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  • 1. IPCC 5th Assessment of Climate Change Science – a Welsh perspective The Fifth Assessment Report (AR5): Key messages and the Welsh contribution James Scourse Director, Climate Change Consortium of Wales (C3W) School of Ocean Sciences, Bangor University
  • 2. Atmospheric CO2 concentrations are now at an unprecedented level compared with the last 800,000 years Atmospheric CO2 concentrations have – increased by about 40% since 1750, due to human activity – exceed values recorded in ice cores for the last 800,000 years IPCC AR5 2013
  • 3. Methane has increased by 150% and nitrous oxide by 20% since 1750 Methane: CH4 Mauna Loa South Pole Nitrous Oxide: N2O Mace Head Cape Grim IPCC AR5 2013
  • 4. Stronger evidence that observed warming is linked to human influence IPCC AR5 2013
  • 5. • It is extremely likely (95-100%) that most of observed increase in global surface temperature since 1951 caused by human influence • Observed ocean warming can now be attributed to human influence with greater confidence (attribution statement likely in AR4 and very likely in AR5) • For 1951-2010 observed warming of 0.6˚C: greenhouse gases contributed 0.5 to 1.3˚C, aerosols -0.6 to 0.1˚C and natural forcings -0.1 to 0.1˚C • Over every continental region, except Antarctica, human influence has made substantial contribution to surface temperature increases IPCC AR5 2013
  • 6. Projections of global average warming • • • By the end of the century, the increase of global mean surface temperature above 19862005 levels is projected to be: – 0.3-1.7˚C for RCP2.6 – 2.6-4.8˚C for RCP8.5 Global warming >2˚C is likely for RCP6.0 and RCP8.5 Global warming >4˚C is unlikely except for RCP8.5 IPCC AR5 2013
  • 7. Warming will not be the same everywhere • • There is very high confidence that long-term warming will be larger over land than over the ocean, and that the Arctic region will warm most rapidly Ocean warming will continue for centuries, even if greenhouse gas emissions are IPCC AR5 2013 decreased
  • 8. http://www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/2012-temps.html
  • 9. There will be large geographical variations in precipitation change • • • For the next few decades, changes in regional-scale precipitation will be strongly influenced by natural variability Contrast between wet and dry regions and seasons will increase over most of the globe, though there are regional exceptions Monsoon precipitation is likely to intensify, along with a lengthening of the monsoon season IPCC AR5 2013
  • 10. Arctic sea ice projected to decline Northern hemisphere September sea ice extent • RCP2.6 RCP8.5 • • 1950 2000 2100 2050 Very likely (90-100%) that Arctic sea ice cover will continue to shrink and thin Projected reductions in sea ice extent for September by end of century are 43% for RCP2.6 and 94% for RCP8.5 A nearly ice-free Arctic Ocean in September is likely (66-100%) before mid-century under RCP8.5 IPCC AR5 2013
  • 11. Sea-level rise will continue • • • Global average sea level will rise during the 21st century, and it is very likely that it will rise faster than it has during the last 40 years Thermal expansion accounts for 30-55% of the total, with melting of glaciers giving the second largest contribution It is likely that reductions in the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets will contribute to sea level rise IPCC AR5 2013 by 0.03-0.20m by 2100
  • 12. Between 1993 and 2010 observed global mean sea level rise was 3.2 [2.8 to 3.4] mm per year • 1.1 [0.8 to 1.4] mm per year: thermal expansion • • • • 0.76 [0.39 to 1.13] mm per year: glaciers except Greenland and Antarctica 0.10 [0.07 to 0.13] mm per year: Greenland glaciers 0.33 [0.25 to 0.41] mm per year: Greenland Ice Sheet 0.27 [0.16 to 0.38] mm per year: Antarctic Ice Sheet • 0.38 [0.26 to 0.49] mm per year: land water storage • BUT: 3.2 mm per year is a GLOBAL AVERAGE IPCC AR5 2013
  • 13. Spatial variation in global sea-level rise 1993 to 2008 based on Topex/Poseidon and Jason-1 satellites [climate.nasa.gov]
  • 14. Vertical land motion (mm/yr) Geological data Gehrels (2010) GIA model
  • 15. Larsen B ice shelf collapse 2002
  • 16. Additional contributions from the ice sheets? • During last interglacial, high confidence that maximum global mean sea level was 5-10 m higher than present • Only collapse of marine based sectors of the Antarctic Ice Sheet, if initiated, could cause global mean sea level to rise substantially above the likely range during the 21st century • Medium confidence that this additional contribution would not exceed several tenths of a meter of sea level rise during the 21st century IPCC AR5 2013
  • 17. Human contribution to changes in weather extremes Phenomenon Global changes since 1950 Human contribution Fewer cold days and nights Very likely Very likely More hot days and nights Increase in heat waves Very likely Very likely Medium confidence Likely Increase in heavy precipitation Likely Medium confidence Increase in drought Low confidence Low confidence Increase in tropical cyclone activity Low confidence Low confidence IPCC AR5 2013
  • 18. The contribution of Welsh science to IPCC AR5: The Physical Science Basis Chapter 4 Lead Author: Tavi Murray (Swansea University) Chapter 13 Contributing Author: Tavi Murray (Swansea University) Chapter 5 Contributing Author: Paul Pearson (Cardiff University) 32 cited scientific articles: 8 in Chapter 4 (Cryosphere) 20 in Chapter 5 (Paleoclimate) 2 in Chapter 6 (Carbon and Other Biogeochemical Cycles) 1 in Chapter 7 (Clouds and Aerosols) 1 in Chapter 14 (Climate Phenomena and their Relevance for Future Regional Climate Change)
  • 19. Swansea and Aberystwyth universities internationally very strong in glaciological/cryospheric research, especially related to the Greenland Ice Sheet Cardiff, Bangor, Swansea and Aberystwyth universities all internationally very strong in paleoclimate research, especially in marine paleoclimate research
  • 20. Chapter 4 (Cryosphere): cited scientific articles ABERYSTWYTH: Carrivick, J. L., B. J. Davies, N. F. Glasser, D. Nyvlt, and M. J. Hambrey, 2012: Late-Holocene changes in character and behaviour of land-terminating glaciers on James Ross Island, Antarctica. Journal of Glaciology, 58 , 1176-1190 ABERYSTWYTH: Davies, B. J., and N. F. Glasser, 2012: Accelerating shrinkage of Patagonian glaciers from the “Little Ice Age” (c. AD1870) to 2011. Journal of Glaciology, 58 , 1063-1084. SWANSEA: Luckman, A., and T. Murray, 2005: Seasonal variation in velocity before retreat of Jakobshavn Isbrae, Greenland. Geophysical Research Letters, 32 , 4 SWANSEA: Murray, T., T. Strozzi, A. Luckman, H. Jiskoot, and P. Christakos, 2003: Is there a single surge mechanism? Contrasts in dynamics between glacier surges in Svalbard and other regions. Journal of Geophysical Research-Solid Earth,108 , 2237. SWANSEA: Murray, T., Scharrer, K., James, T.D., Dye, S.R., Hanna, E., Booth, A.D., Selmes, N., Luckman, A., Hughes, A.L.C., Cook, S. and Huybrechts, P. 2010: Ocean regulation hypothesis for glacier dynamics in southeast Greenland and implications for ice sheet mass changes. Journal of Geophysical Research-Earth Surface, 115 , F03026. ABERYSTWYTH/SWANSEA: Quincey, D. J., M. Braun, N. F. Glasser, M. P. Bishop, K. Hewitt, and A. Luckman, 2011: Karakoram glacier surge dynamics. Geophysical Research Letters, 38 , L18504. SWANSEA: Selmes, N., T. Murray, and T. D. James, 2011: Fast draining lakes on the Greenland Ice Sheet. Geophysical Research Letters, 38 , 5 (L15501). ABERYSTWYTH: Shepherd, A., A. Hubbard, P. Nienow, M. King, M. McMillan, and I. Joughin, 2009: Greenland ice sheet motion coupled with daily melting in late summer. Geophysical Research Letters , 36 , L01501.
  • 21. Chapter 5 (Paleoclimate): cited scientific articles CARDIFF: Barker, S., G. Knorr, M. J. Vautravers, P. Diz, and L. C. Skinner, 2010: Extreme deepening of the Atlantic overturning circulation during deglaciation. Nature Geoscience, 3 , 567-571. CARDIFF: Barker, S., P. Diz, M. J. Vautravers, J. Pike, G. Knorr, I. R. Hall, and W. S. Broecker, 2009: Interhemispheric Atlantic seesaw response during the last deglaciation. Nature, 457 , 1097-1102. CARDIFF: Barker, S., Knorr, G., Edwards, R.L., Parrenin, F., Putnam, A.E., Skinner, L.C., Wolff, E. and Ziegler, M: 800,000 Years of Abrupt Climate Variability. Science, 334 , 347-351. ABERYSTWYTH: Bentley, M. J., C. J. Fogwill, A. M. Le Brocq, A. L. Hubbard, D. E. Sugden, T. J. Dunai, and S. P. H. T. Freeman, 2010: Deglacial history of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet in the Weddell Sea embayment: Constraints on past ice volume change. Geology, 38 , 411-414. BANGOR: Cunningham, L.K., Austin, W.E.N., Knudsen, K.L., Eiríksson, J., Scourse, J.D., Wanamaker, A.D., Jr, Butler, P., Cage, A., Richter, T., Husum, K., Hald, M., Andersson, C., Zorita, E., Linderholm, H., Gunnarson, B.E., Sicre, M.A., Sejrup, H.P., Jiang, H. & Wilson, R.J.S. 2013. Reconstructions of surface ocean conditions from the North East Atlantic and Nordic Seas during the last millennium. The Holocene, 23, 921-935. CARDIFF: Elderfield, H., Greaves, M., Barker, S., Hall, I.R., Tripati, A., Ferretti, P., Crowhurst, S., Booth, L. and Daunt, C. 2010: A record of bottom water temperature and seawater δ 18O for the Southern Ocean over the past 440 kyr based on Mg/Ca of benthic foraminiferal Uvigerina spp. Quaternary Science Reviews, 29, 160-169. CARDIFF: Ellison, C. R. W., M. R. Chapman, and I. R. Hall, 2006: Surface and deep ocean interactions during the cold climate event 8200 years ago. Science, 312 , 1929-1932.
  • 22. Chapter 5 (Paleoclimate): cited scientific articles CARDIFF: Foster, G. L., C. H. Lear, and J. W. B. Rae, 2012: The evolution of pCO2 , ice volume and climate during the middle Miocene. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 341–344 , 243-254. CARDIFF: Hall, I. R., S. B. Moran, R. Zahn, P. C. Knutz, C. C. Shen, and R. L. Edwards, 2006: Accelerated drawdown of meridional overturning in the late-glacial Atlantic triggered by transient pre-H event freshwater perturbation. Geophysical Research Letters, 33 , L16616. SWANSEA: Hughes, A. L. C., E. Rainsley, T. Murray, C. J. Fogwill, C. Schnabel, and S. Xu, 2012: Rapid response of Helheim Glacier, southeast Greenland, to early Holocene climate warming. Geology, 40 , 427-430. CARDIFF: Kleiven, H. F., I. R. Hall, I. N. McCave, G. Knorr, and E. Jansen, 2011: Coupled deep-water flow and climate variability in the middle Pleistocene North Atlantic. Geology, 39 , 343-346. CARDIFF: Köhler, P., G. Knorr, D. Buiron, A. Lourantou, and J. Chappellaz, 2011: Abrupt rise in atmospheric CO2 at the onset of the Bølling/Allerød: in-situ ice core data versus true atmospheric signals. Climate of the Past, 7, 473-486. CARDIFF: Lynch-Stieglitz, J., Adkins, J.F., Curry, W.B., Dokken, T., Hall, I.R., Herguera, J.C., Hirschi, J.J.M., Ivanova, E.V., Kissel, C., Marchal, O., Marchitto, T., McCave, I.N., McManus, J.F., Mulitza, S., Ninnemann, U., Peeters, F., Yu, E.F. and Zahn, R. 2007: Atlantic meridional overturning circulation during the Last Glacial Maximum. Science, 316 , 6669. ABERYSTWYTH: Macklin, M. G., J. Lewin, and J. C. Woodward, 2012: The fluvial record of climate change. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society, Series A , 370 , 2143-2172.
  • 23. Chapter 5 (Paleoclimate): cited scientific articles SWANSEA: McCarroll, D., Loader, N.J., Jalkanen, R., Gagen, M.H., Grudd, H., Gunnarson, B.E., Kirchhefer, A.J., Friedrich, M., Linderholm, H.W., Lindholm, M., Boettger, M., Los, S.O., Remmele, S., Kononov, Y.M., Yamazaki, Y.U., Young, G.H.F. and Zorita, E. 2013: A 1200-year multiproxy record of tree growth and summer temperature at the northern pine forest limit of Europe. The Holocene, 23, 471-484. SWANSEA: NEEM community members (including S.M. Davies), 2013 : Eemian interglacial reconstructed from Greenland folded ice core. Nature, 493 , 489-494. CARDIFF: Pearson, P. N., G. L. Foster, and B. S. Wade, 2009: Atmospheric carbon dioxide through the EoceneOligocene climate transition. Nature, 461 , 1110-1113. CARDIFF: Sosdian, S., and Y. Rosenthal, 2009: Deep-sea temperature and ice volume changes across the PliocenePleistocene climate transitions. Science, 325, 306-310. BANGOR: Trouet, V., J. Esper, N. E. Graham, A. Baker, J. D. Scourse, and D. C. Frank, 2009: Persistent positive north Atlantic oscillation mode dominated the Medieval Climate Anomaly. Science, 324 , 78-80. SWANSEA: Wilson, R., D. Miles, N. Loader, T. Melvin, L. Cunningham, R. Cooper, and K. Briffa, 2013. A millennial long March–July precipitation reconstruction for southern-central England. Climate Dynamics, 40, 997-1017.
  • 24. Chapter 6 (Carbon and Other Biogeochemical Cycles): cited scientific articles BANGOR: Evans, C. D., D. T. Monteith, and D. M. Cooper, 2005: Long-term increases in surface water dissolved organic carbon: observations, possible causes and environmental impacts. Environmental Pollution, 137 , 55-71. CARDIFF: Skinner, L. C., S. Fallon, C. Waelbroeck, E. Michel, and S. Barker, 2010: Ventilation of the deep Southern ocean and deglacial CO2 rise. Science, 328, 1147-1151. Chapter 7 (Clouds and Aerosols): cited scientific article SWANSEA:Gagen, M., Zorita, E., McCarroll, D., Young, G.H.F., Grudd, H., Jalkanen, R., Loader, N., Robertson, I. and Kirchhefer, A., 2011. Cloud response to summer temperatures in Fennoscandia over the last thousand years. Geophysical Research Letters, 38, L05701. Chapter 14 (Climate Phenomena and their Relevance for Future Regional Climate Change): cited scientific article ABERYSTWYTH: Metcalfe, S. E., M. D. Jones, S. J. Davies, A. Noren, and A. MacKenzie, 2010: Climate variability over the last two millennia in the North American Monsoon, recorded in laminated lake sediments from Laguna de Juanacatlan. Mexico. The Holocene, 20 , 1195-1206.
  • 25. UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC): Assessment Report 4, 2007 “the gold standard in scientific reference on all aspects of climate change for governments, industry and individuals worldwide” IPCC Fifth Assessment Report (AR5) The Physical Science Basis, September 2013 Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability, March 2014 Mitigation, April 2014 Synthesis, October 2014