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How Does the North Atlantic SST Pattern Respond to Anthropogenic Aerosols in the 1970s and 2000s?

We show how changes in the glob­al dis­tri­b­u­tion of anthro­pogenic aerosols favor dif­fer­ent spa­tial pat­terns in the North Atlantic sea-sur­face tem­per­a­ture (NASST). The NASSTs large­ly show the expect­ed decrease asso­ci­at­ed with the anthro­pogenic aerosols in the 1970s, but also an unusu­al warm­ing response in the east­ern sub-polar gyre, the region of the North Atlantic warm­ing hole. The NASST response reversed for the anthro­pogenic aerosols in the 2000s against 1970s. The region­al reduc­tion in anthro­pogenic aerosols favored as fol­lows: (1) a strength­en­ing of the warm­ing hole and (2) a NASST increase at high lat­i­tudes asso­ci­at­ed with changes in the cou­pled atmos­phere-ocean dynam­ics. We found that the gyre com­po­nent of the north­ward Atlantic heat trans­port in mid-to high lat­i­tudes is an impor­tant dri­ver for the heat con­ver­gence asso­ci­at­ed with the NASST pat­terns. At least two-thirds of the NASST response in MPI-ESM1.2 is asso­ci­at­ed with aerosol-cloud inter­ac­tions, high­light­ing the need to bet­ter under­stand them.

S. Fiedler,D. Putrasa­han (2021) in Geo­phys­i­cal Research Let­ters, Volume48, Issue7

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