Modelled impact of global warming on ENSO-driven precipitation changes in the tropical Pacific

Chung, Christine T.Y. and Power, Scott B. (2016) Modelled impact of global warming on ENSO-driven precipitation changes in the tropical Pacific. Climate Dynamics, 47 (3-4). pp. 1303-1323. ISSN 0930-7575


Abstract

© 2015, Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.The El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) is the primary source of interannual climate variability over the tropical Pacific. Here we use an ensemble of Atmospheric General Circulation Model (AGCM) experiments to estimate the impact of global warming on ENSO-driven precipitation anomalies over the tropical Pacific. The AGCM is forced using observed time-varying sea surface temperatures (SSTs) from 1951 to 2010, with and without an added warming pattern (the CMIP3 multi-model mean change in SSTs projected for the last 20 years of the twenty-first century under the SRES A2 scenario). In the tropical Pacific, the AGCM’s El Niño rainfall response to the applied warming pattern agrees with rainfall responses in coupled models. With the warming pattern, rainfall is generally greater along the equatorial Pacific throughout the ENSO cycle. The Intertropical Convergence Zone dries over the eastern Pacific and the South Pacific Convergence Zone exhibits increased rainfall along its south-eastern flank and drying along its north-western flank. The magnitude and spatial structure of the changes differ between El Niño and La Niña events, and also depend on the magnitude of the events. Empirical Orthogonal Function analysis shows that the AGCM does not project any significant increase in the frequency of extreme El Niño events (or ‘single zonal convergence zone’ events) in this framework, although the magnitude of such events is increased by approximately 25 %. The modelled zonal wind anomalies show clear spatial and temporal differences between strong and weak El Niño and La Niña events.


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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Permanent restricted access to Published version in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: No Faculty
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: No Faculty
Date Deposited: 24 Nov 2021 04:26
Last Modified: 02 Dec 2021 04:26
Uncontrolled Keywords: climate change; climate; climate variability; El-Nino Southern Oscillation; global warming;
Fields of Research (2008): 04 Earth Sciences > 0401 Atmospheric Sciences > 040104 Climate Change Processes
04 Earth Sciences > 0401 Atmospheric Sciences > 040105 Climatology (excl.Climate Change Processes)
Fields of Research (2020): 37 EARTH SCIENCES > 3702 Climate change science > 370201 Climate change processes
Socio-Economic Objectives (2008): D Environment > 96 Environment > 9603 Climate and Climate Change > 960310 Global Effects of Climate Change and Variability (excl. Australia, New Zealand, Antarctica and the South Pacific) ""
D Environment > 96 Environment > 9603 Climate and Climate Change > 960309 Effects of Climate Change and Variability on the South Pacific (excl. Australia and New Zealand) (excl. Social Impacts)
Socio-Economic Objectives (2020): 19 ENVIRONMENTAL POLICY, CLIMATE CHANGE AND NATURAL HAZARDS > 1905 Understanding climate change > 190506 Effects of climate change on the South Pacific (excl. Australia and New Zealand) (excl. social impacts)
Identification Number or DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s00382-015-2902-9
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/42418

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