Talk by Michael Byrne, University of St. Andrews. Extreme temperatures have warmed substantially over recent decades and are expected to continue warming in response to future climate change. Warming of extreme temperatures is projected to be amplified over land, with severe implications for human health, wildfire risk and food production. Using simulations from 18 climate models, I show that hot days over tropical land warm substantially more than the average day. For example, warming of the hottest 5% of land days is a factor of 1.2 larger than the time-mean warming averaged across models. The climate-change response of extreme temperatures over tropical land is interpreted using a theory based on atmospheric dynamics. According to the theory, warming is amplified for hot land days because those days are dry: this is termed the “drier get hotter” mechanism.
Past Around Campus•Oct 29, 2021
Geophysical Sciences Seminar: Amplified warming of extreme temperatures over tropical land