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The 10-Year Return Levels of Maximum Wind Speeds under Frozen and Unfrozen Soil Forest Conditions in Finland

1
Weather and Climate Change Impact Research, Meteorological and Marine Research Programme, Finnish Meteorological Institute, P.O. Box 503, FI-00101 Helsinki, Finland
2
School of Forest Sciences, Faculty of Science and Forestry, University of Eastern Finland, Yliopistonkatu 7, FI-80101 Joensuu, Finland
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Climate 2019, 7(5), 62; https://doi.org/10.3390/cli7050062
Received: 8 March 2019 / Revised: 25 April 2019 / Accepted: 29 April 2019 / Published: 30 April 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Variability and Change in the 21th Century)
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Abstract

Reliable high spatial resolution information on the variation of extreme wind speeds under frozen and unfrozen soil conditions can enhance wind damage risk management in forestry. In this study, we aimed to produce spatially detailed estimates for the 10-year return level of maximum wind speeds for frozen (>20 cm frost depth) and unfrozen soil conditions for dense Norway spruce stands on clay or silt soil, Scots pine stands on sandy soil and Scots pine stands on drained peatland throughout Finland. For this purpose, the coarse resolution estimates of the 10-year return levels of maximum wind speeds based on 1979–2014 ERA-Interim reanalysis were downscaled to 20 m grid by using the wind multiplier approach, taking into account the effect of topography and surface roughness. The soil frost depth was estimated using a soil frost model. Results showed that due to a large variability in the timing of annual maximum wind speed, differences in the 10-year return levels of maximum wind speeds between the frozen and unfrozen soil seasons are generally rather small. Larger differences in this study are mostly found in peatlands, where soil frost seasons are notably shorter than in mineral soils. Also, the high resolution of wind multiplier downscaling and consideration of wind direction revealed some larger local scale differences around topographic features like hills and ridgelines. View Full-Text
Keywords: boreal region; extreme wind speed; wind climate; soil frost; wind damage risk management; wind multiplier; downscaling; topography; surface roughness boreal region; extreme wind speed; wind climate; soil frost; wind damage risk management; wind multiplier; downscaling; topography; surface roughness
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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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Laapas, M.; Lehtonen, I.; Venäläinen, A.; Peltola, H.M. The 10-Year Return Levels of Maximum Wind Speeds under Frozen and Unfrozen Soil Forest Conditions in Finland. Climate 2019, 7, 62.

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