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Title: The Pliocene Model Intercomparison Project Phase 2: large-scale climate features and climate sensitivity
Abstract. The Pliocene epoch has great potential to improve ourunderstanding of the long-term climatic and environmental consequences of an atmospheric CO2 concentration near ∼400 parts permillion by volume. Here we present the large-scale features of Plioceneclimate as simulated by a new ensemble of climate models of varyingcomplexity and spatial resolution based on new reconstructions ofboundary conditions (the Pliocene Model Intercomparison Project Phase 2;PlioMIP2). As a global annual average, modelled surface air temperaturesincrease by between 1.7 and 5.2 ∘C relative to the pre-industrial erawith a multi-model mean value of 3.2 ∘C. Annual mean totalprecipitation rates increase by 7 % (range: 2 %–13 %). On average, surface air temperature (SAT) increases by 4.3 ∘C over land and 2.8 ∘C over the oceans. There is a clear pattern of polar amplification with warming polewards of 60∘ N and 60∘ S exceeding the global mean warming by a factor of 2.3. In the Atlantic and Pacific oceans, meridional temperature gradients are reduced, while tropical zonal gradients remain largely unchanged. There is a statistically significant relationship between a model's climate response associated with a doubling in CO2 (equilibrium climate sensitivity; ECS) and its simulated Pliocene surface temperature response. The mean ensemble Earth system response to a doubling of CO2 (including ice sheet feedbacks) is 67 % more » greater than ECS; this is larger than the increase of 47 % obtained from the PlioMIP1 ensemble. Proxy-derived estimates of Pliocene sea surface temperatures are used to assess model estimates of ECS and give an ECS range of 2.6–4.8 ∘C. This result is in general accord with the ECS range presented by previous Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Assessment Reports. « less
Authors:
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Award ID(s):
1903650
Publication Date:
NSF-PAR ID:
10280510
Journal Name:
Climate of the Past
Volume:
16
Issue:
6
Page Range or eLocation-ID:
2095 to 2123
ISSN:
1814-9332
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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