Large Variations in Volcanic Aerosol Forcing Efficiency Due to Eruption Source Parameters and Rapid Adjustments

Marshall, L.R., Smith, C. ORCID:, Forster, P.M., Aubry, T.J., Andrews, T., & Schmidt, A. (2020). Large Variations in Volcanic Aerosol Forcing Efficiency Due to Eruption Source Parameters and Rapid Adjustments. Geophysical Research Letters 47 (19) e2020GL090241. 10.1029/2020GL090241.

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The relationship between volcanic stratospheric aerosol optical depth (SAOD) and volcanic radiative forcing is key for quantifying volcanic climate impacts. In their Fifth Assessment Report, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change used one scaling factor between volcanic SAOD and volcanic forcing based on climate model simulations of the 1991 Mt. Pinatubo eruption, which may not be appropriate for all eruptions. Using a large ensemble of aerosol-chemistry-climate simulations of eruptions with different sulfur dioxide emissions, latitudes, emission altitudes, and seasons, we find that the effective radiative forcing (ERF) is on average 20% less than the instantaneous radiative forcing, predominantly due to a positive shortwave cloud adjustment. In our model, the volcanic SAOD-ERF relationship is non-unique and varies widely depending on time since an eruption, eruption latitude, and season due to differences in aerosol dispersion and incoming solar radiation. Our revised SAOD-ERF relationships suggest that volcanic forcing has been previously overestimated.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: aerosols; effective radiative forcing; rapid adjustments; volcanic forcing
Research Programs: Energy (ENE)
Depositing User: Luke Kirwan
Date Deposited: 21 Oct 2020 05:44
Last Modified: 27 Aug 2021 17:33

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