Impact of Climate Change on Global Sensitivity of Lake Stratification

Meyer, G.K., Masliev, I., & Somlyody, L. (1994). Impact of Climate Change on Global Sensitivity of Lake Stratification. IIASA Working Paper. IIASA, Laxenburg, Austria: WP-94-028

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Global climate change could significantly influence hydrophysical processes in lakes and reservoirs and affect aquatic ecosystems. The present work addresses possible impacts on thermal household of standing waters. Sensitivity studies were performed to identify the influence of air temperature changes on lake stratification patterns for different geographic zones of the globe. Ice cover and convective overturn events were selected as indicators. Hypothetical waterbodies used in this series of simulations were assumed typical for shallow, deep, and intermediate lakes. A vertical one-dimensional hydrothermal model developed at the Institute for Water and Ecological Problems (Russia) was used to simulate water temperature and components of the thermal energy budget. The model was cross-checked with a similar model WQRRS (University of California-Davis). Simulation results appear to be consistent with existing stratification-based classification of lakes. Sensitivity analysis showed that effect of changing climate is roughly equivalent to a corresponding change in geographic location, approximately one latitude degree per one degree Celsius of air temperature. Zones of higher sensitivity to air temperature change were revealed where changes were especially profound, namely subtropical zone 30-40 degrees (with respect to cooler climate) and subpolar zone 70-8O degrees (with respect to warming). Subsequently, nine real lakes were selected from the sensitive regions. Future climate conditions were obtained from the GFDL global circulation model, under an assumption of doubling CO2 concentration in the atmosphere. For five selected lakes little or no change in monitored indicators was detected, while for four lakes, changes from an existing stratification pattern were found to be significant.

Item Type: Monograph (IIASA Working Paper)
Depositing User: IIASA Import
Date Deposited: 15 Jan 2016 02:04
Last Modified: 27 Aug 2021 17:14

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