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Trends in the CERES dataset, 2000–13: the effects of sea ice and jet shifts and comparison to climate models

Hartmann, D. L. and Ceppi, P. (2014) Trends in the CERES dataset, 2000–13: the effects of sea ice and jet shifts and comparison to climate models. Journal of Climate, 27 (6). pp. 2444-2456. ISSN 1520-0442

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1175/JCLI-D-13-00411.1

Abstract/Summary

We review the effects of dynamical variability on clouds and radiation in observations and models and discuss their implications for cloud feedbacks. Jet shifts produce robust meridional dipoles in upper-level clouds and longwave cloud-radiative effect (CRE), but low-level clouds, which do not simply shift with the jet, dominate the shortwave CRE. Because the effect of jet variability on CRE is relatively small, future poleward jet shifts with global warming are only a second-order contribution to the total CRE changes around the midlatitudes, suggesting a dominant role for thermodynamic effects. This implies that constraining the dynamical response is unlikely to reduce the uncertainty in extratropical cloud feedback. However, we argue that uncertainty in the cloud-radiative response does affect the atmospheric circulation response to global warming, by modulating patterns of diabatic forcing. How cloud feedbacks can affect the dynamical response to global warming is an important topic of future research.

Item Type:Article
Refereed:Yes
Divisions:No Reading authors. Back catalogue items
Faculty of Science > School of Mathematical, Physical and Computational Sciences > Department of Meteorology
ID Code:46110
Publisher:American Meteorological Society

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