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The spatial and temporal distribution of point precipitation quantiles representing abnormal moisture conditions over the Colorado River Basin (CRB) is analyzed by means of the Standardized Precipitation Index (SPI), calculated in annual and seasonal aggregations. From a cell-by-cell analysis, the area covered by abnormally wet and dry conditions during the last century shows an inverse relationship with their frequency of occurrence, with frequent events (occurring 80% of the time) in which abnormal conditions cover less than 10% of the basin and infrequent events (occurring 5% of the time) in which abnormal conditions cover around 50% of the basin. During El Ni´┐Żo years, both extremely wet and dry conditions are...
This paper is a product from the SW CSC FY 11 project, "Climate change impacts in the Southwest: An assessment of next generation climate models for making projections and derivations". Abstract: Natural climate variability will continue to be an important aspect of future regional climate even in the midst of long-term secular changes. Consequently, the ability of climate models to simulate major natural modes of variability and their teleconnections provides important context for the interpretation and use of climate change projections. Comparisons reported here indicate that the CMIP5 generation of global climate models shows significant improvements in simulations of key Pacific climate mode and their teleconnections...