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Title: Human influence on the seasonal cycle of tropospheric temperature

Abstract

We provide scientific evidence that a human-caused signal in the seasonal cycle of tropospheric temperature has emerged from the background noise of natural variability. Satellite data and the anthropogenic “fingerprint” predicted by climate models show common large-scale changes in geographical patterns of seasonal cycle amplitude. These common features include increases in amplitude at mid-latitudes in both hemispheres, amplitude decreases at high latitudes in the Southern Hemisphere, and small changes in the tropics. Simple physical mechanisms explain these features. The model fingerprint of seasonal cycle changes is identifiable with high statistical confidence in five out of six satellite temperature datasets. Our results suggest that attribution studies with the changing seasonal cycle provide powerful evidence for a significant human effect on Earth’s climate.

Authors:
ORCiD logo [1]; ORCiD logo [1];  [1]; ORCiD logo [1];  [1]; ORCiD logo [1];  [2]; ORCiD logo [3]; ORCiD logo [4]; ORCiD logo [1]; ORCiD logo [1]; ORCiD logo [5];  [4]; ORCiD logo [6]
  1. Program for Climate Model Diagnosis and Intercomparison (PCMDI), Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Livermore, CA 94550, USA.
  2. Department of Atmospheric Sciences, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195, USA.
  3. Earth and Planetary Sciences, University of California, Santa Cruz, CA 95064, USA.
  4. Remote Sensing Systems, Santa Rosa, CA 95401, USA.
  5. Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA 02139, USA.
  6. Center for Satellite Applications and Research, NOAA/NESDIS, College Park, MD 20740, USA.
Publication Date:
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
1460920
Grant/Contract Number:  
AC52-07NA27344; Early Career Research Program Award SCW1295
Resource Type:
Published Article
Journal Name:
Science
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Name: Science Journal Volume: 361 Journal Issue: 6399; Journal ID: ISSN 0036-8075
Publisher:
American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English

Citation Formats

Santer, Benjamin D., Po-Chedley, Stephen, Zelinka, Mark D., Cvijanovic, Ivana, Bonfils, Céline, Durack, Paul J., Fu, Qiang, Kiehl, Jeffrey, Mears, Carl, Painter, Jeffrey, Pallotta, Giuliana, Solomon, Susan, Wentz, Frank J., and Zou, Cheng-Zhi. Human influence on the seasonal cycle of tropospheric temperature. United States: N. p., 2018. Web. doi:10.1126/science.aas8806.
Santer, Benjamin D., Po-Chedley, Stephen, Zelinka, Mark D., Cvijanovic, Ivana, Bonfils, Céline, Durack, Paul J., Fu, Qiang, Kiehl, Jeffrey, Mears, Carl, Painter, Jeffrey, Pallotta, Giuliana, Solomon, Susan, Wentz, Frank J., & Zou, Cheng-Zhi. Human influence on the seasonal cycle of tropospheric temperature. United States. doi:https://doi.org/10.1126/science.aas8806
Santer, Benjamin D., Po-Chedley, Stephen, Zelinka, Mark D., Cvijanovic, Ivana, Bonfils, Céline, Durack, Paul J., Fu, Qiang, Kiehl, Jeffrey, Mears, Carl, Painter, Jeffrey, Pallotta, Giuliana, Solomon, Susan, Wentz, Frank J., and Zou, Cheng-Zhi. Thu . "Human influence on the seasonal cycle of tropospheric temperature". United States. doi:https://doi.org/10.1126/science.aas8806.
@article{osti_1460920,
title = {Human influence on the seasonal cycle of tropospheric temperature},
author = {Santer, Benjamin D. and Po-Chedley, Stephen and Zelinka, Mark D. and Cvijanovic, Ivana and Bonfils, Céline and Durack, Paul J. and Fu, Qiang and Kiehl, Jeffrey and Mears, Carl and Painter, Jeffrey and Pallotta, Giuliana and Solomon, Susan and Wentz, Frank J. and Zou, Cheng-Zhi},
abstractNote = {We provide scientific evidence that a human-caused signal in the seasonal cycle of tropospheric temperature has emerged from the background noise of natural variability. Satellite data and the anthropogenic “fingerprint” predicted by climate models show common large-scale changes in geographical patterns of seasonal cycle amplitude. These common features include increases in amplitude at mid-latitudes in both hemispheres, amplitude decreases at high latitudes in the Southern Hemisphere, and small changes in the tropics. Simple physical mechanisms explain these features. The model fingerprint of seasonal cycle changes is identifiable with high statistical confidence in five out of six satellite temperature datasets. Our results suggest that attribution studies with the changing seasonal cycle provide powerful evidence for a significant human effect on Earth’s climate.},
doi = {10.1126/science.aas8806},
journal = {Science},
number = 6399,
volume = 361,
place = {United States},
year = {2018},
month = {7}
}

Journal Article:
Free Publicly Available Full Text
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DOI: https://doi.org/10.1126/science.aas8806

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