The Effects of Anthropogenic Warming on Changes of Extreme Precipitation Over Kansas City Metropolitan Area
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When the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Special Report Global Warming of 1.5°C was released in 2018 it postulated about the devastating effects of a 2° C increase in global temperature, based on projections of coarse resolution global climate models (GCMs). While GCMs are useful tools to examine global- and continental-scale climate change, policy makers are more interested in climate change from regional and local perspectives. In order for municipalities to accurately prepare for the climate change impacts on their infrastructure, higher-resolution climate models are needed. This research developed a high-resolution (1-kilometer) dynamical climate downscaling framework using the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) regional climate model and applied it to the Kansas City metropolitan area. Two initial simulations are first performed to reproduce a devastating storm in March 2019 known as winter storm Ulmer, which flooded major portions of the Midwest's farmlands causing an estimated $3 billion dollars in damage. These initial simulations used different landcover inputs to represent present-day, i.e., control, and historic land use as the other initial simulation. Then a suite of sensitivity experiments was designed and performed for both initial simulations to investigate potential changes to the region’s precipitation under various global warming and cooling scenarios.
Table of Contents
Introduction -- Global Climate Models and Downscaling -- Methodology -- Results -- Discussion and conclusions
M.S. (Master of Science)