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Boqi Liu and Congwen Zhu

Abstract

The onset of the South China Sea summer monsoon (SCSSM) has traditionally been ascribed to El Niño–Southern Oscillation (ENSO) on an interannual time scale, but the two do not correspond in some years. The present study applies harmonic analysis on the meridional temperature gradient (MTG) in the mid–upper troposphere over the South China Sea (SCS) and decomposes the onset process to be a slow-varying seasonal cycle and transient subseasonal component. The ENSO-related air temperature anomaly in the southern SCS provides seasonal predictability of SCSSM onset by a stable and robust relationship between ENSO and MTG seasonal cycle. However, in the northern SCS, the MTG is regulated by an intraseasonal oscillation (ISO) of extratropical air temperature with a significant 10–30-day period. This ISO originates over the western Tibetan Plateau (TP) and then propagates eastward and gets enhanced by anomalous diabatic heating due to spring rainfall anomaly over South China as a result of subseasonal thermal forcing of TP. When the ISO arrives to the north of the SCS, it directly changes the tropospheric temperature to modulate the MTG. Meanwhile, the upper-level circulation associated with the ISO alters the meridional potential vorticity advection and pumping effect, followed by the anomalous low-level westerly wind and monsoon convection over the SCS. The SCSSM onset is evidently disrupted from its seasonal cycle when this ISO is more active. Since the independence of its intensity from ENSO, this extratropical ISO over TP and South China provides additional subseasonal predictability of the onset dates of the SCSSM.

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Radan Huth and Martin Dubrovský

Abstract

Studies detecting trends in climate elements typically concentrate on their local significance, ignoring the question of whether the significant local trends may or may not have occurred as a result of chance. This paper fills this gap by examining several approaches to detecting statistical significance of trends defined on a grid (i.e., on a regional scale). To this end, we introduce a novel simple procedure of significance testing that is based on counting signs of local trends (sign test), and we compare it with five other approaches to testing collective significance of trends: counting, extended Mann–Kendall, Walker, false detection rate (FDR), and regression tests. Synthetic data are used to construct null distributions of trend statistics, to determine critical values of the tests, and to assess the performance of tests in terms of type-II error. For lower values of spatial and temporal autocorrelations, the sign test and extended Mann–Kendall test perform slightly better than the counting test; these three tests outperform the Walker, FDR, and regression tests by a wide margin. For high autocorrelations, which is a more realistic case, all tests become similar in their performance, with the exception of the regression test, which performs somewhat worse. Some tests cannot be used under specific conditions because of their construction: the Walker and FDR tests for high temporal autocorrelations, and the sign test under high spatial autocorrelations.

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Yishuai Jin and Zhengyu Liu

Abstract

In this paper, we investigate the potential factors that control the relationship between the El Niño–Southern Oscillation (ENSO) persistence barriers (PBs) in sea surface temperature (SST) and ocean heat content (OHC) and apply them to explain observational ENSO PBs. With the addition of seasonal growth rate in SST in the neutral recharge oscillator (NRO) model, approximate analytical solutions of autocorrelation functions for SST and OHC suggest strictly that the timing of PB for OHC leads that of SST by half a year and the strengths of the two PBs are the same. The numerical solutions of the NRO model also show a similar relationship. The role of ENSO growth rate with regard to PBs in SST and OHC is then identified in the damped and unstable ENSO regime. Therefore, it is suggested that for the observational ENSO, the seasonally varying ENSO growth rate in SST controls PBs in SST and OHC simultaneously.

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Momme C. Hell, Bruce D. Cornuelle, Sarah T. Gille, and Nicholas J. Lutsko

Abstract

Southern Ocean (SO) surface winds are essential for ventilating the upper ocean by bringing heat and CO2 to the ocean interior. The relationships between mixed layer ventilation, the southern annular mode (SAM), and the storm tracks remain unclear because processes can be governed by short-term wind events as well as long-term means. In this study, observed time-varying 5-day probability density functions (PDFs) of ERA5 surface winds and stresses over the SO are used in a singular value decomposition to derive a linearly independent set of empirical basis functions. The first modes of wind (72% of the total wind variance) and stress (74% of the total stress variance) are highly correlated with a standard SAM index (r = 0.82) and reflect the SAM’s role in driving cyclone intensity and, in turn, extreme westerly winds. The joint PDFs of zonal and meridional wind show that southerly and less westerly winds associated with strong mixed layer ventilation are more frequent during short and distinct negative SAM phases. The probability of these short-term events might be related to midlatitude atmospheric circulation. The second mode describes seasonal changes in the wind variance (16% of the total variance) that are uncorrelated with the first mode. The analysis produces similar results when repeated using 5-day PDFs from a suite of scatterometer products. Differences between wind product PDFs resemble the first mode of the PDFs. Together, these results show a strong correlation between surface stress PDFs and the leading modes of atmospheric variability, suggesting that empirical modes can serve as a novel pathway for understanding differences and variability of surface stress PDFs.

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Sukyoung Lee and Yohai Kaspi

Abstract

The structure and stability of Jupiter’s atmosphere is analyzed using transformed Eulerian mean (TEM) theory. Utilizing the ammonia distribution derived from microwave radiometer measurements of the Juno orbiter, the latitudinal and vertical distribution of the vertical velocity in the interior of Jupiter’s atmosphere is inferred. The resulting overturning circulation is then interpreted in the TEM framework to offer speculation of the vertical and meridional temperature distribution. At midlatitudes, the analyzed vertical velocity field shows Ferrel-cell-like patterns associated with each of the jets. A scaling analysis of the TEM overturning circulation equation suggests that in order for the Ferrel-cell-like patterns to be visible in the ammonia distribution, the static stability of Jupiter’s weather layer should be on the order of 1 × 10−2 s−1. At low latitudes, the ammonia distribution suggests strong upward motion, which is reminiscent of the rising branch of the Hadley cell where the static stability is weaker. Taken together, the analysis suggests that the temperature lapse rate in the midlatitudes is markedly smaller than that in the low latitudes. Because the cloud-top temperature is nearly uniform across all latitudes, the analysis suggests that in the interior of the weather layer, there could exist a temperature gradient between the low- and midlatitude regions.

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Yajie Li, Amanda Lee Hughes, and Peter D. Howe

Abstract

Message diffusion and message persuasion are two important aspects of success for official risk messages about hazards. Message diffusion enables more people to receive lifesaving messages, and message persuasion motivates them to take protective actions. This study helps to identify win–win message strategies by investigating how an underexamined factor, message content that is theoretically important to message persuasion, influences message diffusion for official risk messages about heat hazards on Twitter. Using multilevel negative binomial regression models, the respective and cumulative effects of four persuasive message factors—hazard intensity, health risk susceptibility, health impact, and response instruction—on retweet counts were analyzed using a dataset of heat-related tweets issued by U.S. National Weather Service accounts. Two subsets of heat-related tweets were also analyzed: 1) heat warning tweets about current or anticipated extreme heat events and 2) tweets about nonextreme heat events. This study found that heat-related tweets that mentioned more types of persuasive message factors were retweeted more frequently, and so were two subtypes of heat-related tweets. Mentions of hazard intensity also consistently predicted increased retweet counts. Mentions of health impacts positively influenced message diffusion for heat-related tweets and tweets about nonextreme heat events. Mentions of health risk susceptibility and response instructions positively predicted retweet counts for tweets about nonextreme heat events and tweets about official extreme heat warnings, respectively. In the context of natural hazards, this research informs practitioners with evidence-based message strategies to increase message diffusion on social media. Such strategies also have the potential to improve message persuasion.

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Qian Li, Matthew H. England, and Andrew McC. Hogg

Abstract

The Southern Ocean has undergone significant climate-related changes over recent decades, including intensified westerly winds and increased radiative heating. The interplay between wind-driven cooling and radiative warming of the ocean is complex and remains unresolved. In this study, idealized wind and thermal perturbations are analyzed in a global ocean–sea ice model at two horizontal resolutions: nominally, 1° and 0.1°. The sea surface temperature (SST) response shows a clear transition from a wind-driven cooling phase to a warming phase. This warming transition is largely attributed to meridional and vertical Ekman heat advection, which are both sensitive to model resolution due to the model-dependent components of temperature gradients. At higher model resolution, due to a more accurate representation of near-surface vertical temperature inversion and upward Ekman heat advection around Antarctica, the anomalous SST warming is stronger and develops earlier. The mixed layer depth at midlatitudes initially increases due to a wind-driven increase in Ekman transport of cold dense surface water northward, but then decreases when the thermal forcing drives enhanced surface stratification; both responses are more sensitive at lower model resolution. With the wind intensification, the residual overturning circulation increases less in the 0.1° case because of the adequately resolved eddy compensation. Ocean heat subduction penetrates along more tilted isopycnals in the 1° case, but it orients to follow isopycnal layers in the 0.1° case. These findings have implications for understanding the ocean response to the combined effects of Southern Hemisphere westerly wind changes and anthropogenic warming.

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Julia Linder and Victoria Campbell-Arvai

Abstract

In the midwestern United States, intensifying impacts from climate change necessitate adaptation by the agricultural sector. Tree fruit agriculture is uniquely vulnerable to climate change due to the long-lived nature of perennial systems, yet very few studies have addressed how fruit growers perceive climate change and are responding to climate risks. For this study, 16 semistructured interviews were conducted with Michigan tree fruit growers to understand how their climate change beliefs, beliefs about adaptive actions, and climate-related risk perceptions influence adaptation behaviors. While there was a great deal of uncertainty about the anthropogenic nature of climate change, growers generally agreed that unprecedented changes in climate and weather patterns were occurring. Because of a perception of little control over future climate impacts, most growers reactively adapted to climate risks that negatively impacted their orchards by implementing measures such as frost protection, irrigation, pesticides, and crop insurance. This study highlighted that while proactive adaptations such as crop diversification, planting new varieties, and improving soil health will be necessary to increase farm resilience in the future, growers were unable to justify making these changes due to their uncertainty about future climate changes. The findings from this study highlight the need for future outreach efforts by university extension agents, private agricultural advisors, and federal and state agency advisors to provide educational information on the long-term impacts of climate change in order to help growers increase the resilience of their farm in the face of future climate impacts.

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Muhammad Naufal Razin and Michael M. Bell

Abstract

Hurricane Ophelia (2005) underwent an unconventional eyewall replacement cycle (ERC) as it was a category-1 storm located over cold sea surface temperatures near 23°C. The ERC was analyzed using airborne radar, flight-level, and dropsonde data collected during the Hurricane Rainband and Intensity Change Experiment (RAINEX) intensive observation period on 11 September 2005. Results showed that the spinup of the secondary tangential wind maximum during the ERC can be attributed to the efficient convergence of absolute angular momentum by the midlevel inflow of Ophelia’s dominantly stratiform rainbands. This secondary tangential wind maximum strongly contributed to the azimuthal mean tangential wind field, which is conducive for increased low-level supergradient winds and corresponding outflow. The low-level supergradient forcing enhanced convergence to form a secondary eyewall. Ophelia provides a unique example of an ERC occurring in a weaker storm with predominantly stratiform rainbands, suggesting an important role of stratiform precipitation processes in the development of secondary eyewalls.

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Youjia Zou and Xiangying Xi

Abstract

It is generally accepted that the El Niño–Southern Oscillation (ENSO) dominates interannual climate variability. Yet, its genesis and maintenance mechanisms are still under intense debate, with no scientific consensus. Some authors argued that the westerly winds originating over the equatorial Indian Ocean are significantly enhanced and extend eastward in the western and central equatorial Pacific during El Niño events, thus advecting the warm pool eastward along the equator and causing SST anomalies. However, this assertion is unlikely to be quantitatively supported by observational data. Here we present detailed observational data and modeling evidence to demonstrate that the westerly winds had little change in intensity in the western equatorial Pacific, with a wider zonal extent only during most El Niño events, and with a slight increase even in the most pronounced 1997 El Niño. Instead, an eastward equatorial current near the equator has been observed and is considered to play a significant role in shifting the eastern edge of the warm pool eastward, elevating SSTs in the central and eastern equatorial Pacific and giving rise to El Niño, with the interactions between the eastward warm pool and the upwelling in the eastern cold tongue ascertaining the amplitudes of SST anomalies.

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