• extremes;
  • Arabia;
  • trends


This article presents an analysis of observed climate extremes over the Arabian Peninsula (AP); a region for which little such analysis has been available. A set of climate extremes indices developed by the Expert Team on Climate Change Detection and Indices (ETCCDI) were computed and analysed for trends including the periods 1970–2008 and 1986–2008 at 23 stations covering six countries (Bahrain, Qatar, Kuwait, Oman, Saudi Arabia and UAE) and for Bahrain (1950–2008), Kuwait (1962–2008), Masirah and Salalah (1943–2008). The results indicate a general decreasing trend of cold temperature extremes and increasing trends of the warm temperature extremes during the periods of analysis. Over the whole region, a remarkable and highly significant increase in very warm nights during 1986–2008 has occurred. In general higher temperature trends (magnitudes/significance) are reported over the northern AP in the day-time extremes while for the night-time extremes the trends are higher and significant for the southern region especially during the recent decades. The precipitation indices trends are weak and insignificant except for the annual count of days when precipitation exceeds 10 mm which shows a significant decrease during 1986–2008.