Publication Details

Category Text Publication
Reference Category Journals
DOI 10.1029/2020GL091990
Licence creative commons licence
Title (Primary) Larger spatial footprint of wintertime total precipitation extremes in a warmer climate
Author Bevacqua, E. ORCID logo ; Shepherd, T.G.; Watson, P.A.G.; Sparrow, S.; Wallom, D.; Mitchell, D.
Journal Geophysical Research Letters
Year 2021
Department CHS
Volume 48
Issue 8
Page From e2020GL091990
Language englisch
Topic T5 Future Landscapes
Data and Software links
Keywords Anthropogenic climate change; Future projections; Spatial statistics; Precipitation extremes; Compound events; Flooding hazard
Abstract The simultaneous occurrence of extremely wet winters at multiple locations in the same region can contribute to widespread flooding and associated socio‐economic losses. However, the spatial extent of precipitation extremes (i.e. the area in which nearby locations experience precipitation extremes simultaneously) and its future changes are largely overlooked in climate assessments. Employing new multi‐thousand‐year climate model simulations, we show that under both 2.0ºC and 1.5ºC warming scenarios, wintertime total precipitation extreme extents would increase over about 80‐90% of the Northern Hemisphere extratropics (i.e. the latitude band 28‐78ºN). Stabilising at 1.5ºC rather than 2.0ºC would reduce the average magnitude of the increase by 1.7‐2 times. According to the climate model, the increased extents are caused by increases in precipitation intensity rather than changes in the spatial organisation of the events. Relatively small percentage increases in precipitation intensities (e.g., by 4%) can drive disproportionately larger, by 1‐2 orders of magnitude, growth in the spatial extents (by 93%).
Persistent UFZ Identifier
Bevacqua, E., Shepherd, T.G., Watson, P.A.G., Sparrow, S., Wallom, D., Mitchell, D. (2021):
Larger spatial footprint of wintertime total precipitation extremes in a warmer climate
Geophys. Res. Lett. 48 (8), e2020GL091990