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  • Hydrology and Earth System Sciences...

  • image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
    Authors: Grillakis, Manolis G.; Koutroulis, Aristeidis G.; Daliakopoulos, Ioannis N.; Tsanis, Ioannis K.;

    Bias correction of climate variables is a standard practice in climate change impact (CCI) studies. Various methodologies have been developed within the framework of quantile mapping. However, it is well known that quantile mapping may significantly modify the long-term statistics due to the time dependency of the temperature bias. Here, a method to overcome this issue without compromising the day-to-day correction statistics is presented. The methodology separates the modeled temperature signal into a normalized and a residual component relative to the modeled reference period climatology, in order to adjust the biases only for the former and preserve the signal of the later. The results show that this method allows for the preservation of the originally modeled long-term signal in the mean, the standard deviation and higher and lower percentiles of temperature. To illustrate the improvements, the methodology is tested on daily time series obtained from five Euro CORDEX regional climate models (RCMs).

    image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/ Copernicus Publicati...arrow_drop_down
    image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
    Copernicus Publications
    Other ORP type . 2018
    image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
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      image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/ Copernicus Publicati...arrow_drop_down
      image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
      Copernicus Publications
      Other ORP type . 2018
      image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
  • image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
    Authors: Papadimitriou, Lamprini V.; Koutroulis, Aristeidis G.; Grillakis, Manolis G.; Tsanis, Ioannis K.;

    Global climate model (GCM) outputs feature systematic biases that render them unsuitable for direct use by impact models, especially for hydrological studies. To deal with this issue, many bias correction techniques have been developed to adjust the modelled variables against observations, focusing mainly on precipitation and temperature. However, most state-of-the-art hydrological models require more forcing variables, in addition to precipitation and temperature, such as radiation, humidity, air pressure, and wind speed. The biases in these additional variables can hinder hydrological simulations, but the effect of the bias of each variable is unexplored. Here we examine the effect of GCM biases on historical runoff simulations for each forcing variable individually, using the JULES land surface model set up at the global scale. Based on the quantified effect, we assess which variables should be included in bias correction procedures. To this end, a partial correction bias assessment experiment is conducted, to test the effect of the biases of six climate variables from a set of three GCMs. The effect of the bias of each climate variable individually is quantified by comparing the changes in simulated runoff that correspond to the bias of each tested variable. A methodology for the classification of the effect of biases in four effect categories (ECs), based on the magnitude and sensitivity of runoff changes, is developed and applied. Our results show that, while globally the largest changes in modelled runoff are caused by precipitation and temperature biases, there are regions where runoff is substantially affected by and/or more sensitive to radiation and humidity. Global maps of bias ECs reveal the regions mostly affected by the bias of each variable. Based on our findings, for global-scale applications, bias correction of radiation and humidity, in addition to that of precipitation and temperature, is advised. Finer spatial-scale information is also provided, to suggest bias correction of variables beyond precipitation and temperature for regional studies.

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    image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
    Copernicus Publications
    Other ORP type . 2018
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      image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
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      Copernicus Publications
      Other ORP type . 2018
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    Authors: Kjellström, Erik; Nikulin, Grigory; Strandberg, Gustav; Christensen, Ole Bøssing; +9 Authors

    We investigate European regional climate change for time periods when the global mean temperature has increased by 1.5 and 2 °C compared to pre-industrial conditions. Results are based on regional downscaling of transient climate change simulations for the 21st century with global climate models (GCMs) from the fifth-phase Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP5). We use an ensemble of EURO-CORDEX high-resolution regional climate model (RCM) simulations undertaken at a computational grid of 12.5 km horizontal resolution covering Europe. The ensemble consists of a range of RCMs that have been used for downscaling different GCMs under the RCP8.5 forcing scenario. The results indicate considerable near-surface warming already at the lower 1.5 °C of warming. Regional warming exceeds that of the global mean in most parts of Europe, being the strongest in the northernmost parts of Europe in winter and in the southernmost parts of Europe together with parts of Scandinavia in summer. Changes in precipitation, which are less robust than the ones in temperature, include increases in the north and decreases in the south with a borderline that migrates from a northerly position in summer to a southerly one in winter. Some of these changes are already seen at 1.5 °C of warming but are larger and more robust at 2 °C. Changes in near-surface wind speed are associated with a large spread among individual ensemble members at both warming levels. Relatively large areas over the North Atlantic and some parts of the continent show decreasing wind speed while some ocean areas in the far north show increasing wind speed. The changes in temperature, precipitation and wind speed are shown to be modified by changes in mean sea level pressure, indicating a strong relationship with the large-scale circulation and its internal variability on decade-long timescales. By comparing to a larger ensemble of CMIP5 GCMs we find that the RCMs can alter the results, leading either to attenuation or amplification of the climate change signal in the underlying GCMs. We find that the RCMs tend to produce less warming and more precipitation (or less drying) in many areas in both winter and summer.

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    Copernicus Publications
    Other ORP type . 2018
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      image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/ Copernicus Publicati...arrow_drop_down
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      Copernicus Publications
      Other ORP type . 2018
      image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
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    Authors: Williams, Karina; Gornall, Jemma; Harper, Anna; Wiltshire, Andy; +4 Authors

    The JULES-crop model (Osborne et al., 2015) is a parametrisation of crops within the Joint UK Land Environment Simulator (JULES), which aims to simulate both the impact of weather and climate on crop productivity and the impact of croplands on weather and climate. In this evaluation paper, observations of maize at three FLUXNET sites in Nebraska (US-Ne1, US-Ne2 and US-Ne3) are used to test model assumptions and make appropriate input parameter choices. JULES runs are performed for the irrigated sites (US-Ne1 and US-Ne2) both with the crop model switched off (prescribing leaf area index (LAI) and canopy height) and with the crop model switched on. These are compared against GPP and carbon pool FLUXNET observations. We use the results to point to future priorities for model development and describe how our methodology can be adapted to set up model runs for other sites and crop varieties.

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    Copernicus Publications
    Other ORP type . 2018
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      Copernicus Publications
      Other ORP type . 2018
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    Authors: Mathison, Camilla; Deva, Chetan; Falloon, Pete; Challinor, Andrew J.;

    Sowing and harvest dates are a significant source of uncertainty within crop models, especially for regions where high-resolution data are unavailable or, as is the case in future climate runs, where no data are available at all. Global datasets are not always able to distinguish when wheat is grown in tropical and subtropical regions, and they are also often coarse in resolution. South Asia is one such region where large spatial variation means higher-resolution datasets are needed, together with greater clarity for the timing of the main wheat growing season. Agriculture in South Asia is closely associated with the dominating climatological phenomenon, the Asian summer monsoon (ASM). Rice and wheat are two highly important crops for the region, with rice being mainly cultivated in the wet season during the summer monsoon months and wheat during the dry winter. We present a method for estimating the crop sowing and harvest dates for rice and wheat using the ASM onset and retreat. The aim of this method is to provide a more accurate alternative to the global datasets of cropping calendars than is currently available and generate more representative inputs for climate impact assessments. We first demonstrate that there is skill in the model prediction of monsoon onset and retreat for two downscaled general circulation models (GCMs) by comparing modelled precipitation with observations. We then calculate and apply sowing and harvest rules for rice and wheat for each simulation to climatological estimates of the monsoon onset and retreat for a present day period. We show that this method reproduces the present day sowing and harvest dates for most parts of India. The application of the method to two future simulations demonstrates that the estimated sowing and harvest dates are successfully modified to ensure that the growing season remains consistent with the internal model climate. The study therefore provides a useful way of modelling potential growing season adaptations to changes in future climate.

    image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/ Copernicus Publicati...arrow_drop_down
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    Copernicus Publications
    Other ORP type . 2019
    image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
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      Copernicus Publications
      Other ORP type . 2019
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    Authors: Papadimitriou, Lamprini V.; Koutroulis, Aristeidis G.; Grillakis, Manolis G.; Tsanis, Ioannis K.;

    Climate model outputs feature systematic errors and biases that render them unsuitable for direct use by the impact models, especially when hydrological parameters are studied. To deal with this issue many bias correction techniques have been developed to adjust the modelled variables against observations. For the most common applications, adjustment concerns only precipitation and temperature whilst for others more driving parameters (including radiation, wind speed, humidity, air pressure) are bias adjusted. Bias adjusting only a part of the variables required as biophysical model input could affect the physical consistency among input variables and is poorly studied. In this work we quantify the individual effect of bias correction of each climate variable on global scale hydrological simulations of the recent past. To this end, a partial correction bias assessment experiment is conducted. Six climate parameters (precipitation, temperature, radiation, humidity, surface pressure and wind speed) from a set of three Global Climate Models are tested. The examined hydrological indicators are mean and extreme (low and high) runoff production. A methodology for the classification of the bias correction effects is developed and applied. Global hotspots of hydrological sensitivity to GCM biases at the global scale are derived, for both mean and extreme runoff. Our results show that runoff is mostly affected by the biases in precipitation, temperature, specific humidity and radiation (in this order) and suggest that bias correction should be applied in priority to these parameters. Surface pressure and wind speed had a minor effect on runoff simulations for the majority of the land surface. Low runoff has an increased sensitivity to the GCM biases compared to mean and high runoff, underlying the importance of bias correction for the study of low flow conditions and relevant hydrological extremes, such as droughts.

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    Copernicus Publications
    Other ORP type . 2018
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      Copernicus Publications
      Other ORP type . 2018
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    Authors: Monioudi, Isavela N.; Velegrakis, Adonis F.; Chatzipavlis, Antonis E.; Rigos, Anastasios; +8 Authors

    The present contribution constitutes the first comprehensive attempt to (a) record the spatial characteristics of the beaches of the Aegean archipelago (Greece), a critical resource for both the local and national economy, and (b) provide a rapid assessment of the impacts of the long-term and episodic sea level rise (SLR) under different scenarios. Spatial information and other attributes (e.g., presence of coastal protection works and backshore development) of the beaches of the 58 largest islands of the archipelago were obtained on the basis of remote-sensed images available on the web. Ranges of SLR-induced beach retreats under different morphological, sedimentological and hydrodynamic forcing, and SLR scenarios were estimated using suitable ensembles of cross-shore (1-D) morphodynamic models. These ranges, combined with empirically derived estimations of wave run-up induced flooding, were then compared with the recorded maximum beach widths to provide ranges of retreat/erosion and flooding at the archipelago scale. The spatial information shows that the Aegean pocket beaches may be particularly vulnerable to mean sea level rise (MSLR) and episodic SLRs due to (i) their narrow widths (about 59 % of the beaches have maximum widths < 20 m), (ii) their limited terrestrial sediment supply, (iii) the substantial coastal development and (iv) the limited existing coastal protection. Modeling results indeed project severe impacts under mean and episodic SLRs, which by 2100 could be devastating. For example, under MSLR of 0.5 m – representative concentration pathway (RCP) 4.5 of the Fifth Assessment Report (AR5) of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate change (IPCC) – a storm-induced sea level rise of 0.6 m is projected to result in a complete erosion of between 31 and 88 % of all beaches (29–87 % of beaches are currently fronting coastal infrastructure and assets), at least temporarily. Our results suggest a very considerable risk which will require significant effort, financial resources and policies/regulation in order to protect/maintain the critical economic resource of the Aegean archipelago.

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    image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
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  • image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
    Authors: Parkes, Ben; Defrance, Dimitri; Sultan, Benjamin; Ciais, Philippe; +1 Authors

    The ability of a region to feed itself in the upcoming decades is an important issue. The West African population is expected to increase significantly in the next 30 years. The responses of crops to short-term climate change is critical to the population and the decision makers tasked with food security. This leads to three questions: how will crop yields change in the near future? What influence will climate change have on crop failures? Which adaptation methods should be employed to ameliorate undesirable changes? An ensemble of near-term climate projections are used to simulate maize, millet and sorghum in West Africa in the recent historic period (1986–2005) and a near-term future when global temperatures are 1.5 K above pre-industrial levels to assess the change in yield, yield variability and crop failure rate. Four crop models were used to simulate maize, millet and sorghum in West Africa in the historic and future climates. Across the majority of West Africa the maize, millet and sorghum yields are shown to fall. In the regions where yields increase, the variability also increases. This increase in variability increases the likelihood of crop failures, which are defined as yield negative anomalies beyond 1 standard deviation during the historic period. The increasing variability increases the frequency of crop failures across West Africa. The return time of crop failures falls from 8.8, 9.7 and 10.1 years to 5.2, 6.3 and 5.8 years for maize, millet and sorghum respectively. The adoption of heat-resistant cultivars and the use of captured rainwater have been investigated using one crop model as an idealized sensitivity test. The generalized doption of a cultivar resistant to high-temperature stress during flowering is shown to be more beneficial than using rainwater harvesting.

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  • image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
    Authors: Frieler, K.; Levermann, A.; Elliott, J.; Heinke, J.; +33 Authors

    Climate change and its impacts already pose considerable challenges for societies that will further increase with global warming (IPCC, 2014a, b). Uncertainties of the climatic response to greenhouse gas emissions include the potential passing of large-scale tipping points (e.g. Lenton et al., 2008; Levermann et al., 2012; Schellnhuber, 2010) and changes in extreme meteorological events (Field et al., 2012) with complex impacts on societies (Hallegatte et al., 2013). Thus climate change mitigation is considered a necessary societal response for avoiding uncontrollable impacts (Conference of the Parties, 2010). On the other hand, large-scale climate change mitigation itself implies fundamental changes in, for example, the global energy system. The associated challenges come on top of others that derive from equally important ethical imperatives like the fulfilment of increasing food demand that may draw on the same resources. For example, ensuring food security for a growing population may require an expansion of cropland, thereby reducing natural carbon sinks or the area available for bio-energy production. So far, available studies addressing this problem have relied on individual impact models, ignoring uncertainty in crop model and biome model projections. Here, we propose a probabilistic decision framework that allows for an evaluation of agricultural management and mitigation options in a multi-impact-model setting. Based on simulations generated within the Inter-Sectoral Impact Model Intercomparison Project (ISI-MIP), we outline how cross-sectorally consistent multi-model impact simulations could be used to generate the information required for robust decision making. Using an illustrative future land use pattern, we discuss the trade-off between potential gains in crop production and associated losses in natural carbon sinks in the new multiple crop- and biome-model setting. In addition, crop and water model simulations are combined to explore irrigation increases as one possible measure of agricultural intensification that could limit the expansion of cropland required in response to climate change and growing food demand. This example shows that current impact model uncertainties pose an important challenge to long-term mitigation planning and must not be ignored in long-term strategic decision making.

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  • image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
    Authors: Grillakis, Manolis G.; Koutroulis, Aristeidis G.; Daliakopoulos, Ioannis N.; Tsanis, Ioannis K.;

    Bias correction of climate variables is a standard practice in climate change impact (CCI) studies. Various methodologies have been developed within the framework of quantile mapping. However, it is well known that quantile mapping may significantly modify the long-term statistics due to the time dependency of the temperature bias. Here, a method to overcome this issue without compromising the day-to-day correction statistics is presented. The methodology separates the modeled temperature signal into a normalized and a residual component relative to the modeled reference period climatology, in order to adjust the biases only for the former and preserve the signal of the later. The results show that this method allows for the preservation of the originally modeled long-term signal in the mean, the standard deviation and higher and lower percentiles of temperature. To illustrate the improvements, the methodology is tested on daily time series obtained from five Euro CORDEX regional climate models (RCMs).

    image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/ Copernicus Publicati...arrow_drop_down
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    image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
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      image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
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      image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
  • image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
    Authors: Papadimitriou, Lamprini V.; Koutroulis, Aristeidis G.; Grillakis, Manolis G.; Tsanis, Ioannis K.;

    Global climate model (GCM) outputs feature systematic biases that render them unsuitable for direct use by impact models, especially for hydrological studies. To deal with this issue, many bias correction techniques have been developed to adjust the modelled variables against observations, focusing mainly on precipitation and temperature. However, most state-of-the-art hydrological models require more forcing variables, in addition to precipitation and temperature, such as radiation, humidity, air pressure, and wind speed. The biases in these additional variables can hinder hydrological simulations, but the effect of the bias of each variable is unexplored. Here we examine the effect of GCM biases on historical runoff simulations for each forcing variable individually, using the JULES land surface model set up at the global scale. Based on the quantified effect, we assess which variables should be included in bias correction procedures. To this end, a partial correction bias assessment experiment is conducted, to test the effect of the biases of six climate variables from a set of three GCMs. The effect of the bias of each climate variable individually is quantified by comparing the changes in simulated runoff that correspond to the bias of each tested variable. A methodology for the classification of the effect of biases in four effect categories (ECs), based on the magnitude and sensitivity of runoff changes, is developed and applied. Our results show that, while globally the largest changes in modelled runoff are caused by precipitation and temperature biases, there are regions where runoff is substantially affected by and/or more sensitive to radiation and humidity. Global maps of bias ECs reveal the regions mostly affected by the bias of each variable. Based on our findings, for global-scale applications, bias correction of radiation and humidity, in addition to that of precipitation and temperature, is advised. Finer spatial-scale information is also provided, to suggest bias correction of variables beyond precipitation and temperature for regional studies.

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    image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
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      image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
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  • image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
    Authors: Kjellström, Erik; Nikulin, Grigory; Strandberg, Gustav; Christensen, Ole Bøssing; +9 Authors

    We investigate European regional climate change for time periods when the global mean temperature has increased by 1.5 and 2 °C compared to pre-industrial conditions. Results are based on regional downscaling of transient climate change simulations for the 21st century with global climate models (GCMs) from the fifth-phase Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP5). We use an ensemble of EURO-CORDEX high-resolution regional climate model (RCM) simulations undertaken at a computational grid of 12.5 km horizontal resolution covering Europe. The ensemble consists of a range of RCMs that have been used for downscaling different GCMs under the RCP8.5 forcing scenario. The results indicate considerable near-surface warming already at the lower 1.5 °C of warming. Regional warming exceeds that of the global mean in most parts of Europe, being the strongest in the northernmost parts of Europe in winter and in the southernmost parts of Europe together with parts of Scandinavia in summer. Changes in precipitation, which are less robust than the ones in temperature, include increases in the north and decreases in the south with a borderline that migrates from a northerly position in summer to a southerly one in winter. Some of these changes are already seen at 1.5 °C of warming but are larger and more robust at 2 °C. Changes in near-surface wind speed are associated with a large spread among individual ensemble members at both warming levels. Relatively large areas over the North Atlantic and some parts of the continent show decreasing wind speed while some ocean areas in the far north show increasing wind speed. The changes in temperature, precipitation and wind speed are shown to be modified by changes in mean sea level pressure, indicating a strong relationship with the large-scale circulation and its internal variability on decade-long timescales. By comparing to a larger ensemble of CMIP5 GCMs we find that the RCMs can alter the results, leading either to attenuation or amplification of the climate change signal in the underlying GCMs. We find that the RCMs tend to produce less warming and more precipitation (or less drying) in many areas in both winter and summer.

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    image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
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      image/svg+xml art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos Open Access logo, converted into svg, designed by PLoS. This version with transparent background. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Open_Access_logo_PLoS_white.svg art designer at PLoS, modified by Wikipedia users Nina, Beao, JakobVoss, and AnonMoos http://www.plos.org/
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    Authors: Williams, Karina; Gornall, Jemma; Harper, Anna; Wiltshire, Andy; +4 Authors

    The JULES-crop model (Osborne et al., 2015) is a parametrisation of crops within the Joint UK Land Environment Simulator (JULES), which aims to simulate both the impact of weather and climate on crop productivity and the impact of croplands on weather and climate. In this evaluation paper, observations of maize at three FLUXNET sites in Nebraska (US-Ne1, US-Ne2 and US-Ne3) are used to test model assumptions and make appropriate input parameter choices. JULES runs are performed for the irrigated sites (US-Ne1 and US-Ne2) both with the crop model switched off (prescribing leaf area index (LAI) and canopy height) and with the crop model switched on. These are compared against GPP and carbon pool FLUXNET observations. We use the results to point to future priorities for model development and describe how our methodology can be adapted to set up model runs for other sites and crop varieties.

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    Authors: Mathison, Camilla; Deva, Chetan; Falloon, Pete; Challinor, Andrew J.;

    Sowing and harvest dates are a significant source of uncertainty within crop models, especially for regions where high-resolution data are unavailable or, as is the case in future climate runs, where no data are available at all. Global datasets are not always able to distinguish when wheat is grown in tropical and subtropical regions, and they are also often coarse in resolution. South Asia is one such region where large spatial variation means higher-resolution datasets are needed, together with greater clarity for the timing of the main wheat growing season. Agriculture in South Asia is closely associated with the dominating climatological phenomenon, the Asian summer monsoon (ASM). Rice and wheat are two highly important crops for the region, with rice being mainly cultivated in the wet season during the summer monsoon months and wheat during the dry winter. We present a method for estimating the crop sowing and harvest dates for rice and wheat using the ASM onset and retreat. The aim of this method is to provide a more accurate alternative to the global datasets of cropping calendars than is currently available and generate more representative inputs for climate impact assessments. We first demonstrate that there is skill in the model prediction of monsoon onset and retreat for two downscaled general circulation models (GCMs) by comparing modelled precipitation with observations. We then calculate and apply sowing and harvest rules for rice and wheat for each simulation to climatological estimates of the monsoon onset and retreat for a present day period. We show that this method reproduces the present day sowing and harvest dates for most parts of India. The application of the method to two future simulations demonstrates that the estimated sowing and harvest dates are successfully modified to ensure that the growing season remains consistent with the internal model climate. The study therefore provides a useful way of modelling potential growing season adaptations to changes in future climate.

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    Authors: Papadimitriou, Lamprini V.; Koutroulis, Aristeidis G.; Grillakis, Manolis G.; Tsanis, Ioannis K.;

    Climate model outputs feature systematic errors and biases that render them unsuitable for direct use by the impact models, especially when hydrological parameters are studied. To deal with this issue many bias correction techniques have been developed to adjust the modelled variables against observations. For the most common applications, adjustment concerns only precipitation and temperature whilst for others more driving parameters (including radiation, wind speed, humidity, air pressure) are bias adjusted. Bias adjusting only a part of the variables required as biophysical model input could affect the physical consistency among input variables and is poorly studied. In this work we quantify the individual effect of bias correction of each climate variable on global scale hydrological simulations of the recent past. To this end, a partial correction bias assessment experiment is conducted. Six climate parameters (precipitation, temperature, radiation, humidity, surface pressure and wind speed) from a set of three Global Climate Models are tested. The examined hydrological indicators are mean and extreme (low and high) runoff production. A methodology for the classification of the bias correction effects is developed and applied. Global hotspots of hydrological sensitivity to GCM biases at the global scale are derived, for both mean and extreme runoff. Our results show that runoff is mostly affected by the biases in precipitation, temperature, specific humidity and radiation (in this order) and suggest that bias correction should be applied in priority to these parameters. Surface pressure and wind speed had a minor effect on runoff simulations for the majority of the land surface. Low runoff has an increased sensitivity to the GCM biases compared to mean and high runoff, underlying the importance of bias correction for the study of low flow conditions and relevant hydrological extremes, such as droughts.

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    Authors: Monioudi, Isavela N.; Velegrakis, Adonis F.; Chatzipavlis, Antonis E.; Rigos, Anastasios; +8 Authors

    The present contribution constitutes the first comprehensive attempt to (a) record the spatial characteristics of the beaches of the Aegean archipelago (Greece), a critical resource for both the local and national economy, and (b) provide a rapid assessment of the impacts of the long-term and episodic sea level rise (SLR) under different scenarios. Spatial information and other attributes (e.g., presence of coastal protection works and backshore development) of the beaches of the 58 largest islands of the archipelago were obtained on the basis of remote-sensed images available on the web. Ranges of SLR-induced beach retreats under different morphological, sedimentological and hydrodynamic forcing, and SLR scenarios were estimated using suitable ensembles of cross-shore (1-D) morphodynamic models. These ranges, combined with empirically derived estimations of wave run-up induced flooding, were then compared with the recorded maximum beach widths to provide ranges of retreat/erosion and flooding at the archipelago scale. The spatial information shows that the Aegean pocket beaches may be particularly vulnerable to mean sea level rise (MSLR) and episodic SLRs due to (i) their narrow widths (about 59 % of the beaches have maximum widths < 20 m), (ii) their limited terrestrial sediment supply, (iii) the substantial coastal development and (iv) the limited existing coastal protection. Modeling results indeed project severe impacts under mean and episodic SLRs, which by 2100 could be devastating. For example, under MSLR of 0.5 m – representative concentration pathway (RCP) 4.5 of the Fifth Assessment Report (AR5) of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate change (IPCC) – a storm-induced sea level rise of 0.6 m is projected to result in a complete erosion of between 31 and 88 % of all beaches (29–87 % of beaches are currently fronting coastal infrastructure and assets), at least temporarily. Our results suggest a very considerable risk which will require significant effort, financial resources and policies/regulation in order to protect/maintain the critical economic resource of the Aegean archipelago.

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    Authors: Parkes, Ben; Defrance, Dimitri; Sultan, Benjamin; Ciais, Philippe; +1 Authors

    The ability of a region to feed itself in the upcoming decades is an important issue. The West African population is expected to increase significantly in the next 30 years. The responses of crops to short-term climate change is critical to the population and the decision makers tasked with food security. This leads to three questions: how will crop yields change in the near future? What influence will climate change have on crop failures? Which adaptation methods should be employed to ameliorate undesirable changes? An ensemble of near-term climate projections are used to simulate maize, millet and sorghum in West Africa in the recent historic period (1986–2005) and a near-term future when global temperatures are 1.5 K above pre-industrial levels to assess the change in yield, yield variability and crop failure rate. Four crop models were used to simulate maize, millet and sorghum in West Africa in the historic and future climates. Across the majority of West Africa the maize, millet and sorghum yields are shown to fall. In the regions where yields increase, the variability also increases. This increase in variability increases the likelihood of crop failures, which are defined as yield negative anomalies beyond 1 standard deviation during the historic period. The increasing variability increases the frequency of crop failures across West Africa. The return time of crop failures falls from 8.8, 9.7 and 10.1 years to 5.2, 6.3 and 5.8 years for maize, millet and sorghum respectively. The adoption of heat-resistant cultivars and the use of captured rainwater have been investigated using one crop model as an idealized sensitivity test. The generalized doption of a cultivar resistant to high-temperature stress during flowering is shown to be more beneficial than using rainwater harvesting.

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    Authors: Frieler, K.; Levermann, A.; Elliott, J.; Heinke, J.; +33 Authors

    Climate change and its impacts already pose considerable challenges for societies that will further increase with global warming (IPCC, 2014a, b). Uncertainties of the climatic response to greenhouse gas emissions include the potential passing of large-scale tipping points (e.g. Lenton et al., 2008; Levermann et al., 2012; Schellnhuber, 2010) and changes in extreme meteorological events (Field et al., 2012) with complex impacts on societies (Hallegatte et al., 2013). Thus climate change mitigation is considered a necessary societal response for avoiding uncontrollable impacts (Conference of the Parties, 2010). On the other hand, large-scale climate change mitigation itself implies fundamental changes in, for example, the global energy system. The associated challenges come on top of others that derive from equally important ethical imperatives like the fulfilment of increasing food demand that may draw on the same resources. For example, ensuring food security for a growing population may require an expansion of cropland, thereby reducing natural carbon sinks or the area available for bio-energy production. So far, available studies addressing this problem have relied on individual impact models, ignoring uncertainty in crop model and biome model projections. Here, we propose a probabilistic decision framework that allows for an evaluation of agricultural management and mitigation options in a multi-impact-model setting. Based on simulations generated within the Inter-Sectoral Impact Model Intercomparison Project (ISI-MIP), we outline how cross-sectorally consistent multi-model impact simulations could be used to generate the information required for robust decision making. Using an illustrative future land use pattern, we discuss the trade-off between potential gains in crop production and associated losses in natural carbon sinks in the new multiple crop- and biome-model setting. In addition, crop and water model simulations are combined to explore irrigation increases as one possible measure of agricultural intensification that could limit the expansion of cropland required in response to climate change and growing food demand. This example shows that current impact model uncertainties pose an important challenge to long-term mitigation planning and must not be ignored in long-term strategic decision making.

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