Dynamical influences on European climate: an uncertain future
Woollings, T. (2010) Dynamical influences on European climate: an uncertain future. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences, 368 (1924). pp. 3733-3756. ISSN 1364-503X
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To link to this article DOI: 10.1098/rsta.2010.0040
Climate science is coming under increasing pressure to deliver projections of future climate change at spatial scales as small as a few kilometres for use in impacts studies. But is our understanding and modelling of the climate system advanced enough to offer such predictions? Here we focus on the Atlantic–European sector, and on the effects of greenhouse gas forcing on the atmospheric and, to a lesser extent, oceanic circulations. We review the dynamical processes which shape European climate and then consider how each of these leads to uncertainty in the future climate. European climate is unique in many regards, and as such it poses a unique challenge for climate prediction. Future European climate must be considered particularly uncertain because (i) the spread between the predictions of current climate models is still considerable and (ii) Europe is particularly strongly affected by several processes which are known to be poorly represented in current models.