Observed, simulated and projected changes in indicators of climate extremes
Francis Zwiers, Pacific Climate Impacts Consortium, University of Victoria
Abstract: There is an accumulating body of evidence suggesting that on global scales, temperature and precipitation extremes have both changed in response to human influences on the climate over the past half-century or so. The research on temperature extremes, in particular, is now quite well established, although work to understand the feedback mechanisms involved in individual extreme temperature events is ongoing. The evidence on precipitation extremes is less well established, although there is increasingly strong evidence that human influence is detectable in observations at the largest scales that are resolvable in available international compilations of daily precipitation records. In contrast, the picture concerning more complex indicators of dryness (e.g., various drought indices) seems to be somewhat less clear. Increasingly, climatologists are using statistical extreme value theory in their analyses, although most studies to date have not explicitly modelled the spatial dependence of extremes. This talk will review some of the recent research on historical changes in extremes and projections for the future. It will also point out some statistical challenges that arise from this work.
Refreshments will be served in the William G. Davis Computer Research Centre (DC) Fishbowl (room 1301) after the talk. All are welcome!
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