1A.2 Constraining Aerosol Forcing from the Land Surface Temperature Record

Monday, 8 January 2018: 9:00 AM
Salon F (Hilton) (Austin, Texas)
Zhaoyi Shen, Princeton Univ., Princeton, NJ; and Y. Ming and I. M. Held

Understanding the anthropogenic influence on regional climate change is important for policy making and adaption planning. Atmosphere/land global climate models (AGCMs) with prescribed oceanic boundary conditions allow a decomposition of historical climate change into a fast component that occurs on an atmospheric adjustment time scale of a month or less, and a slow component due to the changing ocean and sea ice. These two components are simultaneously present in comprehensive coupled climate models. The slow component contains much of the uncertainty in climate sensitivity and is where the forced signals are mixed most strongly with natural variability. Here we use AGCMs to investigate the fast component of the anthropogenic influence on regional temperature change. Although this fast component of the anthropogenic warming is often thought of as small, we find that it is detectable in the observed warming of Northern Hemisphere land during the warm season in recent decades. We suggest that the fast response to aerosol forcing in isolation can be detected on subcontinental scales, and that AGCM simulations of the fast response are useful for empirically constraining aerosol forcing.
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