Impact of historical land cover change on daily indices of climate extremes including droughts in eastern Australia
Article first published online: 25 APR 2009
Copyright 2009 by the American Geophysical Union.
Geophysical Research Letters
Volume 36, Issue 8, April 2009
How to Cite
2009), Impact of historical land cover change on daily indices of climate extremes including droughts in eastern Australia, Geophys. Res. Lett., 36, L08705, doi:10.1029/2009GL037666., , , , , and (
- Issue published online: 25 APR 2009
- Article first published online: 25 APR 2009
- Manuscript Accepted: 24 MAR 2009
- Manuscript Received: 9 FEB 2009
- daily climate extremes;
- El Niño;
- land cover change
 There is growing scientific evidence that anthropogenic land cover change (LCC) can produce a significant impact on regional climate. However, few studies have quantified this impact on climate extremes and droughts. In this study, we analysed daily data from a pair of ensemble simulations using the CSIRO AGCM for the period 1951–2003 to quantify the impact of LCC on selected daily indices of climate extremes in eastern Australia. The results showed: an increase in the number of dry and hot days, a decrease in daily rainfall intensity and wet day rainfall, and an increase in the decile-based drought duration index for modified land cover conditions. These changes were statistically significant for all years, and especially pronounced during strong El Niño events. Therefore it appears that LCC has exacerbated climate extremes in eastern Australia, thus resulting in longer-lasting and more severe droughts.