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hall abstract figAbstract: In the past decade or so, a technique has arisen which purportedly solves the problem of how to evaluate the realism of future climate simulations. Since observations of future climate obviously do not yet exist, so-called "emergent constraints" rely instead on strong simulated relationships between an observable element of current climate and a relevant aspect of future climate. Such relationships are seen to "emerge" from ensembles of climate simulations organized by international scientific bodies. Models can be evaluated in how well they simulate the element of the current climate, which presumably allows for inferences about their ability to simulate the relevant aspect of the future. In this talk, I will survey the emergent constraints that have been proposed, and discuss their credibility and meaning. I will discuss how the technique can (and cannot) be used to reduce climate model spread and weight models. Finally, I will also assess the near-term prospects for constraining critical elements of future climate change, including physical and biogeochemical feedbacks.


Spring 2017: Susan Lozier, Duke University

"A 21st century look at the global ocean conveyor belt"

bitz headshot

Fall 2016: Cecilia Bitz, University of Washington

"Tracking the aerial hydrologic cycle through climate change and variability"


Spring 2016: Lorenzo Polvani, Columbia University

"Stratospheric Ozone and Southern Hemisphere Climate Change"

Peter Webster

Fall 2015: Peter Webster, Georgia Institute of Technology

"Understanding the Monsoon"

Spring 2015: Mark Cane, Columbia University

"Climate and Conflict"

Spring 2015: Detlef Stammer, U. of Hamburg

"Influence of Ocean Dynamics on Future Regional Sea-Level Projections "

Fall 2014: Kerry Emanuel, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

"Radiative-Convective Equilibrium and its Instability: Implications for Weather and Climate"

Spring 2014: Sarah Gille, U. of California SanDiego / Scripps Institution of Oceanography

"Climate Change in the Southern Ocean: Exploring the Role of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current"

Fall 2013: Robert A. Houze, U. of Washington

"Global Variability of Intense Convection"