Volcanic Influence on European Summer Precipitation through Monsoons: Possible Cause for “Years without Summer”*

Wegmann, Martin; Brönnimann, Stefan; Bhend, Jonas; Franke, Jörg; Folini, Doris; Wild, Martin; Luterbacher, Jürg (2014). Volcanic Influence on European Summer Precipitation through Monsoons: Possible Cause for “Years without Summer”*. Journal of Climate, 27(10), pp. 3683-3691. American Meteorological Society 10.1175/JCLI-D-13-00524.1

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Strong tropical volcanic eruptions have significant effects on global and regional temperatures. Their effects on precipitation, however, are less well understood. Analyzing hydroclimatic anomalies after 14 strong eruptions during the last 400 years in climate reconstructions and model simulations, a reduction of the Asian and African summer monsoons and an increase of south-central European summer precipitation in the year following the eruption was found. The simulations provide evidence for a dynamical link between these phenomena. The weaker monsoon circulations weaken the northern branch of the Hadley circulation, alter the atmospheric circulation over the Atlantic–European sector, and increase precipitation over Europe. This mechanism is able to explain, for instance, the wet summer in parts of Europe during the “year without a summer” of 1816, which up to now has not been explained. This study underlines the importance of atmospheric teleconnections between the tropics and midlatitudes to better understand the regional climate response to stratospheric volcanic aerosols.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


08 Faculty of Science > Institute of Geography > Physical Geography > Unit Climatology
10 Strategic Research Centers > Oeschger Centre for Climate Change Research (OCCR)
08 Faculty of Science > Institute of Geography

UniBE Contributor:

Wegmann, Martin; Brönnimann, Stefan; Bhend, Jonas; Franke, Jörg and Luterbacher, Jürg


500 Science > 550 Earth sciences & geology
900 History > 910 Geography & travel




American Meteorological Society




Monika Wälti-Stampfli

Date Deposited:

28 May 2014 12:06

Last Modified:

04 Nov 2015 01:07

Publisher DOI:






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