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Southwestern Asia, defined here as the domain bounded by 20°–40°N and 40°–70°E, which includes the nations of Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, and Pakistan, is a water-stressed and semiarid region that receives roughly 75% of its annual rainfall during November–April. The November–April climate of southwestern Asia is strongly influenced by tropical Indo-Pacific variability on intraseasonal and interannual time scales, much of which can be attributed to sea surface temperature (SST) variations. The influences of lower-frequency SST variability on southwestern Asia climate during November–April Pacific decadal SST (PDSST) variability and the long-term trend in SST (LTSST) is examined. The U.S. Climate Variability and Predictability...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Journal of Climate
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A procedure is described to construct time series of regional surface temperatures and is then applied to interior central California stations to test the hypothesis that century-scale trend differences between irrigated and nonirrigated regions may be identified. The procedure requires documentation of every point in time at which a discontinuity in a station record may have occurred through (a) the examination of metadata forms (e.g., station moves) and (b) simple statistical tests. From this "homogeneous segments" of temperature records for each station are defined. Biases are determined for each segment relative to all others through a method employing mathematical graph theory. The debiased segments are then...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Journal of Climate
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In the Project for Intercomparison of Land-Surface Parameterization Schemes phase 2a experiment, meteorological data for the year 1987 from Cabauw, the Netherlands, were used as inputs to 23 land-surface flux schemes designed for use in climate and weather models. Schemes were evaluated by comparing their outputs with long-term measurements of surface sensible heat fluxes into the atmosphere and the ground, and of upward longwave radiation and total net radiative fluxes, and also comparing them with latent heat fluxes derived from a surface energy balance. Tuning of schemes by use of the observed flux data was not permitted. On an annual basis, the predicted surface radiative temperature exhibits a range of 2 K...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Journal of Climate
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This article applies formal detection and attribution techniques to investigate the nature of observed shifts in the timing of streamflow in the western United States. Previous studies have shown that the snow hydrology of the western United States has changed in the second half of the twentieth century. Such changes manifest themselves in the form of more rain and less snow, in reductions in the snow water contents, and in earlier snowmelt and associated advances in streamflow "center" timing (the day in the "water-year" on average when half the water-year flow at a point has passed). However, with one exception over a more limited domain, no other study has attempted to formally attribute these changes to anthropogenic...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Journal of Climate
A frequently encountered difficulty in assessing model-predicted land–atmosphere exchanges of moisture and energy is the absence of comprehensive observations to which model predictions can be compared at the spatial and temporal resolutions at which the models operate. Various methods have been used to evaluate the land surface schemes in coupled models, including comparisons of model-predicted evapotranspiration with values derived from atmospheric water balances, comparison of model-predicted energy and radiative fluxes with tower measurements during periods of intensive observations, comparison of model-predicted runoff with observed streamflow, and comparison of model predictions of soil moisture with spatial...
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Equilibrium experiments with the Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory's climate model are used to investigate the impact of anthropogenic land cover change on climate. Regions of altered land cover include large portions of Europe, India, eastern China, and the eastern United States. Smaller areas of change are present in various tropical regions. This study focuses on the impacts of biophysical changes associated with the land cover change (albedo, root and stomatal properties, roughness length), which is almost exclusively a conversion from forest to grassland in the model; the effects of irrigation or other water management practices and the effects of atmospheric carbon dioxide changes associated with land...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Journal of Climate
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The northern Rocky Mountains (NRMs) are a critical headwaters region with the majority of water resources originating from mountain snowpack. Observations showing declines in western U.S. snowpack have implications for water resources and biophysical processes in high-mountain environments. This study investigates oceanic and atmospheric controls underlying changes in timing, variability, and trends documented across the entire hydroclimatic-monitoring system within critical NRM watersheds. Analyses were conducted using records from 25 snow telemetry (SNOTEL) stations, 148 1 April snow course records, stream gauge records from 14 relatively unimpaired rivers, and 37 valley meteorological stations. Over the past...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Journal of Climate
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In December 1985, an automated meteorological station was established at Lake Hoare in the dry valley region of Antarctica. Here, we report on the first year-round observations available for any site in Taylor Valley. This dataset augments the year-round data obtained at Lake Vanda (Wright Valley) by winter-over crews during the late 1960s and early 1970s. The mean annual solar flux at Lake Hoare was 92 W m-2 during 1986, the mean air temperature -17.3 degrees C, and the mean 3-m wind speed 3.3 m s-1. The local climate is controlled by the wind regime during the 4-month sunless winter and by seasonal and diurnal variations in the incident solar flux during the remainder of the year. Temperature increases of 20 degrees-30...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Journal of Climate
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Frequency distributions of daily precipitation in winter and daily stream flow from late winter to early summer, at several hundred sites in the western United States, exhibit strong and systematic responses to the two phases of ENSO. Most of the stream flows considered are driven by snowmelt. The Southern Oscillation index (SOI) is used as the ENSO phase indicator. Both modest (median) and larger (90th percentile) events were considered. In years with negative SOI values (El Nino), days with high daily precipitation and stream flow are more frequent than average over the Southwest and less frequent over the Northwest. During years with positive SOI values (La Nina), a nearly opposite pattern is seen. A more pronounced...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Journal of Climate
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Since the late 1940s, snowmelt and runoff have come increasingly early in the water year in many basins in northern and central California. This subtle trend is most pronounced in moderate-altitude basins, which are sensitive to changes in mean winter temperatures. Such basins have broad areas in which winter temperatures are near enough to freezing that small increases result initially in the formation of less snow and eventually in early snowmelt. In moderate-altitude basins of California, a declining fraction of the annual runoff has come in April–June. This decline has been compensated by increased fractions of runoff at other, mostly earlier, times in the water year. Weather stations in central California,...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Journal of Climate
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This article applies formal detection and attribution techniques to investigate the nature of observed shifts in the timing of streamflow in the western United States. Previous studies have shown that the snow hydrology of the western United States has changed in the second half of the twentieth century. Such changes manifest themselves in the form of more rain and less snow, in reductions in the snow water contents, and in earlier snowmelt and associated advances in streamflow ?center? timing (the day in the ?water-year? on average when half the water-year flow at a point has passed). However, with one exception over a more limited domain, no other study has attempted to formally attribute these changes to anthropogenic...
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Predictive climate distributions of U.S. landfalling hurricanes are estimated from observational records over the period 1851–2000. The approach is Bayesian, combining the reliable records of hurricane activity during the twentieth century with the less precise accounts of activity during the nineteenth century to produce a best estimate of the posterior distribution on the annual rates. The methodology provides a predictive distribution of future activity that serves as a climatological benchmark. Results are presented for the entire coast as well as for the Gulf Coast, Florida, and the East Coast. Statistics on the observed annual counts of U.S. hurricanes, both for the entire coast and by region, are similar...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Journal of Climate
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Observations show snowpack has declined across much of the western United States over the period 1950-99. This reduction has important social and economic implications, as water retained in the snowpack from winter storms forms an important part of the hydrological cycle and water supply in the region. A formal model-based detection and attribution (D-A) study of these reductions is performed. The detection variable is the ratio of 1 April snow water equivalent (SWE) to water-year-to-date precipitation (P), chosen to reduce the effect of P variability on the results. Estimates of natural internal climate variability are obtained from 1600 years of two control simulations performed with fully coupled ocean-atmosphere...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Journal of Climate
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The ratio of snow to total precipitation (S/P) is a hydrologic indicator that is sensitive to climate variability and can be used to detect and monitor hydrologic responses to climatic change. Changes in S/P ratio over time could influence the magnitude and timing of spring runoff and recession to summer baseflow. The S/P ratio for 21 U.S. Historical Climatology Network sites in New England was examined. Eleven out of twenty-one sites in New England had significant decreasing annual S/P ratios from 1949 to 2000. Annual trends in S/P are predominantly a result of decreasing snowfall, and to a lesser extent, increasing rainfall. The most consistent trends were in northernmost New England where all four sites had decreasing...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Journal of Climate
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Sea ice thickness (SIT) is a key parameter of scientific interest because understanding the natural spatiotemporal variability of ice thickness is critical for improving global climate models. In this paper, changes in Arctic SIT during 1982-2003 are examined using a neural network (NN) algorithm trained with in situ submarine ice draft and surface drilling data. For each month of the study period, the NN individually estimated SIT of each ice-covered pixel (25-km resolution) based on seven geophysical parameters (four shortwave and longwave radiative fluxes, surface air temperature, ice drift velocity, and ice divergence/convergence) that were cumulatively summed at each monthly position along the pixel's previous...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Journal of Climate
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The Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory (GFDL) has developed a coupled general circulation model (CM3) for the atmosphere, oceans, land, and sea ice. The goal of CM3 is to address emerging issues in climate change, including aerosol-cloud interactions, chemistry-climate interactions, and coupling between the troposphere and stratosphere. The model is also designed to serve as the physical system component of earth system models and models for decadal prediction in the near-term future-for example, through improved simulations in tropical land precipitation relative to earlier-generation GFDL models. This paper describes the dynamical core, physical parameterizations, and basic simulation characteristics of the...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Journal of Climate
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Observations and sea surface temperature (SST)-forced ECHAM5 simulations are examined to study the seasonal cycle of eastern Africa rainfall and its SST sensitivity during 1979–2012, focusing on interannual variability and trends. The eastern Horn is drier than the rest of equatorial Africa, with two distinct wet seasons, and whereas the October–December wet season has become wetter, the March–May season has become drier. The climatological rainfall in simulations driven by observed SSTs captures this bimodal regime. The simulated trends also qualitatively reproduce the opposite-sign changes in the two rainy seasons, suggesting that SST forcing has played an important role in the observed changes. The consistency...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Journal of Climate
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A statistical model based on canonical correlation analysis (CCA) was used to explore climatic associations and predictability of June–August (JJA) maximum and minimum surface air temperatures (Tmax and Tmin) as well as the frequency of Tmax daily extremes (Tmax90) in the central and western United States (west of 90°W). Explanatory variables are monthly and seasonal Pacific Ocean SST (PSST) and the Climate Division Palmer Drought Severity Index (PDSI) during 1950–2001. Although there is a positive correlation between Tmax and Tmin, the two variables exhibit somewhat different patterns and dynamics. Both exhibit their lowest levels of variability in summer, but that of Tmax is greater than Tmin. The predictability...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Journal of Climate
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Projected changes in global rainfall patterns will likely alter water supplies and ecosystems in semiarid regions during the coming century. Instrumental and paleoclimate data indicate that natural hydroclimate fluctuations tend to be more energetic at low (multidecadal to multicentury) than at high (interannual) frequencies. State-of-the-art global climate models do not capture this characteristic of hydroclimate variability, suggesting that the models underestimate the risk of future persistent droughts. Methods are developed here for assessing the risk of such events in the coming century using climate model projections as well as observational (paleoclimate) information. Where instrumental and paleoclimate data...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Journal of Climate


map background search result map search result map Detection and Attribution of Streamflow Timing Changes to Climate Change in the Western United States Large-scale atmospheric forcing of recent trends toward early snowmelt runoff in California Detection and Attribution of Streamflow Timing Changes to Climate Change in the Western United States Large-scale atmospheric forcing of recent trends toward early snowmelt runoff in California