Stratospheric Ozone Depletion and Recovery and Antarctic Climate Change

Lead PI: Michael Previdi , Professor Lorenzo Polvani

Unit Affiliation: Ocean and Climate Physics, Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory (LDEO)

April 2014 - March 2017
Antarctica ; Southern Ocean
Project Type: Research

DESCRIPTION: An array of observational and modeling studies in recent years have demonstrated that stratospheric ozone depletion and recovery caused by human activity significantly affect the Antarctic climate system. Several questions remain, however, regarding the impact of ozone changes on the Antarctic region. These questions are addressed in this project, and pertain to ozone effects on 1) surface temperature; 2) cloud cover; 3) sea ice; and 4) ice sheet mass balance. The primary objective, therefore, is to better understand how past ozone depletion and future ozone recovery have and will affect these four key aspects of Antarctic climate. The approach employed consists of a series of carefully designed climate model experiments, combined with analyses of observations.

OUTCOMES: This project has advanced our understanding of how the Antarctic climate responds to anthropogenic changes in stratospheric ozone. This has enhanced our ability to interpret observed Antarctic change in recent decades during the period of ozone depletion, and will permit more confident projections for the coming decades during the period of ozone recovery.


National Science Foundation (NSF)





1) M. Previdi and L.M. Polvani: Climate System Response to Stratospheric Ozone Depletion and Recovery, Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc., 140, 2401-2419 (2014) (;

2) M. Previdi, K.L. Smith and L.M. Polvani: How well do the CMIP5 models simulate the Antarctic atmospheric energy budget? J. Climate, 28, 7933-7942 (2015) (;

3) M. Previdi and L.M. Polvani: Anthropogenic Impact on Antarctic Surface Mass Balance, Currently Masked by Natural Variability, to Emerge by Mid-Century, Environ. Res. Lett., 11, 094001 (2016) (;

4) K.L. Smith and L.M. Polvani: Spatial patterns of recent Antarctic surface temperature trends and the importance of natural variability: Lessons from multiple reconstructions and the CMIP5 models, Clim. Dyn., 48, 2653-2670 (2017) (;

5) G. Chiodo, L.M. Polvani and M. Previdi: Large increase in incident shortwave radiation due to the ozone hole offset by high climatological albedo over Antarctica, J. Climate, 30, 4883-4890 (2017) (;

6) M. Previdi and L.M. Polvani: Impact of the Montreal Protocol on Antarctic Surface Mass Balance and Implications for Global Sea-Level Rise, J. Climate, 30, 7247-7253 (2017) (;

7) K.L. Smith, G.Chiodo, M. Previdi and L.M. Polvani: No surface cooling over Antarctica from the negative greenhouse effect associated with instantaneous quadrupling of CO2 concentrations, J. Climate, 31, 317-323 (2018) (


stratosphere antarctic climate change climate models ozone hole radiative forcing


Modeling and Adapting to Future Climate