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  1. Free, publicly-accessible full text available April 1, 2024
  2. Abstract In this study, we investigate the air temperature response to land-use and land-cover change (LULCC; cropland expansion and deforestation) using subgrid land model output generated by a set of CMIP6 model simulations. Our study is motivated by the fact that ongoing land-use activities are occurring at local scales, typically significantly smaller than the resolvable scale of a grid cell in Earth system models. It aims to explore the potential for a multimodel approach to better characterize LULCC local climatic effects. On an annual scale, the CMIP6 models are in general agreement that croplands are warmer than primary and secondary land (psl; mainly forests, grasslands, and bare ground) in the tropics and cooler in the mid–high latitudes, except for one model. The transition from warming to cooling occurs at approximately 40°N. Although the surface heating potential, which combines albedo and latent heat flux effects, can explain reasonably well the zonal mean latitudinal subgrid temperature variations between crop and psl tiles in the historical simulations, it does not provide a good prediction on subgrid temperature for other land tile configurations (crop vs forest; grass vs forest) under Shared Socioeconomic Pathway 5–8.5 (SSP5–8.5) forcing scenarios. A subset of simulations with the CESM2 model reveals that latitudinal subgrid temperature variation is positively related to variation in net surface shortwave radiation and negatively related to variation in the surface energy redistribution factor, with a dominant role from the latter south of 30°N. We suggest that this emergent relationship can be used to benchmark the performance of land surface parameterizations and for prediction of local temperature response to LULCC. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available March 1, 2024
  3. Abstract

    Diffuse solar radiation is an important, but understudied, component of the Earth’s surface radiation budget, with most global climate models not archiving this variable and a dearth of ground-based observations. Here, we describe the development of a global 40-year (1980–2019) monthly database of total shortwave radiation, including its diffuse and direct beam components, called BaRAD (Bias-adjusted RADiation dataset). The dataset is based on a random forest algorithm trained using Global Energy Balance Archive (GEBA) observations and applied to the Modern-Era Retrospective analysis for Research and Applications, Version 2 (MERRA-2) dataset at the native MERRA-2 resolution (0.5° by 0.625°). The dataset preserves seasonal, latitudinal, and long-term trends in the MERRA-2 data, but with reduced biases than MERRA-2. The mean bias error is close to 0 (root mean square error = 10.1 W m−2) for diffuse radiation and −0.2 W m−2(root mean square error = 19.2 W m−2) for the total incoming shortwave radiation at the surface. Studies on atmosphere-biosphere interactions, especially those on the diffuse radiation fertilization effect, can benefit from this dataset.

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  4. Abstract

    Accounting for temporal changes in carbon dioxide (CO2) effluxes from freshwaters remains a challenge for global and regional carbon budgets. Here, we synthesize 171 site-months of flux measurements of CO2based on the eddy covariance method from 13 lakes and reservoirs in the Northern Hemisphere, and quantify dynamics at multiple temporal scales. We found pronounced sub-annual variability in CO2flux at all sites. By accounting for diel variation, only 11% of site-months were net daily sinks of CO2. Annual CO2emissions had an average of 25% (range 3%–58%) interannual variation. Similar to studies on streams, nighttime emissions regularly exceeded daytime emissions. Biophysical regulations of CO2flux variability were delineated through mutual information analysis. Sample analysis of CO2fluxes indicate the importance of continuous measurements. Better characterization of short- and long-term variability is necessary to understand and improve detection of temporal changes of CO2fluxes in response to natural and anthropogenic drivers. Our results indicate that existing global lake carbon budgets relying primarily on daytime measurements yield underestimates of net emissions.

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  7. Abstract. For the radiative impact of individual climate forcings,most previous studies focused on the global mean values at the top of theatmosphere (TOA), and less attention has been paid to surface processes,especially for black carbon (BC) aerosols. In this study, the surface radiativeresponses to five different forcing agents were analyzed by using idealizedmodel simulations. Our analyses reveal that for greenhouse gases, solarirradiance, and scattering aerosols, the surface temperature changes aremainly dictated by the changes of surface radiative heating, but for BC,surface energy redistribution between different components plays a morecrucial role. Globally, when a unit BC forcing is imposed at TOA, the netshortwave radiation at the surface decreases by -5.87±0.67 W m−2 (W m−2)−1 (averaged over global land without Antarctica), which ispartially offset by increased downward longwave radiation (2.32±0.38 W m−2 (W m−2)−1 from the warmer atmosphere, causing a netdecrease in the incoming downward surface radiation of -3.56±0.60 W m−2 (W m−2)−1. Despite a reduction in the downward radiationenergy, the surface air temperature still increases by 0.25±0.08 Kbecause of less efficient energy dissipation, manifested by reduced surfacesensible (-2.88±0.43 W m−2 (W m−2)−1) and latent heat flux(-1.54±0.27 W m−2 (W m−2)−1), as well as a decrease inBowen ratio (-0.20±0.07 (W m−2)−1). Such reductions of turbulentfluxes can be largely explained by enhanced air stability (0.07±0.02 K (W m−2)−1), measured as the difference of the potential temperaturebetween 925 hPa and surface, and reduced surface wind speed (-0.05±0.01 m s−1 (W m−2)−1). The enhanced stability is due to the fasteratmospheric warming relative to the surface, whereas the reduced wind speedcan be partially explained by enhanced stability and reduced Equator-to-poleatmospheric temperature gradient. These rapid adjustments under BC forcingoccur in the lower atmosphere and propagate downward to influence thesurface energy redistribution and thus surface temperature response, whichis not observed under greenhouse gases or scattering aerosols. Our studyprovides new insights into the impact of absorbing aerosols on surfaceenergy balance and surface temperature response. 
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  8. Abstract

    Aerosols can enhance terrestrial productivity through increased absorption of solar radiation by the shaded portion of the plant canopy—the diffuse radiation fertilization effect. Although this process can, in principle, alter surface evaporation due to the coupling between plant water loss and carbon uptake, with the potential to change the surface temperature, aerosol‐climate interactions have been traditionally viewed in light of the radiative effects within the atmosphere. Here, we develop a modeling framework that combines global atmosphere and land model simulations with a conceptual diagnostic tool to investigate these interactions from a surface energy budget perspective. Aerosols increase the terrestrial evaporative fraction, or the portion of net incoming energy consumed by evaporation, by over 4% globally and as much as ∼40% regionally. The main mechanism for this is the increase in energy allocation from sensible to latent heat due to global dimming (reduction in global shortwave radiation) and slightly augmented by diffuse radiation fertilization. In regions with moderately dense vegetation (leaf area index >2), the local surface cooling response to aerosols is dominated by this evaporative pathway, not the reduction in incident radiation. Diffuse radiation fertilization alone has a stronger impact on gross primary productivity (+2.18 Pg C y−1or +1.8%) than on land evaporation (+0.18 W m−2or +0.48%) and surface temperature (−0.01 K). Our results suggest that it is important for land surface models to distinguish between quantity (change in total magnitude) and quality (change in diffuse fraction) of radiative forcing for properly simulating surface climate.

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  9. Urbanization has caused environmental changes, such as urban heat islands (UHIs), that affect terrestrial ecosystems. However, how and to what extent urbanization affects plant phenology remains relatively unexplored. Here, we investigated the changes in the satellite-derived start of season (SOS) and the covariation between SOS and temperature ( R T ) in 85 large cities across the conterminous United States for the period 2001–2014. We found that 1) the SOS came significantly earlier (6.1 ± 6.3 d) in 74 cities and R T was significantly weaker (0.03 ± 0.07) in 43 cities when compared with their surrounding rural areas ( P < 0.05); 2) the decreased magnitude in R T mainly occurred in cities in relatively cold regions with an annual mean temperature <17.3 °C (e.g., Minnesota, Michigan, and Pennsylvania); and 3) the magnitude of urban−rural difference in both SOS and R T was primarily correlated with the intensity of UHI. Simulations of two phenology models further suggested that more and faster heat accumulation contributed to the earlier SOS, while a decrease in required chilling led to a decline in R T magnitude in urban areas. These findings provide observational evidence of a reduced covariation between temperature and SOS in major US cities, implying the response of spring phenology to warming conditions in nonurban environments may decline in the warming future. 
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