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Title: A Hierarchical Evaluation of Regional Climate Simulations

Global climate models (GCMs) are the primary tools for predicting the evolution of the climate system. Through decades of development, GCMs have demonstrated useful skill in simulating climate at continental to global scales. However, large uncertainties remain in projecting climate change at regional scales, which limit our ability to inform decisions on climate change adaptation and mitigation. To bridge this gap, different modeling approaches including nested regional climate models (RCMs), global stretch-grid models, and global high-resolution atmospheric models have been used to provide regional climate simulations (Leung et al. 2003). In previous efforts to evaluate these approaches, isolating their relative merits was not possible because factors such as dynamical frameworks, physics parameterizations, and model resolutions were not systematically constrained. With advances in high performance computing, it is now feasible to run coupled atmosphere-ocean GCMs at horizontal resolution comparable to what RCMs use today. Global models with local refinement using unstructured grids have become available for modeling regional climate (e.g., Rauscher et al. 2012; Ringler et al. 2013). While they offer opportunities to improve climate simulations, significant efforts are needed to test their veracity for regional-scale climate simulations.
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Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Eos, 94(34):297-298
Research Org:
Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)
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Country of Publication:
United States
hierarchical; framework; evaluation; regional; climate; simulations