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The impact of air–sea coupling on the simulation of the hydroclimatic change over Peninsular Florida


This study analyzes from a pair of downscaled climate projections over Peninsular Florida (PF) at 10 km grid spacing. One of the downscaled projections corresponds to atmospheric downscaling only with a regional atmospheric model (called the Regional Spectral Model [RSM]). The other projection is related to the coupled ocean–atmosphere Regional Spectral Model-Regional Ocean Model (RSM-ROMS), which downscales both the atmospheric and the oceanic components of the global model simultaneously. The RSM-ROMS shows a better verification of the current climate than the corresponding RSM simulation for some atmospheric variables (precipitation and precipitable water) both over PF and the surrounding oceans. The moisture budget differences between the RSM-ROMS and the RSM simulations for both the current and the future climate show that the differences are larger over the surrounding oceans than over PF. However, RSM-ROMS shows a stronger projected drying over PF than RSM in the mid-twenty-first century. The RSM-ROMS displays a smaller deficit of freshwater over the oceans than RSM because of differences between the simulations in the advection of moisture, divergence of moisture, and moisture flux divergence from transient eddies. The differences in the moisture budget between the simulations over PF are small because of compensatory differences between the divergence of moisture from changes in divergent circulation and the divergence of fluxes from the transient eddies. Our analysis indicates that the air–sea coupling in RSM-ROMS affects the mean gradient of the moisture, the mean divergence, and the transients, which then modulate the advection of moisture, the divergence of moisture, and the convergence of moisture flux, respectively, setting it apart from the RSM simulation.

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Data availability statement

The validation datasets are available from public repositories cited in the text and in the acknowledgement. The authors were unable to find a valid data repository for the model data used in this study. These data are available from the first author, upon request.


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This work was supported by grants from NASA grants 80NSSC19K1199 and NNX17AG72G and the South Florida Water Management District (PO 039231). The supercomputing facility provided by XSEDE under grant number ATM10010 was used in addition to the Florida State University High Performance Computing Cluster to complete the model integrations used in this study. CPC Global Temperature data is provided by the NOAA/OAR/ESRL PSL, Boulder, Colorado, USA, from their Web site at

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Correspondence to Vasubandhu Misra.

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Misra, V., Bhardwaj, A. The impact of air–sea coupling on the simulation of the hydroclimatic change over Peninsular Florida. Clim Dyn (2022).

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