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South American Monsoon System simulation of the last millennium: interannual to multidecadal variability and forcing mechanisms

Grant number: 18/23522-6
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Doctorate (Direct)
Effective date (Start): March 01, 2019
Effective date (End): June 30, 2022
Field of knowledge:Interdisciplinary Subjects
Cooperation agreement: National Science Foundation (NSF) and NSF’s Partnership for International Research and Education (PIRE)
Principal Investigator:Gilvan Sampaio de Oliveira
Grantee:Jelena Maksic
Home Institution: Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas Espaciais (INPE). Ministério da Ciência, Tecnologia, Inovações e Comunicações (Brasil). São José dos Campos , SP, Brazil
Associated research grant:17/50085-3 - PIRE: climate research education in the Americas using tree-ring speleothem examples (PIRE-CREATE), AP.TEM

Abstract

The South America Monsoon System (SAMS) is the dominant mode of climate variability over most of the continent, from Amazon River to the South of La Plata Basin, with summer precipitation exceeding 55 % of the annual total. Interannual to multidecadal variability of the SAMS is also related to the El Niño Southern Oscillation (Garreaud et al., 2009), the North Atlantic Oscillation (Robertson and Mechoso, 1998), to the tropical Atlantic meridional SST gradient (Zhou and Lau, 2001) and the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (Garreaud et al., 2009). In the paleoclimate time scale, SAMS precipitation variability is mainly influenced by two factors: orbital parameters variations and the meridional gradient of Atlantic SSTs (Baker and Fritz, 2015). However, in the Last Millennium volcanic eruptions, land-use change, and greenhouse gas concentrations were also external forcings to the most prominent climate anomalies in this period: the Medieval Climate Anomaly (MCA, ca. 950-1250 CE) and the Little Ice Age (LIA, ca. 1450-1850 CE). Paleoclimate proxies and climate models results (Reuter et al., 2009; Vuille et al., 2012; Rojas et al., 2016) showed a weaker monsoon during the MCA and a relatively stronger monsoon during LIA. However, these signals may differ for other regions of South America. MCA was a hot and moist period over Southeastern Brazil (Oliveira et al., 2009), while the climate over Northeast Brazil was drier for both MCA and LIA periods (Novello et al., 2012). This project aims to investigate SAMS interannual to multidecadal variability due to external forcings in the Last Millennium. Specifically, we will examine the causes of trends and variability of the SAMS using past climate simulations (CMIP5/CMIP6) and forcing experiments of the last 1000 years. We will provide a quantitative and comprehensive assessment of what aspects of the SAMS variability are adequately represented by current models, giving credibility to the future climate change projections. (AU)