Journal of Meteorological Research

, Volume 29, Issue 6, pp 884–895

Uncertainty in the 2°C warming threshold related to climate sensitivity and climate feedback

  • Tianjun Zhou (周天军)
  • Xiaolong Chen (陈晓龙)

DOI: 10.1007/s13351-015-5036-4

Cite this article as:
Zhou, T. & Chen, X. J Meteorol Res (2015) 29: 884. doi:10.1007/s13351-015-5036-4


Climate sensitivity is an important index that measures the relationship between the increase in greenhouse gases and the magnitude of global warming. Uncertainties in climate change projection and climate modeling are mostly related to the climate sensitivity. The climate sensitivities of coupled climate models determine the magnitudes of the projected global warming. In this paper, the authors thoroughly review the literature on climate sensitivity, and discuss issues related to climate feedback processes and the methods used in estimating the equilibrium climate sensitivity and transient climate response (TCR), including the TCR to cumulative CO2 emissions. After presenting a summary of the sources that affect the uncertainty of climate sensitivity, the impact of climate sensitivity on climate change projection is discussed by addressing the uncertainties in 2°C warming. Challenges that call for further investigation in the research community, in particular the Chinese community, are discussed.


climate sensitivity radiative forcing climate feedback 2°C threshold greenhouse gases climate model 

Copyright information

© The Chinese Meteorological Society and Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tianjun Zhou (周天军)
    • 1
  • Xiaolong Chen (陈晓龙)
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.State Key Laboratory of Numerical Modeling for Atmospheric Sciences and Geophysical Fluid DynamicsInstitute of Atmospheric Physics, Chinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina
  2. 2.University of the Chinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina

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