On the additivity of climate response to anthropogenic aerosols and CO2, and the enhancement of future global warming by carbonaceous aerosols

Alf Kirkevåg, Trond Iversen, Jón Egill Kristjánsson, Øyvind Seland, Jens Boldingh Debernard
2008 Tellus: Series A, Dynamic Meteorology and Oceanography  
A B S T R A C T Climate responses to aerosol forcing at present-day and doubled CO 2 -levels are studied based on equilibrium simulations with the CCM-Oslo atmospheric GCM coupled to a slab ocean. Aerosols interact on-line with meteorology through life-cycling of sulphate and black carbon (BC), and tables for aerosol optics and CCN activation. Anthropogenic aerosols counteract the warming by CO 2 through a negative radiative forcing dominated by the indirect effect. Anthropogenic aerosols
more » ... enic aerosols reduce precipitation by 4%, while CO 2 doubling gives a 5% increase, mainly through enhanced convective activity, including a narrower ITCZ. Globally, the aerosol cooling is insensitive to CO 2 , and the effects of CO 2 doubling are insensitive to aerosols. Hence, global climate responses to these sources of forcing are almost additive, although sulphate and BC burdens are slightly increased due to reduced stratiform precipitation over major anthropogenic source regions and a modified ITCZ. Regionally, positive cloud feedbacks give up to 5 K stronger aerosol cooling at present-day CO 2 than after CO 2 doubling. Aerosol emissions projected for year-2100 (SRES A2) strongly increase BC and change the sign of the direct effect. This results in a 0.3 K warming and 0.1% increase in precipitation compared to the year 2000, thus enhancing the global warming by greenhouse gases.
doi:10.3402/tellusa.v60i3.15312 fatcat:yxjcc2xsjbfavh3743kjytuahq