The effect of global climate change on the regions of tropical convection in CSM1

Jan F. Dutton, Chris J. Poulsen, Jenni L. Evans

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24 Scopus citations


The impact of enhanced carbon dioxide concentrations on deep tropical convection (DTC) is explored using (he National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) Climate System Model (CSM1) model. A 134-year simulation in which CO2 concentrations increase 1 % year-1 is analyzed. With approximately present-day CO2 concentrations (367 ppmv) the CSM1 simulation captures the observed relationship between outgoing longwave radiation (OLR) and sea-surface temperature (SST) in the tropics. The temperature threshold for deep convection in the model is approximately 24.75° C. As CO2 concentrations increase, the simulated threshold temperature for tropical convection progressively increases to -25.55° C and 26.55° C at 2×CO2 (year 80) and 3.4×CO2 (year 133). The fully coupled climate model response to increased CO2 concentrations implies that the expansion of the 26° C isotherm, the present-day observed threshold, will not yield an expansion of the regions of DTC.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3049-3052
Number of pages4
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Issue number19
StatePublished - 2000

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geophysics
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)


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