Robustness and uncertainties in global multivariate wind-wave climate projections

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Morim, Joao
Hemer, Mark
Wang, Xiaolan L
Cartwright, Nick
Trenham, Claire
Semedos, Alvaro
Young, Ian
Bricheno, Lucy
Camus, Paula
Casas-Prat, Merce
Erikson, Li
Mentaschi, Lorenzo
Mori, Nobuhito
Shimura, Tomoya
Timmermans, Ben
Aarnes, Ole
Breivik, Oyvind
Behrens, Arno
Dobrynin, Mikhail
Menendez, Melisa
Staneva, Joanna
Wehner, Michael
Wolf, Judith
Kamranzad, Bahareh
Webb, Adrean
Stopa, Justin
Andutta, Fernando
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Understanding climate-driven impacts on the multivariate global wind-wave climate is paramount to effective offshore/coastal climate adaptation planning. However, the use of single-method ensembles and variations arising from different methodologies has resulted in unquantified uncertainty amongst existing global wave climate projections. Here, assessing the first coherent, community-driven, multi-method ensemble of global wave climate projections, we demonstrate widespread ocean regions with robust changes in annual mean significant wave height and mean wave period of 5–15% and shifts in mean wave direction of 5–15°, under a high-emission scenario. Approximately 50% of the world’s coastline is at risk from wave climate change, with ~40% revealing robust changes in at least two variables. Furthermore, we find that uncertainty in current projections is dominated by climate model-driven uncertainty, and that single-method modelling studies are unable to capture up to ~50% of the total associated uncertainty.

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Nature Climate Change

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© 2019 Nature Publishing Group. This is the author-manuscript version of this paper. Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher. Please refer to the journal website for access to the definitive, published version.

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Morim, J; Hemer, M; Wang, XL; Cartwright, N; Trenham, C; Semedos, A; Young, I; Bricheno, L; Camus, P; Casas-Prat, M; Erikson, L; Mentaschi, L; Mori, N; Shimura, T; Timmermans, B; Aarnes, O; Breivik, O; Behrens, A; Dobrynin, M; Menendez, M; Staneva, J; Wehner, M; Wolf, J; Kamranzad, B; Webb, A; Stopa, J; Andutta, F, Robustness and uncertainties in global multivariate wind-wave climate projections, Nature Climate Change, 2019, 9 (9), pp. 711-+