Persistent drying in the tropics linked to natural forcing

Winter, Amos and Zanchettin, Davide and Miller, Thomas and Kushnir, Yochanan and Black, David and Lohmann, Gerrit and Burnett, Allison and Haug, Gerald H. and Estrella-Martínez, Juan and Breitenbach, Sebastian F. M. and Beaufort, Luc and Rubino, Angelo and Cheng, Hai (2015) Persistent drying in the tropics linked to natural forcing. Nature Communications, 6. p. 7627. ISSN 2041-1723 DOI

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Approximately half of the world's population lives in the tropics, and future changes in the hydrological cycle will impact not just the freshwater supplies but also energy production in areas dependent upon hydroelectric power. It is vital that we understand the mechanisms/processes that affect tropical precipitation and the eventual surface hydrological response to better assess projected future regional precipitation trends and variability. Paleo-climate proxies are well suited for this purpose as they provide long time series that pre-date and complement the present, often short instrumental observations. Here we present paleo-precipitation data from a speleothem located in Mesoamerica that reveal large multi-decadal declines in regional precipitation, whose onset coincides with clusters of large volcanic eruptions during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. This reconstruction provides new independent evidence of long-lasting volcanic effects on climate and elucidates key aspects of the causal chain of physical processes determining the tropical climate response to global radiative forcing.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: NILAREP;
Subjects: 01 - Climate Change and Earth-Ocean Atmosphere Systems
Divisions: 01 - Climate Change and Earth-Ocean Atmosphere Systems
Journal or Publication Title: Nature Communications
Volume: 6
Page Range: p. 7627
Identification Number:
Depositing User: Sarah Humbert
Date Deposited: 27 Aug 2015 17:18
Last Modified: 29 Sep 2015 15:56

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