*Lindzen & Choi, Spencer & Braswell, Allen, Tang et al [below], others
Journal of Climate 2012 ; e-View
Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, ChinaGuoyong Leng
Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China, Graduate University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, ChinaPavel Ya. Groisman
A pronounced summer warming is observed in Europe since the 1980s that has been accompanied with an increase in the occurrence of heat waves. Water deficit that strongly reduces surface latent cooling is a widely accepted explanation for the causes of hot summers. We show that the variance of European summer temperature is partly explained by changes in summer cloudiness. Using observation-based products of climate variables, satellite-derived cloud cover and radiation products, we show that during the 1984-2007 period Europe has become less cloudy (except of northeastern Europe) and the regions east of Europe have become cloudier in summer daytime. In response, the summer temperatures increased in the areas of total cloud cover decrease, and stalled or declined in the areas of cloud cover increase. Trends in the surface shortwave radiation are generally positive (negative) in the regions with summer warming (cooling or stalled warming), while the signs of trends in top-of-atmosphere (TOA) reflected shortwave radiation are reversed. Our results suggest that total cloud cover is either the important local factor influencing the summer temperature changes in Europe or a major indicator of these changes.