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Title: Anthropogenic aerosols and the distribution of past large-scale precipitation change

In this paper, the climate response of precipitation to the effects of anthropogenic aerosols is a critical while not yet fully understood aspect in climate science. Results of selected models that participated the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 and the data from the Twentieth Century Reanalysis Project suggest that, throughout the tropics and also in the extratropical Northern Hemisphere, aerosols have largely dominated the distribution of precipitation changes in reference to the preindustrial era in the second half of the last century. Aerosol-induced cooling has offset some of the warming caused by the greenhouse gases from the tropics to the Arctic and thus formed the gradients of surface temperature anomaly that enable the revealed precipitation change patterns to occur. Improved representation of aerosol-cloud interaction has been demonstrated as the key factor for models to reproduce consistent distributions of past precipitation change with the reanalysis data.
  1. Massachusetts Inst. of Technology (MIT), Cambridge, MA (United States)
Publication Date:
Grant/Contract Number:
FG02-94ER61937; AGS-1339264
Published Article
Journal Name:
Geophysical Research Letters
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 42; Journal Issue: 24; Journal ID: ISSN 0094-8276
American Geophysical Union
Research Org:
Massachusetts Inst. of Technology (MIT), Cambridge, MA (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Biological and Environmental Research (BER) (SC-23)
Country of Publication:
United States
54 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES; clouds and aerosols; precipitation; Earth system modeling; climate change and variability; aerosols and particles
OSTI Identifier:
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1246479; OSTI ID: 1342522