04 April 2019

Can we Constrain Uncertainty in Hydrologic Cycle Projections?

Science

  

Impact

  

Summary

Climate change intensifies the earth’s hydrologic cycle, which has far-reaching consequences including water availability, agricultural production, and electric power generation. The rate of intensification projected by state-of-the-art global climate models with increasing greenhouse gas emissions, however, is highly uncertain. Thackeray et al. (2018) show that these uncertainties are related to how GCMs distribute future precipitation by either strongly increasing extreme precipitation at the cost of non-extreme events or by increasing non-extreme precipitation at the cost of extreme precipitation events. These results could help to constrain uncertainties in future hydrologic cycle intensification, thereby improving our understanding of future water resource availability and extreme hydrologic events.

Contact
Angeline Pendergrass
National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR)
Publications
Prein, AF, and A Pendergrass.  2019.  "Can we Constrain Uncertainty in Hydrologic Cycle Projections?"  Geophysical Research Letters.  https://doi.org/10.1029/2018gl081529.