SEARCH

SEARCH BY CITATION

Keywords:

  • Carpathians;
  • climate change;
  • cloud cover;
  • precipitation;
  • relative humidity;
  • surface air pressure;
  • sunshine duration;
  • temperature;
  • wind speed

ABSTRACT

The Carpathians are the longest mountain range in Europe and a geographic barrier between Central Europe, Eastern Europe, and the Balkans. To investigate the climate of the area, the CARPATCLIM project members collected, quality-checked, homogenized, harmonized, and interpolated daily data for 16 meteorological variables and many derived indicators related to the period 1961–2010. The principal outcome of the project is the Climate Atlas of the Carpathian Region, hosted on a dedicated website (www.carpatclim-eu.org) and made of high-resolution daily grids (0.1° × 0.1°) of all variables and indicators at different time steps. In this article, we analyze the spatial and temporal variability of 10 variables: minimum, mean, and maximum temperature, daily temperature range, precipitation, cloud cover, relative sunshine duration, relative humidity, surface air pressure, and wind speed at 2 m. For each variable, we present the gridded climatologies for the period 1961–2010 and discuss the linear trends both on an annual and seasonal basis. Temperature was found to increase in every season, in particular in the last three decades, confirming the trends occurring in Europe; wind speed decreased in every season; cloud cover and relative humidity decreased in spring, summer, and winter, and increased in autumn, while relative sunshine duration behaved in the opposite way; precipitation and surface air pressure showed no significant trend, though they increased slightly on an annual basis. We also discuss the correlation between the variables and we highlight that in the Carpathian Region positive and negative sunshine duration anomalies are highly correlated to the corresponding temperature anomalies during the global dimming (1960s and 1970s) and brightening (1990s and 2000s) periods.