Effect of western U.S. snow cover on climate Public Deposited

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  • The purpose of this study is to identify, characterize and quantify local, regional and remote effects of snow cover on western U.S. climate and water resources. An ensemble of predictability and sensitivity studies was made with the U.S. National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) Community Climate Model, version 3 (CCM3) to investigate the relative roles of snow-cover anomalies and initial atmospheric states in the subsequent accumulation and ablation seasons. The suite of model experiments focuses on the direct effect of snow on regional climate anomalies and ultimately will be used to examine the lagged effect of anomalous snow cover on the climate. The set of ensemble simulations presented here looks at the climate-system response to anomalously high and low snow cover at the start of the ablation season over the western U.S.A. These current results suggest that the initial state of snow cover is more important than the initial state of the atmosphere or of sea-surface temperatures because of direct thermal effects on the surface and subsequent indirect, dynamical effects on the atmospheric circulation.
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  • Marshall, S., Oglesby, R. J., & Nolin, A. W. (2001, January). Effect of western U.S. snow cover on climate. Annals of Glaciology, 32(1), 82-86. doi:10.3189/172756401781819229
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  • 32
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  • 1
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  • This work was supported by grants from the U.S. National Science foundation (NSF), the NASA Land Surface Hydrology Program and from the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Office of Global Programs. In particular, S.M. was supported by NSF grant ATM-9901357, NOAA grant NA66GPO268 and NASA grant NAG8-1514 for this study. R.J.O. was supported in this study by NOAA grant NA66GPO278 and NASA grant NAG8-1515. A.W.N. was suported by NSF grant ATM-9900687. Computational resources were provided by the Scientific Computing Division of NCAR under project No. 3585100. NCAR is supported by the NSF.
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