Equilibrium climate sensitivity estimated by equilibrating climate models

Rugenstein, Maria; Bloch-Johnson, Jonah; Gregory, Jonathan; Andrews, Timothy; Mauritsen, Thorsten; Li, Chao; Frölicher, Thomas L.; Paynter, David; Danabasoglu, Gokhan; Yang, Shuting; Dufresne, Jean-Louis; Cao, Long; Schmidt, Gavin A.; Abe-Ouchi, Ayako; Geoffrey, Olivier; Knutti, Reto (2020). Equilibrium climate sensitivity estimated by equilibrating climate models. Geophysical Research Letters, 47(4) American Geophysical Union 10.1029/2019GL083898

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The methods to quantify equilibrium climate sensitivity are still debated. We collect millennial-length simulations of coupled climate models and show that the global mean equilibrium warming is higher than those obtained using extrapolation methods from shorter simulations. Specifically, 27 simulations with 15 climate models forced with a range of CO2 concentrations show a median 17% larger equilibrium warming than estimated from the first 150 years of the simulations. The spatial patterns of radiative feedbacks change continuously, in most regions reducing their tendency to stabilizing the climate. In the equatorial Pacific, however, feedbacks become more stabilizing with time. The global feedback evolution is initially dominated by the tropics, with eventual substantial contributions from the mid-latitudes. Time-dependent feedbacks underscore the need of a measure of climate sensitivity that accounts for the degree of equilibration, so that models, observations, and paleo proxies can be adequately compared and aggregated to estimate future warming.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

08 Faculty of Science > Physics Institute > Climate and Environmental Physics
10 Strategic Research Centers > Oeschger Centre for Climate Change Research (OCCR)

UniBE Contributor:

Frölicher, Thomas

Subjects:

500 Science > 530 Physics

ISSN:

0094-8276

Publisher:

American Geophysical Union

Language:

English

Submitter:

BORIS Import 2

Date Deposited:

07 Sep 2021 16:06

Last Modified:

07 Sep 2021 16:06

Publisher DOI:

10.1029/2019GL083898

BORIS DOI:

10.48350/158648

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/158648

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