Regional climate change projections for the Northeast USA

  • Katharine Hayhoe
  • Cameron Wake
  • Bruce Anderson
  • Xin-Zhong Liang
  • Edwin Maurer
  • Jinhong Zhu
  • James Bradbury
  • Art DeGaetano
  • Anne Marie Stoner
  • Donald Wuebbles
Original Article

Abstract

Climate projections at relevant temporal and spatial scales are essential to assess potential future climate change impacts on climatologically diverse regions such as the northeast United States. Here, we show how both statistical and dynamical downscaling methods applied to relatively coarse-scale atmosphere-ocean general circulation model output are able to improve simulation of spatial and temporal variability in temperature and precipitation across the region. We then develop high-resolution projections of future climate change across the northeast USA, using IPCC SRES emission scenarios combined with these downscaling methods. The projections show increases in temperature that are larger at higher latitudes and inland, as well as the potential for changing precipitation patterns, particularly along the coast. While the absolute magnitude of change expected over the coming century depends on the sensitivity of the climate system to human forcing, significantly higher increases in temperature and in winter precipitation are expected under a higher as compared to lower scenario of future emissions from human activities.

Keywords

Climate change Downscaling General circulation model Greenhouse gas emission scenarios Northeast United States 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Katharine Hayhoe
    • 1
    • 2
  • Cameron Wake
    • 3
  • Bruce Anderson
    • 4
  • Xin-Zhong Liang
    • 5
  • Edwin Maurer
    • 6
  • Jinhong Zhu
    • 5
  • James Bradbury
    • 7
  • Art DeGaetano
    • 8
  • Anne Marie Stoner
    • 9
  • Donald Wuebbles
    • 9
  1. 1.Department of GeosciencesTexas Tech UniversityLubbockUSA
  2. 2.ATMOS Research & ConsultingLubbockUSA
  3. 3.Institute for the Study of Earth, Oceans and SpaceUniversity of New HampshireDurhamUSA
  4. 4.Department of Geography and EnvironmentBoston UniversityBostonUSA
  5. 5.Illinois State Water SurveyChampaignUSA
  6. 6.Department of Civil EngineeringSanta Clara UniversitySanta ClaraUSA
  7. 7.Climate System Research Center, Department of GeosciencesUniversity of MassachusettsAmherstUSA
  8. 8.Northeast Regional Climate Center, Department of Earth and Atmospheric SciencesCornell UniversityIthacaUSA
  9. 9.Department of Atmospheric SciencesUniversity of Illinois at Urbana-ChampaignUrbanaUSA

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