, Volume 28, Issue 2, pp 464-476
Date: 04 Feb 2011

Projection of future precipitation change over China with a high-resolution global atmospheric model

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Abstract

Projections of future precipitation change over China are studied based on the output of a global AGCM, ECHAM5, with a high resolution of T319 (equivalent to 40 km). Evaluation of the model’s performance in simulating present-day precipitation shows encouraging results. The spatial distributions of both mean and extreme precipitation, especially the locations of main precipitation centers, are reproduced reasonably. The simulated annual cycle of precipitation is close to the observed. The performance of the model over eastern China is generally better than that over western China. A weakness of the model is the overestimation of precipitation over northern and western China. Analyses on the potential change in precipitation projected under the A1B scenario show that both annual mean precipitation intensity and extreme precipitation would increase significantly over southeastern China. The percentage increase in extreme precipitation is larger than that of mean precipitation. Meanwhile, decreases in mean and extreme precipitation are evident over the southern Tibetan Plateau. For precipitation days, extreme precipitation days are projected to increase over all of China. Both consecutive dry days over northern China and consecutive wet days over southern China would decrease.