Missing and underestimated feedbacks in the CMIP5 climate models used for the IPCC carbon budget (25th November 2013)
This is a note for the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology listing papers on missing or underestimated feedbacks in the CMIP5 climate models used to calculate the carbon budget in the recent IPCC report (AR5).
Papers on missing/underestimated feedbacks.
High risk of permafrost thaw: Climate change: High risk of permafrost thaw
Permafrost feedback: Significant contribution to climate warming from the permafrost carbon feedback
Reduced global dimming: Faustian Bargain & The Missing Climate Data
Climate impact of Jellyfish: Stung! On Jellyfish Blooms and the Future of the Ocean. Lisa-ann Gershwin
Climate sensitivity underestimated:Review Article,Climate sensitivity in the Anthropocene
Guardian report: Climate change to have double impact – study
Extreme weather events: Extreme meteorological events and global warming: a vicious cycle?
Reduced sulphur fluxes: Global warming amplified by reduced sulphur fluxes as a result of ocean acidification
Ocean acidification reduces carbon sink: Arctic ocean acidification: pelagic ecosystem and biogeochemical responses during a mesocosm study
Reduced plant growth: Drought Drives Decade-Long Decline in Plant Growth
Climate models underestimate the variability of Amazon dry-season length: Increased dry-season length over southern Amazonia in recent decades and its implication for future climate projection
Water vapor feedback underestimated in models: Stratospheric water vapor feedback
Wildfires projected to worsen with climate change: Ensemble projections of wildfire activity and carbonaceous aerosol concentrations over the western United States in the mid-21st century
Methane from small thaw ponds: Small Thaw Ponds: An Unaccounted Source of Methane in the Canadian High Arctic
Seabed methane release: Ebullition and storm-induced methane release from the East Siberian Arctic Shelf
Postscript 26th November 2013
Nearly all of the items in the list above reference papers that have been peer reviewed. I think there are occasions when the usually valuable demands of peer review exclude the less knowable and the very recent so there are occasions when points, which are important cannot easily be found in the peer reviewed literature.
One feed back mentioned above that I would like to draw attention to concerns dissociating methane hydrates. I had previously raised concerns to get an official response to the Last Hours video. This video concerning the longer term should be considered by POST as well.
Neven’s Sea Ice Blog
A good place to find up to the hour information can often be found on Neven’s Sea Ice Blog. Yesterday a new topic was started And the wind cries methane. POST should look at this and read the comments. The piece by Neven ends “Remember, you can track methane yourself on MethaneTracker.org.” “Looking yourself” is somewhat faster than peer review although not as reliable.
Postscript 28th January 2014
POST note 454, Risks from Climate Feedbacks
A note from the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology, Risks from Climate Feedbacks (POST-PN-454,January 2014) says
“Compared to existing model estimates, it is likely that climate feedbacks will result in additional carbon in the atmosphere and additional warming. This is because the majority of poorly represented climate feedbacks are likely to be amplifying feedbacks. This additional atmospheric carbon from climate feedbacks could make it more difficult to avoid a greater than 2°C rise in global temperatures without additional reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. The strength of many amplifying feedbacks is likely to increase with warming, which could increase the risk of the climate changing state.
Some commentators suggest the uncertainties in our knowledge of carbon cycle and physical feedbacks may mean the Earth will warm faster than models currently estimate.”
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