A multi-model assessment of last interglacial temperatures.

Lunt, D. J., Abe-Ouchi, A., Bakker, P., Berger, A., Braconnot, P., Charbit, S., Fischer, N., Herold, N., Jungclaus, J. H., Khon, V. C., Krebs-Kanzow, U., Langebroek, P. M., Lohmann, G., Nisancioglu, K. H., Otto-Bliesner, B. L., Park, Wonsun , Pfeiffer, M., Phipps, S. J., Prange, M., Rachmayani, R., Renssen, H., Rosenbloom, N., Schneider, Birgit, Stone, E. J., Takahashi, K., Wei, W., Yin, Q. and Zhang, Z. S. (2013) A multi-model assessment of last interglacial temperatures. Open Access Climate of the Past, 9 (2). pp. 699-717. DOI 10.5194/cp-9-699-2013.

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Abstract

The last interglaciation (~130 to 116 ka) is a time period with a strong astronomically induced seasonal forcing of insolation compared to the present. Proxy records indicate a significantly different climate to that of the modern, in particular Arctic summer warming and higher eustatic sea level. Because the forcings are relatively well constrained, it provides an opportunity to test numerical models which are used for future climate prediction. In this paper we compile a set of climate model simulations of the early last interglaciation (130 to 125 ka), encompassing a range of model complexities. We compare the simulations to each other and to a recently published compilation of last interglacial temperature estimates. We show that the annual mean response of the models is rather small, with no clear signal in many regions. However, the seasonal response is more robust, and there is significant agreement amongst models as to the regions of warming vs cooling. However, the quantitative agreement of the model simulations with data is poor, with the models in general underestimating the magnitude of response seen in the proxies. Taking possible seasonal biases in the proxies into account improves the agreement, but only marginally. However, a lack of uncertainty estimates in the data does not allow us to draw firm conclusions. Instead, this paper points to several ways in which both modelling and data could be improved, to allow a more robust model–data comparison.

Document Type: Article
Funder compliance: info:eu-repo/grantAgreement/EC/FP7/243908
Additional Information: WOS:000317009700013
Keywords: Past4Future Climate change – Learning from the past climate; OCEAN HEAT TRANSPORTS; EARTH SYSTEM MODEL; INTERMEDIATE COMPLEXITY; CLIMATE SIMULATIONS; LATE PLEISTOCENE; GLACIAL MAXIMUM; SCALE FEATURES; COUPLED MODEL; SEA-LEVEL
Research affiliation: Kiel University
OceanRep > The Future Ocean - Cluster of Excellence > FO-R09
Kiel University > Kiel Marine Science
OceanRep > GEOMAR > FB1 Ocean Circulation and Climate Dynamics > FB1-ME Maritime Meteorology
OceanRep > The Future Ocean - Cluster of Excellence
Refereed: Yes
Open Access Journal?: Yes
DOI etc.: 10.5194/cp-9-699-2013
ISSN: 1814-9324
Projects: Past4Future, Future Ocean, KCM
Expeditions/Models/Experiments:
Date Deposited: 18 Mar 2013 09:00
Last Modified: 15 Mar 2017 19:25
URI: http://oceanrep.geomar.de/id/eprint/20755

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