Significantly increased extreme precipitation expected in Europe and North America from extratropical cyclones

Hawcroft, Matt and Walsh, Ella and Hodges, Kevin and Zappa, Giuseppe (2018) Significantly increased extreme precipitation expected in Europe and North America from extratropical cyclones. Environmental Research Letters, 13 (12 - Article 124006).

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Abstract

For the Northern Hemisphere extratropics, changes in the mid-latitude storm tracks are key to understanding the impacts of climate warming, but projections of their future location in current climate models are affected by large uncertainty. Here, we show that in spite of this uncertainty in the atmospheric circulation response to warming, by analysing the behaviour of the storms (or extratropical cyclones) themselves, projections of change in the number of the most intensely precipitating extratropical cyclones are substantial and consistent across models. In particular, we show large increases in the frequency of extreme extratropical cyclones (those above the present day 99th percentile of precipitation intensity) by the end of the century. In both Europe and North America, these intensely precipitating extratropical cyclones are projected to more than triple in number by the end of the century unless greenhouse gas emissions are mitigated. Such changes in extratropical cyclone behaviour may have major impacts on society given intensely precipitating extratropical cyclones are responsible for many large-scale flooding events, and associated severe economic losses, in these regions.


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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: © 2018 The Author(s). Original content from this work may be used under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 licence.
Faculty / Department / School: No Faculty
Date Deposited: 27 Feb 2019 04:46
Last Modified: 28 Feb 2019 04:26
Uncontrolled Keywords: climate; climate change; climate impacts; climate models; CMIP5; precipitation; gas emissions; greenhouse gases; losses; precipitation (chemical); precipitation (meteorology); storms; uncertainty analysis; atmospheric circulation; extratropical cyclones; extreme precipitation; Northern Hemispheres; precipitation intensity
Fields of Research : 04 Earth Sciences > 0401 Atmospheric Sciences > 040107 Meteorology
04 Earth Sciences > 0401 Atmospheric Sciences > 040105 Climatology (excl.Climate Change Processes)
Identification Number or DOI: 10.1088/1748-9326/aaed59
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/35932

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