Laurentian Great Lakes double-CO2 climate change hydrological impacts
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- Croley, T.E. Climatic Change (1990) 17: 27. doi:10.1007/BF00148999
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The Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory has developed conceptual daily models for simulating moisture storages in and runoff from the 121 watersheds draining into the Laurentian Great Lakes, over-lake precipitation into each lake, and the heat storages in and evaporation from each lake. We combine these components as net basin supplies for each lake to consider climate change scenarios developed from atmospheric general circulation models (GCMs). Recent scenarios of a doubling of atmospheric Co2, available from the Goddard Institute for Space Studies, the Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory, and Oregon State University are considered by making changes in historical meteorological data similar to the changes observed in the GCMs, observing the impact of the changed data in the model outputs, and comparing outputs to model results using unchanged data, representing comparison to an unchanged atmosphere. This study indicates a 23 to 51% reduction in net basin supplies to all the Great Lakes; there is significant variation in the components of these supplies among the three GCMs. The basins various moisture storages become dryer and the lakes are warmer with associated hydrological impacts.