Cloud Feedbacks



Other MIPs



Google Calendar

Lab Calendar

Site Map


Privacy & Legal Notice

Thanks to Our Sponsors:

PCMDI > WCRP CMIP3 Model Output > Diagnostic Subprojects Printer Friendly Version
<< Back to WCRP CMIP3 Subproject Publications

  • Sewall, J.O., 2005: Precipitation Shifts over Western North America as a Result of Declining Arctic Sea Ice Cover: The Coupled System Response. Earth Interactions, 9, 10.1175/EI171.1.

ABSTRACT: Changes in Arctic sea ice cover have the potential to impact
midlatitude climate. A previous sensitivity study utilizing the National Center
for Atmospheric Research’s (NCAR) atmospheric general circulation model
[AGCM; Community Climate Model, version 3 (CCM3)] to explore climate
sensitivity to declining Arctic sea ice cover suggested that, as Arctic sea ice
cover is reduced, precipitation patterns over western North America will shift
toward dryer conditions in southwestern North America and wetter conditions
in northwestern North America. Here, three complementary lines of research
validate and explore the robustness of this possible climate change impact: 1)
repetition of the previous sensitivity study (specified constant Arctic sea ice
cover and atmospheric CO2) with an updated version of the NCAR AGCM
[third Community Atmosphere Model (CAM3)], 2) investigation of the climate
response to dynamically reduced Arctic sea ice cover (driven by a quadrupling
of atmospheric CO2) in the coupled NCAR Community Climate System Model
(CCSMv3), and 3) analysis of similar results from six other coupled climate
system models. Results from the CAM3 sensitivity study are similar to those
from the original study with declining Arctic sea ice cover driving up to 25%
less mean annual precipitation (MAP) over southwestern North America and
up to an 8% increase in MAP over northwestern North America. The seven
coupled models also reproduce this same general pattern. At the time of CO2
quadrupling, Arctic sea ice cover is reduced (up to 90% in boreal winter) and
MAP over southwestern North America decreases by up to 30% while MAP in
northwestern North America increases by up to 40%. These results represent a
significant shift in the precipitation pattern over western North America and
support the findings of the original sensitivity study in suggesting that, as future
reductions in Arctic sea ice cover take place, there will be a substantial impact
on water resources in western North America.

Full Article: http://earthinteractions.org/

Last Updated: 2006-03-01

<< Back to WCRP CMIP3 Subproject Publications
For questions or comments regarding this website, please contact the Webmaster.
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory  |  Physical & Life Sciences Directorate