Wind and waves are key components of the climate system as they drive air-sea interactions and influence weather systems and atmospheric circulation. In marine environments, understanding surface wind and wave fields and their evolution over time is important for conducting safe and efficient human activities, such as navigation and engineering. This study considers long-term trends in the sea surface wind speed (WS) and significant wave height (SWH) in the China Seas over the period 1988–2011 using the Cross-Calibrated Multi-Platform (CCMP) ocean surface wind product and a 24-year hindcast wave dataset obtained from the WAVEWATCH-III (WW3) wave model forced with CCMP winds. The long-term trends in WS and SWH in the China Seas are analyzed over the past 24 years to provide a reference point from which to assess future climate change and offshore wind and wave energy resource development in the region. Results demonstrate that over the period 1988–2011 in the China Seas: 1) WS and SWH showed a significant increasing trend of 3.38 cm s−1 yr−1 and 1.52 cm yr−1, respectively; 2) there were notable regional differences in the long-term trends of WS and SWH; 3) areas with strong increasing trends were located mainly in the middle of the Tsushima Strait, the northern and southern areas of the Taiwan Strait, and in nearshore regions of the northern South China Sea; and 4) the long-term trend in WS was closely associated with El Niño and a significant increase in the occurrence of gale force winds in the region.
Journal of Ocean University of China – Springer Journals
Published: Aug 12, 2017
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