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Climate of the Past An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Discussion papers
https://doi.org/10.5194/cp-2018-133
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/cp-2018-133
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Research article 22 Oct 2018

Research article | 22 Oct 2018

Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. It is a manuscript under review for the journal Climate of the Past (CP).

Long-term Surface Temperature (LoST) Database as a complement for GCM preindustrial simulations

Francisco José Cuesta-Valero1,2, Almudena García-García1,2, Hugo Beltrami2, Eduardo Zorita3, and Fernando Jaume-Santero2,4 Francisco José Cuesta-Valero et al.
  • 1Environmental Sciences Program, Memorial University of Newfoundland, St. John’s, NL, Canada
  • 2Climate & Atmospheric Sciences Institute, St. Francis Xavier University, Antigonish, NS, Canada
  • 3Institute of Coastal Research, Hemlholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht, Germany
  • 4Departamento de Física de la Tierra y Astrofísica, Facultad de Ciencias Físicas, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, 28040, Madrid, Spain

Abstract. Estimates of climate sensitivity from General Circulation Model (GCM) simulations still present a large spread despite the continued improvements in climate modeling since the 1970s. This variability is partially caused by the dependence of several long-term feedback mechanisms on the reference climate state. Indeed, state-of-the-art GCMs present a large spread of control climate states probably due to the lack of a suitable reference for constraining the climatology of preindustrial simulations. We assemble a new gridded database of long-term ground surface temperatures (LoST database) obtained from geothermal data over North America, and we explore its use as a potential reference for the evaluation of GCM preindustrial simulations. We compare the LoST database with observations from the CRU database, as well as with five past millennium transient climate simulations and five preindustrial control simulations from the third phase of the Paleoclimate Modelling Intercomparison Project (PMIP3) and the fifth phase of the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP5). The database is consistent with meteorological observations as well as with both types of preindustrial simulations, which suggests that LoST temperatures can be employed as a reference to narrow down the spread of surface temperature climatologies on GCM preindustrial control and past millennium simulations.

Francisco José Cuesta-Valero et al.
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Status: open (until 17 Dec 2018)
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Francisco José Cuesta-Valero et al.
Francisco José Cuesta-Valero et al.
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Short summary
A database of North American long-term ground surface temperatures from approximately 1300 CE to 1700 CE, was assembled from geothermal data. These temperatures are useful for studying the future stability of permafrost, as well as for evaluating simulations of preindustrial climate that may help to improve estimates of climate models’ equilibrium climate sensitivity. The database will be made available to the climate science community.
A database of North American long-term ground surface temperatures from approximately 1300 CE to...
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