Detecting cross-equatorial wind change as a fingerprint of climate response to anthropogenic aerosol forcing

TitleDetecting cross-equatorial wind change as a fingerprint of climate response to anthropogenic aerosol forcing
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2016
AuthorsWang H, Xie SP, Tokinaga H., Liu Q., Kosaka Y
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Volume43
Pagination3444-3450
Date Published2016/04
Type of ArticleArticle
ISBN Number0094-8276
Accession NumberWOS:000375537300052
Keywordscirculation; Cloud cover; gradients; late 20th-century; ocean; precipitation; rainfall; reanalysis project; sahel; sensitivity
Abstract

Anthropogenic aerosols are a major driver of the twentieth century climate change. In climate models, the aerosol forcing, larger in the Northern than Southern Hemispheres, induces an interhemispheric Hadley circulation. In support of the model result, we detected a robust change in the zonal mean cross-equatorial wind over the past 60 years from ship observations and reanalyses, accompanied by physically consistent changes in atmospheric pressure and marine cloud cover. Single-forcing experiments indicate that the observed change in cross-equatorial wind is a fingerprint of aerosol forcing. This zonal mean mode follows the evolution of global aerosol forcing that is distinct from regional changes in the Atlantic sector. Atmospheric simulations successfully reproduce this interhemispheric mode, indicating the importance of sea surface temperature mediation in response to anthropogenic aerosol forcing. As societies awaken to reduce aerosol emissions, a phase reversal of this interhemispheric mode is expected in the 21st century.

DOI10.1002/2016gl068521
Student Publication: 
No