Sea-ice and North Atlantic climate response to CO2-induced warming and cooling conditions
Authors: Nazarenko, Larissa; Tausnev, Nickolai; Hansen, James
Source: Journal of Glaciology, Volume 52, Number 178, July 2006 , pp. 433-439(7)
Publisher: International Glaciological Society
Abstract:Using a global climate model coupled with an ocean and a sea-ice model, we compare the effects of doubling CO2 and halving CO2 on sea-ice cover and connections with the atmosphere and ocean. An overall warming in the 2 × CO2 experiment causes reduction of sea-ice extent by 15%, with maximum decrease in summer and autumn, consistent with observed seasonal sea-ice changes. The intensification of the Northern Hemisphere circulation is reflected in the positive phase of the Arctic Oscillation (AO), associated with higher-than-normal surface pressure south of about 50° N and lower-than-normal surface pressure over the high northern latitudes. Strengthening the polar cell causes enhancement of westerlies around the Arctic perimeter during winter. Cooling, in the 0.5 × CO2 experiment, leads to thicker and more extensive sea ice. In the Southern Hemisphere, the increase in ice-covered area (28%) dominates the ice-thickness increase (5%) due to open ocean to the north. In the Northern Hemisphere, sea-ice cover increases by only 8% due to the enclosed land/sea configuration, but sea ice becomes much thicker (108%). Substantial weakening of the polar cell due to increase in sea-level pressure over polar latitudes leads to a negative trend of the winter AO index. The model reproduces large year-to-year variability under both cooling and warming conditions.
Document Type: Research article
Publication date: 2006-07-01
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