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©  Kritscher  

Climate  Change  Projec1ons:  Sources  
Today:  
•   Some  “sneak  peaks”  of  the   latest  climate-­‐change   projec1ons  from  15  or  so   GCMs  that  are  providing   projec1ons  for  the  next  IPCC   Climate-­‐Change  Assessment   • Report  (AR5)     •   Special  aIen1on  to   Mediterranean  regions   around  the  world   Global  Climate  Model  (GCM)              

Climate  Change  Projec1ons:  Forcings  
RCP8.5  

IPCC  Fi,h  Assessment    

(s,ll  underway,  but  climate   projec,ons  becoming  available)   Representa1ve  Concentra1on   Pathways  (RCPs)  of  greenhouse-­‐ gas  emissions  and  concentra1ons  
RCP4.5   RCP2.6  

Five  Mediterranean  Climates  

Projected  Temperature  Changes  
Projected  warming  in   Mediterranean   regions  is  moderated   (a  li<le)  by  their   coastal  &  middle-­‐ laAtude  locaAons  
RCP4.5  

Median  temperature  trends  from  14  GCMs   under  two  RCP  emissions  scenarios  

RCP8.5  

Projected  Precipita1on  Changes  
Among  15  projec1ons  with  RCP4.5  emissions,  how  many   models  yield  increasing  (decreasing)  precipita1on?      

Projected  Precipita1on  Changes  
Among  15  projec1ons  with  RCP8.5  emissions,  how  many   models  yield  increasing  (decreasing)  precipita1on?       Median  declines  typically  -­‐20%  or   more  in  Mediterranean  regions    

Historical  Snowmelt  Contribu1ons  
Frac1onal  Contribu1ons  of  Snowmelt  to  Runoff  

Barne>  et  al.,  Nature,  2005  

Projected  Snowfall  Changes  
Fraction of Precipitation Falling in Months that Historically Had -3C < Avg_Tmin < 0C

Fraction of Total Precipitation
Earman  &  DeGnger,  JWCC,  2011  

0.0

0.2

0.4

0.6

0.8

1.0

Projected  Snow-­‐Season  Changes:  California  
(9  CMIP5  RCP4.5  GCMs  BCCA  downscaled,  VIC  snow  simulated)    

Projected  Changes  in    Snow  Season   Northern  Sierra  Nevada,  California  

 length  of  snow     season  declines    from  ~6  months            to  ~3  months  

Courtesy  of  David  Pierce,  SIO  

Projected  Flood  Condi1ons:  California  
Rainfall   runoff   Snowmelt  

•       Winter1me  flood  flows  increase   in  both  frequency  &  magnitudes   in  Northern  &  Southern  Sierra   •       Spring-­‐snowmelt  high  flows   from  Southern  Sierra  expected  to   decline   •       Causes  of  these  changes  are   mixes  of  larger/more  storms,   higher  snowlines  &  even  weIer   soils,  depending  on  basin  

 Das  et  al.,  2011,  Clima,c  Change  

Projec1ons  of  Extreme  Precipita1on  

Results from the US ParallelClimate Model, which yields small change in AVERAGE precipitation

Atmospheric  Rivers  

Landfalling  atmospheric  rivers  
3   Orographic  cloud   and  precipita1on  

Al1tude  MSL  (km)  

2  

1  

Atmospheric   River  
0  

“Controlling   layer”  (upslope   winds)  

Rain   shadow  

Ocean

-­‐Lateral  structure  from  satellite  data  (~400  km  width  &  2000  km  long)   -­‐VerAcal  structure  from  airplanes  &  radar  (intense  jet  of  vapor  transport      between  1  –  2  km  above  sea  level;  10-­‐20  Mississippis)   -­‐Of  parAcular  importance  on  west  coasts  of  conAnents  

Atmospheric  Rivers  &  Russian  River  flooding  
Ralph  et  al.,  GRL,  2006:    All  7  major  floods  of  Russian  River     since  1997  have  been  atmospheric  rivers    

Other   storms  

Most  recent  analyses  (Florsheim  &  DeGnger,  in   review):  

Atmospheric   River  Storms  

Among  the  39  Russian  River   floods  >  50,000  cfs  from   1948-­‐2011,  34    have  been  caused   by  ARs.  

87%  of  floods  since  1948   have  been  fed  by   atmospheric  rivers!  

Atmospheric    Rivers  &  Climate  Change  
a)
Observed  

Projected     Water  Vapor  &    Low-­‐Level  Winds  

b)

By  end  of  21st  Century,  most  GCMs  (in  a   7-­‐member  A2-­‐emissions  ensemble)  yield:  
•     More  atmospheric  vapor  content,  but  

weakening  westerly  winds    
90ºW 60ºN

W

3.5

4.0 40ºN

Projected     Water  Vapor  &    Low-­‐Level  Winds  

c)

 Net  increase  in  “intensity”  of  extreme   AR  storms   •   Warmer  ARs  (+1.8  C)    snowline  raised   by  about  1000  feet  on  average   •   Lengthening  of  AR  seasons  (maybe?)  

20ºN

23 December 2090 ECHAM5 GCM under A2 emissions scenario

DeGnger,  JAWRA,  2011  
90ºW

180º

150ºW

120ºW

Atmospheric    Rivers  &  Climate  Change  
2046-­‐2065  

Intensi1es  of  ARs  from  different  direc1ons  
San  Jacinto  Mtns   Santa  Ana  Mtns   San  Gabriel  Mtns  

1961-­‐2000  

2081-­‐2100  

DeGnger,  JAWRA,  2011  

Conclusions  
•   Mediterranean  regions  are  focus  of   almost  unanimous  projecAons  of   precipitaAon  decline   •   Projected  temperature  changes   moderated  somewhat  by  coastal  &   midlaAtude  locaAons   •   PrecipitaAon  extremes  expected  to   increase;  flood  risks  may  increase  
©  Kritscher