|Title||Extreme storms in Southwest Asia (Northern Arabian Peninsula) under current and future climates|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||2021|
|Authors||Tuel, A., Choi, Y.-W., AlRukaibi D. & Eltahir, E. A. B.|
Precipitation extremes will generally intensify in response to a warming climate. This robust fngerprint of climate change is of particular concern, resulting in heavy rainfall and devastating foods. Often this intensifcation is explained as a consequence of the Clausius–Clapeyron law in a warmer world, under constant relative humidity. Here, based on an ensemble of CMIP5 global climate models and high-resolution regional climate simulations, we take the example of Southwest Asia, where extreme storms will intensify beyond the Clausius- Clapeyron scaling, and propose an additional novel mechanism for this region: the unique increase in atmospheric relative humidity over the Arabian Sea and associated deep northward penetration of moisture. This increase in humidity is dictated by changes in circulation over the Indian Ocean. Our proposed mechanism is consistent with the recent, most extreme storm ever observed in the region. Our fndings advance a new understanding of natural climate variability in this region, with substantial implications for climate change adaptation of the region’s critical infrastructure.