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[1] The radiative response of tropical clouds to global warming exhibits a large spread among climate models, and this constitutes a major source of uncertainty for climate sensitivity estimates. To better interpret the origin of that uncertainty, we analyze the sensitivity of the tropical cloud radiative forcing to a change in sea surface temperature that(More)
Processes in the climate system that can either amplify or dampen the climate response to an external perturbation are referred to as climate feedbacks. Climate sensitivity estimates depend critically on radia-tive feedbacks associated with water vapor, lapse rate, clouds, snow, and sea ice, and global estimates of these feedbacks differ among general(More)
[1] To assess the current status of climate models in simulating clouds, basic cloud climatologies from ten atmospheric general circulation models are compared with satellite measurements from the International Satellite Cloud Climatology Project (ISCCP) and the Clouds and Earth's Radiant Energy System (CERES) program. An ISCCP simulator is employed in all(More)
Equilibrium climate sensitivity refers to the ultimate change in global mean temperature in response to a change in external forcing. Despite decades of research attempting to narrow uncertainties, equilibrium climate sensitivity estimates from climate models still span roughly 1.5 to 5 degrees Celsius for a doubling of atmospheric carbon dioxide(More)
1. Rising concentrations of carbon dioxide are expected to affect the hydrological cycle through increases in global mean temperature and the water vapour content of the atmosphere 2–4. However, regional precipitation changes also closely depend on the atmospheric circulation, which is expected to weaken in a warmer world 4–6. Here, we assess the effect of(More)
The response of low-level clouds to climate change has been identified as a major contributor to the uncertainty in climate sensitivity estimates among climate models. By analyzing the behaviour of low-level clouds in a hierarchy of models (coupled ocean-atmosphere model, atmospheric general circulation model, aqua-planet model, single-column model) using(More)
This study diagnoses the climate sensitivity, radiative forcing and climate feedback estimates from eleven general circulation models participating in the Fifth Phase of the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP5), and analyzes inter-model differences. This is done by taking into account the fact that the climate response to increased carbon dioxide(More)
By coordinating the design and distribution of global climate model simulations of the past, current, and future climate, the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP) has become one of the foundational elements of climate science. However, the need to address an ever-expanding range of scientific questions arising from more and more research communities(More)
[1] The influence of cloud modelling uncertainties on the projection of the tropical low-cloud response to global warming is explored by perturbing model parameters of the IPSL-CM5A climate model in a range of configurations (realistic general circulation model, aqua-planet, single-column model). While the positive sign and the mechanism of the low-cloud(More)
Climate data are dramatically increasing in volume and complexity, just as the users of these data in the scientific community and the public are rapidly increasing in number. A new paradigm of more open, user-friendly data access is needed to ensure that society can reduce vulnerability to climate variability and change, while at the same time exploiting(More)