We thank the U.K. Meteorological Office for supplying both the cloud resolving model and radiation code used in this study. Dr. C. H. Sui and an anonymous reviewer made many helpful suggestions to improve the original manuscript. Prof. K.-M. Lau and Dr. C. H. Sui are thanked for informing us of some earlier work we were previously unaware of. Tristan Guillot is also thanked for helpful discussions on this subject, and many useful comments were received from Mike Blackburn who reviewed an early version of the manuscript. Adrian Tompkins was supported by NERC during this study.
Arking, A., 1991: The radiative effects of clouds and their impact on climate. Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc.,72, 795–813.
——, and D. Ziskin, 1994: Relationship between clouds and sea surface temperature in the western tropical Pacific. J. Climate,7, 988–1000.
Betts, A. K., 1990: Greenhouse warming and the tropical water budget. Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc.,71, 1464–1465.
Bony, S., K.-M. Lau, and Y. C. Sud, 1997: Sea surface temperature and large-scale circulation influences on tropical greenhouse effect and cloud radiative forcing. J. Climate,10, 2055–2076.
Bretherton, C. S., and P. K. Smolarkiewicz, 1989: Gravity waves, compensating subsidence and detrainment around cumulus clouds. J. Atmos. Sci.,46, 740–759.
Brown, P. R. A., and H. A. Swann, 1997: Evaluation of key microphysical parameters in three dimensional cloud model simulations using aircraft and multiparameter radar data. Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc.,123, 2245–2275.
Cess, R. D., and G. L. Potter, 1988: A methodology for understanding and intercomparing atmospheric climate feedback processes in general circulation models. J. Geophys. Res.,93, 8305–8314.
——, and Coauthors, 1990: Intercomparison of climate feedback processes in 19 atmospheric general circulation models. J. Geophys. Res.,95, 16 601–16 615.
——, and Coauthors, 1996: Cloud feedback in atmospheric general circulation models: An update. J. Geophys. Res.,101, 12 791–12 794.
Collins, W. D., F. P. J. Valero, P. J. Flatau, D. Lubin, H. Grassl, and P. Pilewskie, 1996: Radiative effects of convection in the tropical Pacific. J. Geophys. Res.,101, 14 999–15 012.
Dickinson, R. E., 1981: Convergence rate and stability of ocean–atmosphere coupling schemes with a zero-dimensional climate model. J. Atmos. Sci.,38, 2112–2120.
——, V. Meleshko, D. Randall, E. Sarachik, P. Silva-Dias, and A. Slingo, 1996: Climate processes. Climate Change 1995: The Science of Climate Change, J. T. Houghton, L. G. Meira Filho, B. A. Callander, N. Harris, A. Kattenberg, and K. Maskell, Eds., Cambridge University Press, 193–227.
Dutton, J. A., 1995: An analytical model of atmospheric feedback and global temperature change. J. Climate,8, 1122–1139.
Duvel, J. P., and F. M. Bréon, 1991: The clear-sky greenhouse effect sensitivity to a sea surface temperature change. J. Climate,4, 1162–1169.
Edwards, J. M., and A. Slingo, 1996: Studies with a flexible new radiation code. Part I: Choosing a configuration for a large-scale model. Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc.,122, 689–719.
Emanuel, K. A., 1991: A scheme for representing cumulus convection in large-scale models. J. Atmos. Sci.,48, 2313–2335.
——, 1996: Convective cloud microphysics and climate change. Preprints, Seventh Conf. on Mesoscale Processes, Reading, United Kingdom, Amer. Meteor. Soc., 615–617.
——, J. D. Neelin, and C. S. Bretherton, 1994: On large-scale circulations in convecting atmospheres. Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc.,120, 1111–1143.
Fu, R., A. D. Del Genio, and W. B. Rossow, 1990: Behavior of deep convective clouds in the tropical Pacific deduced from ISCCP radiances. J. Climate,3, 1129–1152.
——, ——, and ——, 1994: Influence of ocean surface conditions on atmospheric vertical thermodynamic structure and deep convection. J. Climate,7, 1092–1108.
Gaffen, D. J., W. P. Elliot, and A. Robock, 1992: Relationships between tropospheric water vapor and surface temperature as observed by radiosondes. Geophys. Res. Lett.,19, 1839–1842.
Garratt, J. R., 1992: The Atmospheric Boundary Layer. Cambridge University Press, 316 pp.
Grabowski, W. W., M. W. Moncrieff, and J. T. Kiehl, 1996: Long-term behaviour of precipitating tropical cloud systems: A numerical study. Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc.,122, 1019–1042.
Graham, N. E., and T. P. Barnett, 1987: Sea surface temperature, surface wind divergence, and convection over the tropical oceans. Science,238, 657–659.
Hallberg, R., and A. K. Inamdar, 1993: Observations of seasonal variations in atmospheric greenhouse trapping and its enhancement at high sea surface temperature. J. Climate,6, 920–931.
Held, I. M., R. S. Hemler, and V. Ramaswamy, 1993: Radiative-convective equilibrium with explicit two-dimensional moist convection. J. Atmos. Sci.,50, 3909–3927.
Jorgensen, D. P., and M. A. Lemone, 1989: Vertical velocity characteristics of oceanic convection. J. Atmos. Sci.,46, 621–640.
Kiehl, J. T., 1994: On the observed near cancellation between longwave and shortwave cloud forcing in tropical regions. J. Climate,7, 559–565.
Kuo, H. L., 1974: Further studies of the parameterization of the influence of cumulus convection on large-scale flow. J. Atmos. Sci.,31, 1232–1240.
Lau, K.-M., C. H. Sui, and W. K. Tao, 1993: A preliminary study of the tropical water cycle and its sensitivity to surface warming. Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc.,74, 1313–1321.
——, ——, M. D. Chou, and W. K. Tao, 1994: An inquiry into the cirrus-cloud thermostat effect for tropical sea surface temperature. Geophys. Res. Lett.,21, 1157–1160.
——, H.-T. Wu, and S. Bony, 1997: The role of large-scale atmospheric circulation in the relationship between tropical convection and sea surface temperature. J. Climate,10, 381–392.
LeMone, M. A., and E. J. Zipser, 1980: Cumulonimbus vertical velocity events in GATE. Part I: Diameter, intensity and mass flux. J. Atmos. Sci.,37, 2444–2457.
Leonard, B. P., 1991: The ULTIMATE conservative difference scheme applied to unsteady one-dimensional advection. Comput. Methods Appl. Mech. Eng.,19, 17–74.
Lin, Y.-L., R. D. Farley, and H. D. Orville, 1983: Bulk parameterization of the snow field in a cloud model. J. Climate Appl. Meteor.,22, 1065–1092.
Lucas, C., E. J. Zipser, and M. A. Lemone, 1994: Vertical velocity in oceanic convection off tropical Australia. J. Atmos. Sci.,51, 3183–3193.
Moncrieff, M. W., S. K. Krueger, D. Gregory, J. L. Redelsperger, and W.-K. Tao, 1997: GEWEX Cloud System Study (GCSS) Working Group 4: Precipitating convective cloud systems. Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc.,78, 831–845.
Petch, J., 1995: Modelling the interaction of clouds and radiation using bulk microphysical schemes. Ph.D. thesis, University of Reading, 191 pp.
——, 1998: Improved radiative transfer calculations from information provided by bulk microphysical schemes. J. Atmos. Sci.,55, 1846–1858.
Ramanathan, V., and W. Collins, 1991: Thermodynamic regulation of ocean warming by cirrus clouds deduced from observations of the 1987 El Nino. Nature,351, 27–32.
——, R. D. Cess, E. F. Harrison, P. Minnis, B. R. Barkstrom, E. Ahmad, and D. Hartmann, 1989: Cloud-radiative forcing and climate: Results from the earth radiation budget experiment. Science,243, 57–63.
Raval, A., and V. Ramanathan, 1989: Observational determination of the greenhouse effect. Nature,342, 758–761.
Robe, F. R., and K. A. Emanuel, 1996: Dependence of tropical convection on radiative forcing. J. Atmos. Sci.,53, 3265–3275.
Schlesinger, M. E., 1985: Feedback analysis of results from energy balance and radiative-convective models. Projecting the Climatic Effects of Increasing Carbon Dioxide, M. C. MacCracken and F. M. Luther, Eds., U.S. Department of Energy, 280–319.
——, and J. F. B. Mitchell, 1987: Climate model simulations of the equilibrium climatic response to increased carbon dioxide. Rev. Geophys.,25, 760–798.
Senior, C. A., and J. F. B. Mitchell, 1993: Carbon dioxide and climate:The impact of cloud parameterization. J. Climate,6, 393–418.
Shine, K. P., and A. Sinha, 1991: Sensitivity of the Earth’s climate to height-dependent changes in the water vapour mixing ratio. Nature,354, 382–384.
Shutts, G. J., and M. E. B. Gray, 1994: A numerical modelling study of the geostrophic adjustment following deep convection. Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc.,120, 1145–1178.
Stephens, G. L., 1990: On the relationship between water vapor over the oceans and sea surface temperature. J. Climate,3, 634–645.
Sui, C. H., K. M. Lau, W. K. Tao, M. D. Chou, and J. Simpson, 1993:Simulated water and radiation budgets in the Tropics. Preprints, 20th Conf. on Hurricanes and Tropical Meteorology, San Antonio, TX, Amer. Meteor. Soc., 431–434.
——, ——, ——, and J. Simpson, 1994: The tropical water and energy cycles in a cumulus ensemble model. Part I: Equilibrium climate. J. Atmos. Sci.,51, 711–728.
Sun, D. Z., and R. S. Lindzen, 1993: Distribution of tropical tropospheric water vapor. J. Atmos. Sci.,50, 1643–1660.
Swann, H., 1994: Cloud microphysical processes—A description of the parameterization used in the Large Eddy Model. JCMM Internal Rep. 10, 22 pp. [Available from Joint Centre for Mesoscale Meteorology, University of Reading, P.O. Box 243, Earley Gate, Reading RG6 6BB, United Kingdom.].
Taylor, J. P., J. M. Edwards, M. D. Glew, P. Hignett, and A. Slingo, 1996: Studies with a flexible new radiation code. Part II: Comparisons with aircraft shortwave data. Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc.,122, 839–861.
Tiedtke, M., 1989: A comprehensive mass flux scheme for cumulus parameterization in large-scale models. Mon. Wea. Rev.,117, 1779–1800.
Tompkins, A. M., 1997: Radiative-convective equilibrium of the tropical troposphere. Ph.D. thesis, University of Reading, 158 pp.
——, and G. C. Craig, 1998a: Radiative-convective equilibrium in a three-dimensional cloud ensemble model. Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc.,124, 2073–2097.
——, and ——, 1998b: Timescales of adjustment to radiative-convective equilibrium in the tropical atmosphere. Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc.,124, 2693–2713.
Waliser, D. E., and N. E. Graham, 1993: Convective cloud systems and warm-pool sea surface temperatures: Coupled interactions and self-regulation. J. Geophys. Res.,98, 12 881–12 893.
Weaver, C. P., W. D. Collins, and H. Grassl, 1994: Relationship between clear-sky atmospheric greenhouse effect and deep convection during the Central Equatorial Pacific Experiment: Model calculations and satellite observations. J. Geophys. Res.,99, 25 891–25 901.
Webb, M. J., A. Slingo, and G. L. Stephens, 1993: Seasonal variations of the clear-sky greenhouse effect: The role of changes in atmospheric temperatures and humidities. Climate Dyn.,9, 117–129.
Xu, K.-M., and D. A. Randall, 1995: Impact of interactive radiative transfer on the macroscopic behaviour of cumulus emsembles. Part I: Radiation parameterization and sensitivity tests. J. Atmos. Sci.,52, 785–799.
——, and ——, 1997: Statistical-equilibrium states of radiative-convective systems over the tropical oceans. Preprints, 22d Conf. on Hurricanes and Tropical Meteorology, Fort Collins, CO, Amer. Meteor. Soc., 67–68.
Zhang, C., 1993: Large-scale variability of atmospheric deep convection in relation to sea surface temperature in the tropics. J. Climate,6, 1898–1913.
Zhang, M. H., J. J. Hack, J. T. Kiehl, and R. D. Cess, 1994: Diagnostic study of climate feedback processes in atmospheric general circulation models. J. Geophys. Res.,99, 5525–5537.