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Open AccessArticle

Changes in the Risk of Extreme Climate Events over East Asia at Different Global Warming Levels

by Jintao Zhang 1,2,† and Fang Wang 1,*,†
1
Key Laboratory of Land Surface Pattern and Simulation, Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100101, China
2
College of Resources and Environment, University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Jintao Zhang and Fang Wang are the co-first authors, and they contributed equally to this work.
Water 2019, 11(12), 2535; https://doi.org/10.3390/w11122535
Received: 29 September 2019 / Revised: 20 November 2019 / Accepted: 28 November 2019 / Published: 30 November 2019
Limiting the global temperature increase to a level that would prevent “dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system” is the focus of intergovernmental climate negotiations, and the cost-benefit analysis to determine this level requires an understanding of how the risk associated with climate extremes varies with different warming levels. We examine daily extreme temperature and precipitation variances with continuous global warming using a non-stationary extreme value statistical model based on the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP5). Our results show the probability of extreme warm and heavy precipitation events over East Asia (EA) will increase, while that of cold extremes over EA will decrease as global warming increases. A present-day 1-in-20-year heavy precipitation extreme in EA is projected to increase to 1.3, 1.6, 2.5, and 3.4 times more frequently of the current climatology, at the global mean warming levels of 1.5 °C, 2 °C, 3 °C, and 4 °C above the preindustrial era, respectively. Moreover, the relative changes in probability are larger for rarer events. These results contribute to an improved understanding of the future risk associated with climate extremes, which helps scientists create mitigation measures for global warming and facilitates policy-making. View Full-Text
Keywords: climate extremes; projection; global warming; risk of climate change; generalized extreme value (GEV) distribution climate extremes; projection; global warming; risk of climate change; generalized extreme value (GEV) distribution
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Zhang, J.; Wang, F. Changes in the Risk of Extreme Climate Events over East Asia at Different Global Warming Levels. Water 2019, 11, 2535.

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