Sensitivity of northwest Australian tropical cyclone activity to ITCZ migration since 500 CE

Denniston, Rhawn F., Ummenhofer, Caroline C., Emanuel, Kerry, Ingrosso, Roberto, Pausata, Francesco S.R., Wanamaker, Alan D., Lachniet, Matthew S., Carr, Kenneth T., Asmerom, Yemane, Polyak, Victor J., Nott, Jonathan, Zhang, Wei, Villarini, Gabriele, Cugley, John, Brooks, Darren, Woods, David, and Humphreys, William F. (2023) Sensitivity of northwest Australian tropical cyclone activity to ITCZ migration since 500 CE. Science Advances, 9 (2). eadd9832.

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Abstract

Tropical cyclones (TCs) regularly form in association with the intertropical convergence zone (ITCZ), and thus, its positioning has implications for global TC activity. While the poleward extent of the ITCZ has varied markedly over past centuries, the sensitivity with which TCs responded remains poorly understood from the proxy record, particularly in the Southern Hemisphere. Here, we present a high-resolution, composite stalagmite record of ITCZ migrations over tropical Australia for the past 1500 years. When integrated with a TC reconstruction from the Australian subtropics, this time series, along with downscaled climate model simulations, provides an unprecedented examination of the dependence of subtropical TC activity on meridional shifts in the ITCZ. TCs tracked the ITCZ at multidecadal to centennial scales, with a more southward position enhancing TC-derived rainfall in the subtropics. TCs may play an increasingly important role in Western Australia’s moisture budgets as subtropical aridity increases due to anthropogenic warming.

Item ID: 78454
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 2375-2548
Copyright Information: Copyright © 2023 The Authors, some rights reserved; exclusive licensee American Association for the Advancement of Science. No claim to original U.S. Government Works. Distributed under a Creative Commons Attribution License 4.0 (CC BY).
Date Deposited: 19 Oct 2023 00:52
FoR Codes: 37 EARTH SCIENCES > 3709 Physical geography and environmental geoscience > 370901 Geomorphology and earth surface processes @ 100%
SEO Codes: 18 ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT > 1802 Coastal and estuarine systems and management > 180201 Assessment and management of coastal and estuarine ecosystems @ 100%
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