The biogeophysical effects of idealized land cover and land management changes in Earth system models

Steven Johan De Hertog, Felix Havermann, Inne Vanderkelen, Suqi Guo, Fei Luo, Iris Manola, D. Coumou, E.L. Davin, G. Duveiller, Quentin Lejeune, Julia Pongratz, Carl-Friedrich Schleussner, Sonia I. Seneviratne, Wim Thiery

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Land cover and land management change (LCLMC) has been highlighted for its critical role in mitigation scenarios, both in terms of global mitigation and local adaptation. Yet, the climate effect of individual LCLMC options, their dependence on the background climate and the local vs. non-local responses are still poorly understood across different Earth system models (ESMs). Here we simulate the climatic effects of LCLMC using three state-of-the-art ESMs, including the Community Earth System Model (CESM), the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology Earth System Model (MPI-ESM) and the European Consortium Earth System Model (EC-EARTH). We assess the LCLMC effects using the following four idealized experiments: (i) a fully afforested world, (ii) a world fully covered by cropland, (ii) a fully afforested world with extensive wood harvesting and (iv) a full-cropland world with extensive irrigation. In these idealized sensitivity experiments, performed under present-day climate conditions, the effects of the different LCLMC strategies represent an upper bound for the potential of global mitigation and local adaptation. To disentangle the local and non-local effects from the LCLMC, a checkerboard-like LCLMC perturbation, i.e. alternating grid boxes with and without LCLMC, is applied. The local effects of deforestation on surface temperature are largely consistent across the ESMs and the observations, with a cooling in boreal latitudes and a warming in the tropics. However, the energy balance components driving the change in surface temperature show less consistency across the ESMs and the observations. Additionally, some biases exist in specific ESMs, such as a strong albedo response in CESM mid-latitudes and a soil-thawing-driven warming in boreal latitudes in EC-EARTH. The non-local effects on surface temperature are broadly consistent across ESMs for afforestation, though larger model uncertainty exists for cropland expansion. Irrigation clearly induces a cooling effect; however, the ESMs disagree whether these are mainly local or non-local effects. Wood harvesting is found to have no discernible biogeophysical effects on climate. Overall, our results underline the potential of ensemble simulations to inform decision making regarding future climate consequences of land-based mitigation and adaptation strategies.
Originele taal-2English
Artikelnummer14
Pagina's (van-tot) 629–667
Aantal pagina's39
TijdschriftEarth System Dynamics
Volume14
Nummer van het tijdschrift3
DOI's
StatusPublished - 6 jun 2023

Bibliografische nota

Funding Information:
This work was funded by the DLR/German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (DE, grant no. 01LS1905A), the Dutch Research Council, and the Belgian Science Policy Office (BELSPO) and was co-funded by the European Union through the project “LAnd MAnagement for CLImate Mitigation and Adaptation” (LAMACLIMA) (grant agreement no. 300478), which is part of ERA4CS, an ERA-NET initiated by JPI Climate. Inne Vanderkelen is a research fellow at the Research Foundation Flanders (grant no. FWOTM920). Gregory Duveiller was supported by the European Research Council (ERC) Synergy Grant “Understanding and Modelling the Earth System with Machine Learning (USMILE)” under grant agreement no. 855187. The computational resources and services used in this work for the simulations and storage of CESM data were provided by the VSC (Flemish Supercomputer Center), funded by the Research Foundation – Flanders (FWO) and the Flemish Government – department EWI. For the storage of signal-separated results and the simulations of MPI-ESM, this work used the resources of the Deutsches Klimarechenzentrum (DKRZ), granted by its Scientific Steering Committee (WLA) under project no. bm1147. Fei Luo and Dim Coumou acknowledge the VIDI award from the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research (NWO) (Persistent Summer Extremes “PERSIST” project no. 016.Vidi.171.011). Fei Luo would like to thank Philippe Le Sager, Lars Nieradzik and Thomas Reerink for their help in the discussions for the post-processing and interpretations of EC-EARTH model output. All the simulations from EC-EARTH were carried out on European Center for Medium Range Weather Forecast (ECMWF) platforms. The authors would like to thank Johannes Winckler, Lars Nieradzik, Paul Miller, David Wårlind and the reviewers for their constructive and useful feedback, which greatly helped to improve the paper during the review process. Finally, we thank the handling editor, Kirsten Zickfeld, for her constructive attitude and feedback throughout the review process.

Funding Information:
This research has been funded by the Belgian Science Policy Office (BELSPO) and was co-funded by the European Union through the project “LAnd MAnagement for CLImate Mitigation and Adaptation” (LAMACLIMA) (grant agreement no. 300478), which is part of ERA4CS, an ERA-NET initiated by JPI Climate.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 Steven J. De Hertog et al.

Copyright:
Copyright 2023 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.

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