A Combined Statistical Bias Correction and Stochastic Downscaling Method for Precipitation.

Volosciuk, Claudia D., Maraun, Douglas, Vrac, Mathieu and Widmann, Martin (2017) A Combined Statistical Bias Correction and Stochastic Downscaling Method for Precipitation. Open Access Hydrology and Earth System Sciences, 21 . pp. 1693-1719. DOI 10.5194/hess-21-1693-2017.

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Much of our knowledge about future changes in precipitation relies on global (GCM) and/or regional climate models (RCM) that have resolutions which are much coarser than typical spatial scales of precipitation, particularly extremes. The major problems with these projections are both climate model biases and the gap between gridbox and point scale. Wong et al. developed a model to jointly bias correct and downscale precipitation at daily scales. This approach, however, relied on pairwise correspondence between predictor and predictand for calibration, and thus, on nudged simulations which are rarely available. Here we present an extension of this approach that separates the downscaling from the bias correction and in principle is applicable to free running GCMs/RCMs. In a first step, we bias correct RCM-simulated precipitation against gridded observations at the same scale using a parametric quantile mapping approach. To correct the whole distribution including extreme tails we apply a mixture distribution of a gamma distribution for the precipitation mass and a generalized Pareto distribution for the extreme tail. In a second step, we bridge the scale gap: we predict local variance employing a vector generalized linear gamma model (VGLM gamma) with the bias corrected time series as predictor. The VGLM gamma model is calibrated between gridded and point scale (station) observations. For evaluation we adopt the perfect predictor experimental setup of VALUE. Precipitation is in most cases improved by (parts of) our method across different European climates. The method generally performs better in summer than in winter and in winter best in the Mediterranean region with a mild winter climate and worst for continental winter climate in mid & eastern Europe or Scandinavia. A strength of this two-step method is that the best combination of bias correction and downscaling methods can be selected. This implies that the concept can be extended to a wide range of method combinations.

Document Type: Article
Research affiliation: OceanRep > GEOMAR > FB1 Ocean Circulation and Climate Dynamics > FB1-ME Maritime Meteorology
Refereed: Yes
Open Access Journal?: Yes
DOI etc.: 10.5194/hess-21-1693-2017
ISSN: 1607-7938
Date Deposited: 20 Sep 2016 08:40
Last Modified: 23 May 2019 10:56
URI: http://oceanrep.geomar.de/id/eprint/33896

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