Climate2014, 2(2), 47-77; doi:10.3390/cli2020047 - published online 22 April 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Water is critical for sustaining natural and managed ecosystems, and precipitation is a key component in the water cycle. To understand controls on long-term changes in precipitation for scientific and environmental management applications it is necessary to examine whether local land use and land cover change (LULCC) has played a significant role in changing historical precipitation patterns and trends. For the small tropical island of Puerto Rico, where maritime climate is dominant, we used long-term precipitation and land use and land cover data to assess whether there were any detectable impacts of LULCC on monthly and yearly precipitation patterns and trends over the past century. Particular focus was given to detecting impacts from the urban landscape on mesoscale climates across Puerto Rico. We found no statistical evidence for significant differences between average monthly precipitation in urban and non-urban areas directly from surface stations, but, after subdividing by Holdridge Ecological Life Zones (HELZs) in a GIS, there were statistically significant differences (α = 0.05) in yearly average total precipitation between urban and non-urban areas in most HELZs. Precipitation in Puerto Rico has been decreasing over the past century as a result of a decrease in precipitation during periods (months or years) of low rain. However, precipitation trends at particular stations contradict synoptic-scale long-term trends, which suggests that local land use/land cover effects are driving precipitation variability at local scales.
Climate2014, 2(2), 28-46; doi:10.3390/cli2020028 - published online 22 April 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: This study examined the spatial and temporal rainfall variability from the 1940s to 2007 in the south west coastal region of Bangladesh. Time series statistical tests were applied to examine the spatial and temporal trends in three time segments (1948–1970, 1971–1990 and 1991–2007) and four seasons (Pre-monsoon; Monsoon; Post-Monsoon and Winter), during the period 1948–2007. Eight weather stations were divided into two zones: exposed (exposed to sea) and interior (distant to sea). Overall, rainfall increased during the period 1948–2007, while the trends intensified during post-1990s. Post-monsoon and winter rainfall was observed to follow significant positive trends at most weather stations during the time period 1948–2007. The rate of change was found in exposed zone and interior zone are +12.51 and +4.86 mm/year, respectively, over post monsoon and +0.9 and +1.86 mm/year, respectively, over winter. These trends intensified both in the exposed zone (+45.81 mm/year) and the interior zone (+27.09 mm/year) 1990 onwards. Winter rainfall does not exhibit significant change (p > 0.1) over the exterior or interior zone, though individual stations like Jessore, Satkhira and Bhola show significant negative trends after 1990s. Although the trends were observed to weaken in the monsoon and pre-monsoon seasons, they are not significant. Moreover, an 11-year cyclicity was found within these two seasons, whilst no cyclicity was observed in the post-monsoon and winter seasons. Sequential Mann Kendal test reveals that the changes in two zones rainfall trends are started around mid-80s, where step change found only for fours season in Khulna stations and also for winter seasons in all weather stations. These changes may have a detrimental effect on rain-fed agriculture in Bangladesh. The application of palaeo-environmental techniques, threshold determination and rainfall analysis across the whole country could be useful to support adaptation planning of the rain-fed agro-economy in Bangladesh.
Climate2014, 2(1), 18-27; doi:10.3390/cli2010018 - published online 27 February 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: The majority of weather station records indicate that surface air temperatures have been warming in California between 1950 and 2005. Temperature data from the mid-1990s to the present were analyzed for stations on California Central Coast near Big Sur (Monterey County) to better understand potential for climate change in this biologically unique region. Results showed that daily temperatures in both the winter and summer seasons have cooled the Big Sur coast, particularly after 2003. A current hypothesis is that observed coastal California cooling derives from greenhouse gas-induced regional warming of the inland Central Valley and Sierra Nevada foothill areas, resulting in stronger sustained on-shore sea-breeze flow. Closer examination of daily temperature records at a station location near the Big Sur coast revealed that, even as average monthly maximum temperatures (Tmax) have decreased gradually, the number of extreme warm summer days (Tmax > 37 °C) has also increased by several fold in frequency. Overall patterns in the station records since the mid-1990s indicated that diurnal temperature ranges are widening on the Big Sur coast, with markedly cooler nighttime temperatures (frequently in the wet winter season) followed by slightly higher-than-average daytime temperatures, especially during the warm, dry summer season.
Climate2014, 2(1), 1-16; doi:10.3390/cli2010001 - published online 13 February 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: In this paper, we test if any statistically significant periodicities are detectable in carbon monoxide emissions over China, the European Union, and the United States of America. To do this, we performed a period analysis using 10 years of daily-averaged data, from the Measurements Of Pollution In The Troposphere (MOPITT) instrument. Besides a seasonal period, we found no clearly detectable periods at any timescale with the exception of a strong signal at 2.28 days. This period was observed over all tested regions and persisted when larger (hemisphere-wide) regions were considered. However, rather than resulting from a physical variation in carbon monoxide, it resulted from day-to-day changes in the area covered by MOPITT on-board its polar-orbiting satellite platform. We also examined linear trends over the dataset, and found that MOPITT identifies several centers of increasing carbon monoxide concentration—the largest being over China—although globally MOPITT reports a significant decrease in carbon monoxide has occurred over the past decade.
Climate2013, 1(3), 163-167; doi:10.3390/cli1030163 - published online 3 December 2013 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Climate change captured my interest as a teenager when, at the dining table, my dad talked about potential anthropogenic climate changes. He brought up subjects such as “climate could change if the Siberian Rivers were to be deviated to the South for irrigation of the (semi) arid areas of the former Soviet Union”. Other subjects were afforestation in the Sahel to enhance precipitation recycling, deforestation in the Tropics that could have worldwide impacts on climate, the local climate impacts of the Merowe High Dam in its vicinity and downstream, Atlantropa, a new ice age, and the increase in days with sunshine after the introduction of the high-chimney policy in the Rhein-Ruhr area, just to mention a few.