Southeast Greenland winter precipitation strongly linked to the Icelandic Low position

Southeast Greenland winter precipitation strongly linked to the Icelandic Low position AbstractGreenland’s largest precipitation flux occurs in its Southeast (SE) region during the winter, controlled primarily by easterly winds and frequent cyclogenesis in the North Atlantic. Several studies have attempted to link SE Greenland precipitation to the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO), however results are inconsistent. This work uses reanalysis, automatic weather station data and regional climate model output and shows that the east-west position of the Icelandic Low is a better predictor of SE Greenland precipitation (average correlation of r = -0.48 in DJF) than climate indices such as the NAO (r = -0.06 in DJF). In years when the Icelandic Low is positioned extremely west, moisture transport increases up to ~40% (or up to 40 kg/m/s) off the SE Greenland coast compared to when the low is in an extreme east position. Furthermore, in years when the Icelandic Low is positioned extremely west, storm track density and intensity increases just off the SE coast of Greenland. Thus, the Icelandic Low’s longitudinal position dominates SE Greenland ice sheet’s wintertime precipitation, a positive term in the ice sheet mass balance. Given SE Greenland’s importance in the overall ice sheet mass balance, the position of the Icelandic Low is thereby important for making projections of future sea level. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Climate American Meteorological Society

Southeast Greenland winter precipitation strongly linked to the Icelandic Low position

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Publisher
American Meteorological Society
Copyright
Copyright © American Meteorological Society
ISSN
1520-0442
D.O.I.
10.1175/JCLI-D-17-0622.1
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

AbstractGreenland’s largest precipitation flux occurs in its Southeast (SE) region during the winter, controlled primarily by easterly winds and frequent cyclogenesis in the North Atlantic. Several studies have attempted to link SE Greenland precipitation to the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO), however results are inconsistent. This work uses reanalysis, automatic weather station data and regional climate model output and shows that the east-west position of the Icelandic Low is a better predictor of SE Greenland precipitation (average correlation of r = -0.48 in DJF) than climate indices such as the NAO (r = -0.06 in DJF). In years when the Icelandic Low is positioned extremely west, moisture transport increases up to ~40% (or up to 40 kg/m/s) off the SE Greenland coast compared to when the low is in an extreme east position. Furthermore, in years when the Icelandic Low is positioned extremely west, storm track density and intensity increases just off the SE coast of Greenland. Thus, the Icelandic Low’s longitudinal position dominates SE Greenland ice sheet’s wintertime precipitation, a positive term in the ice sheet mass balance. Given SE Greenland’s importance in the overall ice sheet mass balance, the position of the Icelandic Low is thereby important for making projections of future sea level.

Journal

Journal of ClimateAmerican Meteorological Society

Published: Feb 23, 2018

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