Collaborative Research: Diagnosing Global Climatic Responses to Large Volcanic Eruptions in Climate Reconstructions and Model Simulations

Lead PI: Jason E Smerdon , Professor Lorenzo Polvani , Mathias Vuille

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

September 2023 - August 2026
North America ; United States
Project Type: Research

DESCRIPTION: The specific research effort for this project involves providing proxy-based global estimates of the spatiotemporal changes in temperature and hydroclimate after large volcanic eruptions. A global picture of proxy-estimated climate responses to volcanism is now possible because of new paleoclimate data assimilation products, which may provide new insights into how volcanoes influence changes in surface temperatures, hydroclimate, and climate dynamics. The ultimate aim of the project is to quantify risks and improve societal preparedness for climatic variations influenced by large volcanic eruptions. The research team intends to achieve the project?s research goals by assessing the temporal persistence of responses across multiple paleoclimate data assimilation outputs and ground-truth the estimates against other state-of-the-art proxy reconstructions and documentary evidence. The researchers will also characterize how dynamic climate responses are manifest in reconstructed sea-surface temperature and atmospheric pressure indices, as well as the positioning of the Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ). All of these responses will be assessed seasonally and in terms of eruption latitudes. The proxy-based estimates will in turn be compared to an ensemble of Common Era simulations to characterize the dynamical responses to volcanic eruptions and understand associated uncertainties in the proxy-based products, volcanic forcing estimates, and the coupled climate models.


National Science Foundation




SUNY at Albany