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Atmosphere 2018, 9(7), 273; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos9070273

The Fingerprint of Climate Change and Urbanization in South Korea

1
School of Natural Resources, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Lincoln, NE 68583, USA
2
Department of Bioresources and Rural Systems Engineering, Hankyong National University, Anseong 17579, Korea
3
Institute of Agricultural Environmental Science, Hankyong National University, Anseong 17579, Korea
4
School of Natural Resources and Environmental Science, Kangwon National University, Chuncheon 24341, Korea
5
Institute on the Environment, University of Minnesota, Saint Paul, MN 55108, USA
6
Department of Environmental Science and Engineering, Ewha Womans University, Seoul 03760, Korea
7
Department of Geosciences, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, AR 72701, USA
Current Address: Department of Research and Development, Next Season Systems, Lincoln, NE 68506, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 18 May 2018 / Revised: 2 July 2018 / Accepted: 14 July 2018 / Published: 17 July 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Climate)
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Abstract

Understanding long-term changes in precipitation and temperature patterns is important in the detection and characterization of climate change, as is understanding the implications of climate change when performing impact assessments. This study uses a statistically robust methodology to quantify long-, medium- and short-term changes for evaluating the degree to which climate change and urbanization have caused temporal changes in precipitation and temperature in South Korea. We sought to identify a fingerprint of changes in precipitation and temperature based on statistically significant differences at multiple-timescales. This study evaluates historical weather data during a 40-year period (1973–2012) and from 54 weather stations. Our results demonstrate that between 1993–2012, minimum and maximum temperature trends in the vicinity of urban and agricultural areas are significantly different from the two previous decades (1973–1992). The results for precipitation amounts show significant differences in urban areas. These results indicate that the climate in urbanized areas has been affected by both the heat island effect and global warming-caused climate change. The increase in the number of rainfall events in agricultural areas is highly significant, although the temporal trends for precipitation amounts showed no significant differences. Overall, the impacts of climate change and urbanization in South Korea have not been continuous over time and have been expressed locally and regionally in terms of precipitation and temperature changes. View Full-Text
Keywords: climate change; urbanization; precipitation; temperature; heat island effect; South Korea climate change; urbanization; precipitation; temperature; heat island effect; South Korea
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).
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Nam, W.-H.; Baigorria, G.A.; Hong, E.-M.; Kim, T.; Choi, Y.-S.; Feng, S. The Fingerprint of Climate Change and Urbanization in South Korea. Atmosphere 2018, 9, 273.

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