Antarctic atmospheric rivers (ARs) are driven by their synoptic
environments and lead to profound and varying impacts along the
coastlines and over the continent. The definition and detection of ARs
specifically over Antarctica accounts for large uncertainty in AR
metrics, and consequently, impacts quantification. We find that
Antarctic-specific detection tools consistently capture the AR footprint
inland over the ice sheets, whereas most global detection tools do not.
Large-scale synoptic environments and associated ARs, however, are
broadly consistent across detection tools. Using data from the
Atmospheric River Tracking Method Intercomparison Project and global
reanalyses, we quantify the uncertainty in Antarctic AR metrics as well
as evaluate large-scale environments in the context of decadal and
interannual modes of variability. The Antarctic western hemisphere has
stronger connections to both decadal and interannual modes of
variability compared to East Antarctica, and the IOD’s influence on
Antarctic ARs is stronger while in phase with ENSO.