Ed Hawkins: Hiatus Decades are Compatible with Global Warming

This is a re-post from the blog of Ed Hawkins, a climate scientist at the University of Reading Department of Meteorology.

What Will the Simulations Do Next?

Recent conversations on the recent slowdown in global surface warming have inspired an animation of how models simulate this phenomenon, and what it means for the evolution of global surface temperatures over the next few decades.

The animation below shows observations and two simulations with a climate model which only vary in their particular realisation of the weather, i.e. chaotic variability. A previous post has described how different realisations can produce very different outcomes for regional climates. However, the animation shows how global temperatures can evolve differently over the course of a century. For example, the blue simulation matches the observed trend over the most recent decade but warms more than the red simulation up to 2050. This demonstrates that a temporary slowdown in global surface warming is not inconsistent with future warming projections.

hawkins gif

Technical details: Both simulations are using CSIRO Mk3.6, using the RCP6.0 scenario.

You can also follow Ed Hawkins on Twitter.

Posted by dana1981 on Sunday, 20 January, 2013

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