Zagros Mountain Barrier Jet Impact on Future Fertile Crescent Rain

By Ali Alsamawi and Jason Evans.

Published by The International Journal of Climate Change: Impacts and Responses

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Regional climate model runs were performed over the Middle East for both present day and future climate conditions under the IPCC SRES A2 emissions scenario. Precipitation events in the Fertile Crescent were placed into six classes using the ISODATA clustering algorithm based on water vapor fluxes into the region. Two of these classes are characterized by a strong southerly flux caused by the formation of a barrier jet on the Western slopes of the Zagros Mountains. The precipitation events are simulated by the mesoscale mode MM5 driven at the boundaries by the NCEP/NCAR Renalyses (MM5/NNRP) and the Community Climate System Model for both present day (MM5/CCSM2000) and the end of the 21st century (MM5/CCSM2095).These southerly event classes produce the largest precipitation events, such that while only 9.5% of events fall into these classes, they account for 24.7% of precipitation in MM5/NNRP. For the MM5/CCSM2000 simulation 8.5% of events fall into these classes and they account for 19.3% of precipitation while by the end of the century these barrier jet associated events are both larger and more numerous, representing 26% of events and over 50% of the total precipitation.

Keywords: Barrier Jet, Climate Change, Middle East, Precipitation

International Journal of Climate Change: Impacts and Responses, Volume 2, Issue 2, pp.117-126. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 815.433KB).

Ali Alsamawi

Visiting Fellow, Climate Change Research Centre, University of New South Wales, Sydney, N.S.W., Australia

I’m currently a visiting fellow at the University of New South Wales. I’m located on the Kensington Campus in the Climate Change Research Centre. At present, I undertaking research in atmospheric climate change with a focus on precipitation. I have MSc in Physics. I’m a member of the Australian Meteorological and Oceanographic Society (AMOS).

Jason Evans

Senior Lecturer and ARC Australian Research Fellow, Climate Change Research Centre, Faculty of Science, University of New South Wales, Sydney, N.S.W., Australia

I am a senior research fellow at the Climate Change Research Centre at the University of New South Wales. My research involves general issues of water cycle processes over land, and how we can change them, largely through changes in land use and changes in climate. I focus at the regional (or watershed) scale and study processes including river flow, evaporation/transpiration, water vapor transport and precipitation.

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