Limited temperature response to the very large AD 1258 volcanic eruption
Article first published online: 6 NOV 2009
Copyright 2009 by the American Geophysical Union.
Geophysical Research Letters
Volume 36, Issue 21, November 2009
How to Cite
2009), Limited temperature response to the very large AD 1258 volcanic eruption, Geophys. Res. Lett., 36, L21708, doi:10.1029/2009GL040083., , , , , , and (
- Issue published online: 6 NOV 2009
- Article first published online: 6 NOV 2009
- Manuscript Accepted: 25 SEP 2009
- Manuscript Revised: 8 SEP 2009
- Manuscript Received: 22 JUL 2009
- volcanic eruptions;
- Earth system modeling
 The large AD 1258 eruption had a stratospheric sulfate load approximately ten times greater than the 1991 Pinatubo eruption. Yet surface cooling was not substantially larger than for Pinatubo (∼0.4 K). We apply a comprehensive Earth System Model to demonstrate that the size of the aerosol particles needs to be included in simulations, especially to explain the climate response to large eruptions. The temperature response weakens because increased density of particles increases collision rate and therefore aerosol growth. Only aerosol particle sizes substantially larger than observed after the Pinatubo eruption yield temperature changes consistent with terrestrial Northern Hemisphere summer temperature reconstructions. These results challenge an oft-held assumption of volcanic impacts not only with respect to the immediate or longer-term temperature response, but also any ecosystem response, including extinctions.