Ubiquity of human-induced changes in climate variability

This is a Preprint and has not been peer reviewed. The published version of this Preprint is available: http://doi.org/10.5194/esd-12-1393-2021. This is version 1 of this Preprint.

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Keith Bradley Rodgers, Sun-Seon Lee, Nan Rosenbloom, Axel Timmermann, Gokhan Danabasoglu, Clara Deser, Jim Edwards, Ji-Eun Kim, Isla Simpson, Karl Stein, Malte F. Stuecker , Ryohei Yamaguchi, Tamas Bodai, Eui-Seok Chung, Lei Huang, Who Kim, Jean-Francois Lamarque, Danica Lombardozzi, William Wieder, Stephen Gerald Yeager


While climate change mitigation targets necessarily concern maximum mean state changes, understanding impacts and developing adaptation strategies will be largely contingent on how climate variability responds to increasing anthropogenic perturbations. Here we present a new 100-member large ensemble of climate change projections conducted with the Community Earth System Model version 2 to examine the sensitivity of internal climate fluctuations to greenhouse warming. Our unprecedented simulations reveal that changes in variability, considered broadly in terms of probability distribution, amplitude, frequency, phasing, and patterns, are ubiquitous and span a wide range of physical and ecosystem variables across many spatial and temporal scales. Greenhouse warming will in particular alter variance spectra of Earth system variables that are characterized by non-Gaussian probability distributions, such as rainfall, primary production or fire occurrence. Our modeling results have important implications for climate adaptation efforts, resource management, and for seasonal predictions.




Atmospheric Sciences, Biogeochemistry, Climate, Earth Sciences, Oceanography, Oceanography and Atmospheric Sciences and Meteorology, Physical Sciences and Mathematics


Climate variability


Published: 2021-06-12 12:13

Last Updated: 2021-06-12 19:13


CC BY Attribution 4.0 International

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Conflict of interest statement:

Data Availability (Reason not available):
Data is available here as of June 14th 2021: https://www.cesm.ucar.edu/projects/community-projects/LENS2/data-sets.html