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Atlantic Control of the Late Nineteenth-Century Sahel Humid Period

AuthorsVillamayor, Julián; Mohino, E.; Khodri, Myriam; Mignot, Juliette; Janicot, S.
Sea surface temperature
Atmosphere-ocean interaction
Climate models
Decadal variability
Multidecadal variability
Issue Date15-Oct-2018
PublisherAmerican Meteorological Society
CitationJournal of Climate 31: 8225-8240 (2018)
AbstractPrecipitation regime shifts in the Sahel region have dramatic humanitarian and economic consequences such as the severe droughts during the 1970s and 1980s. Though Sahel precipitation changes during the late twentieth century have been extensively studied, little is known about the decadal variability prior to the twentieth century. Some evidence suggests that during the second half of the nineteenth century, the Sahel was as rainy as or even more rainy than during the 1950s and 1960s. Here, we reproduce such an anomalous Sahel humid period in the late nineteenth century by means of climate simulations. We show that this increase of rainfall was associated with an anomalous supply of humidity and higher-than-normal deep convection in the mid- and high troposphere. We present evidence suggesting that sea surface temperatures (SSTs) in the Atlantic basin played the dominant role in driving decadal Sahel rainfall variability during this early period.
Publisher version (URL)https://doi.org/10.1175/JCLI-D-18-0148.1
Appears in Collections:(IGEO) Artículos
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