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The Cryosphere An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
https://doi.org/10.5194/tc-2017-182
© Author(s) 2017. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
Research article
04 Sep 2017
Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. It is a manuscript under review for the journal The Cryosphere (TC).
Effects of short-term variability of meteorological variables on soil temperature in permafrost regions
Christian Beer1,2, Philipp Porada1,2, Altug Ekici1,3, and Matthias Brakebusch1,2 1Department of Environmental Science and Analytical Chemistry (ACES), Stockholm University, 10691 Stockholm, Sweden
2Bolin Centre for Climate Research, Stockholm University, 10691 Stockholm, Sweden
3Uni Research Climate, Bjerknes Centre for Climate Research, Bergen, Norway
Abstract. Effects of the short-term temporal variability of meteorological variables on soil temperature in northern high latitude regions have been investigated. For this, a process-oriented land surface model has been driven using an artificially manipulated climate dataset. Climate variability mainly impacts snow depth, and the thermal diffusivity of lichens and bryophytes. This latter effect is of opposite direction in summer and winter in most regions. These impacts of climate variability on insulating surface layers together substantially alter the heat exchange between atmosphere and soil. As a result, soil temperature is 0.1 to 0.8 °C higher when climate variability is reduced. Earth system models project warming of the Arctic region but also increasing variability of meteorological variables and more often extreme meteorological events. Therefore, our results show that projected future increases in permafrost temperature and active-layer thickness in response to climate change will be lower i) when taking into account future changes in short-term variability of meteorological variables, and ii) when representing dynamic snow and lichen and bryophyte functions in land surface models.

Citation: Beer, C., Porada, P., Ekici, A., and Brakebusch, M.: Effects of short-term variability of meteorological variables on soil temperature in permafrost regions, The Cryosphere Discuss., https://doi.org/10.5194/tc-2017-182, in review, 2017.
Christian Beer et al.
Christian Beer et al.
Christian Beer et al.

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Short summary
Idealized model experiments demonstrate that, in addition to a gradual climate change also changing daily to weekly variability of meteorological variables and extreme events will have an impact on mean annual ground temperature in high latitude permafrost areas. In fact, results of the land surface model experiments show that the projected increase of variability of meteorological variables leads to cooler permafrost soil in contrast to an otherwise soil warming in response to climate change.
Idealized model experiments demonstrate that, in addition to a gradual climate change also...
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