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Yanzhong Li, Di Tian, and Hanoi Medina

Abstract

This study assessed multimodel subseasonal precipitation forecasts (SPFs) from eight subseasonal experiment (SubX) models over the contiguous United States (CONUS) and explored the generalized extreme value distribution (GEV)-based ensemble model output statistics (EMOS) framework for postprocessing multimodel ensemble SPF. The results showed that the SubX SPF skill varied by location and season, and the skill was relatively high in the western coastal region, north-central region, and Florida peninsula. The forecast skill was higher during winter than summer seasons, especially for lead week 3 in the northwest region. While no individual model consistently outperformed the others, the simple multimodel ensemble (MME) demonstrated a higher skill than any individual model. The GEV-based EMOS approach dramatically improved the MME subseasonal precipitation forecast skill at long lead times. The continuous ranked probability score (CRPS) was improved by approximately 20% in week 3 and 43% in lead week 4; the 5-mm Brier skill score (BSS) was improved by 59.2% in lead week 3 and 50.9% in lead week 4, with the largest improvements occurring in the northwestern, north-central, and southeastern CONUS. Regarding the relative contributions of the individual SubX model to the predictive skill, the NCEP model was given the highest weight at the shortest lead time, but the weight decreased dramatically with the increase in lead time, while the CESM, EMC, NCEP, and GMAO models were given approximately equal weights for lead weeks 2–4. The presence of active MJO conditions notably increased the forecast skill in the north-central region during weeks 3–4, while the ENSO phases influenced the skill mostly in the southern regions.

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Hanoi Medina, Di Tian, Fabio R. Marin, and Giovanni B. Chirico

Abstract

This study compares the performance of Global Ensemble Forecast System (GEFS) and European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF) precipitation ensemble forecasts in Brazil and evaluates different analog-based methods and a logistic regression method for postprocessing the GEFS forecasts. The numerical weather prediction (NWP) forecasts were evaluated against the Physical Science Division South America Daily Gridded Precipitation dataset using both deterministic and probabilistic forecasting evaluation metrics. The results show that the ensemble precipitation forecasts performed commonly well in the east and poorly in the northwest of Brazil, independent of the models and the postprocessing methods. While the raw ECMWF forecasts performed better than the raw GEFS forecasts, analog-based GEFS forecasts were more skillful and reliable than both raw ECMWF and GEFS forecasts. The choice of a specific postprocessing strategy had less impact on the performance than the postprocessing itself. Nonetheless, forecasts produced with different analog-based postprocessing strategies were significantly different and were more skillful and as reliable and sharp as forecasts produced with the logistic regression method. The approach considering the logarithm of current and past reforecasts as the measure of closeness between analogs was identified as the best strategy. The results also indicate that the postprocessing using analog methods with long-term reforecast archive improved raw GEFS precipitation forecasting skill more than using logistic regression with short-term reforecast archive. In particular, the postprocessing dramatically improves the GEFS precipitation forecasts when the forecasting skill is low or below zero.

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Anna Pelosi, Hanoi Medina, Joris Van den Bergh, Stéphane Vannitsem, and Giovanni Battista Chirico

Abstract

Forecasts from numerical weather prediction models suffer from systematic and nonsystematic errors, which originate from various sources such as subgrid-scale variability affecting large scales. Statistical postprocessing techniques can partly remove such errors. Adaptive MOS techniques based on Kalman filters (here called AMOS), are used to sequentially postprocess the forecasts, by continuously updating the correction parameters as new ground observations become available. These techniques, originally proposed for deterministic forecasts, are valuable when long training datasets do not exist. Here, a new adaptive postprocessing technique for ensemble predictions (called AEMOS) is introduced. The proposed method implements a Kalman filtering approach that fully exploits the information content of the ensemble for updating the parameters of the postprocessing equation. A verification study for the region of Campania in southern Italy is performed. Two years (2014–15) of daily meteorological observations of 10-m wind speed and 2-m temperature from 18 ground-based automatic weather stations are used, comparing them with the corresponding COSMO-LEPS ensemble forecasts. It is shown that the proposed adaptive method outperforms the AMOS method, while it shows comparable results to the member-by-member batch postprocessing approach.

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Daniela I. V. Domeisen, Christopher J. White, Hilla Afargan-Gerstman, Ángel G. Muñoz, Matthew A. Janiga, Frédéric Vitart, C. Ole Wulff, Salomé Antoine, Constantin Ardilouze, Lauriane Batté, Hannah C. Bloomfield, David J. Brayshaw, Suzana J. Camargo, Andrew Charlton-Pérez, Dan Collins, Tim Cowan, Maria del Mar Chaves, Laura Ferranti, Rosario Gómez, Paula L. M. González, Carmen González Romero, Johnna M. Infanti, Stelios Karozis, Hera Kim, Erik W. Kolstad, Emerson LaJoie, Llorenç Lledó, Linus Magnusson, Piero Malguzzi, Andrea Manrique-Suñén, Daniele Mastrangelo, Stefano Materia, Hanoi Medina, Lluís Palma, Luis E. Pineda, Athanasios Sfetsos, Seok-Woo Son, Albert Soret, Sarah Strazzo, and Di Tian

Abstract

Extreme weather events have devastating impacts on human health, economic activities, ecosystems, and infrastructure. It is therefore crucial to anticipate extremes and their impacts to allow for preparedness and emergency measures. There is indeed potential for probabilistic subseasonal prediction on time scales of several weeks for many extreme events. Here we provide an overview of subseasonal predictability for case studies of some of the most prominent extreme events across the globe using the ECMWF S2S prediction system: heatwaves, cold spells, heavy precipitation events, and tropical and extratropical cyclones. The considered heatwaves exhibit predictability on time scales of 3–4 weeks, while this time scale is 2–3 weeks for cold spells. Precipitation extremes are the least predictable among the considered case studies. ­Tropical cyclones, on the other hand, can exhibit probabilistic predictability on time scales of up to 3 weeks, which in the presented cases was aided by remote precursors such as the Madden–Julian oscillation. For extratropical cyclones, lead times are found to be shorter. These case studies clearly illustrate the potential for event-dependent advance warnings for a wide range of extreme events. The subseasonal predictability of extreme events demonstrated here allows for an extension of warning horizons, provides advance information to impact modelers, and informs communities and stakeholders affected by the impacts of extreme weather events.

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