Carbon Dioxide Physiological Forcing Dominates Projected Eastern Amazonian Drying


Journal Article

©2018. The Authors. Future projections of east Amazonian precipitation indicate drying, but they are uncertain and poorly understood. In this study we analyze the Amazonian precipitation response to individual atmospheric forcings using a number of global climate models. Black carbon is found to drive reduced precipitation over the Amazon due to temperature-driven circulation changes, but the magnitude is uncertain. CO2 drives reductions in precipitation concentrated in the east, mainly due to a robustly negative, but highly variable in magnitude, fast response. We find that the physiological effect of CO2 on plant stomata is the dominant driver of the fast response due to reduced latent heating and also contributes to the large model spread. Using a simple model, we show that CO2 physiological effects dominate future multimodel mean precipitation projections over the Amazon. However, in individual models temperature-driven changes can be large, but due to little agreement, they largely cancel out in the model mean.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Richardson, TB; Forster, PM; Andrews, T; Boucher, O; Faluvegi, G; Fläschner, D; Kasoar, M; Kirkevåg, A; Lamarque, JF; Myhre, G; Olivié, D; Samset, BH; Shawki, D; Shindell, D; Takemura, T; Voulgarakis, A

Published Date

  • March 28, 2018

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 45 / 6

Start / End Page

  • 2815 - 2825

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1944-8007

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0094-8276

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1002/2017GL076520

Citation Source

  • Scopus