Climate Dynamics

, Volume 47, Issue 9–10, pp 3373–3386 | Cite as

The multidecadal component of the Mediterranean summer variability

  • M. J. OrtizBevia
  • A. RuizdeElvira
  • F. J. Alvarez-Garcia
  • M. Tasambay-Salazar


This study targets the low frequency components of the anomalous Mediterranean summer climatic variability. This last is characterised here by two indexes obtained from a statistical analysis of Mediterranean sea surface temperature anomalies. The evolution of the first of them, the Western Mediterranean Index, is dominated by a multidecadal timescale. This Index has a strong statistical impact on the summer air temperature anomalies in the European region. In the other index, the Mediterranean Dipole Index, the decadal timescale plays a major part. This last Index is linked to anomalous summer precipitations in some central European regions. A statistical methodology is used in order to identify some feedback relationships between the two Mediterranean indexes and other climate indexes which characterise some global or regional variability. In the case of the Western Mediterranean Index, the analysis reveals significant feedback relationships with two of these indexes. The selected predictors are introduced as variables in a statistical feedback model. The cross-skills scored in a cross-validation hindcast experiment reveals an important potential predictability. In this way, the multidecadal Mediterranean summer sea surface temperature variability appears as the result of two forcings, one related to the north-western Atlantic processes and the other connected to the north tropical Atlantic, and to a weak feedback onto the Atlantic. In the case of the Mediterranean Dipole Mode Index we have not found enough predictive potential in the feedback relationships identified.


Root Mean Square Error Pacific Decadal Oscillation Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation North Atlantic Oscillation North Atlantic Oscillation Index 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



We thank S. Broenimann for supplying the PNA Index obtained from the Twentieth Century Reanalysis. The NAO Index and the MO Index were obtained from The PDO Index comes from Other climate indexes, like the SO and the AMO Index can be found at The NCEP/NCAR Reanalysis 1 datasets were provided at this very address. The HadIsst2 dataset was supplied by the Hadley Center, UK. The University of Delaware is acknowledged for its UDel_AirT_Precip data. The NCEP/NCAR Reanalysis data sets Some of the figures were produced using the NCAR Command Language (NCL) software package (version 6.1.2.). The three reviewers of this paper are acknowledged for useful comments.


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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Departamento de FísicaUniversidad de AlcaláAlcalá de Henares, MadridSpain
  2. 2.Facultad de Informatica y ElectronicaEscuela Superior Politecnica de ChimborazoRiobambaEcuador

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