A Scientific Strategy for U.S. Participation in the GOALS (Global Ocean-Atmosphere-Land System) Component of the CLIVAR (Climate Variability and Predictability) Programme

Global Ocean—Atmosphere—Land System Panel

Climate Research Committee

Board on Atmospheric Sciences and Climate

Commission on Geosciences, Environment, and Resources

National Research Council

NATIONAL ACADEMY PRESS
Washington, D.C.
1998



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--> A Scientific Strategy for U.S. Participation in the GOALS (Global Ocean-Atmosphere-Land System) Component of the CLIVAR (Climate Variability and Predictability) Programme Global Ocean—Atmosphere—Land System Panel Climate Research Committee Board on Atmospheric Sciences and Climate Commission on Geosciences, Environment, and Resources National Research Council NATIONAL ACADEMY PRESS Washington, D.C. 1998

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--> NOTICE: The project that is the subject of this report was approved by the Governing Board of the National Research Council, whose members are drawn from the councils of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the Institute of Medicine. The members of the committee responsible for the report were chosen for their special competencies and with regard for appropriate balance. This material is based upon work supported by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration under Contract No. 50-DKNA-5-00015. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the above-mentioned agency. Additional copies of this report are available from: National Academy Press 2101 Constitution Avenue, N.W. Box 285 Washington, D.C. 20055 800-624-6242 202-334-3313 (in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area) International Standard Book Number 0-309-06145-8 Cover: Long-term average August precipitation compiled by John M. Wallace, Todd P. Mitchell, and Alexis K.-H. Lau at the University of Washington's Joint Institute for the Study of the Atmosphere and Ocean (JISAO). The land data are taken from the Legates and Willmott climatology (1990, Int. J. Climatology, 10, 111-127), which is based on the historical record of rain gauge measurements. The ocean precipitation estimates are from the Microwave Sounding Unit (MSU) (Spencer, 1993, J. Climate, 6, 1301-1326). The climatology is based on averages for the period 1979 to 1992. The data used for the cover are also incorporated in Figure 3-2. The data were obtained from the following web site: //tao.atmos.washington.edu/legates_msu/index.html Copyright 1998 by the National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved. Printed in the United States of America

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--> GLOBAL OCEAN—ATMOSPHERE—LAND SYSTEM PANEL PETER J. WEBSTER (Chair), University of Colorado, Boulder GRANT W. BRANSTATOR, National Center for Atmospheric Research, Boulder, Colorado DUDLEY B. CHELTON, JR., Oregon State University, Corvallis ROGER B. LUKAS, University of Hawaii, Honolulu J. DAVID NEELIN, University of California, Los Angeles EUGENE M. RASMUSSON, University of Maryland, College Park JAGADISH SHUKLA, Institute of Global Environment and Society, Calverton, Maryland W. JAMES SHUTTLEWORTH, University of Arizona, Tucson KEVIN E. TRENBERTH, National Center for Atmospheric Research, Boulder, Colorado ROBERT A. WELLER, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, Massachusetts Staff SUSHEL UNNINAYAR, Scientific Advisor PETER SCHULTZ, Program Officer KELLY NORSINGLE, Senior Program Assistant

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--> CLIMATE RESEARCH COMMITTEE THOMAS R. KARL (Chair), National Climatic Data Center, Asheville, North Carolina ROBERT E. DICKINSON (Vice Chair), University of Arizona, Tucson MAURICE BLACKMON, National Center for Atmospheric Research, Boulder, Colorado BERT BOLIN, Osterskar, Sweden JEFF DOZIER, University of California, Santa Barbara JAMES GIRAYTYS, Consultant, Winchester, Virginia JAMES E. HANSON, Goddard Institute for Space Studies, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, New York, N.Y. PHILIP E. MERILEES, Naval Research Laboratory, Monterey, California ROBERTA BALSTAD MILLER, Consortium for International Earth Science Information Network, University Center, Michigan S. ICHTIAQUE RASOOL, University of New Hampshire, Durham STEVEN W. RUNNING, University of Montana, Missoula EDWARD S. SARACHIK, University of Washington, Seattle WILLIAM H. SCHLESINGER, Duke University, Durham, North Carolina KARL E. TAYLOR, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Livermore, California ANNE M. THOMPSON, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland Staff LOWELL SMITH, Senior Program Officer KELLY NORSINGLE, Senior Project Assistant

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--> BOARD ON ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCES AND CLIMATE ERIC J. BARRON (Co-chair), Pennsylvania State University, University Park JAMES R. MAHONEY (Co-chair), International Technology Corporation, Washington, D.C. SUSAN K. AVERY, Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences, University of Colorado, Boulder LANCE F. BOSART, State University of New York, Albany MARVIN A. GELLER, State University of New York, Stony Brook DONALD M. HUNTEN, University of Arizona, Tucson JOHN IMBRIE, Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island CHARLES E. KOLB, Aerodyne Research, Inc., Billerica, Massachusetts THOMAS J. LENNON, Sonalysts, Inc., Alexandria, Virginia MARK R. SCHOEBERL, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland JOANNE SIMPSON, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland NIEN DAK SZE, Atmospheric and Environmental Research, Inc., Cambridge, Massachusetts Staff GREGORY SYMMES, Acting Director H. FRANK EDEN, Senior Program Officer DAVID H. SLADE, Senior Program Officer LOWELL SMITH, Senior Program Officer (IPA) ELLEN F. RICE, Program Officer/Reports Officer LAURIE GELLER, Program Officer PETER SCHULTZ, Program Officer DORIS BOUADJEMI, Administrative Assistant KELLY NORSINGLE, Senior Project Assistant TENECIA BROWN, Project Assistant

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--> COMMISSION ON GEOSCIENCES, ENVIRONMENT, AND RESOURCES GEORGE M. HORNBERGER (Chair), University of Virginia, Charlottesville PATRICK R. ATKINS, Aluminum Company of America, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania JERRY F. FRANKLIN, University of Washington, Seattle B. JOHN GARRICK, PLG, Inc., Newport Beach, California THOMAS E. GRAEDEL, Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut DEBRA KNOPMAN, Progressive Foundation, Washington, D.C. KAI N. LEE, Williams College, Williamstown, Massachusetts JUDITH E. MCDOWELL, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, Massachusetts RICHARD A. MESERVE, Covington & Burling, Washington, D.C. HUGH C. MORRIS, Canadian Global Change Program, Delta, British Columbia RAYMOND A. PRICE, Queen's University at Kingston, Ontario H. RONALD PULLIAM, University of Georgia, Athens THOMAS C. SCHELLING, University of Maryland, College Park VICTORIA J. TSCHINKEL, Landers and Parsons, Tallahassee, Florida E-AN ZEN, University of Maryland, College Park MARY LOU ZOBACK, United States Geological Survey, Menlo Park, California Staff ROBERT HAMILTON, Executive Director GREGORY SYMMES, Assistant Executive Director JEANETTE SPOON, Administrative Officer SANDI FITZPATRICK, Administrative Associate MARQUITA SMITH, Administrative Assistant/Technology Analyst

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--> Preface The 10-year Tropical Ocean and Global Atmosphere (TOGA) program was a major and successful element of the World Climate Research Programme (WCRP), with participation by the United States and many other countries. TOGA demonstrated, for the first time, that with improved observations of the tropical Pacific Ocean and models that included interactions between the atmosphere and the ocean, aspects of El Niño/Southern Oscillation (ENSO) were predictable as much as a year or more in advance. This understanding, which was achieved around the mid-point of TOGA, led to the international TOGA field experiment "Coupled Ocean—Atmosphere Response Experiment" (TOGA-COARE) during which detailed measurements of atmospheric and oceanic properties were obtained. They are still being analyzed and used to improve the parameterization of processes in models. In the United States, the TOGA program also provided the initial impetus to establish a program on "Seasonal-to-Interannual Prediction" using the data provided by the TOGA observing system. A second important outcome of TOGA was the realization that the scientific issues involved in seasonal-to-interannual prediction were more complex than originally foreseen. Climate variations on seasonal-to-interannual time scales seemed to be linked to other tropical oceans and regions, as well as variations in extratropical sea surface temperatures and land surface properties. Following a meeting between the TOGA Panel of the National Research Council (NRC) and the WCRP Scientific Steering Group of the international TOGA program in July 1990 (Kona, Hawaii), the TOGA Panel recommended that, to take full advantage of the scientific progress made in understanding the dynamics of the coupled atmosphere—ocean system, a follow-on program to

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--> TOGA needed to be created to focus on global climate variability on seasonal-to-interannual time scales. Towards this end, the TOGA Panel organized a series of study sessions covering the Asian—Australian monsoons, air—sea interaction in the tropical Atlantic, and the role of extratropical sea surface temperature variations. Based on these study sessions, the TOGA Panel proposed to the NRC's Climate Research Committee (CRC) that a Global Ocean—Atmosphere—Land System (GOALS) program be initiated. GOALS was conceived as a program that would support the international 15-year CLIVAR (Climate Variability and Predictability Programme) program of the WCRP. The CRC formed a GOALS Steering Committee to explore the concept further and to involve a broader community of scientists. The GOALS Steering Committee planned the GOALS Study Conference (March 1993, Honolulu, Hawaii), attended by 110 scientists, to address a number of scientific questions. Based on the conclusions of the conference, the Steering Committee assisted the NRC in preparing the GOALS Science Plan (NRC, 1994a). The GOALS Science Plan called for a 15-year (1995–2010) research program that builds on the success of TOGA. The plan proposed an expansion of observational, modeling, and process studies to include the possible influences of the global upper ocean and the time-varying land moisture, vegetation, snow, and sea-ice on seasonal-to-interannual climate variability and prediction. The plan also proposed an organizational structure for GOALS and its relationship with CLIVAR. It recommended a tripartite structure, with a project office (GOALS Project Office), a scientific oversight body (NRC, with its CRC and the GOALS Panel), and a group of participating federal agencies (NRC, 1994a). The federal agencies would be responsible for implementing GOALS through coordinated funding of research grants. An Interagency GOALS Project Office would serve as a focal point for the implementation of the national research effort, and the GOALS Panel (with oversight from the NRC's CRC) would provide scientific guidance and oversight for the program. The plan also anticipated that principal investigators and consortia of principal investigators would carry out much of the actual implementation of the GOALS scientific plans. As the needs of the program dictate, the GOALS Project Office would invite groups to prepare coordinated sets of research proposals designed to address specific objectives of GOALS. It was proposed that close coordination between GOALS and the international CLIVAR program be maintained through a formal link between the project offices for the two programs and an informal liaison between the GOALS Panel and the International CLIVAR Scientific Steering Group. In order to complete a retrospective assessment of TOGA, the CRC requested the TOGA Panel to summarize the findings of TOGA, its accomplishments, and its shortcomings with an emphasis on U.S. contributions (NRC, 1996). The assessment involved a broad community of scientists. This initial planning for U.S. participation in the new GOALS program, an ambitious attempt to

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--> extend our knowledge of the El Niño/Southern Oscillation and other short-term variations of climate, incorporates the conclusions of this assessment. Following the development of the GOALS Science Plan, the GOALS Panel was tasked by the CRC to develop a strategy for U.S. participation in GOALS/CLIVAR. This report, which is the outcome of that effort, represents the culmination of extensive discussions and reviews between many members of the scientific community. I wish to compliment the panel members in doing an outstanding job in raising and addressing numerous scientific, observational, logistical, and management issues. In addition to important sections on long-term observations, process studies, empirical and diagnostic studies, modeling, and data management, a section concerning the interaction between the physical science(s) communities and those involved in applications and human dimensions has been specifically incorporated, possibly for the first time in a science program. Thus the applications of climate forecasts and the manner in which climate impacts humans is considered to be an integral part of GOALS. The Executive Summary of this report encapsulates the key scientific issues regarding U.S. participation in GOALS/CLIVAR. We have no question in our minds that GOALS will significantly advance the state-of-science in seasonal-to-interannual climate prediction. PETER J. WEBSTER CHAIRMAN, GOALS PANEL

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--> The National Academy of Sciences is a private, nonprofit, self-perpetuating society of distinguished scholars engaged in scientific and engineering research, dedicated to the furtherance of science and technology and to their use for the general welfare. Upon the authority of the charter granted to it by the Congress in 1863, the Academy has a mandate that requires it to advise the federal government on scientific and technical matters. Dr. Bruce M. Alberts is president of the National Academy of Sciences. The National Academy of Engineering was established in 1964, under the charter of the National Academy of Sciences, as a parallel organization of outstanding engineers. It is autonomous in its administration and in the selection of its members, sharing with the National Academy of Sciences the responsibility for advising the federal government. The National Academy of Engineering also sponsors engineering programs aimed at meeting national needs, encourages education and research, and recognizes the superior achievements of engineers. Dr. William A. Wulf is president of the National Academy of Engineering. The Institute of Medicine was established in 1970 by the National Academy of Sciences to secure the services of eminent members of appropriate professions in the examination of policy matters pertaining to the health of the public. The Institute acts under the responsibility given to the National Academy of Sciences by its congressional charter to be an adviser to the federal government and, upon its own initiative, to identify issues of medical care, research, and education. Dr. Kenneth I. Shine is president of the Institute of Medicine. The National Research Council was organized by the National Academy of Sciences in 1916 to associate the broad community of science and technology with the Academy's purposes of furthering knowledge and advising the federal government. Functioning in accordance with general policies determined by the Academy, the Council has become the principal operating agency of both the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering in providing services to the government, the public, and the scientific and engineering communities. The Council is administered jointly by both Academies and the Institute of Medicine. Dr. Bruce M. Alberts and Dr. William A. Wulf are chairman and vice chairman, respectively, of the National Research Council.

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--> Acknowledgment of Reviewers This report has been reviewed by individuals chosen for their diverse perspectives and technical expertise, in accordance with procedures approved by the NRC's Report Review Committee. The purpose of this independent review is to provide candid and critical comments that will assist the authors and the NRC in making the published report as sound as possible and to ensure that the report meets institutional standards for objectivity, evidence, and responsiveness to the study charge. The content of the review comments and draft manuscript remain confidential to protect the integrity of the deliberative process. We wish to thank the following individuals for their participation in the review of this report: Alan Clarke, Bedford Institute of Oceanography, Dartmouth, Canada Chongyin Li, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China Neville Nicholls, Bureau of Meteorology Research Centre, Melbourne, Australia Soroosh Sorooshian, University of Arizona, Tucson, United States of America Akimasa Sumi, University of Tokyo, Japan While the individuals listed above have provided many constructive comments and suggestions, responsibility for the final content of this report rests solely with the authoring committee and the NRC.

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--> Contents     Executive Summary   1 1   Introduction   5 2   Scientific Objectives and Basis of GOALS   7 3   Temporal and Spatial Foci for GOALS   9 4   The Six Elements of GOALS   13 5   Context for the U.S. GOALS Strategy   17 6   Long-Term Observations and Analyses   20     Key Variables,   24     Measurements and Observing Systems,   27     Data Analysis and Assimilation; Data Reanalysis,   29     Observations Working Group,   30 7   Process Studies   31     Examples of Ongoing and Proposed Process Studies,   33     Guidelines for the Selection of Process Studies,   34 8   Empirical and Diagnostic Studies   36     Structures and Interrelationships,   37     Diagnostics,   37

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-->     Forcings—Response and Feedbacks,   37     Predictability,   38 9   Modeling   39     Model Development,   40     Predictability and Sensitivity Studies,   42     Experimental Prediction,   43     Development of Data Assimilation Systems,   43     Observing System Simulation,   44     Modeling Working Group,   44 10   Applications and Human Dimensions   45     Determining Vulnerability and Characterizing Impacts,   47     Characterization of Information Needs,   48     Assessment Techniques and Communications,   49     Institutional Mechanisms,   50 11   Data Management   51 12   Coordination and Implementation Considerations   53     Internal Linkages,   53     Consortia and Principal Investigator Groups,   54     Interaction with Other Programs,   55     Other Research Coordination and Implementation Issues,   57     GOALS Project Office,   59 13   Summary of Key Recommendations and Conclusions   60     Appendixes     A   Acronyms   63 B   References and Selected Bibliography   66