Emulating climate extreme indices

Tebaldi, C, A Armbruster, H Engler, and R Link.

Environmental Research Letters

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1088/1748-9326/ab8332

We use simple pattern scaling and time-shift to emulate changes in a set of climate extreme indices under future scenarios, and we evaluate the emulators’ accuracy. We propose an error metric that separates systematic emulation errors from discrepancies between emulated and target values due to internal variability, taking advantage of the availability of climate model simulations in the form of initial condition ensembles. We compute the error metric at grid-point scale, and we show geographically resolved results, or aggregate them as global averages. We use a range of scenarios spanning global temperature increases by the end of the century of 1.5 C and 2.0 C compared to a pre-industrial baseline, and two higher trajectories, RCP4.5 and RCP8.5. With this suite of scenarios we can test the effects on the error of the size of the temperature gap between emulation origin and target scenarios.

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