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Past and Current Climate Changes in the Mediterranean Region

March 7, 2013

Mediterranean climate change during the last 60 years is based on homogenized daily temperature and quality controlled precipitation observational data and gridded products. The estimated changes indicate statistically significant Mediterranean summer temperature increase and a reduction in winter precipitation in specific areas. Reconstructions of Mediterranean sea level suggest a rise of some 150 mm since the beginning of the nineteenth century. A 20 years long reanalysis (1985–2007) was produced, showing long term temperature variability and a positive salinity trend in the ocean layers from the surface to 1,500 m depth. A prominent increase in summer temperature extremes is found in the whole Mediterranean region, while warm bias in the mid twentieth century station data is removed by homogenization. No basin-wide trends in precipitation and droughts are found for the second half of the twentieth century, while trends in extreme winds are largely negative, as are those of the related cyclones and cut-off-lows. The role of large scale pressure patterns like the NAO for variabilities and trends is discussed for the different parameters considered.

Ulbrich, U., E. Xoplaki, et al., 2013, Past and Current Climate Changes in the Mediterranean Region. Regional Assessment of Climate Change in the Mediterranean, In: A. Navarra and L. Tubiana (eds.), Regional Assessment of Climate Change in the Mediterranean: Volume 2: Agriculture, Forests and Ecosystem Services and People, Advances in Global Change Research 51, doi:10.1007/978-94-007-5772-1_3, 9-51. Article.

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