Africa, effects of rainfall variability are neutral for dry lands. It is most likely that differences in herbivore communities and fire regimes contribute to regulating tree expansion during wet extremes. Our results illustrate that increasing climatic variability may affect ecosystem services in contrasting, and sometimes surprising, ways. Expansion of dry tropical tree cover during extreme wet events may decrease grassland productivity but enhance carbon sequestration, soil nutrient retention and biodiversity.

  17. 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.

  18. 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. PMID:26886790

  19. 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.

  20. Climatic Variability Leads to Later Seasonal Flowering of Floridian Plants

    PubMed Central

    Von Holle, Betsy; Wei, Yun; Nickerson, David

    2010-01-01

    Understanding species responses to global change will help predict shifts in species distributions as well as aid in conservation. Changes in the timing of seasonal activities of organisms over time may be the most responsive and easily observable indicator of environmental changes associated with global climate change. It is unknown how global climate change will affect species distributions and developmental events in subtropical ecosystems or if climate change will differentially favor nonnative species. Contrary to previously observed trends for earlier flowering onset of plant species with increasing spring temperatures from mid and higher latitudes, we document a trend for delayed seasonal flowering among plants in Florida. Additionally, there were few differences in reproductive responses by native and nonnative species to climatic changes. We argue that plants in Florida have different reproductive cues than those from more northern climates. With global change, minimum temperatures have become more variable within the temperate-subtropical zone that occurs across the peninsula and this variation is strongly associated with delayed flowering among Florida plants. Our data suggest that climate change varies by region and season and is not a simple case of species responding to consistently increasing temperatures across the region. Research on climate change impacts need to be extended outside of the heavily studied higher latitudes to include subtropical and tropical systems in order to properly understand the complexity of regional and seasonal differences of climate change on species responses. PMID:20657765

  1. Climate variability and predictability in Northwest Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baddour, O.; Djellouli, Y.

    2003-04-01

    Northwest Africa defined here as the area including Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia, occupies a large territory in North Africa with an area exceeding 3.5 million km2. The geographical contrast is very important: while most of the southern part is desert, the northern and northwestern parts exhibit a contrasting geography including large flat areas in the western part of Morocco, northern Algeria and eastern part of Tunisia and the formidable Atlas mountains barrier extends from south west of Morocco toward north west of Tunisia crossing central Morocco and north Algeria. Agriculture is one of major socio-economic activities in the region with an extensive cash-crop for exporting to Europe especially from Morocco and Tunisia. The influence of the recurring droughts during the 80s and 90s was very crucial for the economic and societal aspects of the region. In Morocco, severe droughts have caused GDP fluctuation within past 20 years from 10% increase down to negative values in some particular years. Recent studies have investigated seasonal rainfall variability and prediction over MOROCCO in the framework of regional and international collaboration. Results from this work has shown that the main general circulation feature associated with the rainfall variability within Morocco is the North Atlantic Oscillation. The relationship is in fact due to the major role played by the AZORES high pressure with its role in modulating the main position of the active synoptic systems in the north Atlantic area and therefore in modulating the frequency and the intensity of the weather systems that impact the western part of the region. Mediterranean sea plays also major role in the mid of the region. In this paper we applied EOF technique on 500 hPa. The data used are monthly reanalysis NCEP/NCAR analyses for November from 1960 to 1990 climatological time series. Correlation analysis is then performed between EOF time series and global 4x4 degre SST anomalies. The results we

  2. Agricultural management options for climate variability and change: conservation tillage

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Adapting to climate variability and change can be achieved through a broad range of management alternatives and technological advances. This publication is focused on the use of conservation tillage in crop production systems. The publication outlines ways that conservation tillage can reduce risk r...

  3. 2500 Years of European Climate Variability and Human Susceptibility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Büntgen, Ulf; Tegel, Willy; Nicolussi, Kurt; McCormick, Michael; Frank, David; Trouet, Valerie; Kaplan, Jed O.; Herzig, Franz; Heussner, Karl-Uwe; Wanner, Heinz; Luterbacher, Jürg; Esper, Jan

    2011-02-01

    Climate variations influenced the agricultural productivity, health risk, and conflict level of preindustrial societies. Discrimination between environmental and anthropogenic impacts on past civilizations, however, remains difficult because of the paucity of high-resolution paleoclimatic evidence. We present tree ring-based reconstructions of central European summer precipitation and temperature variability over the past 2500 years. Recent warming is unprecedented, but modern hydroclimatic variations may have at times been exceeded in magnitude and duration. Wet and warm summers occurred during periods of Roman and medieval prosperity. Increased climate variability from ~250 to 600 C.E. coincided with the demise of the western Roman Empire and the turmoil of the Migration Period. Such historical data may provide a basis for counteracting the recent political and fiscal reluctance to mitigate projected climate change.

  4. 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.

  5. 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

  6. Response of closed basin lakes to interannual climate variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huybers, Kathleen; Rupper, Summer; Roe, Gerard H.

    2016-06-01

    Lakes are key indicators of a region's hydrological cycle, directly reflecting the basin-wide balance between precipitation and evaporation. Lake-level records are therefore valuable repositories of climate history. However, the interpretation of such records is not necessarily straightforward. Lakes act as integrators of the year-to-year fluctuations in precipitation and evaporation that occur even in a constant climate. Therefore lake levels can exhibit natural, unforced fluctuations that persist on timescales of decades or more. This behavior is important to account for when distinguishing between true climate change and interannual variability as the cause of past lake-level fluctuations. We demonstrate the operation of this general principle for the particular case-study of the Great Salt Lake, which has long historical lake-level and climatological records. We employ both full water-balance and linear models. Both models capture the timing and size of the lake's historical variations. We then model the lake's response to much longer synthetic time series of precipitation and evaporation calibrated to the observations, and compare the magnitude and frequency of the modeled response to the Great Salt Lake's historical record. We find that interannual climate variability alone can explain much of the decadal-to-centennial variations in the lake-level record. Further, analytic solutions to the linear model capture much of the full model's behavior, but fail to predict the most extreme lake-level variations. We then apply the models to other lake geometries, and evaluate how the timing and amplitude of a lake-level response differs with climatic and geometric setting. A lake's response to a true climatic shift can only be understood in the context of these expected persistent lake-level variations. On the basis of these results, we speculate that lake response to interannual climate variability may play an important part in explaining much of Holocene lake

  7. Orbital- versus glacial-mode forcing of tropical African climate: Results of scientific drilling in Lake Malawi, East Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scholz, C. A.; Cohen, A. S.; Johnson, T. C.; King, J. W.; Brown, E. T.; Lyons, R. P.; Stone, J. R.; Beuning, K. R.

    2007-12-01

    Lake Malawi extends from 9-14 degrees S within the East African Rift Valley, and at 700 m deep, contains more than 20 percent of the surface water on the African continent. In 2005 the Lake Malawi Scientific Drilling Project drilled 7 holes at two sites in the lake, recovering a continuous sediment record that samples much of the Quaternary. Detailed studies completed to date on sediments deposited during the past 145 ka indicate periods of severe aridity at precessional frequency between 135 and 75 ka, when the lake's water volume was periodically reduced by at least 95 percent. These dramatic drops in lake level (more than 550 m), signifying markedly arid conditions in the catchment, are documented in sediment lithology (decreased organic carbon content and increased authigenic carbonate content during severe lowstands), aquatic microfossils (appearance of a littoral ostracode fauna, and saline/alkaline lake diatom flora during extreme low lake stages), as well as in dramatic reductions in catchment pollen production. These intervals of pronounced tropical African aridity in the early late-Pleistocene were much more severe than the Last Glacial Maximum, and are consistent with sediment records from Lakes Tanganyika (East Africa) and Bosumtwi (West Africa). In all three lakes a major rise in water levels and a shift to more humid conditions is observed after ~70 ka. The transition to wetter, more stable conditions coincides with the relaxation of orbital eccentricity and a reduction in the amplitude of precession. The observed climate mode switch to decreased environmental variability is consistent with terrestrial and marine records from in and around tropical Africa, but these new drill cores provide evidence for dramatically drier conditions prior to 70 ka that have not as yet been detected in marine sediment records. Such climate change may have stimulated the expansion and migrations of early modern human populations.

  8. 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

  9. 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

  10. Comparison of Decadal AMOC Variability Among Climate Models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Klinger, B. A.; Garuba, O. A.

    2012-12-01

    Atmosphere-ocean general circulation models (AOGCM's) often exhibit decadal variability of the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC), but the nature of this variability shows great quantitative and qualitative differences among different experiments. Here uniform metrics compare AMOC variability among several AOGCM's in preindustrial control runs for the Climate Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP). All the models show decadal variability in meridional overturning. The 3-61 year band is examined to isolate this frequency range. The meridional stream function shows maximum variability in the North Atlantic ranging from about .5 to 1.8 Sv (about 3% to 10% of the time-mean overturning strength), with period (based on the lagged autocorrelation) ranging from about 10 to 25 years for most of the models (50 years for one model). In all models, overturning variability is strongest between 40N and 60N, with a weaker overturning signal propagating across the equator within a few years. Most of the models show a somewhat complex high-latitude density field associated with the meridional overturning, but with a tendency for high density to precede high overturning, as Dong and Sutton (2005) found in a single model. In summary, O(1) Sv North Atlantic decadal overturning variability associated with high latitude density variations is a robust feature of different climate models.

  11. 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:

  12. Reservoir operation under variable climate: Case of Rozva Dam, Zimbabwe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ncube, S. P.; Makurira, H.; Kaseke, E.; Mhizha, A.

    The challenge of maintaining or improving the quality of rural livelihoods against the increasing threat of climate change (CC) and climate variability (CV) calls for the development of robust and tested systems, tools and procedures for the management of water resources. The research aimed at assessing reservoir operation under variable climate for Rozva Dam, a medium-sized reservoir in Zimbabwe. Rozva Dam is located in the Bikita District of Zimbabwe and has a full supply capacity of 2.8 Mm 3 at a maximum water level of 17.3 m. The research analysed 46 years of rainfall and temperature data to assess climate variability and or change. The CROPWAT model was used to estimate crop water requirements for the adjacent 80 hectare irrigation scheme. The WAFLEX model was applied to simulate the performance of the system under three scenarios: (1) existing demands and operational rules, (2) reduced water availability due to climate change, as predicted by the Ministry of Mines, but with increasing annual demands and (3) climate change situation coupled with change in irrigation technology. The results show a general decreasing linear trend for rainfall although the variance was not statistically significant at p = 0.05. A clearer cyclic pattern was observed for the decadal analysis. An increasing trend in both maximum and minimum temperature was observed although, again, these were not statistically significant with a Spearman’s rank correlation coefficient ( R sp) of below 0.5. The research used rainfall and temperature data as the basis for confirmation climate change and variability in the study area. Analyses show that the area is experiencing more of CV than CC. Modelling results show that the reservoir can satisfy current demands but will fail to cope under the forecasted increase in demand. The conclusions from the research are that the available water resources in the studied system are sufficient to satisfy the current demands. The predicted level of climate

  13. Interdecadal variability in surface climate during the instrumental period

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Osborn, Timothy

    2016-04-01

    Although long-term warming of global mean temperature is robust across different observational datasets, there are interesting features at interdecadal timescales that deserve further investigation. A realistic characterisation of interdecadal variability is critical. It is required for important applications such as the detection and attribution of climate changes and assessment of data-model agreement. Via its role in the slowdown of warming relative to model simulations, interdecadal variability is one of the factors considered in the expert judgement (reported in the IPCC's fifth assessment) that near-term projections of warming are likely to be less than those simulated by the CMIP5 ensemble of climate models. This highlights its relevance to future projections of both forced change and unforced variability. Interdecadal variability in surface temperatures will be characterised according to their regional and latitudinal structures. Some features differ between datasets, reflecting the structural uncertainty arising from different choices made for addressing inhomogeneities in the observations and incomplete observational coverage, resulting in different degrees of spatial smoothness and completeness. Other features are robust between datasets, representing short-term forcings and unforced variability. The unforced variability is associated with changes in atmospheric circulation, and these changes also drive regional precipitation anomalies. It is informative, therefore, to represent them as modes of variability in circulation-temperature-precipitation "space", but complications arise from the limited coverage of observational data, especially in the 19th century. Changes in data coverage alter the empirical relationship between these climate variables and need to be taken into account when comparing, for example, the decadal trends around the large El Nino events in 1877-78 and 1997-8.

  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. Downscaling climate variability associated with quasi-periodic climate signals: A new statistical approach using MSSA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cañón, Julio; Domínguez, Francina; Valdés, Juan B.

    2011-02-01

    SummaryA statistical method is introduced to downscale hydroclimatic variables while incorporating the variability associated with quasi-periodic global climate signals. The method extracts statistical information of distributed variables from historic time series available at high resolution and uses Multichannel Singular Spectrum Analysis (MSSA) to reconstruct, on a cell-by-cell basis, specific frequency signatures associated with both the variable at a coarse scale and the global climate signals. Historical information is divided in two sets: a reconstruction set to identify the dominant modes of variability of the series for each cell and a validation set to compare the downscaling relative to the observed patterns. After validation, the coarse projections from Global Climate Models (GCMs) are disaggregated to higher spatial resolutions by using an iterative gap-filling MSSA algorithm to downscale the projected values of the variable, using the distributed series statistics and the MSSA analysis. The method is data adaptive and useful for downscaling short-term forecasts as well as long-term climate projections. The method is applied to the downscaling of temperature and precipitation from observed records and GCM projections over a region located in the US Southwest, taking into account the seasonal variability associated with ENSO.

  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. Human health impacts in a changing South African climate.

    PubMed

    Wright, C Y; Garland, R M; Norval, M; Vogel, C

    2014-08-01

    Climate change is projected to lead to warmer temperatures, especially in southern Africa, where the warming is predicted to be 2°C higher than the global increase. Given the high burden of disease already associated with environmental factors in this region, this temperature increase may lead to grave challenges for human health and quality of life. HIV/AIDS, poverty, food and water insecurity together with inequality and unemployment will further complicate the manner in which we will need to address the challenges of a changing climate. The health impacts are direct, such as increased temperatures leading to heat exhaustion, and indirect, such as likely increases in infectious diseases from contaminated water and changes in the distribution and/or magnitude of vector-borne diseases. The most effective measures for adapting to climate change to ensure healthy populations are to implement basic public health systems and services. These range from a continuous supply of clean water to adequate primary healthcare services. Support for required interventions is required not only from government, but also from healthcare professionals and communities. The need for disease surveillance, data capturing and more focused research is paramount. PMID:26307804

  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. 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.

  20. Sensitivity of Detection and Attribution of Climate Change to Simulated Climate Variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Imbers, J.; Lopez, A.; Huntingford, C.; Allen, M.

    2011-12-01

    The statement in the IPCC 4th Assessment that most of the observed global warming since the mid-20th-century is "very likely" due to the anthropogenic increase in greenhouse gas depends heavily on the statistical method of optimal fingerprinting and on its estimates of internal climate variability. In particular, the estimation of internally generated variability plays a central role in defining the "goodness-of-fit" between models and observations in both detection and attribution of external influences on climate and in the evaluation of climate models. However, most climate models remain deficient at representing important aspects of interannual and longer time-scale variability. We ask what is the sensitivity of attribution statements to a potential misrepresentation of internally-generated variability by climate models. Thus, we characterize natural variability with two statistical representations, a short and a long memory model both with the same number of parameters and we analyze the sensitivity of detection and attribution to these statistical parameters. We also investigate physically based arguments that could establish a superiority of one model over the other when both are statistically robust on the relatively short time series of a century typically used in the IPCC report. We aim to use the CMIP-5 ensemble to update this statement, accounting for a broader range of consistent model simulations and assessing the impact of the decade of near-stable temperatures post 2000.

  1. The role of internal climate variability for interpreting climate change scenarios

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maraun, Douglas

    2013-04-01

    When communicating information on climate change, the use of multi-model ensembles has been advocated to sample uncertainties over a range as wide as possible. To meet the demand for easily accessible results, the ensemble is often summarised by its multi-model mean signal. In rare cases, additional uncertainty measures are given to avoid loosing all information on the ensemble spread, e.g., the highest and lowest projected values. Such approaches, however, disregard the fundamentally different nature of the different types of uncertainties and might cause wrong interpretations and subsequently wrong decisions for adaptation. Whereas scenario and climate model uncertainties are of epistemic nature, i.e., caused by an in principle reducible lack of knowledge, uncertainties due to internal climate variability are aleatory, i.e., inherently stochastic and irreducible. As wisely stated in the proverb "climate is what you expect, weather is what you get", a specific region will experience one stochastic realisation of the climate system, but never exactly the expected climate change signal as given by a multi model mean. Depending on the meteorological variable, region and lead time, the signal might be strong or weak compared to the stochastic component. In cases of a low signal-to-noise ratio, even if the climate change signal is a well defined trend, no trends or even opposite trends might be experienced. Here I propose to use the time of emergence (TOE) to quantify and communicate when climate change trends will exceed the internal variability. The TOE provides a useful measure for end users to assess the time horizon for implementing adaptation measures. Furthermore, internal variability is scale dependent - the more local the scale, the stronger the influence of internal climate variability. Thus investigating the TOE as a function of spatial scale could help to assess the required spatial scale for implementing adaptation measures. I exemplify this proposal with

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Patil, Sopan D.; Wigington, Parker J.; Leibowitz, Scott G.; Sproles, Eric A.; Comeleo, Randy L.

    2014-09-01

    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 (distributed) meteorological inputs instead of spatially uniform (lumped) meteorological inputs. Both lumped and distributed versions of the EXP-HYDRO model are implemented at 41 meso-scale (500-5000 km2) catchments in the Pacific Northwest region of USA. We use two complementary metrics of long-term spatial climate variability, moisture homogeneity index (IM) and temperature variability index (ITV), to analyze the performance improvement with distributed model. Results show that the distributed model performs better than the lumped model in 38 out of 41 catchments, and noticeably better (>10% improvement) in 13 catchments. Furthermore, spatial variability of moisture distribution alone is insufficient to explain the observed patterns of model performance improvement. For catchments with low moisture homogeneity (IM < 80%), IM is a better predictor of model performance improvement than ITV; whereas for catchments with high moisture homogeneity (IM > 80%), ITV is 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 a homogeneous moisture distribution benefit from spatially distributed meteorological inputs if they also have high spatial variability of precipitation phase (rain vs. snow).

  3. Solar forcing synchronizes decadal North Atlantic climate variability.

    PubMed

    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

  4. 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

  5. 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

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

    PubMed

    Harding, 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-km(2) 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

  7. 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.

  8. 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

  9. 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. PMID:26472274

  10. ENSO Variability at Vanuatu during the Medieval Climate Anomaly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hereid, K. A.; Quinn, T. M.; Taylor, F. W.; Edwards, R.; Cheng, H.; Shen, C.

    2011-12-01

    The Medieval Climate Anomaly (MCA; ~1050 - 1250 CE) is a period of warm temperatures in the Northern Hemisphere high latitudes caused by enhanced solar forcing. The tropical response to this forcing is variable; sediment records from the tropical Pacific indicate warm conditions in the western tropics and cooler temperatures in the east during this interval, paired with precipitation changes that suggest a northward migration of the Intertropical Convergence Zone. Speleothem records and western Pacific sediment cores match this migration with a strengthened Asian monsoon, indicating a substantial reorganization in hydrology. However, the effect of these changes in zonal and meridional circulation patterns on the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO), the dominant mode of global interannual climate variability, is unclear. Conflicting hypotheses arise due to datasets that are too short to be representative of multidecadal ENSO variability trends, cannot identify individual ENSO events due to lower than annual resolution, or are located in remote, teleconnected regions. We present a suite of monthly resolved geochemical records from fossil Porites corals at Vanuatu (Tasmaloum, Espiritu Santo), a location whose climate is strongly influenced by variations in ENSO and the South Pacific Convergence Zone (SPCZ). Our proxy coral records of sea surface temperature (SST) and sea surface salinity (SSS) variations provide multidecadal- to centennial-scale windows into ENSO variability and mean climate state from ~600 - 1250 CE in the deep tropics. Preliminary results, based on coral Sr/Ca variations during a portion of the MCA, suggest that SST was cooler than modern at Vanuatu, with similar levels of total variability. Additional data acquisition and future work will focus on assessing potential ENSO event frequency and magnitude changes during the MCA in the deep tropics.

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

    PubMed

    Payne, Benjamin Luke; Bro-Jørgensen, Jakob

    2016-05-01

    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]. PMID:27133868

  12. 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

  13. The role of African easterly waves on Atlantic tropical cyclone variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hopsch, Susanna B.

    Coherent vorticity structures were identified at 850hPa over West Africa and the tropical Atlantic in the ERA40 reanalysis. The presence of two dominant source regions for stormtracks over the Atlantic was found. Results show that the southern stormtrack provides most storms that reach the MDR where most tropical cyclones develop. Marked seasonal variability in location and intensity of storms leaving the West African coast exists, which may influence the likelihood of downstream intensification and longevity. There exists considerable year-to-year variability in number of West African storms, both over land and continuing out over the tropical Atlantic Ocean. While the low-frequency variability is well correlated with Atlantic tropical cyclone activity, West African rainfall and SSTs, the interannual variability is found to be uncorrelated. In contrast, variance of 2-6-day-filtered meridional wind, which provides a synoptic-scale measure of AEW activity, shows a significant, positive correlation with TC activity at interannual timescales. The extent to which the nature of AEWs leaving the West African coast is important for influencing the probability of becoming named storms downstream was also explored. The ERA40 dataset has been analyzed for July through September from 1979-2001 to generate a climatology of AEWs leaving the West African coast. A composite view of the structure of the AEWs and their large-scale environment was obtained by identifying all AEWs that were associated with named storms over the MDR. This was compared to the composite of all disturbances that ultimately failed to develop. It is shown that substantial differences in structure and characteristics exist of AEWs that become associated with tropical cyclones and the ones that don't. The most important differences between developing and non-developing AEWs include: (1) Developing AEWs have a distinctive cold-core structure before reaching the West coast. (2) They transform towards more warm

  14. Northern hemisphere winter atmospheric climate: modes of natural variability and climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Keeley, Sarah P. E.; Collins, Matthew; Thorpe, Alan J.

    2008-08-01

    Under anthropogenic climate change it is possible that the increased radiative forcing and associated changes in mean climate may affect the “dynamical equilibrium” of the climate system; leading to a change in the relative dominance of different modes of natural variability, the characteristics of their patterns or their behavior in the time domain. Here we use multi-century integrations of version three of the Hadley Centre atmosphere model coupled to a mixed layer ocean to examine potential changes in atmosphere-surface ocean modes of variability. After first evaluating the simulated modes of Northern Hemisphere winter surface temperature and geopotential height against observations, we examine their behavior under an idealized equilibrium doubling of atmospheric CO2. We find no significant changes in the order of dominance, the spatial patterns or the associated time series of the modes. Having established that the dynamic equilibrium is preserved in the model on doubling of CO2, we go on to examine the temperature pattern of mean climate change in terms of the modes of variability; the motivation being that the pattern of change might be explicable in terms of changes in the amount of time the system resides in a particular mode. In addition, if the two are closely related, we might be able to assess the relative credibility of different spatial patterns of climate change from different models (or model versions) by assessing their representation of variability. Significant shifts do appear to occur in the mean position of residence when examining a truncated set of the leading order modes. However, on examining the complete spectrum of modes, it is found that the mean climate change pattern is close to orthogonal to all of the modes and the large shifts are a manifestation of this orthogonality. The results suggest that care should be exercised in using a truncated set of variability EOFs to evaluate climate change signals.

  15. 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

    2016-06-01

    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

  16. 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

  17. 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

  18. Evidence of multidecadal climate variability in the Gulf of Mexico

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Poore, Richard Z.; Brock, John C.

    2011-01-01

    The northern Gulf of Mexico coastal region is vulnerable to a variety of natural hazards, many of which are linked to climate and climate variability. Hurricanes, which are one such climate-related hazard, are a major recurring problem, and the active hurricane seasons of 2004 and 2005 raised interest in better understanding the controls and risks of hurricanes. Examination of historical records reveals intervals of alternating low and high hurricane activity that appear to be related to changes in average sea-surface temperature in the North Atlantic Ocean. Analyses of instrumental temperature records from the North Atlantic show decadal-scale oscillations of slightly higher versus slightly lower average temperature extending back in time for over 100 years. This oscillation is known as the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO).

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. Climate dynamics and fluid mechanics: Natural variability and related uncertainties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghil, Michael; Chekroun, Mickaël D.; Simonnet, Eric

    2008-08-01

    The purpose of this review-and-research paper is twofold: (i) to review the role played in climate dynamics by fluid-dynamical models; and (ii) to contribute to the understanding and reduction of the uncertainties in future climate-change projections. To illustrate the first point, we review recent theoretical advances in studying the wind-driven circulation of the oceans. In doing so, we concentrate on the large-scale, wind-driven flow of the mid-latitude oceans, which is dominated by the presence of a larger, anticyclonic and a smaller, cyclonic gyre. The two gyres share the eastward extension of western boundary currents, such as the Gulf Stream or Kuroshio, and are induced by the shear in the winds that cross the respective ocean basins. The boundary currents and eastward jets carry substantial amounts of heat and momentum, and thus contribute in a crucial way to Earth’s climate, and to changes therein. Changes in this double-gyre circulation occur from year to year and decade to decade. We study this low-frequency variability of the wind-driven, double-gyre circulation in mid-latitude ocean basins, via the bifurcation sequence that leads from steady states through periodic solutions and on to the chaotic, irregular flows documented in the observations. This sequence involves local, pitchfork and Hopf bifurcations, as well as global, homoclinic ones. The natural climate variability induced by the low-frequency variability of the ocean circulation is but one of the causes of uncertainties in climate projections. The range of these uncertainties has barely decreased, or even increased, over the last three decades. Another major cause of such uncertainties could reside in the structural instability-in the classical, topological sense-of the equations governing climate dynamics, including but not restricted to those of atmospheric and ocean dynamics. We propose a novel approach to understand, and possibly reduce, these uncertainties, based on the concepts and

  2. Remote sensing of climate changes effects on forest biophysical variables

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zoran, Maria A.; Dida, Adrian I.; Zoran, Liviu Florin V.

    2014-10-01

    Climate variability represents the ensemble of net radiation, precipitation, wind and temperature characteristic for a region in a certain time scale (e.g.monthly, seasonal annual). The temporal and/or spatial sensitivity of forest vegetation dynamics to climate variability is used to characterize the quantitative relationship between these two quantities in temporal and/or spatial scales. So, climate variability has a great impact on the forest vegetation dynamics. Forest vegetation phenology constitutes an efficient bio-indicator of climate and anthropogenic changes impacts and a key parameter for understanding and modeling vegetation-climate interactions. Satellite remote sensing is a very useful tool to assess the main phenological events based on tracking significant changes on temporal trajectories of forest biophysical parameters like as Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVIs) and Leaf Aria Index (LAI), which requires time-series data with good time resolution, over homogeneous area, cloud-free and not affected by atmospheric and geometric effects and variations in sensor characteristics (calibration, spectral responses). This paper will quantify this impact over a forest ecosystem Cernica- Branesti placed in the North-Eastern part of Bucharest town, Romania, with NDVI and LAI parameters extracted from MODIS Terra and NOAA AVHRR satellite images in synergy with meteorological data over 2000-2013 periods. For investigated test area, considerable NDVI and LAI decline have been observed during heat wave and drought events of 2003, 2007 and 2012 years. Under water stress conditions, it is evident that environmental factors such as soil type, parent material, and topography are not correlated with NDVI dynamics.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. Stratospheric influence on Northern Hemisphere winter climate variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ouzeau, Gaelle; Douville, Herve; Saint Martin, David

    2010-05-01

    Despite significant improvements in observing and data assimilation systems, long-range dynamical forecasting remains a difficult challenge for the climate modelling community. The skill of operational seasonal forecasting systems is particularly poor in the northern extratropics where seas surface temperature (SST) has a weaker influence than in the Tropics. It is therefore relevant to look for additional potential sources of long-range climate predictability in the stratosphere using ensembles of global atmospheric simulations. Besides a control experiment where the ARPEGE-Climat model is only driven by SST, parallel simulations have been performed in which an additional control on climate variability has been accounted for through the nudging of the northern extratropical stratosphere towards the ERA40 reanalysis. Though idealized, this original experiment design allows us to compare the relative contribution of the lower and upper boundary forcings on the simulated tropospheric variability. Results show that the stratospheric nudging improves the climatology and interannual variability of the mid-latitude troposphere, especially in winter in the Northern Hemisphere. Major impacts are found in particular on the simulation of the Arctic and North Atlantic oscillations (AO and NAO). Case studies were carried out for the 1976-1977 and 1988-1989 winters, corresponding to extreme phases of the AO. Results confirm the robustness of the positive impact of the nudging, especially for winter 1976-1977 corresponding to relatively weak SST anomalies in the tropical Pacific. A sensitivity study to the model resolution shows that a well-resolved stratosphere is not necessary for the nudging to be efficient. Besides seasonal mean results, analysis of the day-to-day variability in winter allowed us to better understand the stratospheric polar vortex influence on the tropospheric circulation in the Northern Hemisphere mid-latitudes.

  6. 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

  7. 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

  8. Understanding the link between large-scale climate variability and regional hydrologic variability using weather patterns as intermediate variables

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Renard, Benjamin; Lall, Upmanu

    2013-04-01

    Climate naturally follows specific modes of variability, quantified by some climate indices (e.g. North Atlantic Oscillation NAO, Southern Oscillation Index SOI, Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation AMO, etc.). These modes of variability are due to large-scale climatic processes affecting large areas, and whose temporal scales range from a few months to a few decades. The temporal variability of hydrological regimes depends on such modes of variability, as has been reported in several regions worldwide. However, this relationship is more difficult to observe in some other regions, for several possible reasons: (i) the large natural variability of hydrological regimes, especially in the extreme domain, might strongly restrict the ability to detect weak or moderate relationships; (ii) Standard modes of variability like the NAO, SOI, etc. might not be the most relevant for some regions. This presentation explores an approach which, instead of directly seeking links between large-scale climate variability and regional hydrologic variability, decomposes the problem into two transitive "sub-problems" involving weather patterns as intermediate variables. Weather patterns are used to describe the atmospheric situation over a region as a categorical variable. As region-specific indices, they are potentially more explanatory than larger-scale indices like the NAO or SOI to explain the regional variability of hydrologic regimes. Consequently, two probabilistic models are derived: (1) a model to predict the frequency of weather patterns using large-scale climate indices (NAO, SOI, etc.) as predictors; (2) a model to predict the regional distribution of some hydrologic variable (e.g. number of flood events) using the frequencies of weather patterns as predictors. A case study based on French flood data is used to illustrate the application of this approach. It shows that each sub-model has some predictive ability: for instance, the annual number of flood events can be predicted

  9. 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

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

    PubMed

    Kingsolver, Joel G; Buckley, Lauren B

    2015-03-01

    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

  11. 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

  12. Can climate variability contribute to the ``missing'' CO2 sink?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dai, Aiguo; Fung, Inez Y.

    1993-09-01

    The contemporary carbon budget for the atmosphere requires a large "missing" carbon sink to balance anthropogenic carbon inputs. We investigated climatic effects on carbon exchanges between the atmosphere and the undisturbed biosphere and assessed the possible contribution of climate variability to the carbon sink. Empirical models and global temperature and precipitation data sets were used in the study. It was found that climate perturbations during 1940-1988 caused considerable variations in plant productivity and soil respiration. The different sensitivities of the fluxes to climate perturbations led to a significant carbon accumulation in the biosphere. The cumulative carbon sink for the period 1950-1984 (˜20±5 GtC or 1012 kg C) was predominantly located in mid-latitudes in the northern hemisphere (30°-60°N) and could amount to half of the missing CO2 sink as derived from deconvolution analyses. Our results indicate that climate variations have unequal impacts on biospheric carbon fluxes from different ecosystems and imply that caution must be exercised in generalizing in situ observations to the globe.

  13. Colorado River Water Availability Assessment Under Climate Variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yarberry, A. J.; Rajagopalan, B.; Prairie, J. R.

    2010-12-01

    The Colorado River is ruled by a complex system of agreements and regulations that fully allocate its resources. During the drought from 2000 to 2008, decision makers and stakeholders began to question the abilities of existing operating procedures to handle such events; and whether dry events were historically common. A recent study found that a scenario of 20% reduction in the mean annual Colorado River flow due to climate change by 2057 resulted in a nearly 10-fold increase in the probability of annual reservoir depletion by 2057. That study also suggested that flexibility in current management practices could mitigate some of the increased risk from climate change-induced reductions in flows. The general approach of past studies has been to model and generate streamflow scenarios under climate change that are then driven through decision and management models of water resources systems to quantify the risk and reliability of various aspects of the system. Management alternatives are considered to improve the reliability to a desired level under streamflow variability. The methodology used by previous studies assumed that the projected demand growth is a given and that it has to be met in the future. We are of the opinion that this need not be the case, which motivates the present study. To this end an assessment of water availability in the basin was performed using a simple heuristic model under different climate scenarios for the available storage capacity and minimum storage requirements. From the simulations, using the predicted future levels of demand of 13.5 and 14.4 MAF as per current agreements in the basin and the current consumptive use of 12.7 MAF, the key findings are that (i) The reliability of meeting a demand of 13.5 MAF, decreases from 99% to 94% for natural climate variability and a 20% reduction in mean streamflow due to climate change, respectively; and, (ii) For a demand of 14.4 MAF, the reliability decreases from 97% to 70%. However, for

  14. Use of Paleomagnetic Secular Variation, Excursion, and Reversal Records to Correlate African Lake Climate Records

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    King, J.; Heil, C.; Peck, J.; Scholz, C.; Shanahan, T.; Overpeck, J.

    2005-12-01

    Geomagnetic secular variation, excursions, and reversal records can provide an excellent means for high resolution correlation of sedimentary climate records. Recent drilling projects on Lake Bosumtwi, Ghana, and Lake Malawi, Malawi, have provided the opportunity to study long African climate records (<1 Ma). Magnetic studies of these sedimentary archives indicate that high quality SV records are preserved through most of the sequence despite the fact that anoxia is the usual condition of bottom waters in both lakes. We compare the magnetic records of Lake Bosumtwi and Lake Malawi to test our ability to correlate between West African and East African lakes. In addition, we compare the magnetic record of Lake Malawi to records from Lake Tanganyika in East Africa and the Indian Ocean region, and the record of Lake Bosumtwi to that of Lake Barombi Mbo in West Africa. Correlations within regions are straightforward and highly useful for intrasite correlation. Correlation between East and West Africa is also possible, although the resolution of the correlation is more limited.

  15. 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

  16. 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

  17. 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.

  18. 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'.

  19. 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

  20. 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

  1. 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.

  2. Reconstruction of principal dynamical modes from climatic variability: nonlinear approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2015-04-01

    Analysis of multivariate time-series produced by complex systems requires efficient tools for reduction of data dimension. We consider this problem in relation to empirical modeling of climate, which implies an analysis of spatial-distributed time-series. The main goal is to establish the number of principal modes which have key contribution to data and actually governs the observed variability. Currently, the number of widely used linear methods based on PCA and factor analysis exists, which yield different data decompositions taking into consideration simultanious/time-lag correlations between spatial grid points. However, the question about possibility of improving the decomposition by taking into account nonlinear couplings between variables often remains untouched. In the report the method for constructing principal dynamic modes on the basis of low-dimensional nonlinear parametric representation of observed multivariate time-series is suggested. It is aimed to extracting the set of latent modes that both explains an essential part of variability, and obeys the simplest evolution law. Thus, this approach can be used for optimal reconstruction of the phase space for empirical prognostic modeling of observed dynamics. The evidence of nonlinear couplings in SST space-distributed data covering the Globe is investigated by the proposed approach. It is demonstrated that the obtained principal modes capture more part of SST variability than principal components (PCs) constructed by either EOF decomposition or its spatio-temporal extension. Relation of these modes to various climate phenomena is shown and discussed in the report. The application of the approach to data-driven forecast of climate bahavior is also discussed.

  3. 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

  4. 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

  5. Climatic Effects on Mammalian Body Size During the African Plio-Pleistocene

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reynolds, S. C.

    2004-12-01

    Climatic and environmental differences cause geographic patterns of larger versus smaller body sizes (size clines) in certain extant mammals, such as the spotted hyaena (Crocuta crocuta) and the Plains zebra (Equus burchellii). Likewise, body size changes seen in fossil specimens of these taxa from East and southern African Plio-Pleistocene sites are presumed to have climatic and environmental causes. This paper examines body size changes in these two taxa from key fossil sites in East Africa (Olduvai Beds I-IV, East Turkana and Olorgesailie) and southern Africa (Swartkrans, Sterkfontein and Kromdraai) to assess the nature and extent of body size changes. The differences between modern size variation and fossil size variation will be discussed. Results indicate that body sizes of fossil conspecifics in the focal taxa do not follow the pattern of geographic variation seen in modern conspecifics. Climatic and environmental changes may explain these differences, in particular that shifts in the East African region during the Plio-Pleistocene were greater than contemporaneous changes in southern Africa.

  6. Evaluating environmental flows under climate variability and change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilby, R.

    2012-04-01

    How much river flow is needed to ensure healthy freshwater ecosystems? This is a question that has exercised environmental managers for decades and one that is being made even harder by the prospect of anthropogenic climate change. The response requires balancing the long-term water demands of society with the needs of the environment in a sustainable and least cost way. Meeting these challenges will require more flexible water management systems and processes that recognise changing environmental limits, incentivise more environmentally-sensitive behaviours by water users and abstractors during times of water scarcity, and a move away from capital intensive, supply-side solutions. This talk evaluates the sensitivity of river flows to decadal variations in rainfall, abstraction amounts, licensing regime, and climate change. The overall objective is to determine how achievable abstraction volumes vary with different e-flow standards and water licensing regimes, under climate variability and change. The River Itchen in southern England has historically experienced unsustainable levels of water abstraction and is used as a test basin. The talk will consider the extent to which a 'smarter' approach to abstraction licensing could ensure that e-flow standards are met despite large uncertainty in the future climate, whilst having a minimal impact on security of water supplies.

  7. 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.

  8. Assessing variability in climate data: a significant event viewer tool

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rozum, Iryna; Raoult, Baudouin; Dee, Dick

    2014-05-01

    The EU funded CHARMe project ("Characterization of metadata to allow high-quality climate applications and services") addresses the major difficulty faced by users of climate data when judging whether data are fit for purpose, by introducing the concept of 'Commentary' metadata. The ECMWF's ERA-CLIM reanalysis project produced several climate data products including the 111 years Observation Feedback Archive which contains all the earth observations processed by the reanalysis, as well as, for each of them, feedback information generated by the data assimilation system. This information is complemented with a database of significant events which can affect data, such as volcanic eruptions, the launch of new satellites or El Niño phases, etc. A web-based graphical tool is being developed that will allow users to interactively browse and visualise time series of climate data with their associated events. This would allow users to become more familiar with the variety of observations that feed into the reanalysis, and to determine whether the variability and features seen in the dataset were likely to be artefacts of the measurement or processing steps, or real changes in the environment.

  9. Earth Climate Changes Connected To Solar Diameter and Irradiance Variabilities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lefebvre, S.; Rozelot, J. P.

    Recent studies indicate that small but persistent variations in the total solar irradiance may play an important role in climate changes. If it is known that such changes are mainly due to changes in sunspots darkness and faculae brightness, it begins to be understood that changes in the radius of the Sun may also play a role. In a first part of this paper, we will show how the irradiance is affected by small distortions of the solar shape. Indeed such departures to a pure spherical Sun can be modelized as they reflect the gravitational distortions inside the Sun (variability of the rotation rate both in latitude and in depth as deduced by helioseismic measurements). These departures have been also observed from space (MDI on board SOHO) and from ground (solar astrolabes, scanning heliometer or other means). Such a variability on the Sun's di- ameter, certainly of no more than 40 mas (maybe less), will imply a change in the luminosity of about 6 parts per 10000. For the time being such variations have not been yet taken into account in the Earth climate changes. In the second part of this paper, we will focus on a longer period of time. We will briefly review the variabil- ity of the solar diameter over the last past four centuries, as it is suspected now with a rather good confidence that such a temporal variability may have a sense. We will compare this variability with the global Earth temperatures used as a climatic proxy. It can be seen that diameter changes over such a long period of time are indicative of an external variability on the Earth climate. The physical mechanism involved is obviously through the irradiance changes for which we will emphasize the need to get accurate and simultaneous measurements of the Sun's radius. The determination of the commonly used ratio W, which measures the relative variations of the radius over the relative variations of the irradiance, and as deduced in the first part of this paper, is helpful to pinpoint the source of

  10. 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

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. KZai 02 pollen record, an insight into West African monsoon fluctuations during the Last Climatic Cycle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dalibard, M.; Popescu, S.; Maley, J.; Suc, J.

    2012-12-01

    Climate of the circum-Atlantic intertropical zone is driven by the ocean/atmosphere dynamics in response to variations of yearly insolation. These latitudes correspond to the convergence of the Hadley cells expressed on earth surface by intense trade winds and in lower troposphere by the African easterly jet making the edges of the intertropical zone relatively dry, while humidity is concentrated near the Equator. This phenomenon generates a precipitation front, known as the InterTropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ), the oscillations of which regulate the latitudinal vegetation distribution. Pollen record of core KZai 02 (Guinea Gulf) allows high resolution reconstruction of variations of past ecosystems over Central Africa during the Last Climatic Cycle. Plant taxa recorded in pollen analyses have been clustered according to their ecological requirements and African phytogeography. Fluctuations of these groups inform on precipitation intensity and their distribution during the last 130 ka. During Glacials, an open vegetation made of Cyperaceae marshes developed in the central Zaire/Congo Basin, surrounded by savannah on borders and afromontane forests on reliefs. Composition and distribution of vegetation indicate a decrease in monsoon activity and the strengthening of the precipitation front in the center of the basin. Interglacial phases are characterized by rain forest expansion over Central Africa in response to a precipitation enhancement associated with a northward shift of the rainfall front. Replacement of afromontane forest and marsh ecosystems by savannah then lowland pioneering, warm-temperate and rain forests characterized glacial/interglacial transitions. This succession suggests the increasing influence of at least two climatic parameters: the water availability and temperature and/or CO2 fluctuation. Spectral analysis applied to vegetation groups evidences the forcing of insolation, mainly driven by precession, on the West African monsoon system. Sub

  14. Plasticity of oxidative metabolism in variable climates: molecular mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Seebacher, Frank; Brand, Martin D; Else, Paul L; Guderley, Helga; Hulbert, Anthony J; Moyes, Christopher D

    2010-01-01

    Converting food to chemical energy (ATP) that is usable by cells is a principal requirement to sustain life. The rate of ATP production has to be sufficient for housekeeping functions, such as protein synthesis and maintaining membrane potentials, as well as for growth and locomotion. Energy metabolism is temperature sensitive, and animals respond to environmental variability at different temporal levels, from within-individual to evolutionary timescales. Here we review principal molecular mechanisms that underlie control of oxidative ATP production in response to climate variability. Nuclear transcription factors and coactivators control expression of mitochondrial proteins and abundance of mitochondria. Fatty acid and phospholipid concentrations of membranes influence the activity of membrane-bound proteins as well as the passive leak of protons across the mitochondrial membrane. Passive proton leak as well as protein-mediated proton leak across the inner mitochondrial membrane determine the efficacy of ATP production but are also instrumental in endothermic heat production and as a defense against reactive oxygen species. Both transcriptional mechanisms and membrane composition interact with environmental temperature and diet, and this interaction between diet and temperature in determining mitochondrial function links the two major environmental variables that are affected by changing climates. The limits to metabolic plasticity could be set by the production of reactive oxygen species leading to cellular damage, limits to substrate availability in mitochondria, and a disproportionally large increase in proton leak over ATP production. PMID:20586603

  15. 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.

  16. Functional cereals for production in new and variable climates.

    PubMed

    Henry, Robert J; Rangan, Parimalan; Furtado, Agnelo

    2016-04-01

    Adaptation of cereal crops to variable or changing climates requires that essential quality attributes are maintained to deliver food that will be acceptable to human consumers. Advances in cereal genomics are delivering insights into the molecular basis of nutritional and functional quality traits in cereals and defining new genetic resources. Understanding the influence of the environment on expression of these traits will support the retention of these essential functional properties during climate adaptation. New cereals for use as whole grain or ground to flour for other food products may be based upon the traditional species such as rice and wheat currently used in these food applications but may also include new options exploiting genomics tools to allow accelerated domestication of new species. PMID:26828379

  17. Linking lake variability, climate, and human activity in Basotu, Tanzania.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Higgins, Lindsey; Westerberg, Lars-Ove; Risberg, Jan

    2016-04-01

    Lake Basotu (4.3697°S, 35.0728°E) is a crater lake in north-central Tanzania. This lake is an important source of freshwater for local people as no perennial rivers are present. Due to intensive agricultural methods and climatic factors, lake level has fluctuated greatly over time. A history of environmental variability of the past 1800 years was established using the diatom record, magnetic parameters, and carbon content from a three meter long sediment core. Fluctuations in modern lake extent (1973 - 2015) were calculated using archived Landsat images and compared to meteorological records and documents of activity around the lake to determine the greatest impacts and their consequences on this essential water resource. Variations in the paleo-record indicate that fluctuations in lake level are not abnormal, however human influence has likely increased the sensitivity of Lake Basotu to climatic fluctuations.

  18. Some results applying flicker-noise spectroscopy on climate variables

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Casanovas, Alexandre; Gomez, Vicent

    2000-02-01

    Several quality data sets of different climate variables have been analyzed by Timashev's flicker-noise spectroscopy (FNS) methods. The data include Mauna Loa and Barrow ozone concentration, GISP2 and GRIP ice core temperature proxies, Great Salt Lake volume, down-welling longwave irradiation and atmospheric clearness index. The data cover very different time scales ranging from few years to ice-ages. All of them show a coloured spectrum with a negative power f-n dependence on frequency, characteristic of correlations that die out in time and are therefore suitable for applying FNS methods. Results indicate that FNS methods are promising for analysing climate data and that these methods can give more insight into the implied phenomena, if the time series fulfill certain requisites of length and quality. Since the parameters obtained are phenomenological in nature, additional work should be done to connect the phenomenological parameters with model physical parameters.

  19. From precipitation to runoff: Climatic controls on discharge variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rossi, M. W.; Whipple, K. X.; Vivoni, E. R.

    2012-12-01

    exponential distribution), discharge is often described as a heavy-tailed process (i.e. a power law distribution). Choosing among these two different climate forcings has significant implications for fluvial incision models where only events exceeding a threshold do geomorphic work. While many precipitation records do exhibit approximately exponential distributions, many are better described by more variable stretched exponential distributions with best fit exponents ranging from ~0.5 (heavy-tailed) to ~1.0 (exponential). Moreover, while many discharge records plausibly exhibit power-law behavior, many do not (~70%). By identifying correlations between the stretched exponential and power law exponents, we map the spatial distribution of climate variability in a way that better isolates regional patterns in the precipitation-runoff relationship. To this end, we present two detailed climate transects that exemplify relationships between mean annual runoff and discharge variability, and their relation to rainfall, aridity, and other climate variables. We also present new strategies that make fuller use of hydro-meteorological observations when testing other explanations for the non-linear transformation from precipitation to runoff including the role of the soil water balance (2) and the spatial organization of channel networks (3).

  20. 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)

  1. 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.

  2. The impact of the African Great Lakes on the regional climate in a dynamically downscaled CORDEX simulation (COSMO-CLM)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thiery, W.; Panitz, H.; van Lipzig, N.

    2013-12-01

    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. The performance of two lake modules within CCLM are compared for the period 1999-2008: the default FLake scheme and the alternative 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 stability, increased downwind precipitation, stronger winds, and the formation of local circulation patterns. This is achieved through comparison to a model integration excluding lake effects.

  3. 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

  4. Climate and Species Richness Predict the Phylogenetic Structure of African Mammal Communities

    PubMed Central

    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. PMID:25875361

  5. Ernst Julius Öpik, Solar Variability and Climate Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sterken, C.

    This paper covers some aspects of the life and work of the Estonian astronomer Ernst Öpik (1893--1985), who contributed to a very wide range of astronomical disciplines, and whose publications span more than 70 years. He worked in Estonia, the Soviet Union, the United States, Germany and Northern Ireland. His visions on the role of solar variability in global climate change are emphasized, and his opinions on modelling in science are explained, in addition to his views about scientific refereeing and publishing.

  6. Nao/ao Variability In The Coupled Bergen Climate Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sorteberg, A.; Furevik, T.; Bentsen, M.; Drange, H.; Kvamsto, N. G.; Thorstensen-Kindem, I.

    A new fully coupled atmosphere-ocean-sea ice model, known as the Bergen Climate Model (BCM), has been developed. The coupled model can be run with stretched co- ordinates both in the atmosphere and ocean and consists of the atmospheric model ARPEGE/IFS, and a global version of the isopycnal ocean model MICOM, including a sea ice model. The atmospheric model ARPEGE/IFS (c22) is a spectral model devel- oped jointly by Meteo-France and the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF). The ocean circulation model is the Miami Isopycnic Coordinate Ocean Model (MI- COM). Several modifications have been done to the MICOM model including the incorporation of a thermodynamic and dynamic sea ice model, the use of tempera- ture as a prognostic variable instead of salinity, and the use of a metric scale factor in both lateral, so the model can easily be configured on a general orthogonal grid. Also,the thickness diffusion has been modified to better handle diffusion near bottom topography and the base of the mixed layer. Coupling has been done with the library OASIS where 14 different fields are ex- changed using Montecarlo mapping and subgrid interpolation. Continental runoff into the correct rivers and discharge into the correct ocean grid cells are performed using the Total Runoff Integrating Pathways (TRIP) data set. Results will be present from a 300 years flux adjusted control integration of BCM with todays climate, using a unstretched T63 truncation in the atmosphere and a 0.8 by 2.4 degree resolution (near the equator gradually transforming to approximate square grid cells towards the poles) in the ocean. The model output has been analysed for large scale variability in both the ocean and atmosphere, with emphasise on the North Atlantic and Arctic climate. Statistical properties of the NAO/AO signal, and its im- pacts on the climate components, are identified and compared with observations. The NAO/AO mode of variability show up in the model with

  7. Climate variability as observed by the Nimbus-7 ERB

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ardanuy, P. E.; Kyle, H. L.

    1986-01-01

    Limits to the accuracy of the Earth Radiation Budget (ERB) data being obtained by the Nimbus-7 satellite are discussed with emphasis on the implications for the measured variabilities in the global climate. Error analyses are performed for both wide and narrow field of view instruments and the success of in-flight calibration efforts is noted. Alterations in the ERB due to the eruptions of El Chichon in 1982 and the 1982-1983 ENSO event are summarized, particularly the teleconnections which were observed during ENSO.

  8. African American Adolescents and New Media: Associations with HIV/STI risk behavior and psychosocial variables

    PubMed Central

    Whiteley, Laura B.; Brown, Larry K.; Swenson, Rebecca R.; Romer, Daniel; DiClemente, Ralph J.P.; Salazar, Laura F.; Vanable, Peter A.; Carey, Michael P.; Valois, Robert F.

    2012-01-01

    Objectives Cell phones and online media are used frequently but we know little about their use among African American adolescents. This study examines the frequency of such use and its relationship to psychosocial variables and STI/HIV risk behavior. Setting/Participants 1,518 African American, 13 to 18 years of age, from 2 Northeast U.S. cities (Providence, RI; Syracuse, NY) and 2 Southeast U.S. cities (Columbia, SC; Macon, GA) were assessed from 2008–2009. Design Participants were assessed on frequency of cell phone and Internet use, psychological constructs (depression, life satisfaction, impulsivity) and HIV/STI risk behaviors (history of intercourse, sexual sensation seeking attitudes, peer sexual risks norms) with reliable scales and measures using an audio computer-assisted self-interview. Results Over 90% of African American adolescents used cell phones everyday or most days and 60% used social networking sites everyday or most days (96% used Myspace). Greater requency of cell phone use was associated with sexual sensation seeking (p=.000), riskier peer sexual norms (p=.000), and impulsivity (p=.016). Greater frequency of Internet use was associated with a history of oral/vaginal/anal sex (OR= 1.03, CI=1.0–1.05) and sexual sensation seeking (p=.000). Conclusion These findings suggest that riskier youth are online and using cell phones frequently. The Internet and cell phones maybe useful platforms for targeted health promotion and prevention efforts with AA adolescents. PMID:21749027

  9. 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. PMID:26796698

  10. 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.

  11. Arctic climate response to the termination of the African Humid Period

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muschitiello, Francesco; Zhang, Qiong; Sundqvist, Hanna S.; Davies, Frazer J.; Renssen, Hans

    2015-10-01

    The Earth's climate response to the rapid vegetation collapse at the termination of the African Humid Period (AHP) (5.5-5.0 kyr BP) is still lacking a comprehensive investigation. Here we discuss the sensitivity of mid-Holocene Arctic climate to changes in albedo brought by a rapid desertification of the Sahara. By comparing a network of surface temperature reconstructions with output from a coupled global climate model, we find that, through a system of land-atmosphere feedbacks, the end of the AHP reduced the atmospheric and oceanic poleward heat transport from tropical to high northern latitudes. This entails a general weakening of the mid-latitude Westerlies, which results in a shift towards cooling over the Arctic and North Atlantic regions, and a change from positive to negative Arctic Oscillation-like conditions. This mechanism would explain the sign of rapid hydro-climatic perturbations recorded in several reconstructions from high northern latitudes at 5.5-5.0 kyr BP, suggesting that these regions are sensitive to changes in Saharan land cover during the present interglacial. This is central in the debate surrounding Arctic climate amplification and future projections for subtropical precipitation changes.

  12. Investigation of biogeophysical feedback on the African climate using a two-dimensional model

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Xue, Yongkang; Liou, Kuo-Nan; Kasahara, Akira

    1990-01-01

    A numerical scheme is specifically designed to develop a time-dependent climate model to ensure the conservation of mass, momentum, energy, and water vapor, in order to study the biogeophysical feedback for the climate of Africa. A vegetation layer is incorporated in the present two-dimensional climate model. Using the coupled climate-vegetation model, two tests were performed involving the removal and expansion of the Sahara Desert. Results show that variations in the surface conditions produce a significant feedback to the climate system. It is noted that the simulation responses to the temperature and zonal wind in the case of an expanded desert agree with the climatological data for African dry years. Perturbed simulations have also been performed by changing the albedo only, without allowing the variation in the vegetation layer. It is shown that the variation in latent heat release is significant and is related to changes in the vegetation cover. As a result, precipitation and cloud cover are reduced.

  13. 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.

  14. 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

  15. Interactions of Mineral Dust with Clouds, Sea Surface Temperature, and Climate Modes of Variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    DeFlorio, Michael J.

    Global climate models (GCMs) are a vital tool for ensuring the prosperity and security of modern society. They allow scientists to understand complex interactions between the air, ocean, and land, and are used by policymakers to project future changes in climate on regional and global scales. The previous generation of GCMs, represented by CMIP3 models, are shown to be deficient in their representation of precipitation over the western United States, a region that depends critically on wintertime orographically enhanced precipitation for drinking water. In addition, aerosol-cloud interactions were prescribed in CMIP3 models, which decreased the value of their representation of global aerosol, cloud, and precipitation features. This has potentially large impacts on global radiation budgets, since aerosol-cloud interactions affect the spatial extent and magnitude of clouds and precipitation. The newest suite of GCMs, the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP5) models, includes state-of-the-art parameterizations of small-scale features such as aerosols, clouds, and precipitation, and is widely used by the scientific community to learn more about the climate system. The Community Earth System Model (CESM), in conjunction with observations, provides several simulations to investigate the role of aerosols, clouds, and precipitation in the climate system and how they interact with larger modes of climate variability. We show that CESM produces a realistic spatial distribution of precipitation extremes over the western U.S., and that teleconnected signals of ENSO and the Pacific Decadal Oscillation to large-scale circulation patterns and precipitation over the western U.S. are improved when compared to CCSM3. We also discover a new semi-direct effect between dust and stratocumulus clouds over the subtropical North Atlantic, whereby boundary layer inversion strength increases during the most dusty summers due to shortwave absorption of dust above the planetary

  16. Potential vorticity intrusion index and climate variability of surface temperature

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cai, M.

    2003-04-01

    This paper proposes a potential vorticity intrusion index (denoted as PVI) as an alternative diagnostic tool to study the observed climate variability/trend of the surface temperature. The PVI index is defined as the percentage area of upper lever PV intrusion in the extratropics at any given time. Abundance (shortage) of extreme cold surface air temperature episodes in high latitudes coincides with a high (low) PVI index. The interannual variability of the PVI index exhibits a strong QBO- like signal. The high (low) PVI index prevails when the equatorial zonal mean zonal wind at 50 hPa is easterly (westerly). The probability distribution map of PV intrusion activities shows a shift of the preferred regions of frontogenesis from the oceans to the continents when the PVI index is high. This explains directly why more extreme cold events are observed over the northern Eurasian and Northern America continents when the PVI index is high or the QBO is in the easterly phase.

  17. Potential vorticity intrusion index and climate variability of surface temperature

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cai, Ming

    2003-02-01

    This paper proposes a potential vorticity intrusion index (denoted as PVI) as an alternative diagnostic tool to study the observed climate variability/trend of the surface temperature. The PVI index measures the percentage area of upper lever PV intrusion in the extratropics at any given time. More (fewer) outbreaks of extreme cold surface air temperature in high latitudes take place when the PVI index is high (low). The interannual variability of the PVI index exhibits a strong QBO- like signal. The high (low) PVI index prevails when the equatorial zonal mean zonal wind at 50 hPa is easterly (westerly). The probability distribution map of PV intrusion activities shows a shift of the preferred regions of frontogenesis from the oceans to the continents when the PVI index is high. This explains directly why more extreme cold events are observed over the northern Eurasian and Northern America continents when the PVI index is high, or the QBO is in the easterly phase.

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. Exploratory Long-Range Models to Estimate Summer Climate Variability over Southern Africa.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jury, Mark R.; Mulenga, Henry M.; Mason, Simon J.

    1999-07-01

    Teleconnection predictors are explored using multivariate regression models in an effort to estimate southern African summer rainfall and climate impacts one season in advance. The preliminary statistical formulations include many variables influenced by the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) such as tropical sea surface temperatures (SST) in the Indian and Atlantic Oceans. Atmospheric circulation responses to ENSO include the alternation of tropical zonal winds over Africa and changes in convective activity within oceanic monsoon troughs. Numerous hemispheric-scale datasets are employed to extract predictors and include global indexes (Southern Oscillation index and quasi-biennial oscillation), SST principal component scores for the global oceans, indexes of tropical convection (outgoing longwave radiation), air pressure, and surface and upper winds over the Indian and Atlantic Oceans. Climatic targets include subseasonal, area-averaged rainfall over South Africa and the Zambezi river basin, and South Africa's annual maize yield. Predictors and targets overlap in the years 1971-93, the defined training period. Each target time series is fitted by an optimum group of predictors from the preceding spring, in a linear multivariate formulation. To limit artificial skill, predictors are restricted to three, providing 17 degrees of freedom. Models with colinear predictors are screened out, and persistence of the target time series is considered. The late summer rainfall models achieve a mean r2 fit of 72%, contributed largely through ENSO modulation. Early summer rainfall cross validation correlations are lower (61%). A conceptual understanding of the climate dynamics and ocean-atmosphere coupling processes inherent in the exploratory models is outlined.Seasonal outlooks based on the exploratory models could help mitigate the impacts of southern Africa's fluctuating climate. It is believed that an advance warning of drought risk and seasonal rainfall prospects will

  1. Predicting the effect of climate change on African trypanosomiasis: integrating epidemiology with parasite and vector biology

    PubMed Central

    Moore, Sean; Shrestha, Sourya; Tomlinson, Kyle W.; Vuong, Holly

    2012-01-01

    Climate warming over the next century is expected to have a large impact on the interactions between pathogens and their animal and human hosts. Vector-borne diseases are particularly sensitive to warming because temperature changes can alter vector development rates, shift their geographical distribution and alter transmission dynamics. For this reason, African trypanosomiasis (sleeping sickness), a vector-borne disease of humans and animals, was recently identified as one of the 12 infectious diseases likely to spread owing to climate change. We combine a variety of direct effects of temperature on vector ecology, vector biology and vector–parasite interactions via a disease transmission model and extrapolate the potential compounding effects of projected warming on the epidemiology of African trypanosomiasis. The model predicts that epidemics can occur when mean temperatures are between 20.7°C and 26.1°C. Our model does not predict a large-range expansion, but rather a large shift of up to 60 per cent in the geographical extent of the range. The model also predicts that 46–77 million additional people may be at risk of exposure by 2090. Future research could expand our analysis to include other environmental factors that influence tsetse populations and disease transmission such as humidity, as well as changes to human, livestock and wildlife distributions. The modelling approach presented here provides a framework for using the climate-sensitive aspects of vector and pathogen biology to predict changes in disease prevalence and risk owing to climate change. PMID:22072451

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. Changes in the variability of extreme climate events in Latvia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Avotniece, Zanita; Lizuma, Lita; Briede, Agrita; Klavins, Maris

    2015-04-01

    Recent changes in the mean values of surface air temperature and precipitation have led to significant local changes in hazardous and extreme events in many parts of the world, including the Northern Europe and Latvia. The observed trends in the changes of such extreme climate events indicate that extremes associated with high temperatures and precipitation are becoming more frequent in Latvia, however not much is known about the changes in variability of these extreme events. This study investigated the long-term trends and variability of extreme temperature and precipitation events as defined by the ECA&D in 10 meteorological observation stations in Latvia over the period 1925-2012. In order to detect and study the changes in variability and anomalies of extreme events, a comparison of three different time scales was performed: 1931-1960, 1961-1990,1981-2010. The results of the analysis revealed steady changes in some extremes while others have experienced a significant change in variability in the most recent 30-year period. Due to the specifics in the spatial distribution of extreme events, the results show differences in the behaviour of extreme events over the country.

  5. Decadal variability of the Arctic Ocean in a changing climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ding, Y.

    2015-12-01

    Arctic climate is characterized by strong interannual to interannual/decadal variability involving interactions with the overlying atmosphere as well as exchanges with the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans. By increasing the geographic area of contact as well as by changing the mean stratification and overturning circulation future reductions of sea ice cover offers the potential to enhance and alter these interactions. This study begins with a comparison of simulated and historical interannual/decadal variability in the Arctic Ocean, and the relative importance of local atmospheric heating and ocean heat convergence, as they appear in a collection of CMIP5 model simulations. This analysis reveals that the models can be classified into two groups depending on their responses. Then we examine the changes in this variability over the coming centuries as simulated by the models, which reveal dramatic changes to the strength and frequency of the variability as the sea ice retreats. The connections to interannual/decadal variations of the overturning circulation and to atmospheric weather patterns will be discussed.

  6. Interannual climate variability seen in the Pliocene Model Intercomparison Project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brierley, C. M.

    2014-09-01

    Following proxy observations of weakened temperature gradients along the Equator in the early Pliocene, there has been much speculation about Pliocene climate variability. A major advance for our knowledge about the later Pliocene has been the coordination of modelling efforts through the Pliocene Model Intercomparison Project (PlioMIP). Here the changes in interannual modes of sea surface temperature variability will be presented across PlioMIP. Previously model ensembles have shown little consensus in the response of the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) to imposed forcings - either for the past or future. The PlioMIP ensemble, however, shows surprising agreement with eight models simulating reduced variability and only one model indicating no change. The Pliocene's robustly weaker ENSO also saw a shift to lower frequencies. Model ensembles focussed at a wide variety of forcing scenarios have not yet shown this level of coherency. Nonetheless the PlioMIP ensemble does not show a robust response of either ENSO flavour or sea surface temperature variability in the Tropical Indian and North Pacific Oceans. Existing suggestions of ENSO properties linked to changes in zonal temperature gradient, seasonal cycle and the elevation of the Andes Mountains are investigated, yet prove insufficient to explain the coherent response. The reason for this surprisingly coherent signal warrants further investigation.

  7. Interannual climate variability seen in the Pliocene Model Intercomparison Project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brierley, C. M.

    2015-03-01

    Following reconstructions suggesting weakened temperature gradients along the Equator in the early Pliocene, there has been much speculation about Pliocene climate variability. A major advance for our knowledge about the later Pliocene has been the coordination of modelling efforts through the Pliocene Model Intercomparison Project (PlioMIP). Here the changes in interannual modes of sea surface temperature variability will be presented across PlioMIP. Previously, model ensembles have shown little consensus in the response of the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) to imposed forcings - either for the past or future. The PlioMIP ensemble, however, shows surprising agreement, with eight models simulating reduced variability and only one model indicating no change. The Pliocene's robustly weaker ENSO also saw a shift to lower frequencies. Model ensembles focussed on a wide variety of forcing scenarios have not yet shown this level of coherency. Nonetheless, the PlioMIP ensemble does not show a robust response of either ENSO flavour or sea surface temperature variability in the tropical Indian and North Pacific oceans. Existing suggestions linking ENSO properties to to changes in zonal temperature gradient, seasonal cycle and the elevation of the Andes Mountains are investigated, yet prove insufficient to explain the consistent response. The reason for this surprisingly coherent signal warrants further investigation.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. A speleothem record of Holocene climate variability from southwestern Mexico

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bernal, Juan Pablo; Lachniet, Matthew; McCulloch, Malcolm; Mortimer, Graham; Morales, Pedro; Cienfuegos, Edith

    2011-01-01

    A paleoclimate reconstruction for the Holocene based upon variations of δ 18O in a U-Th dated stalagmite from southwestern Mexico is presented. Our results indicate that the arrival of moisture to the area has been strongly linked to the input of glacial meltwaters into the North Atlantic throughout the Holocene. The record also suggests a complex interplay between Caribbean and Pacific moisture sources, modulated by the North Atlantic SST and the position of the ITCZ, where Pacific moisture becomes increasingly more influential through ENSO since ~ 4.3 ka. The interruption of stalagmite growth during the largest climatic anomalies of the Holocene (10.3 and 8.2 ka) is evidenced by the presence of hiatuses, which suggest a severe disruption in the arrival of moisture to the area. The δ 18O record presented here has important implications for understanding the evolution of the North American Monsoon and climate in southwestern Mexico, as it represents one of the most detailed archives of climate variability for the area spanning most of the Holocene.

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. Comparison of glacial periods reveals systematic cold climate variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bauch, Henning

    2013-04-01

    On a global scale, major variations in Pleistocene temperatures correlate well with glacial-interglacial changes of northern hemisphere ice sheet sizes. While a discharge of icebergs from the ice sheets surrounding the polar North Atlantic region directly reflects the rates of growth and decay of the ice sheet margins at sea level, it is also the result of a rapidly changing climate which affected both the meridional overturning in the ocean and the pattern in ocean-atmosphere circulation. Ice cores and many deep-sea sediment records from this region have demonstrated such complex interrelations between these main environmental processes for the last glaciation (Weichselian). In ice cores, the millennial-scale climate variabilities of the Weichselian are recognized in both hemispheres, albeit with apparently a significant time lag between the southern and northern pole regions. Comparing records of iceberg discharge from the polar and subpolar North Atlantic now reveals a very similar millennial-scale variability between the Weichselian and the penultimate glaciation (Saalian) during which warmer, interstadial times alternated with rather cold polar conditions. Because cold conditions in the polar North were also time-coeval with enhanced aridity and atmospheric dust content (e.g. at least over northern Africa due to changes in the monsoon system), the glacial dust records of Antarctica, which extend back in time much farther than Greenland ice records, could be used to also make an interhemispheric climate comparison. For the last two glaciations such a comparison would indeed indicate a strong linkage between iceberg discharge events in the polar North and increased dust content in the atmosphere.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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. PMID:25707919

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. Enhanced temperature variability in high-altitude climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ohmura, Atsumu

    2012-12-01

    In the present article, monthly mean temperature at 56 stations assembled in 18 regional groups in 10 major mountain ranges of the world were investigated. The periods of the analysis covered the last 50 to 110 years. The author found that the variability of temperature in climatic time scale tends to increase with altitude in about 65 % of the regional groups. A smaller number of groups, 20 %, showed the fastest change at an intermediate altitude between the peaks (or ridges) and their foot, while the remaining small number of sites, 15 %, showed the largest trends at the foot of mountains. This tendency provides a useful base for considering and planning the climate impact evaluations. The reason for the amplification of temperature variation at high altitudes is traced back to the increasing diabatic processes in the mid- and high troposphere as a result of the cloud condensation. This situation results from the fact that the radiation balance at the earth's surface is transformed more efficiently into latent heat of evaporation rather than sensible heat, the ratio between them being 4 to 1. Variation in the surface evaporation is converted into heat upon condensation into cloud particles and ice crystals in the mid- and high troposphere. Therefore, this is the altitude where the result of the surface radiation change is effectively transferred. Further, the low temperature of the environment amplifies the effect of the energy balance variation on the surface temperature, as a result of the functional shape of Stefan-Boltzmann law. These processes altogether contribute to enhancing temperature variability at high altitudes. The altitude play s an important role in determining the temperature variability, besides other important factors such as topography, surface characteristics, cryosphere/temperature feedback and the frequency and intensity of an inversion. These processes have a profound effect not only on the ecosystem but also on glaciers and permafrost.

  5. Interaction between soil moisture memory and different climate variables

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stacke, Tobias; Hagemann, Stefan

    2015-04-01

    A large number of modelling studies show a potential impact of the soil moisture state on regional climate on different time scales. Especially for short prediction periods, perturbations of the soil moisture state may result in significant alteration of surface temperature in the following season. The physical reasoning for such effects are usually attributed to the soil moisture - temperature as well as the soil moisture - precipitation feedbacks. We designed a model experiment to investigate the time scale until the effect of arbitrary soil moisture initialization is forgotten by the model. This time period is called soil moisture memory and computed for different seasons based on an ensemble of nine, 3 year long, simulations per season. These simulations are done using the coupled land-atmosphere model ECHAM6-JSBACH, which is part of the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology's Earth System Model (MPI-ESM). Soil moisture memory was found to range between few days up to several months. While the longest memory often coincides with either snow-covered conditions or follows on monsoon periods, short memory is computed prior to snow-melt and rainy seasons. Additionally, the correlations between soil moisture memory and a number of surface variables was investigated. We found that the magnitude of the initial soil moisture perturbations explains at most 50% of the spatial variation in soil moisture memory while the remaining variance is associated with soil properties and - even stronger - with dynamical variables like surface temperature, evapotranspiration and runoff. This effect differs for different seasons and soil moisture regimes which demonstrates the complexity of soil moisture - climate interactions. Further analysis will be focused on the re-occurrence of soil moisture memory after periods of insignificant memory and the possibility of memory transfer between different land surface state variables.

  6. 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

  7. Measuring the economic impact of climate change on major South African field crops: a Ricardian approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gbetibouo, G. A.; Hassan, R. M.

    2005-07-01

    This study employed a Ricardian model to measure the impact of climate change on South Africa's field crops and analysed potential future impacts of further changes in the climate. A regression of farm net revenue on climate, soil and other socio-economic variables was conducted to capture farmer-adapted responses to climate variations. The analysis was based on agricultural data for seven field crops (maize, wheat, sorghum, sugarcane, groundnut, sunflower and soybean), climate and edaphic data across 300 districts in South Africa. Results indicate that production of field crops was sensitive to marginal changes in temperature as compared to changes in precipitation. Temperature rise positively affects net revenue whereas the effect of reduction in rainfall is negative. The study also highlights the importance of season and location in dealing with climate change showing that the spatial distribution of climate change impact and consequently needed adaptations will not be uniform across the different agro-ecological regions of South Africa. Results of simulations of climate change scenarios indicate many impacts that would induce (or require) very distinct shifts in farming practices and patterns in different regions. Those include major shifts in crop calendars and growing seasons, switching between crops to the possibility of complete disappearance of some field crops from some region.

  8. 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

  9. 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.

  10. The Impact of Climate Variability on the Wildfire Behaviour of Distinct Land Ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Viegas, L.; Stevenson, D.; Merchant, C.

    2009-04-01

    The objective of our research is to investigate the impact of climate variability on geographic, ecological, seasonal and inter-annual distributions and magnitudes of biomass burning and on the correspondent quantity and quality of pyrogenic emissions, across a variety of ecosystems. With this purpose, we used 10 years of monthly, 1°x1° gridded burnt fraction and pyrogenic emissions data, from the Global Fire Emissions Database version 2 (GFEDv2), together with land-cover data, from the Goddard Institute of Space Studies (GISS), and with climate data from ECMWF reanalyses, the Global Precipitation Climatology Project (GPCP) and the Global Hydrology Resource Centre (GHRC). Knowledge about the ecosystems -- climatology, topography, orography, vegetation species and structure -- did not influence the statistical analyses themselves, which relied only on data for 1°x1° resolution pixels, but it was used before and after, first to choose eco-regions (ecosystems within geographical regions) with a reasonable ecological, geographic and climatic homogeneity, and then to draw conclusions and explanations. Overall, the climate parameters that showed significant statistical relationships with burnt area (absolute rank-correlations above 70%), in more eco-regions, were air and soil temperature, humidity, rainfall, wind and lightning density, and also precipitation and snow cover up to 6 months preceeding the fire season. The most extreme cases of inter-annual variability occurred in equatorial rainforests. These ecosystems rarely burn, since they are sparsely populated and lightning strikes are almost always simultaneous with rain, but, when fires do occur, like during ENSO related droughts, a great quantity of carbon is released to the atmosphere, because of the rainforests rich content in fuel loads. Monsoon moist-deciduous forests also became very prone to fires, in years when the onset of the rainy season was delayed. Earlier snow melt and/or diminished winter

  11. Response of Seasonal Atlantic Tropical Cyclone Activity to Suppression of African Easterly Waves in a Regional Climate Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Patricola, C. M.; Saravanan, R.; Chang, P.

    2014-12-01

    Atlantic tropical cyclones and African easterly waves (AEWs) are strongly linked on the synoptic timescale, with about 85% of observed major Atlantic hurricanes originating from AEWs (e.g., Landsea et al. 1993). However, the influence of variability in AEWs on seasonal Atlantic tropical cyclone activity is not fully understood; a positive correlation between AEW activity and Atlantic tropical cyclone activity exists on the interannual timescale during just some periods of the observational record (e.g., Thorncroft and Hodges, 2001; Hopsch et al. 2007). This study investigates the impact of AEWs on seasonal Atlantic tropical cyclone activity using regional climate model simulations in which AEWs were either prescribed or removed through the lateral boundary condition (LBC). The control simulation (10-member ensemble) was run at 27 km resolution and used 6-hourly LBCs from the NCEP CFS Reanalysis and daily NOAA Optimum Interpolation (OI) V2 sea surface temperature (SST) from the year 2005. In the experiment AEWs were suppressed by filtering 2-10 day variability over tropical latitudes from the eastern LBC, located along the west coast of the Sahel. The difference in Atlantic tropical cyclone frequency was insignificant between the simulations in which AEWs were prescribed versus suppressed, indicating that AEWs are not necessary to maintain climatological tropical cyclone frequency even though tropical cyclones readily originate from these features. This further implies that seasonal Atlantic tropical cyclone frequency is uninfluenced by variability in AEWs, and that the value of AEW variability as a predictor of Atlantic tropical cyclones is limited to the weekly timescale. However in response to filtering AEWs, accumulated cyclone energy significantly increased by about 15% of the control simulation mean and the spatial pattern of track density shifted in association with changes in steering winds. This suggests the importance of AEWs in impacting tropical cyclone

  12. 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

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. Nevada Monitoring System to Assess Climate Variability and Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Devitt, D. A.; Arnone, J.; Biondi, F.; Fenstermaker, L. F.; Saito, L.; Young, M.; Riddle, B.; Strachan, S. D.; Bird, B.; McCurdy, G.; Lyles, B. F.

    2010-12-01

    The Nevada System of Higher Education (University of Nevada Las Vegas, University of Nevada Reno and the Desert Research Institute) was awarded a multiyear NSF EPSCoR grant to support infrastructure associated with regional climate change research. The overall project is comprised of 5 components: education, cyberinfrastructure, policy, climate modeling and water/ecology. The water and ecology components are using their infrastructure funding for the assessment of climate variability and change on ecosystem function and hydrologic services. A series of 10 m tall towers are under construction and are being equipped with a wide array of sensors to monitor atmospheric, soil and plant parameters over time. The towers are located within the Mojave and Great Basin Deserts in two transects; the Mojave Desert transect is located in the southern Nevada Sheep Mountain Range and the Great Basin transect is located in the east central Nevada Snake Mountain Range. The towers are centrally positioned in well-defined vegetation zones. In southern Nevada these zones are represented by the following plant species: Creosote/Bursage (Creosotebush scrub zone); Blackbrush/Joshua Tree (Blackbrush zone); Pinyon/ Juniper (pygmy conifer zone), Ponderosa Pine (montane zone) and Bristlecone Pine (subalpine zone). The Snake Mountain transect incorporates the eastern and western valleys on both sides of the mountain range. The vegetation zones are represented by: Greasewood and mixed shrub (salt desert zone); Big Sage (sagebrush zone); Pinyon/Juniper (pygmy conifer zone); White/Douglas Fir, Ponderosa Pine and Aspen (montane zone); and Bristlecone/Limber Pine and Engelmann Spruce (subalpine zone). We are currently in the third year of funding with a goal of having the majority of towers fully operational by winter 2010. In close collaboration with our cyberinfrastructure component team, all data acquired from the transect monitoring stations will be made available to other researchers and the

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. Effects of climate variability on savannah fire regimes in West Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    N'Datchoh, E. T.; Konaré, A.; Diedhiou, A.; Diawara, A.; Quansah, E.; Assamoi, P.

    2015-04-01

    The main objective of this work is to investigate at regional scale the variability in burned areas over the savannahs of West Africa and their links with the rainfall and the large-scale climatic indexes such as the Southern Oscillation Index (SOI), Multivariate ENSO Index (MEI), North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) and sea surface temperature gradient (SSTG). Daily satellite products (L3JRC) of burned areas from the SPOT Vegetation sensor at a moderate spatial resolution of 1 km x 1 km between 2000 and 2007 were analyzed over the West African savannah in this paper. Results from seasonal analysis revealed a large increase in burned areas from November to February, with consistent peaks in December at the regional scale. In addition, about 30% of the pixels are burned at least four times within the 7-year period. Positive correlations were found between burned areas and rainfall values obtained from the TRMM satellite over savannahs located above 8° N, meaning that a wet rainfall season over these regions was favorable to biomass availability in the next dry season and therefore may induce an increase in burned areas in this region. Moreover, our results showed a nonlinear relationship between the large-scale climatic indexes SOI, MEI, NAO and SSTG and burned-area anomalies. Positive (negative) correlations between burned areas and SOI (MEI) were consistent over the Sahel and Sudano-Sahelian areas. Negative correlations with Atlantic SSTG were significant over the Guinea subregion. Correlations between burned areas over Sudano-Guinean subregion and all the large-scale indexes were weak and may be explained by the fact that this subregion had a mean rainfall greater than 800 mm yr-1 with permanent biomass availability and an optimal amount of soil moisture favorable to fire practice irrespective of the climate conditions. The teleconnection with NAO was not clear and needed to be investigated further.

  20. Assessment of human health vulnerability to climate variability and change in Cuba.

    PubMed

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

    2006-12-01

    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

  1. 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

  2. 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.

  3. Solar Variability and Climate Change in the Last 2000 Years

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pang, K.; Yau, K.

    2002-12-01

    Studying past climatic data can help us better understand present natural variations and predict future trends. Identification of cycles can be useful to forecasting. However, various reconstructions of the climate of the last 1000 years have given only broad similarities, with large variances in time and space [Briffa JGR 106, 2929, 2001]. For example, during the Little Ice Age (ca. 1600-1800) severe winters were frequent in Europe and China, but not over Greenland [Sci. Amer., 2/1992, 21]. The differences in modeling results are partly due to uncertainties in the past radiative forcing [Mann, Eos 82 (46), 2001]. Another outstanding question is whether we are in a time similar to Medieval Warm Period. From the frequencies of sunspot and aurora sightings, abundance of carbon-14 in the rings of long-lived trees, and beryllium-10 in the annual layers of polar ice cores, we have reconstructed the recent history of a variable Sun. In the past 1800 years the Sun has gone through nine cycles of changes in brightness. While these long-term changes account for less than one percent of the total irradiance, there is a clear evidence that they affect the climate. During the Maunder Minimum (1645-1715) few sunspots were seen--about 1 in 10 yr from China or Europe--indicative of a weak Sun. Eddy [Science 192, 1189, 1976] used historical aurora, C-14 and climate data to confirm its reality, and link it to the Little Ice Age. Using new historical sunspot catalogues [Yau, Quart. J. Roy. Astron. Soc., 29, 175, 1988], we have identified or confirmed earlier solar minima at 200-300, 400-500, 580-820, 980-1070, 1280-1350, 1410-1590; and maxima at 1080-1280, 1350-1400, etc. All these features are coincident with respective minima or maxima in the frequency of aurora sightings from Europe or Asia. Both time series are in turn consistent with radioisotope data [Pang, Eos. 9/2002]. Carbon-14 and beryllium-10 are made by cosmic rays high in the atmosphere. When the Sun is active the solar

  4. Educating At-Risk Urban African American Children: The Effects of School Climate on Motivation and Academic Achievement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fenzel, L. Mickey; O'Brennan, Lindsey M.

    2007-01-01

    The present study examines the mediating effects of student intrinsic motivation and teacher ratings of student academic engagement on the relation between school climate perceptions and student academic performance among 282 urban African American middle school students. Results provided support for the hypothesized model and suggest the…

  5. 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

  6. 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

  7. Intraindividual Variability in Psychometrically Defined Mild Cognitive Impairment Status in Older African Americans

    PubMed Central

    Gamaldo, Alyssa A.; Allaire, Jason C.; Whitfield, Keith E.

    2013-01-01

    The current study examines day to day variability in psychometrically defined MCI status and potential predictors of changes in MCI status in an independent-living sample of urban dwelling older adults in Baltimore, Maryland. The participant sample consisted of 50 older adults ranging in age from 50 to 80 years. Participants completed health and cognitive measures (i.e. executive function, language, memory, and global cognition) over 8 occasions within a 2–3 week period. After each testing occasion, a post-hoc classification of MCI status was determined using psychometrically defined criteria based upon cognitive performance. Participants who classified as MCI after one assessment often did not meet MCI criteria at subsequent occasions. Daily fluctuations in sleep duration were associated with an increased risk for MCI classification. These results demonstrate that changes in sleep may explain changes in MCI status, particularly for African Americans. PMID:22708537

  8. 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

  9. Application of Infrared Hyperspectral Sounder Data to Climate Research: Interannual Variability and climate trend evaluation.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aumann, H. H.; Gregorich, D. T.

    2007-12-01

    Satellite measurements of the spectrally resolved upwelling infrared radiances have a unique role in the observation of climate and climate change: They give direct insight into the way the Earth Climate System responds to periodic and long term changes in forcing with changes in surface and atmospheric temperatures and changes in large scale atmospheric circulation patterns. The Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS), the first in a series of hyper-spectral polar orbiting sounders, was launch on the EOS Aqua into a 1:30 pm polar orbit at 705 km altitude in May 2002, with an anticipated lifetime of 12 years. The Infrared Atmospheric Sounding Interferometer (IASI) was launched in October 2006 into a 9:30 AM orbit, to be followed by the Crosstrack InfraRed Sounder (CRIS) in a 2 PM orbit in 2010. The AIRS radiometric stability since 2002 has been verified at the better than 0.01 K/year level. We report on observations of the oceans between 30S and 30N. The 0.05 K/year trend in co2 sensitive channels due to the 2 ppmv/year increase in the co2 column abundance is readily detectable and statistically reliable. The AIRS data show very consistent seasonal modulations of key surface, cloud, water vapor and atmospheric temperatures. After removing the seasonal variation, the anomaly shows interannual rms variability in the monthly means larger than 0.1 K. The rms variability in the monthly means in the mid- tropospheric temperature with peak excursions as large as 0.6 K are observed by the AIRS 2388 cm-1 channel and AMSU channel 5 at 57 GHz. The interannual variability is not obviously correlated with the Multivariate Enso Index (MEI). This variability places limits on the length of time required to measure global warming trends at the 0.1 K/decade level. These limits exceed the expected 12 year lifetime of AIRS and need to be taken into account in the design of space missions and instruments to measure climate change.

  10. 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).

  11. 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.

  12. Development of a variable climate controlled portable storage facility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Timmins, Mitchel; Yadav, Kamal; Iroanusi, Kennedy; Tickle, Andrew J.

    2012-10-01

    This paper focuses on the development of a portable variable climate controlled system that can be tailored to the requirements of the item to be stored by manipulating the temperature, humidity and light levels within the controlled area. This could be used to store anything from bio-chemical samples (to preserve them from field work) to cooled electronics (prior to deployment in a given situation) to foodstuffs (such as wine and other alcohols). In this situation however, to provide a relatively simplistic example, the environment will be used to store wine. The system is adaptive in that anything can be stored within it, assuming the storage parameters are known in order to correctly configure the environment. In this paper a microcontroller (PICF4520) is connected to a fridge with various sensors attached to monitor and manipulate the environment and adjust it accordingly. For the chosen item to be stored, a temperature of 13- 14oC is required, a high humidity level and a non-Ultraviolent (UV) light source. This work thus allows for a small handheld unit that could be used to control the climate within without the need for the traditional 12 - 16 foot size portable units traditionally used. The unit could be left in the field and run off a solar cell to assist in longer term studies. This paper presents how the microcontroller is connected to the fridge and its sensors, how it manipulates the environment and the process by which the temperature and other factors can be changed without having to edit and recompile the C code, this allows for a much more friendly device interface.

  13. Climate variability during the Holocene inferred from northeastern Iberian speleothems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moreno, A.; Bartolomé, M.; Sancho, C.; Belmonte, Á.; Stoll, H.; Cacho, I.; Edwards, R. L.; Hellstrom, J.

    2012-04-01

    Although the general climate trends during the Holocene in the Iberian Peninsula have been well described after the study of marine and lacustrine records, many questions regarding the timing of some of the events together with the characterization of the higher-frequency climate variability are still poorly understood. New speleothem records from several caves in northeastern Iberia provide data to explore Holocene climate changes. The selected caves are located in a latitudinal transect from the Pyrenees to the Iberian Range and placed at different altitude. Two of them, 5 de Agosto and Pot au Feu, belong to the same karstic complex in Cotiella massif (Central Pyrenees, 1600 m asl). Seso Cave, also in the Central Pyrenees but at 781 m of altitude, and Molinos cave, a cavity very rich in speleothems located at 1040 m in the Iberian Range, complete the transect. Although in all the caves precipitation coming from Atlantic fronts dominates over the year, a significant Mediterranean influence, specially in summer months, is identified after rainfall monitoring. Speleothem formation during the Holocene occurred at a very low pace in 5 de Agosto cave (80yrs/mm) and increased dramatically at low-altitude caves and during particular periods proved to be wetter (eg. Early Holocene in Molinos cave, less than 10yr/mm). In Seso and Pot au Feu caves, up to seven studied speleothems only grew during short climatic events such as the Iron Cold Period (3000-2500 cal yr BP) or the Little Ice Age (1300-1850 yr AD) that, although cold, were particularly humid periods in northeastern Spain. First stable isotope results highlight the importance of comparing speleothems with similar growing rates and from the same cave to extract climate information and discard other influences. From the integration of four stalagmites from Molinos cave covering since the Holocene onset to 2000 cal yrs BP, the Early Holocene (11.7-8.5 ka BP) with d13C values between -11 and - 9‰ appears as the

  14. Decadal-scale Holocene climate variability in the Nordic seas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koc, N.; Andersen, C.; Andrews, J.; Jennings, A.

    2003-04-01

    Sea-surface temperatures (SST) at decadal resolution have been reconstructed from core MD 95-2011, core MD 99-2269 and core BS88-6-5A based on diatom transfer functions. Core MD 95-2011 is located on the Vöring Plateau (66^o58.18N; 07^o38.36E, 1050 m water depth) along the main axis of the northward flowing warm Atlantic water. It is, therefore, in an ideal position to monitor changes in the northward heat flux to northwestern Europe. Core MD 99-2269 is located in the deep Hunafloi trough, off N Iceland (66^o37.53N; 20^o51.16W, 365 m water depth). Today the core lies under the influence of the Irminger current, but it also may be influenced by the cold East Greenland current (EGC) as the Polar front migrates eastward. Core BS88-6-5A is located on the East Greenland shelf (67^o07.54N; 30^o54.26W, 707 m water depth) and is influenced by the EGC. The cores has been dated by AMS C-14 and Pb 210 isotope profiles. SST variations are estimated by means of 3 different diatom transfer function methods. Results indicate a division of the Holocene into three periods and a climate development in step with the decreasing Northern Hemisphere insolation. However, regional differences between the surface currents occur regarding both timing and magnitude of changes. Superimposed on the general Holocene cooling trend there is a high frequency SST variability, which is in the order of 1--1.5 degrees C for the Vöring Plateau and the East Greenland shelf, and 2.5--3 degrees C for the North Iceland shelf. There is clear evidence for late Holocene climatic events such as the "Little Ice Age" and the "Medieval Warm Period". Timing of late Holocene climatic events at the eastern versus western Nordic Seas will be discussed.

  15. Climate Variability Impacts on Watershed Nutrient Delivery and Reservoir Production

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    White, J. D.; Prochnow, S. J.; Zygo, L. M.; Byars, B. W.

    2005-05-01

    Reservoirs in agricultural dominated watersheds tend to exhibit pulse-system behavior especially if located in climates dominated by summer convective precipitation inputs. Concentration and bulk mass of nutrient and sediment inputs into reservoir systems vary in terms of timing and magnitude of delivery from watershed sources to reservoirs under these climate conditions. Reservoir management often focuses on long-term average inputs without considering short and long-term impacts of variation in loading. In this study we modeled a watershed-reservoir system to assess how climate variability affects reservoir primary production through shifts in external loading and internal recycling of limiting nutrients. The Bosque watershed encompasses 423,824 ha in central Texas which delivers water to Lake Waco, a 2900 ha reservoir that is the primary water source for the city of Waco and surrounding areas. Utilizing the Soil Water Assessment Tool for the watershed and river simulations and the CE-Qual-2e model for the reservoir, hydrologic and nutrient dynamics were simulated for a 10 year period encompassing two ENSO cycles. The models were calibrated based on point measurement of water quality attributes for a two year time period. Results indicated that watershed delivery of nutrients was affected by the presence and density of small flood-control structure in the watershed. However, considerable nitrogen and phosphorus loadings were derived from soils in the upper watershed which have had long-term waste-application from concentrated animal feeding operations. During El Niño years, nutrient and sediment loads increased by 3 times above non-El Niño years. The simulated response within the reservoir to these nutrient and sediment loads had both direct and indirect. Productivity evaluated from chlorophyll a and algal biomass increased under El Niño conditions, however species composition shifts were found with an increase in cyanobacteria dominance. In non-El Niño years

  16. 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

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. Does internal climate variability overwhelm climate change signals in streamflow? The upper Po and Rhone basin case studies.

    PubMed

    Fatichi, S; Rimkus, S; Burlando, P; Bordoy, R

    2014-09-15

    Projections of climate change effects in streamflow are increasingly required to plan water management strategies. These projections are however largely uncertain due to the spread among climate model realizations, internal climate variability, and difficulties in transferring climate model results at the spatial and temporal scales required by catchment hydrology. A combination of a stochastic downscaling methodology and distributed hydrological modeling was used in the ACQWA project to provide projections of future streamflow (up to year 2050) for the upper Po and Rhone basins, respectively located in northern Italy and south-western Switzerland. Results suggest that internal (stochastic) climate variability is a fundamental source of uncertainty, typically comparable or larger than the projected climate change signal. Therefore, climate change effects in streamflow mean, frequency, and seasonality can be masked by natural climatic fluctuations in large parts of the analyzed regions. An exception to the overwhelming role of stochastic variability is represented by high elevation catchments fed by glaciers where streamflow is expected to be considerably reduced due to glacier retreat, with consequences appreciable in the main downstream rivers in August and September. Simulations also identify regions (west upper Rhone and Toce, Ticino river basins) where a strong precipitation increase in the February to April period projects streamflow beyond the range of natural climate variability during the melting season. This study emphasizes the importance of including internal climate variability in climate change analyses, especially when compared to the limited uncertainty that would be accounted for by few deterministic projections. The presented results could be useful in guiding more specific impact studies, although design or management decisions should be better based on reliability and vulnerability criteria as suggested by recent literature. PMID:24418218

  20. Assessing risks of climate variability and climate change for Indonesian rice agriculture.

    PubMed

    Naylor, Rosamond L; Battisti, David S; Vimont, Daniel J; Falcon, Walter P; Burke, Marshall B

    2007-05-01

    El Niño events typically lead to delayed rainfall and decreased rice planting in Indonesia's main rice-growing regions, thus prolonging the hungry season and increasing the risk of annual rice deficits. Here we use a risk assessment framework to examine the potential impact of El Niño events and natural variability on rice agriculture in 2050 under conditions of climate change, with a focus on two main rice-producing areas: Java and Bali. We select a 30-day delay in monsoon onset as a threshold beyond which significant impact on the country's rice economy is likely to occur. To project the future probability of monsoon delay and changes in the annual cycle of rainfall, we use output from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change AR4 suite of climate models, forced by increasing greenhouse gases, and scale it to the regional level by using empirical downscaling models. Our results reveal a marked increase in the probability of a 30-day delay in monsoon onset in 2050, as a result of changes in the mean climate, from 9-18% today (depending on the region) to 30-40% at the upper tail of the distribution. Predictions of the annual cycle of precipitation suggest an increase in precipitation later in the crop year (April-June) of approximately 10% but a substantial decrease (up to 75% at the tail) in precipitation later in the dry season (July-September). These results indicate a need for adaptation strategies in Indonesian rice agriculture, including increased investments in water storage, drought-tolerant crops, crop diversification, and early warning systems. PMID:17483453

  1. Earth science: An extended yardstick for climate variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meckler, Nele

    2016-06-01

    Decoded and precisely dated information encrypted in stalagmites from a cave in China reveal past climatic changes and provide insight into the complex interactions in today's climate system. See Letter p.640

  2. Western equatorial African forest-savanna mosaics: a legacy of late Holocene climatic change?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ngomanda, A.; Chepstow-Lusty, A.; Makaya, M.; Favier, C.; Schevin, P.; Maley, J.; Fontugne, M.; Oslisly, R.; Jolly, D.

    2009-10-01

    Past vegetation and climate changes reconstructed using two pollen records from Lakes Maridor and Nguène, located in the coastal savannas and inland rainforest of Gabon, respectively, provide new insights into the environmental history of western equatorial African rainforests during the last 4500 cal yr BP. These pollen records indicate that the coastal savannas of western equatorial Africa did not exist during the mid-Holocene and instead the region was covered by evergreen rainforests. From ca. 4000 cal yr BP a progressive decline of inland evergreen rainforest, accompanied by the expansion of semi-deciduous rainforest, occurred synchronously with grassland colonisation in the coastal region of Gabon. The contraction of moist evergreen rainforest and the establishment of coastal savannas in Gabon suggest decreasing humidity from ca. 4000 cal yr BP. The marked reduction in evergreen rainforest and subsequent savanna expansion was followed from 2700 cal yr BP by the colonization of secondary forests dominated by the palm, Elaeis guineensis, and the shrub, Alchornea cordifolia (Euphorbiaceae). A return to wetter climatic conditions from about 1400 cal yr BP led to the renewed spread of evergreen rainforest inland, whereas a forest-savanna mosaic still persists in the coastal region. There is no evidence to suggest that the major environmental changes observed were driven by human impact.

  3. 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...

  4. 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.

  5. The West African Monsoon: variability and teleconnection with ENSO during the years 1948-57

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stickler, Alexander; Brönnimann, Stefan

    2010-05-01

    The intensity of the West African Monsoon (WAM) has been shown to be influenced by different factors. Most important for the existence of the monsoon system is the land-sea thermal contrast between the North African landmass and the Gulf of Guinea. ENSO plays an important role for its interannual variability via an atmospheric teleconnection bridging the Pacific and Atlantic oceanic basins and favouring either descent/weak low-level monsoon flow or ascent/strong low-level monsoon flow over tropical West Africa. Most published studies on the WAM variability are based on reanalysis datasets. However, while reproducing quite well the interannual variability, reanalysis products have been found to contain major biases in certain tropical regions before 1968. These lead to an unrealistic low frequency behaviour and might be explained by the lack of observations assimilated into the reanalyses, as is the case e.g. for tropical Africa where only the much sparser radiosonde data have been assimilated into the NCEP/NCAR Reanalysis (NNR). Here we present an analysis of the interannual WAM variability and its teleconnection with ENSO for the years 1948-57 which is not based on a reanalysis, but on early pilot balloon observational wind data from the Comprehensive Historical Upper Air Network (CHUAN). We have examined wind data from all 36 stations located in the domain (10°S-30°N, 20°W-20°E) on 5 levels up to the mid troposphere (corresponding roughly to the 925, 850, 700, 600 and 500 hPa pressure levels). This analysis shows that 7 subregions can be defined which are characterised by similar vertical wind profiles as well as seasonality: the NW (Mauritania, northern Senegal), the SW (southern Senegal to coastal Guinea), central sub-Saharan West Africa (SSWA, from interior Guinea in the W to coastal Cameroon and southern Niger in the E), central and eastern Niger, western Chad, the western Central African Republic, and the southern coastal regions east of the Gulf of

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. U.S. NATIONAL ASSESSMENT OF POTENTIAL CONSEQUENCES OF CLIMATE VARIABILITY AND CHANGE

    EPA Science Inventory

    The U.S. National Assessment of Potential Consequences of Climate Variability and Change will provide a detailed understanding of the consequences of climate change for the nation and will examine the possible coping mechanisms thatexist to adapt to climate change. This assessme...

  9. [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. PMID:12178539

  10. 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).

  11. Predictability of Mediterranean climate variables from oceanic variability. Part I: Sea surface temperature regimes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hertig, E.; Jacobeit, J.

    2011-03-01

    The determination of specific sea surface temperature (SST) patterns from large-scale gridded SST-fields has widely been done. Often principal component analysis (PCA) is used to condense the SST-data to major patterns of variability. In the present study SST-fields for the period 1950-2003 from the area 20°S to 60°N are analysed with respect to SST-regimes being defined as large-scale oceanic patterns with a regular and at least seasonal occurrence. This has been done in context of investigations on seasonal predictability of Mediterranean regional climate with large-scale SST-regimes as intended predictors in statistical model relationships. The SST-regimes are derived by means of a particular technique including multiple applications of s-mode PCA. Altogether 17 stationary regimes can be identified, eight for the Pacific Ocean, five for the Atlantic Ocean, two for the Indian Ocean, and two regimes which show a distinct co-variability within different ocean basins. Some regimes exist, with varying strength and spatial extent, throughout the whole year, whereas other regimes are only characteristic for a particular season. Several regimes show dominant variability modes, like the regimes associated with El Niño, with the Pacific Decadal Oscillation or with the North Atlantic Tripole, whereas other regimes describe little-known patterns of large-scale SST variability. The determined SST-regimes are subsequently used as predictors for monthly precipitation and temperature in the Mediterranean area. This subject is addressed in Part II of this paper.

  12. 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

  13. A study of mathematics and science achievement scores among African American students and the impact of teacher-oriented variables on them through the Educational Longitudinal Study, 2002 (ELS: 2002) data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Walker, Valentine

    The purpose of this dissertation was to utilize the ELS: 2002 longitudinal data to highlight the achievement of African American students relative to other racial sub-groups in mathematics and science and to highlight teacher oriented variables that might influence their achievement. Various statistical tools, including descriptive statistics, ANOVA, Multiple Regression were used to analyze data that was derived from the students', teachers' and administrations' questionnaires compiled in the base year of the study (2002) as well as the first follow-up transcript study (2006). The major findings are as follows: African American students performed lower than all other major racial subgroups in mathematics and science; Parental variables including SES and parental education were strong correlates of achievement in mathematics and science: The amount and type of mathematics and science courses students took were strong predictors of achievement in mathematics and science; Teachers' race, experience, certification status, graduate courses completed and professional development influenced African American students' achievement in mathematics and science; Aspects of classroom climate including teacher-pupil relationship, classroom management, students' perception of quality instructions, praise and rewards system might influence African American students' achievement in mathematics and science; Teachers' beliefs pertaining to students' background and intellectual ability might influence their educational expectation of African American students and subsequently student achievement in mathematics and science; Teaching strategies such as reviewing, lecturing and using graphing calculators had a positive influence on mathematics achievement while using computers, discussion and using other books than mathematics textbooks had negative influences on mathematics achievement; Computer use in science had positive influence on science achievement while homework had a positive

  14. Climate, Cattle Rearing Systems and African Animal Trypanosomosis Risk in Burkina Faso

    PubMed Central

    Pagabeleguem, Soumaïla; Sangaré, Mamadou; Bengaly, Zakaria; Akoudjin, Massouroudin; Belem, Adrien M. G.; Bouyer, Jérémy

    2012-01-01

    Background In sub-Saharan countries infested by tsetse flies, African Animal Trypanosomosis (AAT) is considered as the main pathological constraint to cattle breeding. Africa has known a strong climatic change and its population was multiplied by four during the last half-century. The aim of this study was to characterize the impact of production practices and climate on tsetse occurrence and abundance, and the associated prevalence of AAT in Burkina Faso. Methodology/Principal Findings Four sites were selected along a South-north transect of increasing aridity. The study combines parasitological and entomological surveys. For the parasitological aspect, blood samples were collected from 1,041 cattle selected through a stratified sampling procedure including location and livestock management system (long transhumance, short transhumance, sedentary). Parasitological and serological prevalence specific to livestock management systems show a gradual increase from the Sahelian to the Sudano-Guinean area (P<0.05). Livestock management system had also a significant impact on parasitological prevalence (P<0.05). Tsetse diversity, apparent densities and their infection rates overall decreased with aridity, from four species, an apparent density of 53.1 flies/trap/day and an infection rate of 13.7% to an absence at the northern edge of the transect, where the density and diversity of other biting flies were on the contrary highest (p<0.001). Conclusions/Significance The climatic pressure clearly had a negative impact on tsetse abundance and AAT risk. However, the persistency of tsetse habitats along the Mouhoun river loop maintains a high risk of cyclical transmission of T. vivax. Moreover, an “epidemic mechanical livestock trypanosomosis” cycle is likely to occur in the northern site, where trypanosomes are brought in by cattle transhuming from the tsetse infested area and are locally transmitted by mechanical vectors. In Burkina Faso, the impact of tsetse thus extends

  15. 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. PMID:22057927

  16. The relationship between the equatorial westerlies, upper-level zonal flow and interannual variability of the West African monsoon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nicholson, S. E.

    2013-12-01

    Two of the most important circulation features governing the interannual variability of the West African monsoon are the low-level African westerly jet and the upper tropospheric Tropical Easterly Jet. Both jets are abnormally intense during wet years over the Sahel/Soudan region. This paper examines four new aspects of these systems and their role in interannual variability. One is the extent to which these systems explain recent variability in the region. A second is their role in western equatorial regions. A third is possible teleconnections of the low-level jet to rainfall in eastern equatorial Africa. A fourth is the mechanism by which intensification of the two jets appears to occur in tandem.

  17. 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

  18. « 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

  19. 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.

  20. Influences of the Agulhas Current on South African terrestrial climate as inferred from speleothem stable isotope records

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Braun, K.; Bar-Matthews, M.; Ayalon, A.; Marean, C.; Herries, A. I. R.; Zahn, R.; Matthews, A.

    2012-04-01

    South African (SA) climate is strongly influenced by the circulation systems surrounding the subcontinent. The warm tropical Agulhas Current provides large amounts of moisture, transported onshore by south-easterly trade winds during summer. As the trade wind shifts north during winter, the south-western tip of SA is especially affected by temperate westerlies. High amounts of rainfall from the Benguela region off the west coast then only affect the very south-west of the country. This seasonal pattern creates a highly variable terrestrial climate, characterized by strong E-W gradients in the seasonal distribution and amount of rainfall. As summer and winter rain is derived from sources with different properties (density, salinity, temperature), the rainfall also displays seasonal isotopic compositional variations, as for example the present mean δ18O of rainfall in Mossel Bay located in the transition region varies from ~0.13‰ in January to -6.05‰ in July. Vegetation type (C3 vs C4) also follows the rainfall regime with C4 vegetation dominating in the summer rainfall region. As part of the GATEWAYS project, speleothems are used as an excellent, high resolution, precisely dated archive of terrestrial paleoenvironmental conditions[1]. This study focuses on a speleothem record from Crevice Cave on the South African south coast (near Mossel Bay), covering the interval between ~111 and ~53 ka[1,2]. At present, the area is influenced by both summer and winter rainfall, and has mostly C3 type vegetation. Variations in the past show more positive δ18O and δ13C values in the interval corresponding to the glacial MIS 4 and indicate increased summer rainfall and C4 vegetation. This contradicts the common assumption that MIS 4 was characterized by a northward shift of the climatic belts over SA and an increase of winter rainfall and C3 vegetation in the cave area[3]. Comparison of the record to marine sediment cores from the Agulhas Retroflection area[4] and the Cape

  1. Detection of trends in surface ozone in the presence of climate variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barnes, Elizabeth A.; Fiore, Arlene M.; Horowitz, Larry W.

    2016-05-01

    Trends in trace atmospheric constituents can be driven not also by trends in their (precursor) emissions but also by trends in meteorology. Here we use ground-level ozone as an example to highlight the extent to which unforced, low-frequency climate variability can drive multidecadal trends. Using output from six experiments of the Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory chemistry-climate model (CM3), we demonstrate that 20 year trends in surface ozone driven by climate variability alone can be as large as those forced by changes in ozone precursor emissions or by anthropogenic climate change. We highlight regions and seasons where surface ozone is strongly influenced by climate variability and thus where a given forced trend may be more difficult to detect. A corollary is that this approach identifies regions and seasons of low variability, where measurement sites may be most effectively deployed to detect a particular trend driven by changing precursor emissions. We find that the representative concentration pathways 4.5 (RCP4.5) and RCP8.5 forced surface ozone trends in most locations emerge over background variability during the first half of the 21st century. Ozone trends are found to respond mostly to changes in emissions of ozone precursors and unforced climate variability, with a comparatively small impact from anthropogenic climate change. Thus, attempts to attribute observed trends to regional emissions changes require consideration of internal climate variability, particularly for short record lengths and small forced trends.

  2. 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

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

    PubMed Central

    Tebaldi, Claudia; Friedlingstein, Pierre

    2013-01-01

    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. PMID:24101485

  4. 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. PMID:24101485

  5. 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

  6. 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.

  7. Population variability complicates the accurate detection of climate change responses.

    PubMed

    McCain, Christy; Szewczyk, Tim; Bracy Knight, Kevin

    2016-06-01

    The rush to assess species' responses to anthropogenic climate change (CC) has underestimated the importance of interannual population variability (PV). Researchers assume sampling rigor alone will lead to an accurate detection of response regardless of the underlying population fluctuations of the species under consideration. Using population simulations across a realistic, empirically based gradient in PV, we show that moderate to high PV can lead to opposite and biased conclusions about CC responses. Between pre- and post-CC sampling bouts of modeled populations as in resurvey studies, there is: (i) A 50% probability of erroneously detecting the opposite trend in population abundance change and nearly zero probability of detecting no change. (ii) Across multiple years of sampling, it is nearly impossible to accurately detect any directional shift in population sizes with even moderate PV. (iii) There is up to 50% probability of detecting a population extirpation when the species is present, but in very low natural abundances. (iv) Under scenarios of moderate to high PV across a species' range or at the range edges, there is a bias toward erroneous detection of range shifts or contractions. Essentially, the frequency and magnitude of population peaks and troughs greatly impact the accuracy of our CC response measurements. Species with moderate to high PV (many small vertebrates, invertebrates, and annual plants) may be inaccurate 'canaries in the coal mine' for CC without pertinent demographic analyses and additional repeat sampling. Variation in PV may explain some idiosyncrasies in CC responses detected so far and urgently needs more careful consideration in design and analysis of CC responses. PMID:26725404

  8. Spatio-temporal Trends of Climate Variability in North Carolina

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sayemuzzaman, Mohammad

    Climatic trends in spatial and temporal variability of maximum temperature (Tmax), minimum temperature (Tmin), mean temperature (Tmean) and precipitation were evaluated for 249 ground-based stations in North Carolina for 1950-2009. The Mann-Kendall (MK), the Theil-Sen Approach (TSA) and the Sequential Mann-Kendall (SQMK) tests were applied to quantify the significance of trend, magnitude of trend and the trend shift, respectively. The lag-1 serial correlation and double mass curve techniques were used to address the data independency and homogeneity. The pre-whitening technique was used to eliminate the effect of auto correlation of the data series. The difference between minimum and maximum temperatures, and so the diurnal temperature range (DTR), at some stations was found to be decreasing on both an annual and a seasonal basis, with an overall increasing trend in the mean temperature. For precipitation, a statewide increasing trend in fall (highest in November) and decreasing trend in winter (highest in February) were detected. No pronounced increasing/decreasing trends were detected in annual, spring, and summer precipitation time series. Trend analysis on a spatial scale (for three physiographic regions: mountain, piedmont and coastal) revealed mixed results. Coastal zone exhibited increasing mean temperature (warming) trend as compared to other locations whereas mountain zone showed decreasing trend (cooling). Three main moisture components (precipitation, total cloud cover, and soil moisture) and the two major atmospheric circulation modes (North Atlantic Oscillation and Southern Oscillation) were used for correlative analysis purposes with the temperature (specifically with DTR) and precipitation trends. It appears that the moisture components are associated with DTR more than the circulation modes in North Carolina.

  9. Beyond a Climate-Centric View of Plant Distribution: Edaphic Variables Add Value to Distribution Models

    PubMed Central

    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 ∼55000 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 for

  10. Vegetation Response to Climatic Variations in the southern African tropics during the Late- Pleistocene and Holocene

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beuning, K. R.; Zimmerman, K. A.; Ivory, S. J.; Cohen, A. S.

    2007-12-01

    Pollen records from Lake Malawi, Africa spanning the last 135 kyr show substantial and abrupt vegetation response to multiple episodes of extreme aridity during the mega-drought period (130-90 ka). In contrast, vegetation composition and relative abundance remained fairly constant throughout the last 75 ka with no significant change during the Last Glacial Maxima (LGM) (35-15 ka). During the extremely arid mega-drought time period, fluctuations in pollen production define three distinct zones. The first zone, from 123-117 ka, is characterized by increasing amounts of grass, and decreasing amounts of both Podocarpus and evergreen forest taxa (i.e. Celtis, Ixora, Myrica, Macaranga), which, when matched with charcoal data, suggests a short period of extreme aridity. The disappearance of Brachystegia in this interval in conjunction with a peak in Amaranthaceae suggests conversion of the surrounding miombo woodland to an open grassland community probably caused by increased seasonality with a more prolonged and arid dry season. Peak amounts of Podocarpus (30-40%) along with diminishing levels of grass distinguish zone two (117-105 ka). This assemblage defines zone 2 as a period marked by a cool, dry climate resulting in expansion of montane forest taxa to lower elevations. Marine palynological records from the Angola Margin and Congo Fan show similar peak Podocarpus percentages at this time (oxygen isotope stage 5d) indicating similar latitudinal climates across the African continent. Zone three (105-75 ka) shows the highest and most consistent levels of Poaceae. This evidence, along with markedly low levels of most other taxa, indicates that this period contained the most sustained long-lasting dry spells during the past 135 ka. This episode in African history was severe enough as to cause the disappearance of forest taxa such as Uapaca and Brachystegia as well as montane taxa ( Podocarpus, Olea spp. and Ericaceae) within the pollen source area of Lake Malawi. The

  11. Climate Variability in Comprehensive Climate Simulations at the Beginning of the Common Era over Europe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wagner, S.; Zorita, E.; Gomez-Navarro, J. J.; Bothe, O.

    2014-12-01

    The climate of the Common Era has yet been studied, albeit with an overall focus on the last millennium. Here we present an analysis for the period 100 BC until 300 AD. The results are based on three simulations with comprehensive climate models, the coupled atmosphere-ocean model ECHO-G (T30) and a recent simulation with the Earth System Model MPI-ESM-P (T63). The ECHO-G simulations are forced (i) only with changes in earth orbital parameters and (ii) additional solar and greenhouse gas forcings, respectively. The MPI-ESM-P simulation additionally includes the effect of volcanic activity. In all simulations summer temperatures show a quite stable temperature level, albeit with a slight negative trend caused by a decline in shortwave insolation due to changes in earth orbit. During the 2nd half of the 3rdcentury AD the MPI-ESM-P simulation shows a decline in temperatures. Since this negative temperature excursion is not evident in the ECHO-G simulations, which does not include volcanic forcing, it seems plausible that a large-size tropical volcanic eruption is responsible for this cooling event. Interestingly, the historical prominent eruption of the Vesuvius in 79 AD is not clear-cut reflected within the European temperature time series, most likely because of the small amount of injections of sulfate aerosols into the stratosphere. In comparison to the only orbitally forced ECHO-G simulation, the additionally solar and GHG forced ECHO-G simulation indicates some externally forced decadal variability connected to solar anomalous periods. Overall, the MPI-ESM-P simulation shows largest decadal variability compared to the ECHO-G simulations, most probably due to the increased horizontal resolution. Further analysis will include a comparison with proxy data with an overall emphasis on hydrological variations. For this task, a number of Regional Climate Model simulations will be used to downscale these global simulations and obtain better insight in the interactions

  12. Decadal variability in historical simulations by coupled climate models in CMIP5

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yoon, J.; Rasch, P. J.

    2013-12-01

    Climate variability beyond interannual time scales has not been well explored by coupled climate models because of relatively poor simulations and shorter observational record to verify its robustness. However, a newly available historical data assimilation products such as 20CR, newly compiled surface observation datasets such as CRU_TS3.2 and GPCC, paleoclimate records, and improved simulation by coupled climate models provide a new opportunity. In this study, we'll evaluate how well fully coupled climate models in CMIP5 simulate a couple of well known decadal/multi-decadal climate variabilities, such as Pacific Decadal Variability (PDV), Atlantic Multi-decadal oscillation (AMO), and decadal component of North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO). Further, we'll use sets of sensitivity experiments with CESM1 to investigate the anthropogenic causes of these decadal variabilities.

  13. Long-term Variability of NorthWest African coastal upwelling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wade, Malick; Rodríguez-Fonseca, Belen; Lazar, Alban

    2014-05-01

    The NorthWest African sea surface temperature variability can be due to changes in the coastal upwelling system, which in turn can be due to alterations in local winds, global winds induced by teleconnections and propagation of waves from wind burst in remote regions. The two last processes could be due in turn to changes in the sea surface temperature in extended regions remote from the upwelling region, as changes in Pacific SSTs associated with ENSO, or in the Equatorial Atlantic SSTs. This work demonstrates that the whole signal cannot be explained by local wind/Ekman pumping and large scale winds induced by teleconnections play an important role. Using observational data of SSTs and winds from atmospheric reanalysis, and applying different statistical technics, as correlation analysis, filtering and discriminant analysis, the different influences and its stationarity along the observational period are tested pointing to the non stationarity of El Niño influence in FMA and to other possible predictors influencing in the region.

  14. 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. PMID:19948897

  15. North African vegetation-precipitation feedback in early and mid-Holocene climate simulations with CCSM3-DGVM

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2015-02-01

    The present study analyses the sign, strength, and working mechanism of the vegetation-precipitation feedback over North Africa in middle (6 ka BP) and early Holocene (9 ka BP) simulations using the comprehensive coupled climate-vegetation model CCSM3-DGVM (Community Climate System Model version 3 and a dynamic global vegetation model). The coupled model simulates enhanced summer rainfall and a northward migration of the West African monsoon trough along with an expansion of the vegetation cover for the early and middle Holocene compared to the pre-industrial period. It is shown that dynamic vegetation enhances the orbitally triggered summer precipitation anomaly by approximately 20% in the Sahara-Sahel region (10-25° N, 20° W-30° E) in both the early and mid-Holocene experiments compared to their fixed-vegetation counterparts. The primary vegetation-rainfall feedback identified here operates through surface latent heat flux anomalies by canopy evaporation and transpiration and their effect on the mid-tropospheric African easterly jet, whereas the effects of vegetation changes on surface albedo and local water recycling play a negligible role. Even though CCSM3-DGVM simulates a positive vegetation-precipitation feedback in the North African region, this feedback is not strong enough to produce multiple equilibrium climate-ecosystem states on a regional scale.

  16. 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

  17. Variability of West African monsoon patterns generated by a WRF multi-physics ensemble

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Klein, Cornelia; Heinzeller, Dominikus; Bliefernicht, Jan; Kunstmann, Harald

    2015-11-01

    The credibility of regional climate simulations over West Africa stands and falls with the ability to reproduce the West African monsoon (WAM) whose precipitation plays a pivotal role for people's livelihood. In this study, we simulate the WAM for the wet year 1999 with a 27-member multi-physics ensemble of the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model. We investigate the inter-member differences in a process-based manner in order to extract generalizable information on the behavior of the tested cumulus (CU), microphysics (MP), and planetary boundary layer (PBL) schemes. Precipitation, temperature and atmospheric dynamics are analyzed in comparison to the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) rainfall estimates, the Global Precipitation Climatology Centre (GPCC) gridded gauge-analysis, the Global Historical Climatology Network (GHCN) gridded temperature product and the forcing data (ERA-Interim) to explore interdependencies of processes leading to a certain WAM regime. We find that MP and PBL schemes contribute most to the ensemble spread (147 mm month-1) for monsoon precipitation over the study region. Furthermore, PBL schemes have a strong influence on the movement of the WAM rainband because of their impact on the cloud fraction, that ranges from 8 to 20 % at 600 hPa during August. More low- and mid-level clouds result in less incoming radiation and a weaker monsoon. Ultimately, we identify the differing intensities of the moist Hadley-type meridional circulation that connects the monsoon winds to the Tropical Easterly Jet as the main source for inter-member differences. The ensemble spread of Sahel precipitation and associated dynamics for August 1999 is comparable to the observed inter-annual spread (1979-2010) between dry and wet years, emphasizing the strong potential impact of regional processes and the need for a careful selection of model parameterizations.

  18. Communication of the role of natural variability in future North American climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deser, Clara; Knutti, Reto; Solomon, Susan; Phillips, Adam S.

    2012-11-01

    As climate models improve, decision-makers' expectations for accurate climate predictions are growing. Natural climate variability, however, poses inherent limits to climate predictability and the related goal of adaptation guidance in many places, as illustrated here for North America. Other locations with low natural variability show a more predictable future in which anthropogenic forcing can be more readily identified, even on small scales. We call for a more focused dialogue between scientists, policymakers and the public to improve communication and avoid raising expectations for accurate regional predictions everywhere.

  19. Effects of Climate Variability and Change on Groundwater Resources of the United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gurdak, Jason S.; Hanson, Randall T.; Green, Timothy R.

    2009-01-01

    Groundwater is an important part of the global fresh water supply and is affected by climate. U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) scientists are working with local, State, Federal, and international partners to understand how the availability and sustainability of groundwater resources in the United States will be affected by climate variability and change. This fact sheet describes climate variability and change, important groundwater resources of the Nation, and how USGS research is helping to answer critical questions about the effects of climate on groundwater.

  20. 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…

  1. 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.

  2. Do Birds of a Feather Flock Together? The Variable Bases for African American, Asian American, and European American Adolescents' Selection of Similar Friends.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hamm, Jill V.

    2000-01-01

    Examined variability in adolescent-friend similarity in African American, Asian American, and European American adolescents. Found greatest similarity for substance use, modest for academic orientation, and low for ethnic identity. Found that compared with other groups, African Americans chose friends who were less similar in academic orientation…

  3. Impact of Climate Change and Variability on Crop Productivity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jain, A. K.; Song, Y.

    2012-12-01

    Climate change, in terms of increasing levels of CO2, change in temperature and precipitation pattern, is directly influencing crop production through biophysical and phenology effects. At the same time crop production will also influence thermal energy and water exchange between land surface and atmosphere, and thus impact regional and global climate at long term time scale. Therefore, to satisfy the growing need of food production and realize sustainable agriculture under climate change, it is necessary to understand the complex interaction between crop productivity and climate change. While many research studies have been carried out on this area, there are still some unanswered key questions: How will changes in climate (temperature and precipitation) and atmospheric CO2 affect the regional crop yields for each crop types? Will there be a positive, negative, or insignificant interaction between crop yields and climate change? In which climate region(s) will the interaction be most pronounced? How rain-fed crop production will influence water balance between land surface and atmosphere, and thus its production potential? A land surface model with dynamic simulation of crop component (ISAM) has been developed and applied to address these questions. The ISAM model is a process-based, biogeophysical and biogeochemical model, which calculates dynamic crop growth processes as well as carbon, nitrogen, water and energy exchanges between soil, crop-system and atmosphere. The crop-system considered in current version of the ISAM includes corn and soybean. This study will specifically focus on the agricultural regions in the US. The potential productivity of these crops will be assessed under the various atmospheric CO2 and climate change conditions. This study will help to quantify the impact of various environmental factors on row crops and to better understand the spatial and temporal dynamics of crop yields under different climate change conditions.

  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. Subseasonal climate variability for North Carolina, United States

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sayemuzzaman, Mohammad; Jha, Manoj K.; Mekonnen, Ademe; Schimmel, Keith A.

    2014-08-01

    Subseasonal trends in climate variability for maximum temperature (Tmax), minimum temperature (Tmin) and precipitation were evaluated for 249 ground-based stations in North Carolina for 1950-2009. The magnitude and significance of the trends at all stations were determined using the non-parametric Theil-Sen Approach (TSA) and the Mann-Kendall (MK) test, respectively. The Sequential Mann-Kendall (SQMK) test was also applied to find the initiation of abrupt trend changes. The lag-1 serial correlation and double mass curve were employed to address the data independency and homogeneity. Using the MK trend test, statistically significant (confidence level ≥ 95% in two-tailed test) decreasing (increasing) trends by 44% (45%) of stations were found in May (June). In general, trends were decreased in Tmax and increased in Tmin data series in subseasonal scale. Using the TSA method, the magnitude of lowest (highest) decreasing (increasing) trend in Tmax is - 0.050 °C/year (+ 0.052 °C/year) in the monthly series for May (March) and for Tmin is - 0.055 °C/year (+ 0.075 °C/year) in February (December). For the precipitation time series using the TSA method, it was found that the highest (lowest) magnitude of 1.00 mm/year (- 1.20 mm/year) is in September (February). The overall trends in precipitation data series were not significant at the 95% confidence level except that 17% of stations were found to have significant (confidence level ≥ 95% in two-tailed test) decreasing trends in February. The statistically significant trend test results were used to develop a spatial distribution of trends: May for Tmax, June for Tmin, and February for precipitation. A correlative analysis of significant temperature and precipitation trend results was examined with respect to large scale circulation modes (North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) and Southern Oscillation Index (SOI). A negative NAO index (positive-El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) index) was found to be associated with

  6. 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.

  7. Quantification of climate and vegetation from Southern African Middle Stone Age sites - an application using Late Pleistocene plant material from Sibudu, South Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bruch, A. A.; Sievers, C.; Wadley, L.

    2012-04-01

    The isolated geographical situation of South Africa makes the unraveling of various parameters that influence its regional climate in time challenging. If the South African climate does not exhibit a linear correlation with global archives as suggested by some authors then the contribution of independent local data that provides direct information on the environment at a certain place and time is crucial. Fossil plant remains provide valuable information on past environmental conditions. Although few paleobotanical data are available from Southern Africa, some sites reveal rich and diverse fossil floras, most notably, Sibudu Cave, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, with its numerous fruits, seeds, pollen and charcoal flora. Such plant remains not only provide information on past vegetation, but also serve as a sound base for paleoclimate quantification with the Coexistence Approach (CA). Sibudu Cave has pulses of Middle Stone Age occupation separated by hiatuses that are as long as 10 ka. Pre-Still Bay, Still Bay, Howiesons Poort, post-Howiesons Poort and late and final Middle Stone Age industries are present. Variations in vegetation and the animals preyed on through time suggest that subtle environmental changes could have occurred during MIS4 and MIS3 in the Sibudu area. Whilst always semi-forested, the region may have comprised a mosaic of uneven and changeable patches of coastal forest and savanna. These in turn might have influenced the numbers of forest versus plains animals in the area. Cultural factors could also have played a part in the faunal variability observed in Sibudu. Preliminary analyses of Sibudu Cave material confirm the potential of the CA for its application on Late Pleistocene African floras. In the future, comparison with other contemporaneous sites will help quantify spatial differences in the climate of the Late Pleistocene in South Africa, and may answer if environmental changes effected the cultural development from Still Bay to late MSA

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

    PubMed

    Rohr, Jason R; Raffel, Thomas R

    2010-05-01

    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

  9. Spatial variability of the trends in climatic variables across China during 1961-2010

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Hanbo; Yang, Dawen; Hu, Qingfang; Lv, Huafang

    2015-05-01

    Distribution of meteorological stations is not uniform in many regions of the world, especially in developing countries like China. To eliminate the effect of uneven stations, this study produced a data set of areal average precipitation, air temperature, solar radiation, and wind speed from 736 meteorological station observations during 1961-2010 using an inverse-distance weighted technique. Based on the data set, this study detected the trends in climatic variables. Precipitation has a slight but no significant ( p = 0.78) trend for the whole of China and has a significant increase trend in northwest China. Surface air temperature has a significant ( p < 0.001) accelerating warming trend of 0.032 °C/a for the whole of China, and spatially larger in northern China than that in southern China. Solar radiation has a significant ( p < 0.001) dimming trend of -0.14 W/(m2 · a) for the whole of China, and the largest dimming trend appears in eastern China, the possible cause for which is a high-aerosol concentration. Surface wind speed has a significant ( p < 0.001) stilling trend of -0.012 m/(s·a) for the whole of China, the causes for which were speculated the changes in atmospheric circulation and surface roughness, as well as increases in aerosol concentration and the decrease in the south-north temperature gradient in China. In addition, three large-scale instrument replacements increase uncertainties of the trend analysis.

  10. 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

  11. 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.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-02-01

    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

  13. 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.

  14. Enhanced insights into late Quaternary African hydroclimate dynamics using a water-isotope enabled climate model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Singarayer, Joy; Holloway, Max

    2016-04-01

    The climate of intertropical Africa is strongly governed by the dynamics of the tropical rainbelt, which is often associated with the Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ). On millennial time-scales the primary drivers of variation in the rainbelt include orbital configuration changes to insolation seasonality and high-latitude forcing (e.g. Heinrich events). The spatial pattern of precipitation variability in tropical and subtropical Africa over the late Quaternary is complex and has long been debated. Stable water isotopes from inland lakes and off-shore ocean core records have provided longitudinal records, variously interpreted as changes to precipitation intensity or changes to moisture source location due to atmospheric circulation changes (or a combination of several factors). In this preliminary study we have used a global climate model, HadCM3, in which water isotopes are interactively coupled to produce snapshots at 1000-year intervals covering the last deglaciation (21kyr to pre-industrial). In conjunction with a comparison to available palaeodata, this enables us to better elucidate the connections between precipitation and other climate factors with changes to the water isotope signature, as well as how this varies regionally and through time.

  15. Shifts in climate foster exceptional opportunities for species radiation: the case of South african geraniums.

    PubMed

    Martínez-Cabrera, Hugo I; Peres-Neto, Pedro R

    2013-01-01

    Climate change is often assumed to be a major driver of biodiversity loss. However, it can also set the stage for novel diversification in lineages with the evolutionary ability to colonize new environments. Here we tested if the extraordinary evolutionary success of the genus Pelargonium was related to the ability of its species to capitalize on the climate niche variation produced by the historical changes in southern Africa. We evaluated the relationship between rates of climate niche evolution and diversification rates in the main Pelargonium lineages and disentangled the roles of deep and recent historical events in the modification of species niches. Pelargonium clades exhibiting higher ecological differentiation along summer precipitation (SPP) gradients also experienced higher diversification rates. Faster rates of niche differentiation in spatially structured variables, along with lower levels of niche overlap among closely related species, suggest recent modification in species niches (e.g. dispersal or range shift) and niche lability. We suggest that highly structured SPP gradients established during the aridification process within southern Africa, in concert with niche lability and low niche overlap, contributed to species divergence. These factors are likely to be responsible for the extensive diversification of other lineages in this diversity hot spot. PMID:24358250

  16. 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.

  17. 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

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

    PubMed

    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

  19. 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

  20. 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

  1. 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. PMID:26618637

  2. Holocene climate dynamics, biogeochemical cycles and ecosystem variability in the eastern Mediterranean Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schmiedl, Gerhard; Adloff, Fanny; Emeis, Kay; Grimm, Rosina; Maier-Reimer, Ernst; Mikolajewicz, Uwe; Möbius, Jürgen; Müller-Navarra, Katharina

    2013-04-01

    The past variability of biogeochemical processes and marine ecosystems of the eastern Mediterranean Sea (EMS) is documented in the form of organic-rich sapropels that occurred at northern hemisphere insolation maxima. In order to understand the processes leading from deglacial and Holocene climate variability to the formation of sapropel S1 via changed biogeochemical cycling in the EMS, we integrated results from global and regional Earth system model experiments with biogeochemical and micropaleontological proxy records. Our results suggest a high spatiotemporal variability of deep-water oxygenation and biogeochemical processes at the sea floor during the late glacial and early Holocene. Changes in trophic conditions of bathyal ecosystems along ocean margins are closely linked to the hydrology of the EMS borderlands; they reflect orbital and sub-orbital climate variations of the high northern latitudes and the African monsoon system. Local trophic conditions were particularly variable in the northern Aegean Sea as a response to changes in riverine runoff and Black Sea outflow. During the time of S1 deposition, average oxygen levels decreased exponentially with increasing water depth, suggesting a basin-wide shallowing of vertical convection superimposed by local signals. In the northernmost Aegean Sea, deep-water ventilation persisted during the early period of S1 formation, owing to temperature-driven local convection and the absence of low-salinity Black Sea outflow. At the same time, severe temporary dysoxia or even short anoxia occurred in the eastern Levantine basin at water depths as shallow as 900 m. This area was likely influenced by enhanced nutrient input of the Nile river that resulted in high organic matter fluxes and related high oxygen-consumption rates in the water column. In contrast, abyssal ecosystems of the Levantine and Ionian basins lack eutrophication during the early Holocene suggesting that enhanced productivity did not play a crucial role

  3. 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

  4. Impacts of Sea Surface Salinity Bias Correction on North Atlantic Ocean Circulation and Climate Variability in the Kiel Climate Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Park, Taewook; Park, Wonsun; Latif, Mojib

    2016-04-01

    We investigated impacts of correcting North Atlantic sea surface salinity (SSS) biases on the ocean circulation of the North Atlantic and on North Atlantic sector mean climate and climate variability in the Kiel Climate Model (KCM). Bias reduction was achieved by applying a freshwater flux correction over the North Atlantic to the model. The quality of simulating the mean circulation of the North Atlantic Ocean, North Atlantic sector mean climate and decadal variability is greatly enhanced in the freshwater flux-corrected integration which, by definition, depicts relatively small North Atlantic SSS biases. In particular, a large reduction in the North Atlantic cold sea surface temperature (SST) bias is observed and a more realistic Atlantic Multidecadal Variability (AMV) simulated. Improvements relative to the non-flux corrected integration also comprise a more realistic representation of deep convection sites, sea ice, gyre circulation and Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC). The results suggest that simulations of North Atlantic sector mean climate and decadal variability could strongly benefit from alleviating sea surface salinity biases in the North Atlantic, which may enhance the skill of decadal predictions in that region.

  5. Role of climate variability in the heatstroke death rates of Kanto region in Japan.

    PubMed

    Akihiko, Takaya; Morioka, Yushi; Behera, Swadhin K

    2014-01-01

    The death toll by heatstroke in Japan, especially in Kanto region, has sharply increased since 1994 together with large interannual variability. The surface air temperature and humidity observed during boreal summers of 1980-2010 were examined to understand the role of climate in the death toll. The extremely hot days, when the daily maximum temperature exceeds 35 °C, are more strongly associated with the death toll than the conventional Wet Bulb Globe Temperature index. The extremely hot days tend to be associated with El Niño/Southern Oscillation or the Indian Ocean Dipole, suggesting a potential link with tropical climate variability to the heatstroke related deaths. Also, the influence of these climate modes on the death toll has strengthened since 1994 probably related to global warming. It is possible to develop early warning systems based on seasonal climate predictions since recent climate models show excellent predictability skills for those climate modes. PMID:25008122

  6. Precipitation Variability and Projection Uncertainties in Climate Change Adaptation: Go Local!

    EPA Science Inventory

    Presentations agenda includes: Regional and local climate change effects: The relevance; Variability and uncertainty in decision- making and adaptation approaches; Adaptation attributes for the U.S. Southwest: Water availability, storage capacity, and related; EPA research...

  7. Global and Regional-scale Sst Variability and West African Monsoon. The Role of The Indian Ocean : A Numerical Study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trzaska, S.; Fontaine, B.; Janicot, S.

    Interannual to decadal variability of the West African Monsoon has been commonly linked to Tropical Atlantic and Pacific SST variabilities (so called "Atlantic Dipole" and ENSO). Tropical Atlantic is thought to affect West African Monsoon via modi- fication of low-level thermal gradients driving the monsoon thus the location of the rainbelt over the continent. Warm events in the easten Pacific may affect it via up- per level zonal circulation and eventual subsidence over West Africa. However the teleconnections seem to have modified through time : main association with tropi- cal Atlantic during 50's and 60's i.e. the wetter period vs stronger association with ENSO and relative disconnection with tropical Atlantic during recent, dry decades. The role of the Indian Ocean has not been much investigated so far. The variability of this basin is dominated by a slow warming trend which compares well with the global warming. This study is aimed at investigating the possible effects of the Indian Ocean warming on the West African Monsoon dynamics and its teleconnections to ENSO and Tropical Atlantic. It is shown that this warming can potentially modify circulation anomalies related to ENSO in the Atlantic-African region by limiting the zonal extent of the zonal circulation anomalies and shifting the main subsidence branch to Africa and central Atlantic. In non-ENSO case monsoon circulation seems also to have more zonal orientation. The results are documented in the divergent circulation frame since it allows to unify a regional view of the monsoon as a meridional overturning with the global effects of ENSO in the zonal circulation. Modifications in the low-level moisture flux are also presented.

  8. 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.

  9. Climate variability has a stabilizing effect on the coexistence of prairie grasses.

    PubMed

    Adler, Peter B; HilleRisLambers, Janneke; Kyriakidis, Phaedon C; Guan, Qingfeng; Levine, Jonathan M

    2006-08-22

    How expected increases in climate variability will affect species diversity depends on the role of such variability in regulating the coexistence of competing species. Despite theory linking temporal environmental fluctuations with the maintenance of diversity, the importance of climate variability for stabilizing coexistence remains unknown because of a lack of appropriate long-term observations. Here, we analyze three decades of demographic data from a Kansas prairie to demonstrate that interannual climate variability promotes the coexistence of three common grass species. Specifically, we show that (i) the dynamics of the three species satisfy all requirements of "storage effect" theory based on recruitment variability with overlapping generations, (ii) climate variables are correlated with interannual variation in species performance, and (iii) temporal variability increases low-density growth rates, buffering these species against competitive exclusion. Given that environmental fluctuations are ubiquitous in natural systems, our results suggest that coexistence based on the storage effect may be underappreciated and could provide an important alternative to recent neutral theories of diversity. Field evidence for positive effects of variability on coexistence also emphasizes the need to consider changes in both climate means and variances when forecasting the effects of global change on species diversity. PMID:16908862

  10. 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.

  11. Does climatic variability influence agricultural land prices under differing uses? The Texas High Plains case

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The Texas High Plains faces projections of increasing temperature and declining precipitation in the future on account of its semi-arid climate. This research evaluated the impact of climatic variability on agricultural land prices under different land uses in the Texas High Plains, employing the Ri...

  12. 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...

  13. 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.

  14. North African vegetation-precipitation feedback in early and mid-Holocene climate simulations with CCSM3-DGVM

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2014-05-01

    The present study analyses the sign, strength and working mechanism of the vegetation-precipitation feedback over North Africa in middle (6 ka BP) and early Holocene (9 ka BP) simulations using the comprehensive coupled climate-vegetation model CCSM3-DGVM. The coupled model simulates enhanced summer rainfall and a northward migration of the West African monsoon trough along with an expansion of the vegetation cover for the early and middle Holocene compared to pre-industrial. It is shown that dynamic vegetation enhances the orbitally triggered summer precipitation anomaly by approximately 20% in the Sahara/Sahel region (10° N-25° N, 20° W-30° E) in both the early and mid-Holocene experiments compared to their fixed-vegetation counterparts. The primary vegetation-rainfall feedback identified here operates through surface latent heat flux anomalies by canopy evaporation and transpiration and their effect on the mid-tropospheric African Easterly Jet, whereas the effects of vegetation changes on surface albedo and local water recycling play a negligible role. Even though CCSM3-DGVM simulates a positive vegetation-precipitation feedback in the North African region, this feedback is not strong enough to produce multiple equilibrium climate-ecosystem states on a regional scale.

  15. The Contribution of Student Perceptions of School Climate to Understanding the Disproportionate Punishment of African American Students in a Middle School

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shirley, Erica L. M.; Cornell, Dewey G.

    2012-01-01

    This study investigated the contribution of student perceptions of school climate to racial differences in school discipline. Four hundred middle school students completed a school climate survey. Compared to Caucasian students, African-American students were referred to the office for discipline three times as frequently and received five times…

  16. 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…

  17. 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.

  18. Changes in climate variability with reference to land quality and agriculture in Scotland.

    PubMed

    Brown, Iain; Castellazzi, Marie

    2015-06-01

    Classification and mapping of land capability represents an established format for summarising spatial information on land quality and land-use potential. By convention, this information incorporates bioclimatic constraints through the use of a long-term average. However, climate change means that land capability classification should also have a dynamic temporal component. Using an analysis based upon Land Capability for Agriculture in Scotland, it is shown that this dynamism not only involves the long-term average but also shorter term spatiotemporal patterns, particularly through changes in interannual variability. Interannual and interdecadal variations occur both in the likelihood of land being in prime condition (top three capability class divisions) and in class volatility from year to year. These changing patterns are most apparent in relation to the west-east climatic gradient which is mainly a function of precipitation regime and soil moisture. Analysis is also extended into the future using climate results for the 2050s from a weather generator which show a complex interaction between climate interannual variability and different soil types for land quality. In some locations, variability of land capability is more likely to decrease because the variable climatic constraints are relaxed and the dominant constraint becomes intrinsic soil properties. Elsewhere, climatic constraints will continue to be influential. Changing climate variability has important implications for land-use planning and agricultural management because it modifies local risk profiles in combination with the current trend towards agricultural intensification and specialisation. PMID:25099211

  19. 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.

  20. Novel swine virulence determinant in the left variable region of the African swine fever virus genome.

    PubMed

    Neilan, J G; Zsak, L; Lu, Z; Kutish, G F; Afonso, C L; Rock, D L

    2002-04-01

    Previously we have shown that the African swine fever virus (ASFV) NL gene deletion mutant E70DeltaNL is attenuated in pigs. Our recent observations that NL gene deletion mutants of two additional pathogenic ASFV isolates, Malawi Lil-20/1 and Pr4, remained highly virulent in swine (100% mortality) suggested that these isolates encoded an additional virulence determinant(s) that was absent from E70. To map this putative virulence determinant, in vivo marker rescue experiments were performed by inoculating swine with infection-transfection lysates containing E70 NL deletion mutant virus (E70DeltaNL) and cosmid DNA clones from the Malawi NL gene deletion mutant (MalDeltaNL). A cosmid clone representing the left-hand 38-kb region (map units 0.05 to 0.26) of the MalDeltaNL genome was capable of restoring full virulence to E70DeltaNL. Southern blot analysis of recovered virulent viruses confirmed that they were recombinant E70DeltaNL genomes containing a 23- to 28-kb DNA fragment of the Malawi genome. These recombinants exhibited an unaltered MalDeltaNL disease and virulence phenotype when inoculated into swine. Additional in vivo marker rescue experiments identified a 20-kb fragment, encoding members of multigene families (MGF) 360 and 530, as being capable of fully restoring virulence to E70DeltaNL. Comparative nucleotide sequence analysis of the left variable region of the E70DeltaNL and Malawi Lil-20/1 genomes identified an 8-kb deletion in the E70DeltaNL isolate which resulted in the deletion and/or truncation of three MGF 360 genes and four MGF 530 genes. A recombinant MalDeltaNL deletion mutant lacking three members of each MGF gene family was constructed and evaluated for virulence in swine. The mutant virus replicated normally in macrophage cell culture but was avirulent in swine. Together, these results indicate that a region within the left variable region of the ASFV genome containing the MGF 360 and 530 genes represents a previously unrecognized virulence

  1. Novel Swine Virulence Determinant in the Left Variable Region of the African Swine Fever Virus Genome

    PubMed Central

    Neilan, J. G.; Zsak, L.; Lu, Z.; Kutish, G. F.; Afonso, C. L.; Rock, D. L.

    2002-01-01

    Previously we have shown that the African swine fever virus (ASFV) NL gene deletion mutant E70ΔNL is attenuated in pigs. Our recent observations that NL gene deletion mutants of two additional pathogenic ASFV isolates, Malawi Lil-20/1 and Pr4, remained highly virulent in swine (100% mortality) suggested that these isolates encoded an additional virulence determinant(s) that was absent from E70. To map this putative virulence determinant, in vivo marker rescue experiments were performed by inoculating swine with infection-transfection lysates containing E70 NL deletion mutant virus (E70ΔNL) and cosmid DNA clones from the Malawi NL gene deletion mutant (MalΔNL). A cosmid clone representing the left-hand 38-kb region (map units 0.05 to 0.26) of the MalΔNL genome was capable of restoring full virulence to E70ΔNL. Southern blot analysis of recovered virulent viruses confirmed that they were recombinant E70ΔNL genomes containing a 23- to 28-kb DNA fragment of the Malawi genome. These recombinants exhibited an unaltered MalΔNL disease and virulence phenotype when inoculated into swine. Additional in vivo marker rescue experiments identified a 20-kb fragment, encoding members of multigene families (MGF) 360 and 530, as being capable of fully restoring virulence to E70ΔNL. Comparative nucleotide sequence analysis of the left variable region of the E70ΔNL and Malawi Lil-20/1 genomes identified an 8-kb deletion in the E70ΔNL isolate which resulted in the deletion and/or truncation of three MGF 360 genes and four MGF 530 genes. A recombinant MalΔNL deletion mutant lacking three members of each MGF gene family was constructed and evaluated for virulence in swine. The mutant virus replicated normally in macrophage cell culture but was avirulent in swine. Together, these results indicate that a region within the left variable region of the ASFV genome containing the MGF 360 and 530 genes represents a previously unrecognized virulence determinant for domestic swine

  2. 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. PMID:25293650

  3. 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

  4. 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.

  5. 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...

  6. 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...

  7. Validation of China-wide interpolated daily climate variables from 1960 to 2011

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yuan, Wenping; Xu, Bing; Chen, Zhuoqi; Xia, Jiangzhou; Xu, Wenfang; Chen, Yang; Wu, Xiaoxu; Fu, Yang

    2015-02-01

    Temporally and spatially continuous meteorological variables are increasingly in demand to support many different types of applications related to climate studies. Using measurements from 600 climate stations, a thin-plate spline method was applied to generate daily gridded climate datasets for mean air temperature, maximum temperature, minimum temperature, relative humidity, sunshine duration, wind speed, atmospheric pressure, and precipitation over China for the period 1961-2011. A comprehensive evaluation of interpolated climate was conducted at 150 independent validation sites. The results showed superior performance for most of the estimated variables. Except for wind speed, determination coefficients ( R 2) varied from 0.65 to 0.90, and interpolations showed high consistency with observations. Most of the estimated climate variables showed relatively consistent accuracy among all seasons according to the root mean square error, R 2, and relative predictive error. The interpolated data correctly predicted the occurrence of daily precipitation at validation sites with an accuracy of 83 %. Moreover, the interpolation data successfully explained the interannual variability trend for the eight meteorological variables at most validation sites. Consistent interannual variability trends were observed at 66-95 % of the sites for the eight meteorological variables. Accuracy in distinguishing extreme weather events differed substantially among the meteorological variables. The interpolated data identified extreme events for the three temperature variables, relative humidity, and sunshine duration with an accuracy ranging from 63 to 77 %. However, for wind speed, air pressure, and precipitation, the interpolation model correctly identified only 41, 48, and 58 % of extreme events, respectively. The validation indicates that the interpolations can be applied with high confidence for the three temperatures variables, as well as relative humidity and sunshine duration based

  8. 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

  9. Vegetation response to climate variability in India from 2001 to 2010

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hashimoto, H.; Milesi, C.; Wang, W.; Ganguly, S.; Michaelis, A.; Nemani, R.

    2011-12-01

    Food supply in India is a critical issue in sustaining a large population, and more accurate predictability of agricultural productivity is necessary for policy makers. After the Green revolution, the productivity in India has increased dramatically, but the leveling-off of the productivity was expected in the near future. Decreasing of ground water was already observed and some climate models predict a higher frequency of drought in the 21st century. For a better understanding of vegetation response to climate change, we analyzed the satellite images of India from 2001 to 2010. MODIS satellite imagery shows high spatial variability in vegetation indices in response to climate variability. In this study we scrutinize the cause and mechanism of the spatial variability in vegetation growth in India. First, we tried to find the corresponding climate variability from re-analysis data (MERRA and NCEP-NCAR reanalysis data) and satellite imagery such as TRMM, GIMMS, and MODIS, as well as interpolated climate observation data (CRU). Although the precipitation variability due to ENSO has the strongest impact on vegetation growth, the other climate variability, such as shortwave radiation, also perturbed the vegetation response to climate changes. Second, we proved our hypothesis explaining the vegetation growth trend by running the Terrestrial Observation and Prediction System (TOPS) model. The model results were compared with satellite images and showed reasonable spatial pattern of net primary production to explain the observed vegetation growth variability to climate change. Those results can contribute to a more profound understanding of the mechanism of vegetation growth in India toward future prediction in food supply.

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. Causes of Decadal Climate Variability over the North Pacific and North America.

    PubMed

    Latif, M; Barnett, T P

    1994-10-28

    The cause of decadal climate variability over the North Pacific Ocean and North America is investigated by the analysis of data from a multidecadal integration with a state-of-the-art coupled ocean-atmosphere model and observations. About one-third of the low-frequency climate variability in the region of interest can be attributed to a cycle involving unstable air-sea interactions between the subtropical gyre circulation in the North Pacific and the Aleutian low-pressure system. The existence of this cycle provides a basis for long-range climate forecasting over the western United States at decadal time scales. PMID:17793457

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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

  16. 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