Center on Global Change Seminar Series - Dr. Noah Diffenbaugh, Stanford University, "Dynamics and Impacts of Fine-Scale Climate Change: Greenhouse Forcing, Heat-waves, and Corn Price Volatility in the United States"
We explore the use of climate impacts as a probe for understanding the dynamics governing the response of the climate system to changes in radiative forcing. As a case study, Dr. Diffenbaugh focused on the volatility of corn prices in the U.S. Recent price spikes have raised concern that climate change could increase food insecurity by reducing grain yields in the coming decades.Given these projected changes in climate dynamics associated with near-term intensification of severe hot events, we next explore the transient response of summer climate in the US to increasing greenhouse forcing through the end of the 21st century. We find that the central US exhibits the strongest warming response over the course of the 21st century, stronger coupling of changes in surface air temperature, precipitation, and moisture and energy fluxes, and changes in atmospheric circulation toward increased anticylonic anomalies in the mid-troposphere and a poleward shift in the mid-latitude jet aloft. Dr. Diffenbaugh will explain how these results highlight not only the potential impacts of climate change on agriculture in the US, but also the potential for impacts indicators to identify and diagnose the dynamics governing the response of critical climate phenomena to global warming.Please see More Information for a detailed abstract and speaker bio. Refreshments provided.