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Title: North American extreme precipitation events and related large-scale meteorological patterns: a review of statistical methods, dynamics, modeling, and trends

Abstract

This paper surveys the current state of knowledge regarding large-scale meteorological patterns (LSMPs) associated with short-duration (less than 1 week) extreme precipitation events over North America. In contrast to teleconnections, which are typically defined based on the characteristic spatial variations of a meteorological field or on the remote circulation response to a known forcing, LSMPs are defined relative to the occurrence of a specific phenomenon—here, extreme precipitation—and with an emphasis on the synoptic scales that have a primary influence in individual events, have medium-range weather predictability, and are well-resolved in both weather and climate models. For the LSMP relationship with extreme precipitation, we consider the previous literature with respect to definitions and data, dynamical mechanisms, model representation, and climate change trends. There is considerable uncertainty in identifying extremes based on existing observational precipitation data and some limitations in analyzing the associated LSMPs in reanalysis data. Many different definitions of “extreme” are in use, making it difficult to directly compare different studies. Dynamically, several types of meteorological systems—extratropical cyclones, tropical cyclones, mesoscale convective systems, and mesohighs—and several mechanisms—fronts, atmospheric rivers, and orographic ascent—have been shown to be important aspects of extreme precipitation LSMPs. The extreme precipitation is often realized through mesoscale processesmore » organized, enhanced, or triggered by the LSMP. Understanding of model representation, trends, and projections for LSMPs is at an early stage, although some promising analysis techniques have been identified and the LSMP perspective is useful for evaluating the model dynamics associated with extremes.« less

Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. (LBNL), Berkeley, CA (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Science (SC); National Science Foundation (NSF); Korea Meteorological Administration Research and Development Program
OSTI Identifier:
1580989
Grant/Contract Number:  
AC02-05CH11231; KMI2018-03610
Resource Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Climate Dynamics
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 53; Journal Issue: 11; Journal ID: ISSN 0930-7575
Publisher:
Springer-Verlag
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
54 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES

Citation Formats

North American extreme precipitation events and related large-scale meteorological patterns: a review of statistical methods, dynamics, modeling, and trends. United States: N. p., 2019. Web. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00382-019-04958-z.
North American extreme precipitation events and related large-scale meteorological patterns: a review of statistical methods, dynamics, modeling, and trends. United States. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00382-019-04958-z
Fri . "North American extreme precipitation events and related large-scale meteorological patterns: a review of statistical methods, dynamics, modeling, and trends". United States. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00382-019-04958-z. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1580989.
@article{osti_1580989,
title = {North American extreme precipitation events and related large-scale meteorological patterns: a review of statistical methods, dynamics, modeling, and trends},
author = {None, None},
abstractNote = {This paper surveys the current state of knowledge regarding large-scale meteorological patterns (LSMPs) associated with short-duration (less than 1 week) extreme precipitation events over North America. In contrast to teleconnections, which are typically defined based on the characteristic spatial variations of a meteorological field or on the remote circulation response to a known forcing, LSMPs are defined relative to the occurrence of a specific phenomenon—here, extreme precipitation—and with an emphasis on the synoptic scales that have a primary influence in individual events, have medium-range weather predictability, and are well-resolved in both weather and climate models. For the LSMP relationship with extreme precipitation, we consider the previous literature with respect to definitions and data, dynamical mechanisms, model representation, and climate change trends. There is considerable uncertainty in identifying extremes based on existing observational precipitation data and some limitations in analyzing the associated LSMPs in reanalysis data. Many different definitions of “extreme” are in use, making it difficult to directly compare different studies. Dynamically, several types of meteorological systems—extratropical cyclones, tropical cyclones, mesoscale convective systems, and mesohighs—and several mechanisms—fronts, atmospheric rivers, and orographic ascent—have been shown to be important aspects of extreme precipitation LSMPs. The extreme precipitation is often realized through mesoscale processes organized, enhanced, or triggered by the LSMP. Understanding of model representation, trends, and projections for LSMPs is at an early stage, although some promising analysis techniques have been identified and the LSMP perspective is useful for evaluating the model dynamics associated with extremes.},
doi = {10.1007/s00382-019-04958-z},
journal = {Climate Dynamics},
number = 11,
volume = 53,
place = {United States},
year = {2019},
month = {9}
}

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  • Vogel, Richard M.; Yaindl, Chad; Walter, Meghan
  • JAWRA Journal of the American Water Resources Association, Vol. 47, Issue 3
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Urban precipitation extremes: How reliable are regional climate models?: URBAN PRECIPITATION EXTREMES
journal, February 2012

  • Mishra, Vimal; Dominguez, Francina; Lettenmaier, Dennis P.
  • Geophysical Research Letters, Vol. 39, Issue 3
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Increased dry-season length over southern Amazonia in recent decades and its implication for future climate projection
journal, October 2013

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Identification of large-scale meteorological patterns associated with extreme precipitation in the US northeast
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Contemporary Changes of the Hydrological Cycle over the Contiguous United States: Trends Derived from In Situ Observations
journal, February 2004


Uncertainty in gridded precipitation products: Influence of station density, interpolation method and grid resolution
journal, October 2018

  • Herrera, Sixto; Kotlarski, Sven; Soares, Pedro M. M.
  • International Journal of Climatology, Vol. 39, Issue 9
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Atmospheric Rivers and Flooding over the Central United States
journal, October 2013


Analysis of precipitation extremes with the assessment of regional climate models over the Willamette River Basin, USA: PRECIPITATION EXTREMES OVER THE WILLAMETTE RIVER BASIN
journal, June 2012

  • Halmstad, Andrew; Najafi, Mohammad Reza; Moradkhani, Hamid
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Design Life Level: Quantifying risk in a changing climate: Design Life Level
journal, September 2013

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Uncertainty Analysis in the Evaluation of Extreme Rainfall Trends and Its Implications on Urban Drainage System Design
journal, December 2015

  • Notaro, Vincenza; Liuzzo, Lorena; Freni, Gabriele
  • Water, Vol. 7, Issue 12
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Satellite and CALJET Aircraft Observations of Atmospheric Rivers over the Eastern North Pacific Ocean during the Winter of 1997/98
journal, July 2004


High-Resolution Coupled Climate Runoff Simulations of Seasonal Snowfall over Colorado: A Process Study of Current and Warmer Climate
journal, June 2011

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  • Journal of Climate, Vol. 24, Issue 12
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Regional Extreme Monthly Precipitation Simulated by NARCCAP RCMs
journal, December 2010

  • Gutowski, William J.; Arritt, Raymond W.; Kawazoe, Sho
  • Journal of Hydrometeorology, Vol. 11, Issue 6
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Precipitation Distribution Associated with Landfalling Tropical Cyclones over the Eastern United States
journal, June 2007

  • Atallah, Eyad; Bosart, Lance F.; Aiyyer, Anantha R.
  • Monthly Weather Review, Vol. 135, Issue 6
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More frequent intense and long-lived storms dominate the springtime trend in central US rainfall
journal, November 2016

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Dismissing return periods!
journal, July 2014

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The Great Colorado Flood of September 2013
journal, September 2015

  • Gochis, David; Schumacher, Russ; Friedrich, Katja
  • Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, Vol. 96, Issue 9
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Extreme Rainfall in Texas: Patterns and Predictability
journal, January 2005


Weak linkage between the heaviest rainfall and tallest storms
journal, February 2015

  • Hamada, Atsushi; Takayabu, Yukari N.; Liu, Chuntao
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A Synoptic Perspective of the Record 1-2 May 2010 Mid-South Heavy Precipitation Event
journal, May 2012

  • Durkee, Joshua D.; Campbell, Lee; Berry, Kyle
  • Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, Vol. 93, Issue 5
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The effect of horizontal resolution on simulation of very extreme US precipitation events in a global atmosphere model
journal, September 2009


Atmospheric rivers impacting Northern California and their modulation by a variable climate
journal, November 2018

  • Guirguis, Kristen; Gershunov, Alexander; Shulgina, Tamara
  • Climate Dynamics, Vol. 52, Issue 11
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A review on regional convection‐permitting climate modeling: Demonstrations, prospects, and challenges
journal, May 2015

  • Prein, Andreas F.; Langhans, Wolfgang; Fosser, Giorgia
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The South-Central U.S. Flood of May 2010: Present and Future
journal, July 2013


Climatology and Environmental Characteristics of Extreme Precipitation Events in the Southeastern United States
journal, March 2015

  • Moore, Benjamin J.; Mahoney, Kelly M.; Sukovich, Ellen M.
  • Monthly Weather Review, Vol. 143, Issue 3
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MERRA: NASA’s Modern-Era Retrospective Analysis for Research and Applications
journal, July 2011


The Modern-Era Retrospective Analysis for Research and Applications, Version 2 (MERRA-2)
journal, July 2017


Response of the Midlatitude Jets, and of Their Variability, to Increased Greenhouse Gases in the CMIP5 Models
journal, September 2013


Tracking an atmospheric river in a warmer climate: from water vapor to economic impacts
journal, January 2018

  • Dominguez, Francina; Dall'erba, Sandy; Huang, Shuyi
  • Earth System Dynamics, Vol. 9, Issue 1
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Stationarity is undead: Uncertainty dominates the distribution of extremes
journal, March 2015


Future changes in intense precipitation over Canada assessed from multi-model NARCCAP ensemble simulations
journal, May 2011

  • Mailhot, Alain; Beauregard, Ian; Talbot, Guillaume
  • International Journal of Climatology, Vol. 32, Issue 8
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The Johnstown Flood of July 1977: A Long-Lived Convective System
journal, August 1981


Evaluation of the convection-resolving regional climate modeling approach in decade-long simulations
journal, July 2014

  • Ban, Nikolina; Schmidli, Juerg; Schär, Christoph
  • Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres, Vol. 119, Issue 13
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Trends in Intense Precipitation in the Climate Record
journal, May 2005

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Multi-Radar Multi-Sensor (MRMS) Quantitative Precipitation Estimation: Initial Operating Capabilities
journal, April 2016

  • Zhang, Jian; Howard, Kenneth; Langston, Carrie
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Assessment and Implications of NCEP Stage IV Quantitative Precipitation Estimates for Product Intercomparisons
journal, April 2016

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The Contribution of Eastern North Pacific Tropical Cyclones to the Rainfall Climatology of the Southwest United States
journal, August 2009

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Detection and attribution of climate extremes in the observed record
journal, March 2016

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Precipitation regime change in Western North America: The role of Atmospheric Rivers
journal, July 2019

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Synoptic-Scale Environments of Predecessor Rain Events Occurring East of the Rocky Mountains in Association with Atlantic Basin Tropical Cyclones
journal, March 2013

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Understanding the detectability of potential changes to the 100-year peak storm surge
journal, October 2017


Assessing the Potential for Rare Precipitation Events with Standardized Anomalies and Ensemble Guidance at the Hydrometeorological Prediction Center
journal, April 2009

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Regional, Very Heavy Daily Precipitation in NARCCAP Simulations
journal, August 2013

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Projections of global changes in precipitation extremes from Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 models
journal, September 2013

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Synoptic Typing and Precursors of Heavy Warm-Season Precipitation Events at Montreal, Québec
journal, April 2014

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Warm Core Vortex Amplification over Land
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The impact of climate change on rainfall Intensity–Duration–Frequency (IDF) curves in Alabama
journal, November 2012

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Downscaling extremes: A comparison of extreme value distributions in point-source and gridded precipitation data
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Anomalous North Pacific Atmospheric Circulation and Large Winter Floods in the Southwestern United States
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An Overview of the Global Historical Climatology Network-Daily Database
journal, July 2012

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An Analysis of Multiple Predecessor Rain Events ahead of Tropical Cyclones Ike and Lowell: 10–15 September 2008
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Downscaling Extreme Precipitation from CMIP5 Simulations Using Historical Analogs
journal, September 2017

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Mesoscale and Radar Observations of the Fort Collins Flash Flood of 28 July 1997
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Greenhouse Gas–Induced Changes in Summer Precipitation over Colorado in NARCCAP Regional Climate Models
journal, November 2013

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Cold Pools and MCS Propagation: Forecasting the Motion of Downwind-Developing MCSs
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Attributing intensification of precipitation extremes to human influence
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Does increasing the spatial resolution of a regional climate model improve the simulated daily precipitation?
journal, November 2012

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How Do Atmospheric Rivers Form?
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The Community Earth System Model (CESM) Large Ensemble Project: A Community Resource for Studying Climate Change in the Presence of Internal Climate Variability
journal, August 2015

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Using Normalized Climatological Anomalies to Rank Synoptic-Scale Events Objectively
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A Case Study of Excessive Rainfall Centered Around Wellsville, New York, 20–21 June 1972
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Attribution of extreme rainfall from Hurricane Harvey, August 2017
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Factors Influencing the Development and Maintenance of Nocturnal Heavy-Rain-Producing Convective Systems in a Storm-Scale Ensemble
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Flash Flood Forecasting: An Ingredients-Based Methodology
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Composite Predictor Maps of Extraordinary Weather Events in the Sacramento, California, Region*
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Examining moisture pathways and extreme precipitation in the U.S. Intermountain West using self-organizing maps: Extreme Precipitation in the IMW
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Wintertime Extreme Precipitation Events along the Pacific Northwest Coast: Climatology and Synoptic Evolution
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A regional peaks-over-threshold model in a nonstationary climate: REGIONAL PEAKS-OVER-THRESHOLD MODEL
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Predicting the Movement of Mesoscale Convective Complexes
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Assessing the climate-scale variability of atmospheric rivers affecting western North America: Atmospheric River Climate-Scale Behavior
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Effects of ENSO on weather-type frequencies and properties at New Orleans, Louisiana, USA
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Kinematic and Thermodynamic Structures of Sierra Barrier Jets and Overrunning Atmospheric Rivers during a Landfalling Winter Storm in Northern California
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Synoptic Typing of Extreme Cool-Season Precipitation Events at St. John’s, Newfoundland, 1979–2005
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Defining Uncertainties through Comparison of Atmospheric River Tracking Methods
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Added value of convection permitting seasonal simulations
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A Diagnostic Evaluation of Rainfall Predictability for Tropical Storm Agnes, June 1972
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Statistics of extremes in climate change
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Regional Climate and Variability of NASA MERRA and Recent Reanalyses: U.S. Summertime Precipitation and Temperature
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Estimating extremes in climate change simulations using the peaks-over-threshold method with a non-stationary threshold
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Atmospheric River Tracking Method Intercomparison Project (ARTMIP): project goals and experimental design
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Cloud-Resolving Simulations of Mesoscale Vortex Intensification and Its Effect on a Serial Mesoscale Convective System
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Large-Scale Influences on Summertime Extreme Precipitation in the Northeastern United States
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Potential increase in floods in California’s Sierra Nevada under future climate projections
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A Study of Heavy Rainfall Events during the Great Midwest Flood of 1993
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Environments of Long-Lived Mesoscale Convective Systems Over the Central United States in Convection Permitting Climate Simulations: Long-Lived Mesoscale Convective Systems
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Tropospheric rivers? - A pilot study
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Mesoscale Processes Contributing to Extreme Rainfall in a Midlatitude Warm-Season Flash Flood
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Frontal Focusing of a Flooding Rainstorm
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The Agnes Rainstorm of June 1972: Surface Feature Evolution Culminating in Inland Storm Redevelopment
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A nonstationary index flood model for precipitation extremes in transient regional climate model simulations
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Defining “Atmospheric River”: How the Glossary of Meteorology Helped Resolve a Debate
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Atmospheric Predictability at Synoptic Versus Cloud-Resolving Scales
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A Global Climatology of Tropical Moisture Exports
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