Impacts of ENSO events on cloud radiative effects in preindustrial conditions: Changes in cloud fraction and their dependence on interactive aerosol emissions and concentrations

TitleImpacts of ENSO events on cloud radiative effects in preindustrial conditions: Changes in cloud fraction and their dependence on interactive aerosol emissions and concentrations
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2016
AuthorsYang Y., Russell LM, Xu L, Lou S.J, Lamjiri M.A, Somerville R.CJ, Miller AJ, Cayan DR, DeFlorio M.J, Ghan SJ, Liu Y., Singh B., Wang HL, Yoon JH, Rasch PJ
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research-Atmospheres
Volume121
Pagination6321-6335
Date Published2016/06
Type of ArticleArticle
ISBN Number2169-897X
Accession NumberWOS:000381631700012
Keywordsbudget experiment; climate; community atmosphere model; el-nino; interannual variability; optical-depth; simulations; top-height; trends; tropospheric ozone; version-3 cam3
Abstract

We use three 150 year preindustrial simulations of the Community Earth System Model to quantify the impacts of El Nino-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) events on shortwave and longwave cloud radiative effects (CRESW and CRELW). Compared to recent observations from the Clouds and the Earth's Radiant Energy System data set, the model simulation successfully reproduces larger variations of CRESW and CRELW over the tropics. The ENSO cycle is found to dominate interannual variations of cloud radiative effects. Simulated cooling (warming) effects from CRESW (CRELW) are strongest over the tropical western and central Pacific Ocean during warm ENSO events, with the largest difference between 20 and 60 W m(-2), with weaker effects of 10-40 W m(-2) over Indonesian regions and the subtropical Pacific Ocean. Sensitivity tests show that variations of cloud radiative effects are mainly driven by ENSO-related changes in cloud fraction. The variations in midlevel and high cloud fractions each account for approximately 20-50% of the interannual variations of CRESW over the tropics and almost all of the variations of CRELW between 60 degrees S and 60 degrees N. The variation of low cloud fraction contributes to most of the variations of CRESW over the midlatitude oceans. Variations in natural aerosol concentrations explained 10-30% of the variations of both CRESW and CRELW over the tropical Pacific, Indonesian regions, and the tropical Indian Ocean. Changes in natural aerosol emissions and concentrations enhance 3-5% and 1-3% of the variations of cloud radiative effects averaged over the tropics.

DOI10.1002/2015jd024503
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