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Keywords:

  • East Asian Winter Monsoon;
  • Siberian High;
  • climate change;
  • climate model prediction

[1] This study highlights the fast recovery of the wintertime Siberian High intensity (SHI) over the last two decades. The SHI showed a marked weakening trend from the 1970s to 1980s, leading to unprecedented low SHI in the early 1990s according to most observational data sets. This salient declining SHI trend, however, was sharply replaced by a fast recovery over the last two decades. Since the declining SHI trend has been considered as one of the plausible consequences of climate warming, the recent SHI recovery seemingly contradicts the continuous progression of climate warming in the Northern Hemisphere. We suggest that alleviated surface warming and decreased atmospheric stability in the central Siberia region, associated with an increase in Eurasian snow cover, in the recent two decades contributed to this rather unexpected SHI recovery. The prominent SHI change, however, is not reproduced by general circulation model (GCM) simulations used in the IPCC AR4. The GCMs indicate the steady weakening of the SHI for the entire 21st century, which is found to be associated with a decreasing Eurasian snow cover in the simulations. An improvement in predicting the future climate change in regional scale is desirable.