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Convection-permitting simulations of current and future climates over the Tibetan Plateau


doi:  10.1007/s00376-024-3277-9

  • The Tibetan Plateau (TP) region, known as “Asian water tower”, provides a vital water resource for downstream regions. Previous studies of water cycle changes over the TP have been conducted with climate models of coarse resolution in which deep convection should be parameterized. In this study, we present results from a first set of high-resolution climate change simulations that permit convection at approximately 3.3-km grid spacing with focus on the TP using the Icosahedral Nonhydrostatic Weather and Climate Model (ICON). Two 12-year simulations were performed, consisting of a retrospective simulation (2008-2020) with initial and boundary conditions from ERA5 reanalysis and a pseudo-global warming projection driven by modified reanalysis-derived initial and boundary conditions by adding the monthly CMIP6 ensemble-mean climate change under the SSP5-8.5 scenario. The retrospective simulation shows overall good performance in capturing the seasonal precipitation and surface air temperature. Over the central and eastern TP, the average biases in precipitation (temperature) are less than -0.34 mm/day (-1.1 °C) throughout the year. The simulated biases over the TP are height dependent. Cold (wet) biases are found in summer (winter) above 5500 m. The future climate simulation suggests that the TP will be wetter and warmer under the SSP5-8.5 scenario. The general features of projected changes in ICON are comparable to the CMIP6 ensemble projection, but the added value from kilometer-scale modeling is evident in both precipitation and temperature projections over complex topographic regions. These ICON-downscaled climate change simulations provide a high-resolution dataset to the community for study of regional climate changes and impacts over the TP.
  • [1] LIU Ge, WU Renguang, ZHANG Yuanzhi, and NAN Sulan, 2014: The Summer Snow Cover Anomaly over the Tibetan Plateau and Its Association with Simultaneous Precipitation over the Mei-yu-Baiu region, ADVANCES IN ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCES, 31, 755-764.  doi: 10.1007/s00376-013-3183-z
    [2] Koji DAIRAKU, Seita EMORI, Toru NOZAWA, 2008: Impacts of Global Warming on Hydrological Cycles in the Asian Monsoon Region, ADVANCES IN ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCES, 25, 960-973.  doi: 10.1007/s00376-008-0960-1
    [3] ZHU Weijun, Yongsheng ZHANG, 2009: Summertime Atmospheric Teleconnection Pattern Associated with a Warming over the Eastern Tibetan Plateau, ADVANCES IN ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCES, 26, 413-422.  doi: 10.1007/s00376-009-0413-5
    [4] Donglin GUO, Huijun WANG, 2016: Comparison of a Very-fine-resolution GCM with RCM Dynamical Downscaling in Simulating Climate in China, ADVANCES IN ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCES, 33, 559-570.  doi: 10.1007/s00376-015-5147-y
    [5] Zhongfeng XU, Ying HAN, Meng-Zhuo ZHANG, Chi-Yung TAM, Zong-Liang YANG, Ahmed M. EL KENAWY, Congbin FU, 2024: Assessing the Performance of a Dynamical Downscaling Simulation Driven by a Bias-Corrected CMIP6 Dataset for Asian Climate, ADVANCES IN ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCES, 41, 974-988.  doi: 10.1007/s00376-023-3101-y
    [6] Jintao ZHANG, Qinglong YOU, Fangying WU, Ziyi CAI, Nick PEPIN, 2022: The Warming of the Tibetan Plateau in Response to Transient and Stabilized 2.0°C/1.5°C Global Warming Targets, ADVANCES IN ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCES, 39, 1198-1206.  doi: 10.1007/s00376-022-1299-8
    [7] Lihua ZHU, Gang HUANG, Guangzhou FAN, Xia QU, Guijie ZHAO, Wei HUA, 2017: Evolution of Surface Sensible Heat over the Tibetan Plateau Under the Recent Global Warming Hiatus, ADVANCES IN ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCES, 34, 1249-1262.  doi: 10.1007/s00376-017- 6298-9
    [8] Lang ZHANG, Yaoming MA, Weiqiang MA, Binbin WANG, 2018: Comparison of Different Generation Mechanisms of Free Convection between Two Stations on the Tibetan Plateau, ADVANCES IN ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCES, 35, 1137-1144.  doi: 10.1007/s00376-018-7195-6
    [9] LI Wei, CHEN Longxun, 2003: Characteristics of the Seasonal Variation of the Surface Total Heating over the Tibetan Plateau and Its Surrounding Area in Summer 1998 and Its Relationship with the Convection over the Subtropical Area of the Western Pacific, ADVANCES IN ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCES, 20, 343-348.  doi: 10.1007/BF02690792
    [10] Deniz BOZKURT, David H. BROMWICH, Jorge CARRASCO, Keith M. HINES, Juan Carlos MAUREIRA, Roberto RONDANELLI, 2020: Recent Near-surface Temperature Trends in the Antarctic Peninsula from Observed, Reanalysis and Regional Climate Model Data, ADVANCES IN ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCES, 37, 477-493.  doi: 10.1007/s00376-020-9183-x
    [11] Peihua QIN, Zhenghui XIE, Rui HAN, Buchun LIU, 2024: Evaluation and Projection of Population Exposure to Temperature Extremes over the Beijing−Tianjin−Hebei Region Using a High-Resolution Regional Climate Model RegCM4 Ensemble, ADVANCES IN ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCES, 41, 1132-1146.  doi: 10.1007/s00376-023-3123-5
    [12] DUAN Anmin, WU Guoxiong, LIU Yimin, MA Yaoming, ZHAO Ping, 2012: Weather and Climate Effects of the Tibetan Plateau, ADVANCES IN ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCES, 29, 978-992.  doi: 10.1007/s00376-012-1220-y
    [13] Shuo JIA, Jiefan YANG, Hengchi LEI, 2024: Case Studies of the Microphysical and Kinematic Structure of Summer Mesoscale Precipitation Clouds over the Eastern Tibetan Plateau, ADVANCES IN ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCES, 41, 97-114.  doi: 10.1007/s00376-023-2303-7
    [14] WANG Chenghai, SHI Hongxia, HU Haolin, WANG Yi, XI Baike, 2015: Properties of Cloud and Precipitation over the Tibetan Plateau, ADVANCES IN ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCES, 32, 1504-1516.  doi: 10.1007/s00376-015-4254-0
    [15] LIU Yimin, BAO Qing, DUAN Anmin, QIAN Zheng'an, WU Guoxiong, 2007: Recent Progress in the Impact of the Tibetan Plateau on Climate in China, ADVANCES IN ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCES, 24, 1060-1076.  doi: 10.1007/s00376-007-1060-3
    [16] Kequan ZHANG, Jiakang DUAN, Siyi ZHAO, Jiankai ZHANG, James KEEBLE, Hongwen LIU, 2022: Evaluating the Ozone Valley over the Tibetan Plateau in CMIP6 Models, ADVANCES IN ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCES, 39, 1167-1183.  doi: 10.1007/s00376-021-0442-2
    [17] WANG Leidi, LÜ Daren, HE Qing, 2015: The Impact of Surface Properties on Downward Surface Shortwave Radiation over the Tibetan Plateau, ADVANCES IN ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCES, 32, 759-771.  doi: 10.1007/s00376-014-4131-2
    [18] Yahao WU, Liping LIU, 2017: Statistical Characteristics of Raindrop Size Distribution in the Tibetan Plateau and Southern China, ADVANCES IN ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCES, 34, 727-736.  doi: 10.1007/s00376-016-5235-7
    [19] Li Guo ping, Lu Jinghua, Jin Bingling, Bu Nima, 2001: The Effects of Anomalous Snow Cover of the Tibetan Plateau on the Surface Heating, ADVANCES IN ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCES, 18, 1207-1214.  doi: 10.1007/s00376-001-0034-0
    [20] YOU Wei, ZANG Zengliang, PAN Xiaobin, ZHANG Lifeng, LI Yi, 2015: Statistical Analysis of Thunderstorms on the Eastern Tibetan Plateau Based on Modified Thunderstorm Indices, ADVANCES IN ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCES, 32, 515-527.  doi: 10.1007/s00376-014-4039-x

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Manuscript History

Manuscript received: 21 October 2023
Manuscript revised: 09 March 2024
Manuscript accepted: 26 March 2024
通讯作者: 陈斌, bchen63@163.com
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Convection-permitting simulations of current and future climates over the Tibetan Plateau

Abstract: The Tibetan Plateau (TP) region, known as “Asian water tower”, provides a vital water resource for downstream regions. Previous studies of water cycle changes over the TP have been conducted with climate models of coarse resolution in which deep convection should be parameterized. In this study, we present results from a first set of high-resolution climate change simulations that permit convection at approximately 3.3-km grid spacing with focus on the TP using the Icosahedral Nonhydrostatic Weather and Climate Model (ICON). Two 12-year simulations were performed, consisting of a retrospective simulation (2008-2020) with initial and boundary conditions from ERA5 reanalysis and a pseudo-global warming projection driven by modified reanalysis-derived initial and boundary conditions by adding the monthly CMIP6 ensemble-mean climate change under the SSP5-8.5 scenario. The retrospective simulation shows overall good performance in capturing the seasonal precipitation and surface air temperature. Over the central and eastern TP, the average biases in precipitation (temperature) are less than -0.34 mm/day (-1.1 °C) throughout the year. The simulated biases over the TP are height dependent. Cold (wet) biases are found in summer (winter) above 5500 m. The future climate simulation suggests that the TP will be wetter and warmer under the SSP5-8.5 scenario. The general features of projected changes in ICON are comparable to the CMIP6 ensemble projection, but the added value from kilometer-scale modeling is evident in both precipitation and temperature projections over complex topographic regions. These ICON-downscaled climate change simulations provide a high-resolution dataset to the community for study of regional climate changes and impacts over the TP.

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