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Title: How Asymmetries Between Arctic and Antarctic Climate Sensitivity Are Modified by the Ocean

Abstract

We investigate how the ocean response to CO 2 forcing affects hemispheric asymmetries in polar climate sensitivity. Intermodel comparison of Phase 5 of the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project CO 2 quadrupling experiments shows that even in models where hemispheric ocean heat uptake differences are small, Arctic warming still exceeds Antarctic warming. The polar climate impact of this evolving ocean response to CO 2 forcing is then isolated using slab ocean experiments in a state-of-the-art climate model. Overall, feedbacks over the Southern Hemisphere more effectively dissipate top-of-atmosphere anomalies than those over the Northern Hemisphere. Furthermore, a poleward shift in ocean heat convergence in both hemispheres amplifies destabilizing ice albedo and lapse rate feedbacks over the Arctic much more so than over the Antarctic. These results suggest that the Arctic is intrinsically more sensitive to both CO 2 and oceanic forcings than the Antarctic and that ocean-driven climate sensitivity asymmetry arises from feedback destabilization over the Arctic rather than feedback stabilization over the Antarctic.

Authors:
ORCiD logo [1]; ORCiD logo [2]; ORCiD logo [2]
  1. Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States). Atmospheric Sciences and Global Change Division; Univ. of Victoria, BC (Canada). School of Earth and Ocean Sciences
  2. Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States). Atmospheric Sciences and Global Change Division
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
1485697
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1485698; OSTI ID: 1490383
Report Number(s):
PNNL-SA-139104
Journal ID: ISSN 0094-8276
Grant/Contract Number:  
AC0576RL01830
Resource Type:
Published Article
Journal Name:
Geophysical Research Letters
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 45; Journal Issue: 23; Journal ID: ISSN 0094-8276
Publisher:
American Geophysical Union
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
54 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES; polar climate; Arctic; Antarctic; climate sensitivity; ocean dynamics; radiative feedbacks

Citation Formats

Singh, H. A., Garuba, O. A., and Rasch, P. J. How Asymmetries Between Arctic and Antarctic Climate Sensitivity Are Modified by the Ocean. United States: N. p., 2018. Web. doi:10.1029/2018GL079023.
Singh, H. A., Garuba, O. A., & Rasch, P. J. How Asymmetries Between Arctic and Antarctic Climate Sensitivity Are Modified by the Ocean. United States. doi:10.1029/2018GL079023.
Singh, H. A., Garuba, O. A., and Rasch, P. J. Wed . "How Asymmetries Between Arctic and Antarctic Climate Sensitivity Are Modified by the Ocean". United States. doi:10.1029/2018GL079023.
@article{osti_1485697,
title = {How Asymmetries Between Arctic and Antarctic Climate Sensitivity Are Modified by the Ocean},
author = {Singh, H. A. and Garuba, O. A. and Rasch, P. J.},
abstractNote = {We investigate how the ocean response to CO2 forcing affects hemispheric asymmetries in polar climate sensitivity. Intermodel comparison of Phase 5 of the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project CO2 quadrupling experiments shows that even in models where hemispheric ocean heat uptake differences are small, Arctic warming still exceeds Antarctic warming. The polar climate impact of this evolving ocean response to CO2 forcing is then isolated using slab ocean experiments in a state-of-the-art climate model. Overall, feedbacks over the Southern Hemisphere more effectively dissipate top-of-atmosphere anomalies than those over the Northern Hemisphere. Furthermore, a poleward shift in ocean heat convergence in both hemispheres amplifies destabilizing ice albedo and lapse rate feedbacks over the Arctic much more so than over the Antarctic. These results suggest that the Arctic is intrinsically more sensitive to both CO2 and oceanic forcings than the Antarctic and that ocean-driven climate sensitivity asymmetry arises from feedback destabilization over the Arctic rather than feedback stabilization over the Antarctic.},
doi = {10.1029/2018GL079023},
journal = {Geophysical Research Letters},
number = 23,
volume = 45,
place = {United States},
year = {2018},
month = {12}
}

Journal Article:
Free Publicly Available Full Text
Publisher's Version of Record
DOI: 10.1029/2018GL079023

Figures / Tables:

Figure 1 Figure 1: Response to CO2 quadrupling (years 100–150) in 13 CMIP5 models: (a) zonal mean surface temperature anomaly (K) in the Northern Hemisphere (NH; solid lines) and Southern Hemisphere (SH; dashed lines) in individual CMIP5 models (colors) and for the multimodel mean (black). (b) As in (a) but for themore » ocean heat uptake (OHU) anomaly (W/m2; positive downward). (c) OHU difference between the NH and SH (area weighted and averaged from 50N/S to the pole) versus the area-averaged polar temperature anomaly difference between the NH and SH (area weighted and averaged from 50N/S to the pole), for individual CMIP5 models (markers) with the line of best fit computed via linear regression (y intercept = 3.2 K, slope = 0.6 K/W/m2, r = 0.6). In (c), results from years 300 to 330 of the CESM1 CO2 doubling experiment are also shown (black dot).« less

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    Figures/Tables have been extracted from DOE-funded journal article accepted manuscripts.