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Emulating ocean dynamic sea level by two-layer pattern scaling
  • Jiacan Yuan,
  • Robert E Kopp
Jiacan Yuan
Fudan University

Corresponding Author:jcyuan@fudan.edu.cn

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Robert E Kopp
Rutgers University
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Ocean dynamic sea level (DSL) change is a key driver of relative sea level (RSL) change. Projections of DSL change are generally obtained from simulations using atmosphere-ocean general circulation models (GCMs). Here, we develop a two-layer climate emulator to interpolate between emission scenarios simulated with GCMs and extend projections beyond the time horizon of available simulations. This emulator captures the evolution of DSL changes in corresponding GCMs, especially over middle and low latitudes. Compared with an emulator using univariate pattern scaling, the two-layer emulator more accurately reflects GCM behavior and captures non-linearities and non-stationarity in the relationship between DSL and global-mean warming. Using the emulator, we develop a probabilistic ensemble of DSL projections through 2300 for four scenarios: Representative Concentration Pathway (RCP) 2.6, RCP4.5, RCP8.5, and Shared Socioeconomic Pathway (SSP) 3-7.0. The magnitude and uncertainty of projected DSL changes decrease from the high- to the low- emission scenarios, indicating a reduced DSL rise hazard in low- and moderate- emission scenarios (RCP2.6 and RCP4.5) compared to the high-emission scenarios (SSP3-7.0 and RCP8.5).
Mar 2021Published in Journal of Advances in Modeling Earth Systems volume 13 issue 3. 10.1029/2020MS002323