Pacific-North American Teleconnection and North Pacific Oscillation: Historical Simulation and Future Projection in CMIP5 models
Title: Pacific-North American Teleconnection and North Pacific Oscillation: Historical Simulation and Future Projection in CMIP5 models
Journal:Climate Dynamics, doi:10.1007/s00382-017-3881-9
Authors: CHEN Z., B. -L. Gan*, L. -X. Wu, and F. Jia
Abstract: Based on reanalysis datasets and as many as 35 CMIP5 models, this study evaluates the capability of climate models to simulate the spatiotemporal features of Pacific-North American teleconnection (PNA) and North Pacific Oscillation (NPO) in the twentieth century wintertime, and further investigates their responses to greenhouse warming in the twenty-first century. Analysis reveals that while the majority (80%) of models reasonably simulate either the geographical distribution or the amplitude of PNA/NPO pattern, only half of models can well capture both features in space. As for the temporal features, variabilities of PNA and NPO in most models are biased toward higher amplitude. Additionally, most models simulate the interannual variabilities of PNA and NPO, qualitatively consistent with the observation, whereas models generally lack the capability to reproduce the decadal (20–25 years) variability of PNA. As the climate warms under the strongest future warming scenario, the PNA intensity is found to be strengthened, whereas there is no consensus on the direction of change in the NPO intensity among models. The intensification of positive PNA is primarily manifested in the large deepening of the North Pacific trough, which is robust as it is 2.3 times the unforced internal variability. By focusing on the tropical Pacific Ocean, we find that the multidecadal evolution of the North Pacific trough intensity (dominating the PNA intensity evolution) is closely related to that of the analogous trough in the PNA-like teleconnection forced by sea surface temperature anomalies (SSTa) in the tropical central Pacific (CP) rather than the tropical eastern Pacific (EP). Such association is also found to act under greenhouse warming: that is, the strengthening of the PNA-like teleconnection induced by the CP SSTa rather than the EP SSTa is a driving force for the intensification of PNA. This is in part owing to the robust enhancement of the tropical precipitation response to the CP SST variation. Indeed, further inspection suggests that models with stronger intensification of the CP SST variability and its related tropical precipitation response tend to have larger deepening magnitude of the North Pacific trough associated with the PNA variability.