Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/hess-2024-95
https://doi.org/10.5194/hess-2024-95
05 Apr 2024
 | 05 Apr 2024
Status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal HESS.

A storyline-based approach towards changing typhoon intensities over the Pearl River Delta under future conditions using Pseudo-Global Warming

Patrick Olschewski, Qi Sun, Jianhui Wei, Yu Li, Zhan Tian, Laixiang Sun, Joël Arnault, Tanja C. Schober, Brian Böker, Harald Kunstmann, and Patrick Laux

Abstract. During the Pacific typhoon season of 2023, the Pearl River Delta (PRD) was hit by a series of typhoons, causing unprecedented precipitation as well as fatalities and significant damages. There are indications that these events may intensify under climate change. However, the unfolding of similar events in the future is yet to be fully understood. We therefore conducted an investigation of historical typhoon events affecting the PRD using Pseudo-Global Warming. Within this framework, we perturbed the historical initial and boundary conditions obtained from ERA5 reanalysis and handed to the regional model WRF according to the climate change signal projected by the CMIP6 ensemble under SSP5-8.5. We pursued a storyline-based approach, in which each of the 16 selected CMIP6 models acted as the basis for an individual storyline of future typhoon intensity. Additionally, we created two storylines based on thermodynamic drivers to create scenarios with excessively favorable and unfavorable conditions for typhoon intensification, resulting in 18 storylines that were assessed for seven representative typhoons. WRF was set up in a two-way nesting framework using domains of 25 km and 5 km resolution, of which the latter was used for further assessment. For each typhoon, the simulations were initiated at the start of the first intensification phase and statistically assessed until landfall. Minimum sea level pressure, maximum wind speed, mean and maximum 1-hourly precipitation rates as well as the integrated kinetic energy (IKE) as an advanced measure for typhoon damage potential were used to determine typhoon intensity. Results indicate a general increase in typhoon intensity across all metrics for six of the seven inspected typhoons. This increase is notably higher for specific storylines, and the projected increase in the extreme values of the inspected metrics significantly exceed the median change of all storylines. This indicates that the true potential range may lie above what would be expected under a median approach. The results suggest a maximum decrease of up to 15 hPa for minimum central pressure, 11 m s-1 increase for maximum wind speed, 2.5 mm h-1 for mean and 50 mm h-1 for maximum precipitation rates. The two additional storylines revealed an even higher intensity increase in the form of central minimum pressure decreases and wind maxima increases for two typhoons, but mostly resembled the span provided by the 16 GCM-based storylines. These results can support the optimization of the development of protective measures considering the improved range of intensity potential.

Publisher's note: Copernicus Publications remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims made in the text, published maps, institutional affiliations, or any other geographical representation in this preprint. The responsibility to include appropriate place names lies with the authors.
Patrick Olschewski, Qi Sun, Jianhui Wei, Yu Li, Zhan Tian, Laixiang Sun, Joël Arnault, Tanja C. Schober, Brian Böker, Harald Kunstmann, and Patrick Laux

Status: open (until 31 May 2024)

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  • RC1: 'Comment on hess-2024-95', Anonymous Referee #1, 02 May 2024 reply
  • RC2: 'Comment on hess-2024-95', Anonymous Referee #2, 06 May 2024 reply
Patrick Olschewski, Qi Sun, Jianhui Wei, Yu Li, Zhan Tian, Laixiang Sun, Joël Arnault, Tanja C. Schober, Brian Böker, Harald Kunstmann, and Patrick Laux
Patrick Olschewski, Qi Sun, Jianhui Wei, Yu Li, Zhan Tian, Laixiang Sun, Joël Arnault, Tanja C. Schober, Brian Böker, Harald Kunstmann, and Patrick Laux

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Short summary
There are indications that typhoon intensities may increase under global warming. However, further research on these projections and their uncertainties is necessary. We study changes in typhoon intensity under SSP5-8.5 for seven events affecting the Pearl River Delta using Pseudo-Global Warming and a storyline approach based on 16 CMIP6 models. Results show intensified wind speed, sea level pressure drop and precipitation levels for six events with amplified increases for individual storylines.