06 Jul 2021
06 Jul 2021

Ubiquity of human-induced changes in climate variability

Keith B. Rodgers1,2, Sun-Seon Lee1,2, Nan Rosenbloom3, Axel Timmermann1,2, Gokhan Danabasoglu3, Clara Deser3, Jim Edwards3, Ji-Eun Kim1,2, Isla Simpson3, Karl Stein1,2, Malte F. Stuecker4, Ryohei Yamaguchi1,2, Tamas Bodai2, Eui-Seok Chung5, Lei Huang1,2, Who Kim3, Jean-Francois Lamarque3, Danica Lombardozzi3, William R. Wieder3,6, and Stephen G. Yeager3 Keith B. Rodgers et al.
  • 1Center for Climate Physics, Institute for Basic Science, Busan, South Korea
  • 2Pusan National University, Busan, South Korea
  • 3National Center for Atmospheric Research, Boulder, USA
  • 4Department of Oceanography and International Pacific Research Center, School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology, University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, Honolulu, HI, USA
  • 5Korea Polar Research Institute, Incheon, South Korea
  • 6Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research, University of Colorado, Boulder, CO, USA

Abstract. While climate change mitigation targets necessarily concern maximum mean state change, understanding impacts and developing adaptation strategies will be largely contingent on how climate variability responds to increasing anthropogenic perturbations. Thus far Earth system modeling efforts have primarily focused on projected mean state changes and the sensitivity of specific modes of climate variability, such as the El Niño-Southern Oscillation. However, our knowledge of forced changes in the overall spectrum of climate variability and higher order statistics is relatively limited. 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, seasonal predictions, and for assessing potential stressors for terrestrial and marine ecosystems.

Journal article(s) based on this preprint

Keith B. Rodgers et al.

Interactive discussion

Status: closed

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • CC1: 'Comment on esd-2021-50', Richard Rosen, 11 Jul 2021
    • AC1: 'Reply on CC1', Keith Rodgers, 03 Sep 2021
  • RC1: 'Comment on 'Ubiquity of human-induced changes in climate variability' by Rodgers et al.', Anonymous Referee #1, 28 Jul 2021
    • AC2: 'Reply on RC1', Keith Rodgers, 03 Sep 2021