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Keywords:

  • Early Warning;
  • Meridional Overturning;
  • Tipping Point

[1] Early warning indicators of the collapse of the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (MOC) have up to now mostly been based on temporal correlations in single time series. Here, we propose new indicators based on spatial correlations in the time series of the Atlantic temperature field. To demonstrate the performance of these indicators, we use a meridional‒depth model of the MOC for which the critical conditions for collapse can be explicitly computed. An interaction network approach is used to monitor changes in spatial correlations in the model temperature time series as the critical transition is approached. The new early warning indicators are based on changes in topological properties of the network, in particular changes in the distribution functions of the degree and the clustering coefficient.