Multi-model climate change projections for India under representative concentration pathways
Climate projections for the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) are made using the newly developed representative concentration pathways (RCPs) under the Coupled Model Inter-comparison Project 5 (CMIP5). This
article provides multi-model and multi-scenario temperature and precipitation projections for India for the period 1860–2099 based on the new climate data. We find that CMIP5 ensemble mean climate is closer to observed climate than any individual model.
The key findings of this study are:
- under the business-as usual (between RCP6 and RCP8.5) scenario, mean warming in India is likely to be in the range 1.7–2°C by 2030s and 3.3–4.8°C by 2080s relative to pre industrial times;
- all-India precipitation under the business-as-usual scenario is projected to increase from 4 to 5% by 2030s and from 6 to 14% towards the end of the century (2080s) compared to the 1961–1990 baseline;
- while precipitation projections are generally less reliable than temperature projections, model agreement in precipitation projections increases from RCP2.6 to RCP8.5, and from short-to long-term projections, indicating that long-term precipitation projections are generally more robust than their short-term counterparts, and
- there is a consistent positive trend in frequency of extreme precipitation days (e.g. > 40 mm/day) for decades 2060s and beyond.
These new climate projections should be used in future assessment of impact of climate change and adaptation planning. There is need to consider not just the mean climate projections, but also the more important extreme projections in impact studies and
as well in adaptation planning.
Authors: Rajiv Kumar Chaturvedi1,, Jaideep Joshi2, Mathangi Jayaraman1, G. Bala3 and N. H. Ravindranath1
1-Centre for Sustainable Technologies, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore 560 012, India
2-Department of Electrical Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay, Powai, Mumbai 400 076, India
3-Centre for Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences and Divecha Centre for Climate Change, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore 560 012, India
Submitted to: CURRENT SCIENCE, VOL. 103, NO. 7, 10 OCTOBER 2012
Full paper : Multi-Model Climate Project Current Science paper
Started in year 2010, ‘Climate Himalaya’ initiative has been working on the mountain and climate related issues in the Himalayan region of South Asia. In the last two years this knowledge sharing portal has become one of the important references for the governments, research institutions, civil society groups and international agencies, those have work and interest in Himalayas. The Climate Himalaya team innovates on knowledge sharing, capacity building and climatic adaptation aspects in its focus countries like Bhutan, India, Nepal and Pakistan. Climate Himalaya’s thematic areas of work are mountain ecosystem, water, forest and livelihood. Read>>