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  1. Abstract

    Sub‐grid topographic heterogeneity has large impacts on surface energy balance and land‐atmosphere interactions. However, the impacts of representing sub‐grid topographic effects in land surface models (LSMs) on surface energy balance and boundary conditions remain unclear. This study analyzed and evaluated the impacts of sub‐grid topographic representations on surface energy balance, turbulent heat flux, and scalar (co‐)variances in the Energy Exascale Earth System Model (E3SM) land model (ELM). Three sub‐grid topographic representations in ELM were compared: (a) the default sub‐grid structure (D), (b) the recently developed sub‐grid topographic structure (T), and (c) high spatial resolution (1KM). Additionally, two different solar radiation schemes in ELM were compared: (a) the default plane‐parallel radiative transfer scheme (PP) and (b) the parameterization scheme (TOP) that accounts for sub‐grid topographic effects on solar radiation. A series of offline simulations with the three grid discretization structures (D, T, and 1KM) and two schemes of solar radiation (TOP and PP) were carried out using the Sierra Nevada, California. 1KM simulations with TOP well capture the spatial heterogeneity of surface fluxes compared to Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer remote sensing data. There are significant differences between TOP and PP in the 1‐km simulated surface energy balance, but the differencesmore »in mean values and standard deviations become small when aggregated to the grid scale (i.e., 0.5°). The T configuration better mimics the 1KM simulations with TOP than the D configuration and better captures the sub‐grid topographic effects on surface energy balance and boundary conditions. These results underline the importance of representing sub‐grid topographic heterogeneities in LSMs and motivate future research to understand the sub‐grid topographic effects on land‐atmosphere interactions over mountainous areas.

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  2. Abstract

    In tropical forests, both vegetation characteristics and soil properties are important not only for controlling energy, water, and gas exchanges directly but also determining the competition among species, successional dynamics, forest structure and composition. However, the joint effects of the two factors have received limited attention in Earth system model development. Here we use a vegetation demographic model, the Functionally Assembled Terrestrial Ecosystem Simulator (FATES) implemented in the Energy Exascale Earth System Model (E3SM) Land Model (ELM), ELM‐FATES, to explore how plant traits and soil properties affect tropical forest growth and composition concurrently. A large ensemble of simulations with perturbed vegetation and soil hydrological parameters is conducted at the Barro Colorado Island, Panama. The simulations are compared against observed carbon, energy, and water fluxes. We find that soil hydrological parameters, particularly the scaling exponent of the soil retention curve (Bsw), play crucial roles in controlling forest diversity, with higherBswvalues (>7) favoring late successional species in competition, and lowerBswvalues (1 ∼ 7) promoting the coexistence of early and late successional plants. Considering the additional impact of soil properties resolves a systematic bias of FATES in simulating sensible/latent heat partitioning with repercussion on water budget and plant coexistence. A greater fractionmore »of deeper tree roots can help maintain the dry‐season soil moisture and plant gas exchange. As soil properties are as important as vegetation parameters in predicting tropical forest dynamics, more efforts are needed to improve parameterizations of soil functions and belowground processes and their interactions with aboveground vegetation dynamics.

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  3. Abstract

    Flooding impacts are on the rise globally, and concentrated in urban areas. Currently, there are no operational systems to forecast flooding at spatial resolutions that can facilitate emergency preparedness and response actions mitigating flood impacts. We present a framework for real‐time flood modeling and uncertainty quantification that combines the physics of fluid motion with advances in probabilistic methods. The framework overcomes the prohibitive computational demands of high‐fidelity modeling in real‐time by using a probabilistic learning method relying on surrogate models that are trained prior to a flood event. This shifts the overwhelming burden of computation to the trivial problem of data storage, and enables forecasting of both flood hazard and its uncertainty at scales that are vital for time‐critical decision‐making before and during extreme events. The framework has the potential to improve flood prediction and analysis and can be extended to other hazard assessments requiring intense high‐fidelity computations in real‐time.

  4. Abstract

    This work documents version two of the Department of Energy's Energy Exascale Earth System Model (E3SM). E3SMv2 is a significant evolution from its predecessor E3SMv1, resulting in a model that is nearly twice as fast and with a simulated climate that is improved in many metrics. We describe the physical climate model in its lower horizontal resolution configuration consisting of 110 km atmosphere, 165 km land, 0.5° river routing model, and an ocean and sea ice with mesh spacing varying between 60 km in the mid‐latitudes and 30 km at the equator and poles. The model performance is evaluated with Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 6 Diagnosis, Evaluation, and Characterization of Klima simulations augmented with historical simulations as well as simulations to evaluate impacts of different forcing agents. The simulated climate has many realistic features of the climate system, with notable improvements in clouds and precipitation compared to E3SMv1. E3SMv1 suffered from an excessively high equilibrium climate sensitivity (ECS) of 5.3 K. In E3SMv2, ECS is reduced to 4.0 K which is now within the plausible range based on a recent World Climate Research Program assessment. However, a number of important biases remain including a weak Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation, deficienciesmore »in the characteristics and spectral distribution of tropical atmospheric variability, and a significant underestimation of the observed warming in the second half of the historical period. An analysis of single‐forcing simulations indicates that correcting the historical temperature bias would require a substantial reduction in the magnitude of the aerosol‐related forcing.

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