Journal cover Journal topic
The Cryosphere An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
Journal topic

Journal metrics

Journal metrics

  • IF value: 4.790 IF 4.790
  • IF 5-year value: 5.921 IF 5-year
    5.921
  • CiteScore value: 5.27 CiteScore
    5.27
  • SNIP value: 1.551 SNIP 1.551
  • IPP value: 5.08 IPP 5.08
  • SJR value: 3.016 SJR 3.016
  • Scimago H <br class='hide-on-tablet hide-on-mobile'>index value: 63 Scimago H
    index 63
  • h5-index value: 51 h5-index 51
Discussion papers
https://doi.org/10.5194/tcd-9-1077-2015
© Author(s) 2015. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/tcd-9-1077-2015
© Author(s) 2015. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Submitted as: research article 20 Feb 2015

Submitted as: research article | 20 Feb 2015

Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. It has been under review for the journal The Cryosphere (TC). The revised manuscript was not accepted.

Arctic sea ice area in CMIP3 and CMIP5 climate model ensembles – variability and change

V. A. Semenov1,2,3, T. Martin1, L. K. Behrens1,*, and M. Latif1,4 V. A. Semenov et al.
  • 1GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research, Kiel, Germany
  • 2A. M. Obukhov Institut of Atmospheric Physics Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow, Russia
  • 3Institute of Geography Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow, Russia
  • 4Kiel University, Kiel, Germany
  • *now at: University of Bremen, Bremen, Germany

Abstract. The shrinking Arctic sea ice cover observed during the last decades is probably the clearest manifestation of ongoing climate change. While climate models in general reproduce the sea ice retreat in the Arctic during the 20th century and simulate further sea ice area loss during the 21st century in response to anthropogenic forcing, the models suffer from large biases and the model results exhibit considerable spread. The last generation of climate models from World Climate Research Programme Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP5), when compared to the previous CMIP3 model ensemble and considering the whole Arctic, were found to be more consistent with the observed changes in sea ice extent during the recent decades. Some CMIP5 models project strongly accelerated (non-linear) sea ice loss during the first half of the 21st century.

Here, complementary to previous studies, we compare results from CMIP3 and CMIP5 with respect to regional Arctic sea ice change. We focus on September and March sea ice. Sea ice area (SIA) variability, sea ice concentration (SIC) variability, and characteristics of the SIA seasonal cycle and interannual variability have been analysed for the whole Arctic, termed Entire Arctic, Central Arctic and Barents Sea. Further, the sensitivity of SIA changes to changes in Northern Hemisphere (NH) averaged temperature is investigated and several important dynamical links between SIA and natural climate variability involving the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC), North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) and sea level pressure gradient (SLPG) in the western Barents Sea opening serving as an index of oceanic inflow to the Barents Sea are studied.

The CMIP3 and CMIP5 models not only simulate a coherent decline of the Arctic SIA but also depict consistent changes in the SIA seasonal cycle and in the aforementioned dynamical links. The spatial patterns of SIC variability improve in the CMIP5 ensemble, particularly in summer. Both CMIP ensembles depict a significant link between the SIA and NH temperature changes. Our analysis suggests that, on average, the sensitivity of SIA to external forcing is enhanced in the CMIP5 models. The Arctic SIA variability response to anthropogenic forcing is different in CMIP3 and CMIP5. While the CMIP3 models simulate increased variability in March and September, the CMIP5 ensemble shows the opposite tendency. A noticeable improvement in the simulation of summer SIA by the CMIP5 models is often accompanied by worse results for winter SIA characteristics. The relation between SIA and mean AMOC changes is opposite in September and March, with March SIA changes being positively correlated with AMOC slowing. Finally, both CMIP ensembles demonstrate an ability to capture, at least qualitatively, important dynamical links of SIA to decadal variability of the AMOC, NAO and SLPG. SIA in the Barents Sea is strongly overestimated by the majority of the CMIP3 and CMIP5 models, and projected SIA changes are characterized by a large spread giving rise to high uncertainty.

V. A. Semenov et al.
Interactive discussion
Status: closed
Status: closed
AC: Author comment | RC: Referee comment | SC: Short comment | EC: Editor comment
Printer-friendly Version - Printer-friendly version Supplement - Supplement
Interactive discussion
Status: closed
Status: closed
AC: Author comment | RC: Referee comment | SC: Short comment | EC: Editor comment
Printer-friendly Version - Printer-friendly version Supplement - Supplement
V. A. Semenov et al.
V. A. Semenov et al.
Viewed  
Total article views: 1,548 (including HTML, PDF, and XML)
HTML PDF XML Total BibTeX EndNote
899 565 84 1,548 56 91
  • HTML: 899
  • PDF: 565
  • XML: 84
  • Total: 1,548
  • BibTeX: 56
  • EndNote: 91
Views and downloads (calculated since 20 Feb 2015)
Cumulative views and downloads (calculated since 20 Feb 2015)
Cited  
Saved  
Discussed  
No discussed metrics found.
Latest update: 17 Jan 2020
Publications Copernicus
Download
Short summary
The shrinking Arctic sea ice cover is probably the clearest manifestation of ongoing climate change. The last generation of climate models from World Climate Research Programme Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP3 and CMIP5) simulate consistent changes in the Sea Ice Area (SIA) seasonal cycle. On average, the sensitivity of SIA to external forcing is enhanced in the CMIP5 models. The Arctic SIA variability response to anthropogenic forcing is different in CMIP3 and CMIP5.
The shrinking Arctic sea ice cover is probably the clearest manifestation of ongoing climate...
Citation