Climate Dynamics

, Volume 35, Issue 6, pp 1073–1097

Future change of climate in South America in the late twenty-first century: intercomparison of scenarios from three regional climate models

  • Jose A. Marengo
  • Tercio Ambrizzi
  • Rosmeri P. da Rocha
  • Lincoln M. Alves
  • Santiago V. Cuadra
  • Maria C. Valverde
  • Roger R. Torres
  • Daniel C. Santos
  • Simone E. T. Ferraz
Article

DOI: 10.1007/s00382-009-0721-6

Cite this article as:
Marengo, J.A., Ambrizzi, T., da Rocha, R.P. et al. Clim Dyn (2010) 35: 1073. doi:10.1007/s00382-009-0721-6

Abstract

Regional climate change projections for the last half of the twenty-first century have been produced for South America, as part of the CREAS (Cenarios REgionalizados de Clima Futuro da America do Sul) regional project. Three regional climate models RCMs (Eta CCS, RegCM3 and HadRM3P) were nested within the HadAM3P global model. The simulations cover a 30-year period representing present climate (1961–1990) and projections for the IPCC A2 high emission scenario for 2071–2100. The focus was on the changes in the mean circulation and surface variables, in particular, surface air temperature and precipitation. There is a consistent pattern of changes in circulation, rainfall and temperatures as depicted by the three models. The HadRM3P shows intensification and a more southward position of the subtropical Pacific high, while a pattern of intensification/weakening during summer/winter is projected by the Eta CCS/RegCM3. There is a tendency for a weakening of the subtropical westerly jet from the Eta CCS and HadRM3P, consistent with other studies. There are indications that regions such of Northeast Brazil and central-eastern and southern Amazonia may experience rainfall deficiency in the future, while the Northwest coast of Peru-Ecuador and northern Argentina may experience rainfall excesses in a warmer future, and these changes may vary with the seasons. The three models show warming in the A2 scenario stronger in the tropical region, especially in the 5°N–15°S band, both in summer and especially in winter, reaching up to 6–8°C warmer than in the present. In southern South America, the warming in summer varies between 2 and 4°C and in winter between 3 and 5°C in the same region from the 3 models. These changes are consistent with changes in low level circulation from the models, and they are comparable with changes in rainfall and temperature extremes reported elsewhere. In summary, some aspects of projected future climate change are quite robust across this set of model runs for some regions, as the Northwest coast of Peru-Ecuador, northern Argentina, Eastern Amazonia and Northeast Brazil, whereas for other regions they are less robust as in Pantanal region of West Central and southeastern Brazil.

Keywords

Regional climate models Climate change Rainfall Temperature 

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jose A. Marengo
    • 1
  • Tercio Ambrizzi
    • 2
  • Rosmeri P. da Rocha
    • 2
  • Lincoln M. Alves
    • 3
  • Santiago V. Cuadra
    • 4
  • Maria C. Valverde
    • 1
  • Roger R. Torres
    • 1
  • Daniel C. Santos
    • 1
  • Simone E. T. Ferraz
    • 5
  1. 1.Centro de Ciência do Sistema Terrestre, Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas Espaciais, CCST/INPESão PauloBrazil
  2. 2.Department of Atmospheric SciencesUniversity of São Paulo, IAG-DCA/USPSão PauloBrazil
  3. 3.Centro de Previsão de Tempo e Estudos Climáticos, Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas Espaciais, CPTEC/INPESão PauloBrazil
  4. 4.Universidade Federal de ViçosaViçosaBrazil
  5. 5.Universidade Federal de Santa MariaSanta MariaBrazil

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