Alex Cannon

Alex Cannon
Environment and Climate Change Canada · Climate Research Division

PhD Atmospheric Science
Climate Data and Analysis Section

About

182
Publications
52,400
Reads
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5,767
Citations
Introduction
climate extremes; climate model post-processing; machine learning; statistical climatology; environmental prediction; hydroclimatology
Additional affiliations
April 2015 - November 2020
Environment and Climate Change Canada
Position
  • Researcher
Description
  • Activities that contribute to understanding the state, trends, variability, extremes, and future projections of climate at both global and regional scales.
January 2012 - April 2015
University of Victoria
Position
  • Research Climatologist
September 2009 - present
University of British Columbia - Vancouver
Position
  • Professor (Associate)
Education
September 2004 - November 2008
University of British Columbia - Vancouver
Field of study
  • Atmospheric Science

Publications

Publications (182)
Article
The qrnn package for R implements the quantile regression neural network, which is an artificial neural network extension of linear quantile regression. The model formulation follows from previous work on the estimation of censored regression quantiles. The result is a nonparametric, nonlinear model suitable for making probabilistic predictions of...
Article
Quantile mapping bias correction algorithms are commonly used to correct systematic distributional biases in precipitation outputs from climate models. Although they are effective at removing historical biases relative to observations, it has been found that quantile mapping can artificially corrupt future model-projected trends. Previous studies o...
Article
Full-text available
Most bias correction algorithms used in climatology, for example quantile mapping, are applied to univariate time series. They neglect the dependence between different variables. Those that are multivariate often correct only limited measures of joint dependence, such as Pearson or Spearman rank correlation. Here, an image processing technique desi...
Article
Full-text available
Climate models are the major tools to study the climate system and its evolutions in the future. However, climate simulations often present statistical biases and have to be corrected against observations before being used in impact assessments. Several bias correction (BC) methods have therefore been developed in the literature over the last 2 dec...
Article
Full-text available
The goal of quantile regression is to estimate conditional quantiles for specified values of quantile probability using linear or nonlinear regression equations. These estimates are prone to "quantile crossing", where regression predictions for different quantile probabilities do not increase as probability increases. In the context of the environm...
Article
Individual and joint variations of extreme temperature and precipitation are assessed across Canada using the large ensemble of Canadian Regional Climate Model simulations (CanRCM4-LE) and two corresponding multivariate bias-corrected datasets (Canadian Large Ensembles Adjusted Datasets, CanLEAD-E & S). The overall performance of the three 50-membe...
Article
Full-text available
This study investigates changes in linkages between atmospheric blocking and winter (December–February) cold spells over the Pacific-North America region in two large-ensembles of Canadian Earth System Models (CanESM2 and CanESM5 under high-emission scenarios). The two ensembles show decreases in winter blocking frequency over the North Pacific fro...
Article
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As summer heatwaves have severe adverse impacts on human society and ecosystems, there is need to better understand their meteorological drivers and future projections under climate change. This study investigates the linkage between atmospheric blocking and summer (June–August) heatwaves over North America using two reanalysis datasets (ERA-Interi...
Article
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A strong atmospheric river made landfall in southwestern British Columbia, Canada on 14th November 2021, bringing two days of intense precipitation to the region. The resulting floods and landslides led to the loss of at least five lives, cut Vancouver off entirely from the rest of Canada by road and rail, and made this the costliest natural disast...
Article
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A multivariate bias correction based on N‐dimensional probability density function transform (MBCn) technique is applied to four different high‐resolution regional climate change simulations and key meteorological variables, namely precipitation, mean near‐surface air temperature, near‐surface maximum air temperature, near‐surface minimum air tempe...
Article
Extreme temperature is a major threat to urban populations; thus, it is crucial to understand future changes to plan adaptation and mitigation strategies. We assess historical and CMIP6 projected trends of minimum and maximum temperatures for the 18 most populated Canadian cities. Temperatures increase (on average 0.3°C/decade) in all cities during...
Article
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Use of downscaled global climate model projections is expanding rapidly as climate change vulnerability assessments and adaptation planning become mainstream in many sectors. Many climate change impact analysesuse climate model projections downscaled at very high spatial resolution (~1 km) but very low temporal resolution (20‐ to 30‐year normals)....
Article
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The Canadian Large Ensembles Adjusted Dataset version 1 (CanLEADv1) contains 50‐member ensembles of bias‐adjusted near‐surface global and regional climate model variables on a 0.5° grid over North America for historical and future scenarios (1950–2100). Canadian Earth System Model Large Ensembles (CanESM2 LE) and Canadian Regional Climate Model Lar...
Article
Leveraging advances in artificial intelligence could revolutionize the Earth and environmental sciences. We must ensure that our research funding and training choices give the next generation of geoscientists the capacity to realize this potential.
Article
Full-text available
Representative subsets of global climate models (GCMs) are often used in climate change impact studies to account for uncertainty in ensemble climate projections. However, the effectiveness of such subsets has seldom been assessed for the estimations of either the mean or the spread of the full ensembles. We assessed two different approaches that w...
Preprint
Full-text available
Many studies of climate change impacts and adaptation use climate model projections downscaled at very high spatial resolution (~1km) but very low temporal resolution (20- to 30-year normals). These applications have model selection priorities that are distinct from analyses at high temporal resolution. Here, we select a 13-model CMIP6 ensemble des...
Article
Full-text available
Climate change can affect different drivers of flooding in low-lying coastal areas of the world, challenging the design and planning of communities and infrastructure. The concurrent occurrence of multiple flood drivers such as high river flows and extreme sea levels can aggravate such impacts and result in catastrophic damages. In this study, the...
Article
Full-text available
Climate change in the Arctic is leading to shifts in vegetation communities, permafrost degradation and alteration of tundra surface–atmosphere energy and carbon (C) fluxes, among other changes. However, year-round C and energy flux measurements at high-latitude sites remain rare. This poses a challenge for evaluating the impacts of climate change...
Preprint
Full-text available
Due to the significant negative consequences of winter cold extremes, there is need to better understand and simulate the mechanisms driving their occurrence. The impact of atmospheric blocking on winter cold spells over North America is investigated using ERA-Interim and NCEP-DOE-R2 reanalyses for 1981–2010. Initial-condition large-ensembles of tw...
Article
Full-text available
Using climate scenarios from only one or a small number of global climate models (GCMs) in climate change impact studies may lead to biased assessment due to large uncertainty in climate projections. Ensemble means in impact projections derived from a multi-GCM ensemble are often used as best estimates to reduce bias. However, it is often time-cons...
Article
Full-text available
The dependence structure of temperature-precipitation compound events is analyzed across Canada using three datasets derived from Canadian Regional Climate Model Large Ensemble simulations, including raw model outputs (CanRCM4-LE) and two sets of multivariate bias-corrected model outputs (Canadian Large Ensembles Adjusted Datasets, CanLEAD-EWEMBI/S...
Data
Extracted data for individual river basins are available at https://open.canada.ca/data/en/dataset/f8996696-4354- 471d-808e-f681fa0091b2.
Article
Full-text available
Anthropogenic climate change is affecting the snowpack freshwater storage, with socioeconomic and ecological impacts. We present an assessment of maximum snow water equivalent (SWE max) change in large river basins of the northwestern North America region using the Canadian Regional Climate Model 50-member ensemble under 1.0°C to 4.0°C global warmi...
Preprint
Full-text available
The Arctic is warming more rapidly than other regions of the world leading to ecosystem change including shifts in vegetation communities, permafrost degradation and alteration of tundra surface-atmosphere energy and carbon (C) fluxes, among others. However, year-round C and energy flux measurements at high-latitude sites remain rare. This poses a...
Technical Report
Full-text available
The report provides an assessment of how climatic design data relevant to the National Building Code of Canada (NBCC 2015, Table C-2) and the Canadian Highway Bridge Design Code (CHBDC/CSA S6 2014, Annex A3.1) might change as the climate continues to warm. The approach in this report is based on an assessment of the current understanding of climate...
Article
Full-text available
Strong wind coinciding with rainfall is an important weather phenomenon in many science and engineering fields. This study investigates changes in hourly extreme driving rain wind pressure (DRWP)—a climatic variable used in building design in Canada—for future periods of specified global mean temperature change using an ensemble of a Canadian regio...
Article
Full-text available
Internal climate variability (ICV) is one of the major sources of uncertainty in climate projections, yet it is seldom quantified for projections of crop production. Our study focuses on quantifying the uncertainty due to ICV in projections of crop productions in Canada. We utilize climate scenarios from two large ensembles (LEs, CanESM2-LE and Can...
Article
Full-text available
This study evaluates and compares historical simulations of daily sea-level pressure circulation types over 6 continental-scale regions (North America, South America, Europe, Africa, East Asia, and Australasia) by 15 pairs of global climate models from modeling centers that contributed to both Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP5) a...
Poster
Full-text available
Climate models are the major tools to estimate climate variables evolutions in the future. However, climate simulations often present statistical biases and have to be corrected against observations before being used in impact assessments. Several bias correction (BC) methods have therefore been developed in the literature over the last two decades...
Data
The EU WATCH ERA-Interim reanalysis WFDEI (Weedon et al., 2014) 3h*0.5ᵒ dataset (1979-2016) was used to bias correct an initial condition ensemble of 15 members of CanRCM4 simulations (Scinocca et al., 2016) that were obtained by downscaling CanESM2 global simulations over the North American CORDEX domain. CanESM2 was forced with historical emissio...
Article
Full-text available
Powdery mildew (Erysiphe necator) is a fungal disease causing significant loss of grape yield in commercial vineyards. The rate of development of this disease varies annually and is driven by complex interactions between the pathogen, its host, and environmental conditions. The long term impacts of weather and climate variability on disease develop...
Article
Full-text available
Cold region hydrology is very sensitive to the impacts of climate warming. Impacts of warming over recent decades in western Canada include glacier retreat, permafrost thaw, and changing patterns of precipitation, with an increased proportion of winter precipitation falling as rainfall and shorter durations of snow cover, as well as consequent chan...
Article
Full-text available
Bias correction methods remove systematic differences in the distributional properties of climate model outputs with respect to observations, often as a means of pre‐processing model outputs for use in hydrological impact studies. Traditionally, bias correction is applied at each weather station individually, neglecting the dependence that exists b...
Preprint
Full-text available
Abstract. Climate models are the major tools to estimate climate variables evolutions in the future. However, climate simulations often present statistical biases and have to be corrected against observations before being used in impact assessments. Several bias correction (BC) methods have therefore been developed in the literature over the last t...
Article
Full-text available
Wind-driven rain (WDR) on building façades reduces hygrothermal performance and durability of wall assemblies. This paper evaluates projected changes to WDR exposure of building façades in Canada for future periods corresponding to specified levels (0.5 ~ 3.5 °C) of global warming above the 1986–2016 baseline. Projections are based on a large ensem...
Article
Full-text available
Atmospheric moisture loading affects the performance and durability of building exteriors. In a changing climate, designing for historical moisture loads may no longer be adequate. This study investigates potential climate change impacts on the moisture index used in the design and management of buildings over Canada. Projections are obtained for f...
Article
Full-text available
Global warming is expected to produce modifications in the intensity, as well as in the seasonality and spatiotemporal structure of extreme precipitation. In the present study, the temporal evolution of simulated daily and subdaily precipitation extremes was analyzed to assess how they respond to climate warming over different time horizons. Poolin...
Article
Full-text available
The characterization of extreme precipitation at fine spatiotemporal scale represents a paramount challenge in hydroclimate sciences due to large uncertainties affecting the precipitation estimation from existing datasets. Comparing the spatiotemporal structure of precipitation extremes estimated from different datasets thus represents an essential...
Article
Full-text available
Cold regions hydrology is very sensitive to the impacts of climate warming. Impacts of warming over recent decades in western Canada include glacier retreat, permafrost thaw and changing patterns of precipitation, with increased proportion of winter precipitation falling as rainfall and shorter durations of snowcover, and consequent changes in flow...
Preprint
Full-text available
Cold regions hydrology is very sensitive to the impacts of climate warming. Impacts of warming over recent decades in western Canada include glacier retreat, permafrost thaw and changing patterns of precipitation, with increased proportion of winter precipitation falling as rainfall and shorter durations of snowcover, and consequent changes in flow...
Article
Full-text available
This analysis documents projected changes in daily precipitation and temperature characteristics over Canada based on a 15-member ensemble which had been downscaled using the Canadian Regional Climate Model–CanRCM4 at 50 km resolution by the Canadian Centre for Climate Modelling and Analysis (CCCma) under Representative Concentration Pathway (RCP)...
Article
Full-text available
Science-based assessments of climate change impacts on cropping systems under different levels of global warming are essential for informing stakeholders which global climate targets and potential adaptation strategies may be effective. A comprehensive evaluation of climate change impacts on Canada's crop production under different levels of global...
Article
Full-text available
We describe a state-of-the-art framework for projecting hydrologic impacts due to enhanced warming and amplified moisture fluxes in the subarctic environment under anthropogenic climate change. We projected future hydrologic changes based on Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 global climate model simulations using the Variable Infiltrati...
Data
This dataset provides an improved set of forcing data for large scale hydrological models for climate change impacts assessment in Mackenzie River Basin (MRB). The best available gridded data in the MRB is from the high resolution forecasts of the Global Environmental Multiscale (GEM) atmospheric model and outputs of the Canadian Precipitation Anal...
Article
Full-text available
Atmospheric ice accretion caused by freezing precipitation (FP) can lead to severe damage and the failure of buildings and infrastructure. This study investigates projected changes to extreme ice loads – those used to design infrastructure over North America (NA) – for future periods of specified global mean temperature change (GMTC), relative to t...
Article
Full-text available
Alpine catchments show a high sensitivity to climate variation as they include the elevation range of the snow line. Therefore, the correct representation of climate variables and their interdependence is crucial when describing or predicting hydrological processes. When using climate model simulations in hydrological impact studies, forcing meteor...
Article
Full-text available
Convection-permitting climate models have been recommended for use in projecting future changes in local-scale, short-duration rainfall extremes that are of the greatest relevance to engineering and infrastructure design, e.g., as commonly summarized in intensity–duration–frequency (IDF) curves. Based on thermodynamic arguments, it is expected that...
Article
Full-text available
We describe a spatially contiguous, temporally consistent high-resolution gridded daily meteorological dataset for northwestern North America. This >4 million km2 region has high topographic relief, seasonal snowpack, permafrost and glaciers, crosses multiple jurisdictional boundaries and contains the entire Yukon, Mackenzie, Saskatchewan, Fraser a...
Article
Full-text available
A record 1.2 million ha burned in British Columbia, Canada's extreme wildfire season of 2017. Key factors in this unprecedented event were the extreme warm and dry conditions that prevailed at the time, which are also reflected in extreme fire weather and behavior metrics. Using an event attribution method and a large ensemble of regional climate m...