Articles | Volume 10, issue 2
Research article
25 Apr 2019
Research article |  | 25 Apr 2019

Human influence on European winter wind storms such as those of January 2018

Robert Vautard, Geert Jan van Oldenborgh, Friederike E. L. Otto, Pascal Yiou, Hylke de Vries, Erik van Meijgaard, Andrew Stepek, Jean-Michel Soubeyroux, Sjoukje Philip, Sarah F. Kew, Cecilia Costella, Roop Singh, and Claudia Tebaldi

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Cited articles

Aalbers, E. E., Lenderink, G., van Meijgaard, E., and van den Hurk, B. J. J. M.: Local-scale changes in mean and heavy precipitation in Western Europe: climate change or internal variability?, Clim. Dynam., 50, 4745–4766,, 2017. 
Barredo, J. I.: No upward trend in normalised windstorm losses in Europe: 1970–2008, Nat. Hazards Earth Syst. Sci., 10, 97–104,, 2010. 
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Beniston, M.: Current and Future Trends of Climatic Extremes in Switzerland, Geography Compass, 1, 739–751,, 2007. 
Bichet, A., Wild, M., Folini, D., and Schär, C.: Causes for decadal variations of wind speed over land: Sensitivity studies with a global climate model, Geophys. Res. Lett., 39, L11701,, 2012. 
Short summary
The effect of human activities on the probability of winter wind storms like the ones that occurred in Western Europe in January 2018 is analysed using multiple model ensembles. Despite a significant probability decline in observations, we find no significant change in probabilities due to human influence on climate so far. However, such extreme events are likely to be slightly more frequent in the future. The observed decrease in storminess is likely to be due to increasing roughness.
Final-revised paper