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Lauren E. Hay, Steven L. Markstrom, and Christian Ward-Garrison

.2. GCMs General circulation models (or global climate models) are numerical models that represent all components of the Earth system, including the atmosphere, oceans, cryosphere, and land surface. The climate-change signal from individual GCMs (i.e., the difference between simulated future climate and simulated historical climate) can vary in direction and magnitude because of the uncertainties associated with each GCM parameterization, initial forcings, emission scenarios, and representation of the

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P. C. D. Milly and Krista A. Dunne

underlying (8) and expected to prevail at the large spatial scales considered by climate models. Fourth, the Jensen–Haise formula places no (total) energy-availability limit on evapotranspiration. Fifth, and related to the fourth point, hydrologic adjustment apparently severs the feedback from land to atmosphere. If the Jensen–Haise formula were used in a climate model (a practice not being advocated here), the relatively large increase in e p might lead, through this feedback, to amplified surface

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John Risley, Hamid Moradkhani, Lauren Hay, and Steve Markstrom

model. GCMs are limited in their representation of Earth’s physical processes, model resolution, and linkages between the atmosphere, ocean, and land bodies. For the five GCMs used in this study, the latitude and longitude grid spacing of the atmospheric component ranged from 1.9° to 4.0° and from 1.9° to 5.0°, respectively ( Alley 2007 ). For the study basin latitudes, a 5° distance between longitudes ranges from approximately 350 to 450 km, which is a climate input grid spacing that is too coarse

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Mark C. Mastin, Katherine J. Chase, and R. W. Dudley

. Winstral , 2007 : Finding the rain/snow transition elevation during storm events in mountain basins . Proc. Joint Symp. JHW001: Interactions between Snow, Vegetation and the Atmosphere, Perugia, Italy, IUGG, 35 . Mastin , M. C. , 2008 : Effects of potential future warming on runoff in the Yakima River basin, Washington . U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Rep. 2008-5124, 12 pp . McCabe , G. J. , and D. M. Wolock , 1999 : General-circulation-model simulations of future

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John F. Walker, Lauren E. Hay, Steven L. Markstrom, and Michael D. Dettinger

1. Introduction General circulation model (GCM) simulations through 2099 project a wide range of possible future climate changes in response to increasing greenhouse-gas concentrations in the atmosphere ( Solomon et al. 2007 ). To determine the sensitivity and potential impact of long-term climate change on the freshwater resources of the United States, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) global change study “An integrated watershed scale response to global change in selected basins across the

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Kathryn M. Koczot, Steven L. Markstrom, and Lauren E. Hay

using downscaled GCM output and a hydrologic model, are subject to numerous sources of uncertainty (see Hay et al. 2011 ). These sources include the GCM models, the downscaling technique, and the hydrologic model. The representation of the physical processes of the atmosphere, model structure, and feedbacks within the climate system all introduce large uncertainties in the GCM outputs (see Alley et al. 2007 ). GCMs produce outputs at a very coarse spatial resolution compared to the spatial

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