Climate Impacts From Large Volcanic Eruptions in a High-Resolution Climate Model: The Importance of Forcing Structure

Wenchang Yang, Gabriel Andres Vecchi, Stephan Andreas Fueglistaler, Larry W. Horowitz, David J. Luet, Ángel G. Muñoz, David Paynter, Seth Underwood

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

Explosivevolcanic eruptions have large climate impacts and can serve as observable tests of the climatic response to radiative forcing. Using a high-resolution climate model, we contrast the climate responses to Pinatubo, with symmetric forcing, and those to Santa Maria and Agung, which had meridionally asymmetric forcing. Although Pinatubo had larger global-mean forcing, asymmetric forcing strongly shifts the latitude of tropical rainfall features, leading to larger local precipitation/tropical cyclone changes. For example, North Atlantic tropical cyclone activity over is enhanced/reduced by SH forcing (Agung)/NH forcing (Santa Maria) but changes little in response to the Pinatubo forcing. Moreover, the transient climate sensitivity estimated from the response to Santa Maria is 20% larger than that from Pinatubo or Agung. This spread in climatic impacts of volcanoes needs to be considered when evaluating the role of volcanoes in global and regional climate and serves to contextualize the well-observed response to Pinatubo.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)7690-7699
Number of pages10
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Volume46
Issue number13
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 16 2019

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geophysics
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)

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