VOLCANOES4CMIP: Applying volcanic impacts to future CMIP projections

To develop moethodologies for incorporating plausible future volcanic erruptions into CMIP climate projections. 


  1. Methodology for incorporating potential volcanic effects into existing future climate projections without further simulations

  2. Development of methodology for climate variables of relevance to climate impact assessments

  3. Report/publication on methodology and its application to CMIP5/6 projections

  4. (Stretch Goal) Development and application to climate variables with non-linearly scaling response

Project Summary

Despite the important role volcanic emissions play in shaping the climate, they have been omitted or at best crudely represented in state-of-the-art future climate projections to date. Recent work by our team at BCCR has assessed the effect of including volcanoes in
future climate projections with a large ensemble of 21st Century climate change simulations through the use of synthetic (proxy-based) volcanic forcing [Bethke et al. 2017, Nature Climate Change]. With the CMIP6 simulations underway, it is timely to build
on this success by developing innovative strategies to better account for volcanic emissions in future climate projections. Expanding on our previous work, we are now in a position to develop a methodology to artificially incorporate the response to
volcanic forcing into CMIP projections without the need for further simulations. While the methodology has been initially tested only for global-mean temperature in CMIP5, this project will explore its application to other climate variables of importance for climatic impact assessments (e.g. regionally averaged temperatures, monsoon rainfall, sea ice extent, etc.), and will apply the methodology for NorESM CMIP6 simulations as they become available. This activity will address the strategic interests of BCCR, to Identify processes controlling natural and human-induced climate change [Annual report Bjerknes Centre, 2017].


Project Details
NERSC Principal Investigator: 
Stephen Outten
Coordinating Institute: 
Nansen Environmental and Remote Sensing Center
Project Status: