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Abstract An ice-free Arctic summer is a landmark of global change and has the far-reaching climate, environmental, and economic impacts. However, the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 6 models’ projected occurrence remains notoriously uncertain. Finding emergent constraints to reduce the projection uncertainties has been a foremost challenge. To establish a physical basis for the constraints, we first demonstrate, with numerical experiments, that the observed trend of Arctic ice loss is primarily driven by the Arctic near-surface air temperature. Thus, two constraints are proposed: the Arctic sea ice sensitivity that measures Arctic sea ice response to the local warming, and the Arctic amplification sensitivity that assesses how well the model responds to anthropogenic forcing and allocates heat to the Arctic region. The two constraints are complementary and nearly scenario-independent. The model-projected first Arctic ice-free year significantly depends on the model’s two climate sensitivities. Thus, the first Arctic ice-free year can be predicted by the linear combination of the two Arctic sensitivity measures. Based on model-simulated sensitivity skills, 20 CMIP models are divided into two equal number groups. The ten realistic-sensitivity models project, with a likelihood of 80%, the ice-free Arctic will occur by additional 0.8 °C global warming from 2019 level or before 2040 under the SSP2-4.5 (medium emission) scenario. The ten realistic-sensitivity models’ spread is reduced by about 70% compared to the ten underestimate-sensitivity models’ large spread. The strategy for creating physics-based emergent constraints through numerical experiments may be instrumental for broad application to other fields for advancing robust projection and understanding uncertainty sources.more » « less
null (Ed.)The death of George Floyd has brought a new wave of 2020 Black Lives Matter (BLM) protests into U.S. cities. Protests happened in a few cities accompanied by reports of violence over the first few days. The protests appear to be related to rising crime. This study uses newly collected crime data in 50 U.S. cities/counties to explore the spatiotemporal crime changes under BLM protests and to estimate the driving factors of burglary induced by the BLM protest. Four spatial and statistic models were used, including the Average Nearest Neighbor (ANN), Hotspot Analysis, Least Absolute Shrinkage, and Selection Operator (LASSO), and Binary Logistic Regression. The results show that (1) crime, especially burglary, has risen sharply in a few cities/counties, yet heterogeneity exists across cities/counties; (2) the volume and spatial distribution of certain crime types changed under BLM protest, the activity of burglary clustered in certain regions during protests period; (3) education, race, demographic, and crime rate in 2019 are related with burglary changes during BLM protests. The findings from this study can provide valuable information for ensuring the capabilities of the police and governmental agencies to deal with the evolving crisis.more » « less
Although standard statistical methods and climate models can simulate and predict sea-ice changes well, it is still very hard to distinguish some direct and robust factors associated with sea-ice changes from its internal variability and other noises. Here, with long-term observations (38 years from 1980 to 2017), we apply the causal effect networks algorithm to explore the direct precursors of September Arctic sea-ice extent by adjusting the maximal lead time from one to eight months. For lead time of more than three months, June downward longwave radiation flux in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago is the only one precursor. However, for lead time of 1–3 months, August sea-ice concentration in Western Arctic represents the strongest positive correlation with September sea-ice extent, while August sea-ice concentration factors in other regions have weaker influences on the marginal seas. Other precursors include August wind anomalies in the lower latitudes accompanied with an Arctic high pressure anomaly, which induces the sea-ice loss along the Eurasian coast. These robust precursors can be used to improve the seasonal predictions of Arctic sea ice and evaluate the climate models.more » « less
The teleconnection between tropical and extratropical climates in the North Pacific and continental regions of eastern Asia and western North America is known to vary on decadal to multidecadal time scales. In this study, the teleconnection pattern is studied with observational and reanalysis data products. The regional focus is set on the Hawaiian Islands in the central subtropical part of the North Pacific. By analysing correlations between regional climate indices and large‐scale climate modes during the years 1980 and 2014, it was found that the correlation between El Niño—Southern Oscillation (ENSO) and the synoptic weather activity over the Hawaiian Islands decreased over time. Composite analysis of the geopotential height anomalies and upper level winds suggest that the systematic shift in the North Pacific Jet (NPJ) position had an impact on the teleconnection between tropical Pacific SST and winter storm activity and precipitation variability in Hawai'i. The change in the correlations and in the NPJ structure coincides with a transition from the positive phase of the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) towards a neutral and weak negative state. This observation‐based study provides a central subtropical Pacific viewpoint in support of the growing body of research studies that have reported a major shift in the Pacific climate system during the mid‐1990s. The article further discusses the potential role of decadal‐scale changes in the North Pacific Oscillation (NPO) phase in changing the strength of the ENSO teleconnection with synoptic activity over the Hawaiian Islands. The results of this study are relevant to paleoclimate interpretation of individual proxy records as well as for regional downscaling of future rainfall for the Hawaiian Islands.