2019 Volume 97 Issue 2 Pages 317-335
Global warming experiments using three different 60 km mesh atmospheric global circulation models are studied to characterize ensemble mean future changes in monthly East Asian precipitation for June to August. During the summer, wetting and drying effects due to changes in the mean vertical motion play a key role in future precipitation changes, as does the “wet-get-wetter” effect due to increased moisture. The former processes are related adiabatically to the projected modification of 500 hPa horizontal atmospheric circulation, which is characterized by two cyclonic circulation anomalies extending over the eastern Eurasian Continent (C1) and the western North Pacific Ocean (C2) for each month.
Over Japan, the western edge of C2 shifts from a region south of the Japanese Islands to northern Japan during June to August, representing a delayed northward movement or southward shift of the westerly jet over the western North Pacific in the future compared with the present-day climatology. Most regions of Japan lie within the northeasterly wind and associated downward-motion zones of C2, leading to significant uncertainties in future precipitation over Japan by the offset against the “wet-get-wetter” effect and possibly even a future decrease in precipitation. A wetter future climate is anticipated under weak subsidence or upward vertical motion zone of C2, such as western Japan in August away from C2, and the Southwest Islands of Japan in June in the C2 southwesterly wind zone. Over the eastern Eurasian Continent, C1 is distributed mainly over northeastern China in June and over central and southern China in July and August, respectively. During these months, most of the eastern regions are located within the southwesterly to southeasterly wind zone of C1, indicating wet future conditions due to enhanced upward motion. This tendency drives a further increase in precipitation in future wetter East Asian climate via the “wet-get-wetter” effect and the increased evaporation.