High-Resolution Climate Projections Over Minnesota for the 21st Century

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Abstract

Minnesota is the state with the strongest winter warming in the contiguous United States. We performed regional climate projections at 10 km horizontal resolution using the Weather Research Forecasting model forced with eight CMIP5 GCMs. The selected GCMs have previously been found to be in relatively good agreement with observations over Minnesota compared to other members of the CMIP5 model ensemble. Our projections suggest ongoing warming in all seasons, especially in winter, as well as shallower snow depth and fewer days with snow cover. We expect significant increases in spring and early summer heavy precipitation events. Our comparisons between different time slices and two different emission scenarios indicate a climate for the state of Minnesota near the end of the 21st century that is significantly different from what has been observed by the end of the 20th century. Winters and summers are expected to be up to 6 and 4°C warmer, respectively, over northern and central Minnesota, and spring precipitation may increase by more than 1 mm d−1 over northern Minnesota. Especially over the central part of the state, winter snow depth is projected to decrease by more than 12 cm, and the number of days per year with snow depth of more than 2.54 cm (one inch) is expected to decrease by up to 55.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere2021EA001893
JournalEarth and Space Science
Volume9
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors acknowledge Keith J. Harding and the Minnesota Supercomputing Institute at the University of Minnesota for providing resources that contributed to the research results reported within this paper ( http://www.msi.umn.edu ). Funding for this project was provided by a grant from the Legislative‐Citizen Commision on Minnesota Resources Grant Number: M. L. 2014, Chp. 312, Sec. 8 to the Minnesota Invasive Terrestrial Plants and Pests Center ( http://www.mitppc.umn.edu ), and by a grant from the Minnesota Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund Grant Number: M. L. 2015, Chp. 76, Sec. 2, Subd. 04a ( http://www.legacy.mn.gov ) as recommended by the Legislative‐Citizen Commission on Minnesota Resources. The Trust Fund is a permanent fund constitutionally established by the citizens of Minnesota to assist in the protection, conservation, preservation, and enhancement of the state's air, water, land, fish, wildlife, and other natural resources. Currently, 40% of net Minnesota State Lottery proceeds are dedicated to growing the Trust Fund and ensuring future benefits for Minnesota's environment and natural resources. The authors are grateful to three anonymous reviewers for their insightful comments.

Funding Information:
The authors acknowledge Keith J. Harding and the Minnesota Supercomputing Institute at the University of Minnesota for providing resources that contributed to the research results reported within this paper (http://www.msi.umn.edu). Funding for this project was provided by a grant from the Legislative-Citizen Commision on Minnesota Resources Grant Number: M. L. 2014, Chp. 312, Sec. 8 to the Minnesota Invasive Terrestrial Plants and Pests Center (http://www.mitppc.umn.edu), and by a grant from the Minnesota Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund Grant Number: M. L. 2015, Chp. 76, Sec. 2, Subd. 04a (http://www.legacy.mn.gov) as recommended by the Legislative-Citizen Commission on Minnesota Resources. The Trust Fund is a permanent fund constitutionally established by the citizens of Minnesota to assist in the protection, conservation, preservation, and enhancement of the state's air, water, land, fish, wildlife, and other natural resources. Currently, 40% of net Minnesota State Lottery proceeds are dedicated to growing the Trust Fund and ensuring future benefits for Minnesota's environment and natural resources. The authors are grateful to three anonymous reviewers for their insightful comments.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 The Authors. Earth and Space Science published by Wiley Periodicals LLC on behalf of American Geophysical Union.

Keywords

  • Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model
  • cropland simulations
  • dynamical downscaling
  • regional climate change over Midwestern USA

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