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Creators/Authors contains: "Ting, Mingfang"

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  1. Free, publicly-accessible full text available April 28, 2024
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  3. Free, publicly-accessible full text available January 1, 2024
  4. Abstract

    The impact of extreme heat on crop yields is an increasingly pressing issue given anthropogenic climate warming. However, some of the physical mechanisms involved in these impacts remain unclear, impeding adaptation-relevant insight and reliable projections of future climate impacts on crops. Here, using a multiple regression model based on observational data, we show that while extreme dry heat steeply reduced U.S. corn and soy yields, humid heat extremes had insignificant impacts and even boosted yields in some areas, despite having comparably high dry-bulb temperatures as their dry heat counterparts. This result suggests that conflating dry and humid heat extremes may lead to underestimated crop yield sensitivities to extreme dry heat. Rainfall tends to precede humid but not dry heat extremes, suggesting that multivariate weather sequences play a role in these crop responses. Our results provide evidence that extreme heat in recent years primarily affected yields by inducing moisture stress, and that the conflation of humid and dry heat extremes may lead to inaccuracy in projecting crop yield responses to warming and changing humidity.

  5. Abstract By summer 2021 moderate to exceptional drought impacted 28% of North America, focused west of the Mississippi, with serious impacts on fire, water resources, and agriculture. Here, using reanalyses and SST-forced climate models, we examine the onset and development of this southwestern drought from its inception in summer 2020 through winter and spring 2020/21. The drought severity in summer 2021 resulted from four consecutive prior seasons in which precipitation in the southwest United States was the lowest on record or, at least, extremely dry. The dry conditions in summer 2020 arose from internal atmospheric variability but are beyond the range of what the studied atmosphere models simulate for that season. From winter 2020 through spring 2021 the worsening drought conditions were guided by the development of a La Niña in the tropical Pacific Ocean. Decadal variability in the Pacific Ocean aided drought in the southern part of the region by driving the cool season to be drier during the last two decades. There is also evidence that the southern part of the region in spring is drying due to human-driven climate change. In sum the drought onset was driven by a combination of internal atmospheric variability and interannual climatemore »variability and aided by natural decadal variability and human-driven climate change.« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available November 15, 2023
  6. Abstract The increasing frequency of heatwaves over East Asia (EA) is impacting agriculture, water management, and people’s livelihood. However, the effect of humidity on high-temperature events has not yet been fully explored. Using observations and future climate change projections conducted with the latest generation of Earth System models, we examine the mechanisms of dry and moist heatwaves over EA. In the dry heatwave region, anticyclonic circulation has been amplified after the onset of heatwaves under the influence of the convergence of anomalous wave activity flux over northern EA, resulting in surface warming via adiabatic processes. In contrast, the moist heatwaves are triggered by the locally generated anticyclonic anomalies, with the surface warming amplified by cloud and water vapor feedback. Model simulations from phase six of the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project projected display intensification of dry heatwaves and increased moist heatwave days in response to projected increases in greenhouse gas concentrations.
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available December 1, 2023
  7. Abstract

    Anticipated future reductions in aerosol emissions are expected to accelerate warming and substantially change precipitation characteristics. Therefore, it is vital to identify the existing patterns and possible future pathways of anthropogenic aerosol reductions. The COVID-19 pandemic prompted abrupt, global declines in transportation and industrial activities, providing opportunities to study the aerosol effects of pandemic-driven emissions changes. Here, measurements of aerosol optical depth (AOD) from two satellite instruments were used to characterize aerosol burdens throughout 2020 in four Northern Hemisphere source regions (Eastern & Central China, the United States, India, and Europe). In most regions, record-low measures of AOD persisted beyond the earliest ‘lockdown’ periods of the pandemic. Record-low values were most concentrated during the boreal spring and summer months, when 56% to 72% of sampled months showed record-low AOD values for their respective regions. However, in India and Eastern & Central China, the COVID-19 AOD signature was eclipsed by sources of natural variability (dust) and a multi-year trend, respectively. In the United States and Europe, a likely COVID-19 signal peaks in the summer of 2020, contributing as much as −.01 to −.03 AOD units to observed anomalies.

  8. Abstract We investigate wintertime extreme sea ice loss events on synoptic to subseasonal time scales over the Barents-Kara Sea, where the largest sea ice variability is located. Consistent with previous studies, extreme sea ice loss events are associated with moisture intrusions over the Barents-Kara Sea, which are driven by the large-scale atmospheric circulation. In addition to the role of downward longwave radiation associated with moisture intrusions, which is emphasized by previous studies, our analysis shows strong turbulent heat fluxes are associated with extreme sea ice melting events, with both turbulent sensible and latent heat fluxes contributing, though turbulent sensible heat fluxes dominate. Our analysis also shows that these events are connected to tropical convective anomalies. A dipole pattern of convective anomalies with enhanced convection over the Maritime Continent and suppressed convection over the central to eastern Pacific is consistently detected about 6 to 10 days prior to extreme sea ice loss events. This pattern is associated with either the Madden-Julian Oscillation (MJO) or El Niño–Southern Oscillation (ENSO). Composites show that extreme sea ice loss events are connected to tropical convection via Rossby wave propagation in the midlatitudes. However, tropical convective anomalies alone are not sufficient to trigger extreme sea icemore »loss events, suggesting that extratropical variability likely modulates the connection between tropical convection and extreme sea ice loss events.« less