Predictability of Mediterranean climate variables from oceanic variability. Part II: Statistical models for monthly precipitation and temperature in the Mediterranean area
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- Hertig, E. & Jacobeit, J. Clim Dyn (2011) 36: 825. doi:10.1007/s00382-010-0821-3
The objective of this study is to investigate the predictability of monthly climate variables in the Mediterranean area by using statistical models. It is a well-known fact that the future state of the atmosphere is sensitive to preceding conditions of the slowly varying ocean component with lead times being sufficiently long for predictive assessments. Sea surface temperatures (SSTs) are therefore regarded as one of the best variables to be used in seasonal climate predictions. In the present study, SST-regimes which have been derived and discussed in detail in Part I of this paper, are used with regard to monthly climate predictions for the Mediterranean area. Thus, cross-correlations with time lags from 0 up to 12 months and ensuing multiple regression analyses between the large-scale SST-regimes and monthly precipitation and temperature for Mediterranean sub-regions have been performed for the period 1950–2003. Statistical hindcast ensembles of Mediterranean precipitation including categorical forecast skill can be identified only for some months in different seasons and for some individual regions of the Mediterranean area. Major predictors are the tropical Atlantic Ocean and the North Atlantic Ocean SST-regimes, but significant relationships can also be found with tropical Pacific and North Pacific SST-regimes. Statistical hindcast ensembles of Mediterranean temperature with some categorical forecast skill can be determined primarily for the Western Mediterranean and the North African regions throughout the year. As for precipitation the major predictors for temperature are located in the tropical Atlantic Ocean and the North Atlantic Ocean, but some connections also exist with the Pacific SST variations.