AbstractERA-Interim has been widely considered as a valid proxy for observations at global and regional scales. However, the verifications of ERA-Interim precipitation and temperature in mainland China have been rarely conducted, especially in the spatial and long-term performances. Therefore, in this study, we employed the interpolated ground station (STA) data to evaluate the spatial and temporal patterns and trends of ERA-Interim precipitation and temperature during 1980–2012. The results showed that relatively weaker performances were observed in ERA-Interim precipitation, with the skill score (S index) ranging from 0.41 to 0.50. Interannual ERA-Interim precipitation presented comparable trends with STA precipitation at the annual and seasonal scales. Spatial patterns of empirical orthogonal function (EOF) modes and corresponding principal components were evidently different between annual ERA-Interim and STA precipitation. For temperature, annual and seasonal patterns of ERA-Interim data were in good consistency with those of STA over China with the S index ranging from 0.59 to 0.70. Yet interannual STA temperature recorded stronger warming trends (from 0.37 K decade−1 of wintertime to 0.53 K decade−1 of springtime) at the annual and seasonal scales compared to corresponding periods for ERA-Interim temperature (from 0.03 K decade−1 of wintertime to 0.25 K decade−1 of summertime). Overall, ERA-Interim precipitation and temperature had good agreement with STA data in east China with lower elevation (<1000 m above sea level), but good agreements were not observed in west China with higher elevation. The findings suggest that caution should be paid when using ERA-Interim precipitation and temperature in areas with complex orography.
Journal of Climate – American Meteorological Society
Published: Jun 3, 2018
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