Article

Climate Dynamics

, Volume 29, Issue 7, pp 661-696

First online:

Climate simulations for 1880–2003 with GISS modelE

  • J. HansenAffiliated withNASA Goddard Institute for Space StudiesColumbia University Earth Institute Email author 
  • , M. SatoAffiliated withColumbia University Earth Institute
  • , R. RuedyAffiliated withSigma Space Partners LLC
  • , P. KharechaAffiliated withColumbia University Earth Institute
  • , A. LacisAffiliated withNASA Goddard Institute for Space StudiesDepartment of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Columbia University
  • , R. MillerAffiliated withNASA Goddard Institute for Space StudiesDepartment of Applied Physics and Applied Mathematics, Columbia University
  • , L. NazarenkoAffiliated withColumbia University Earth Institute
  • , K. LoAffiliated withSigma Space Partners LLC
  • , G. A. SchmidtAffiliated withNASA Goddard Institute for Space StudiesDepartment of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Columbia University
    • , G. RussellAffiliated withNASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies
    • , I. AleinovAffiliated withColumbia University Earth Institute
    • , S. BauerAffiliated withColumbia University Earth Institute
    • , E. BaumAffiliated withClean Air Task Force
    • , B. CairnsAffiliated withDepartment of Applied Physics and Applied Mathematics, Columbia University
    • , V. CanutoAffiliated withNASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies
    • , M. ChandlerAffiliated withColumbia University Earth Institute
    • , Y. ChengAffiliated withSigma Space Partners LLC
    • , A. CohenAffiliated withClean Air Task Force
    • , A. Del GenioAffiliated withNASA Goddard Institute for Space StudiesDepartment of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Columbia University
    • , G. FaluvegiAffiliated withColumbia University Earth Institute
    • , E. FlemingAffiliated withNASA Goddard Space Flight Center
    • , A. FriendAffiliated withLaboratoire des Sciences du Climat et de l’Environnement
    • , T. HallAffiliated withNASA Goddard Institute for Space StudiesDepartment of Applied Physics and Applied Mathematics, Columbia University
    • , C. JackmanAffiliated withNASA Goddard Space Flight Center
    • , J. JonasAffiliated withColumbia University Earth Institute
    • , M. KelleyAffiliated withLaboratoire des Sciences du Climat et de l’Environnement
    • , N. Y. KiangAffiliated withNASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies
    • , D. KochAffiliated withColumbia University Earth InstituteDepartment of Geology, Yale University
    • , G. LabowAffiliated withNASA Goddard Space Flight Center
    • , J. LernerAffiliated withColumbia University Earth Institute
    • , S. MenonAffiliated withLawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
    • , T. NovakovAffiliated withLawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
    • , V. OinasAffiliated withSigma Space Partners LLC
    • , Ja. PerlwitzAffiliated withDepartment of Applied Physics and Applied Mathematics, Columbia University
    • , Ju. PerlwitzAffiliated withColumbia University Earth Institute
    • , D. RindAffiliated withNASA Goddard Institute for Space StudiesDepartment of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Columbia University
    • , A. RomanouAffiliated withNASA Goddard Institute for Space StudiesDepartment of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Columbia University
    • , R. SchmunkAffiliated withSigma Space Partners LLC
    • , D. ShindellAffiliated withNASA Goddard Institute for Space StudiesDepartment of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Columbia University
    • , P. StoneAffiliated withMassachusetts Institute of Technology
    • , S. SunAffiliated withNASA Goddard Institute for Space StudiesMassachusetts Institute of Technology
    • , D. StreetsAffiliated withArgonne National Laboratory
    • , N. TausnevAffiliated withSigma Space Partners LLC
    • , D. ThresherAffiliated withDepartment of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Columbia University
    • , N. UngerAffiliated withColumbia University Earth Institute
    • , M. YaoAffiliated withSigma Space Partners LLC
    • , S. ZhangAffiliated withColumbia University Earth Institute

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Abstract

We carry out climate simulations for 1880–2003 with GISS modelE driven by ten measured or estimated climate forcings. An ensemble of climate model runs is carried out for each forcing acting individually and for all forcing mechanisms acting together. We compare side-by-side simulated climate change for each forcing, all forcings, observations, unforced variability among model ensemble members, and, if available, observed variability. Discrepancies between observations and simulations with all forcings are due to model deficiencies, inaccurate or incomplete forcings, and imperfect observations. Although there are notable discrepancies between model and observations, the fidelity is sufficient to encourage use of the model for simulations of future climate change. By using a fixed well-documented model and accurately defining the 1880–2003 forcings, we aim to provide a benchmark against which the effect of improvements in the model, climate forcings, and observations can be tested. Principal model deficiencies include unrealistically weak tropical El Nino-like variability and a poor distribution of sea ice, with too much sea ice in the Northern Hemisphere and too little in the Southern Hemisphere. Greatest uncertainties in the forcings are the temporal and spatial variations of anthropogenic aerosols and their indirect effects on clouds.