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Lin Chen, Yongqiang Yu, and De-Zheng Sun

1. Introduction Cloud and water vapor are major modulators in the climate system and strongly influence both the global circulation and energy balance through their radiative effects ( Manabe and Wetherald 1967 ; Hartmann and Short 1980 ; Harrison et al. 1990 ; Kiehl and Trenberth 1997 ; Soden 1997 ; Houghton et al. 2001 ; Stephens 2005 ). The climate sensitivity to the rise of the manmade greenhouse gases in the atmosphere depends critically on the feedbacks from water vapor and clouds

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Justin Sheffield, Andrew P. Barrett, Brian Colle, D. Nelun Fernando, Rong Fu, Kerrie L. Geil, Qi Hu, Jim Kinter, Sanjiv Kumar, Baird Langenbrunner, Kelly Lombardo, Lindsey N. Long, Eric Maloney, Annarita Mariotti, Joyce E. Meyerson, Kingtse C. Mo, J. David Neelin, Sumant Nigam, Zaitao Pan, Tong Ren, Alfredo Ruiz-Barradas, Yolande L. Serra, Anji Seth, Jeanne M. Thibeault, Julienne C. Stroeve, Ze Yang, and Lei Yin

surface temperatures, and atmospheric and surface water budgets. Section 4 evaluates the model simulations of extremes of temperature and surface hydrology and temperature-based biophysical indicators such as growing season length. Section 5 focuses on regional climate features such as North Atlantic winter storms, the Great Plains low-level jet, and Arctic sea ice. The results are synthesized in section 6 and compared to results from CMIP3 models for selected variables. 2. CMIP5 models and

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Eric D. Maloney, Suzana J. Camargo, Edmund Chang, Brian Colle, Rong Fu, Kerrie L. Geil, Qi Hu, Xianan Jiang, Nathaniel Johnson, Kristopher B. Karnauskas, James Kinter, Benjamin Kirtman, Sanjiv Kumar, Baird Langenbrunner, Kelly Lombardo, Lindsey N. Long, Annarita Mariotti, Joyce E. Meyerson, Kingtse C. Mo, J. David Neelin, Zaitao Pan, Richard Seager, Yolande Serra, Anji Seth, Justin Sheffield, Julienne Stroeve, Jeanne Thibeault, Shang-Ping Xie, Chunzai Wang, Bruce Wyman, and Ming Zhao

day −1 ). Six regions were defined for the NA continent: Central America (CAM), western North America (WNA), central North America (CNA), eastern North America (ENA), Alaska/northwest Canada (ALA), and northeast Canada (NEC). The circles represent individual climate models. The triangles represent the MEM values. Precipitation balances runoff plus evapotranspiration over decadal time scales by assuming no change in water storage. The diagonal lines represent contours of precipitation. A shift in

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