Jürg Luterbacher

Jürg Luterbacher
World Meteorological Organization | WMO · Science and Innovation Department

Prof., PhD

About

437
Publications
200,561
Reads
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31,588
Citations
Additional affiliations
January 1999 - March 2009
Universität Bern
Position
  • Deputy head

Publications

Publications (437)
Article
Full-text available
This study compares gridded European seasonal series of surface air temperature (SAT) and precipitation (PRE) reconstructions with a regional climate simulation over the period 1500–1990. The area is analysed separately for nine subareas that represent the majority of the climate diversity in the European sector. In their spatial structure, an over...
Article
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Tree-ring width is one of the most widely used proxy in paleoclimatological studies. Due to various environmental and biological processes, however, the associated reconstructions often suffer from overestimated low-frequency variability. In this study, a new correction approach is proposed using fractional integral techniques that corrects for the...
Article
Full-text available
The COVID-19 pandemic has brought dynamics of compound hazards and risk-response feedbacks to the fore of hydrometeorological hazard preparedness and response. For example, lockdowns implemented to slow the hazard of COVID-19 transmission have the potential unintended side effect of isolating or demobilizing people in the face of an incoming compou...
Technical Report
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Una sequía extrema y persistente que comenzó en 2019 todavía hoy sigue afectando a la Cuenca del Plata, la segunda cuenca hidrográfica más grande de Sudamérica y la quinta del mundo. En el presente informe se ofrece una visión general del episodio, su contexto climatológico, su evolución espaciotemporal, sus causas y características y sus impactos...
Technical Report
Full-text available
Uma seca persistente e extrema iniciada em 2019 está ainda em curso e tem vindo a afetar a bacia de La Plata, a segunda maior bacia hidrográfica da América do Sul e a quinta maior do mundo. Apresentamos aqui uma panorâmica do evento, do seu contexto climatológico, da sua evolução espaciotemporal, das suas causas e características, bem como dos seus...
Article
As climate change accelerates, societies and climate sensitive socioeconomic sectors cannot continue to rely on the past as a guide to possible future climate hazards. Operational decadal predictions offer the potential to inform current adaptation and increase resilience by filling the important gap between seasonal forecasts and climate projectio...
Article
El Niño–Southern Oscillation (ENSO) and the Indian summer monsoon (ISM) are the dominant modes of climate variability affecting the tropical and subtropical regions. In this study, we investigate the impact of ENSO episodes, through the modulation of the ISM configuration, on the Eastern Mediterranean (EMed) summer atmospheric circulation over the...
Article
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The question of how sensitive the regional and local climates are to different land cover maps and fractions is important, as land cover affects the atmospheric circulation via its influence on heat, moisture, and momentum transfer, as well as the chemical composition of the atmosphere. In this study, we used three independent land cover data sets,...
Chapter
Until now, proxy records have been the primary tool for quantitative reconstructions of the physical world of the ancient and late antique Mediterranean. This chapter demonstrates the combined use of proxy datasets and the hitherto underutilized potential of earth system models in the scientific and historical study of past environmental variations...
Article
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Increasing atmospheric CO2 enhances plant biomass production and may thereby change nutrient concentrations in plant tissues. The objective of this study was to identify the effect of elevated atmospheric CO2 concentrations on nutrient concentrations of grassland biomass that have been grown for 16 years (1998–2013). The grassland biomass grown at...
Technical Report
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A persistent and extreme drought started in 2019 is still ongoing and has been affecting the La Plata Basin, the second largest river basin in South America and the fifth in the world. Here we provide an overview of the event, its climatological background, its spatio-temporal evolution, its causes and characteristics, as well as its impacts on nat...
Article
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Background: Psychiatric disorders constitute a major public health concern that are associated with substantial health and socioeconomic burden. Psychiatric patients may be more vulnerable to high temperatures, which under current climate change projections will most likely increase the burden of this public health concern. Objective: This study...
Article
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Asian summer monsoon (ASM) variability and its long-term ecological and societal impacts extending back to Neolithic times are poorly understood due to a lack of high-resolution climate proxy data. Here, we present a precisely dated and well-calibrated tree-ring stable isotope chronology from the Tibetan Plateau with 1- to 5-y resolution that refle...
Preprint
The mechanisms of recent Elevation-Dependent Warming (EDW) remain debated because nearly all data sources are limited to past decades and subject to anthropogenic effects. Here, we study how temperature changed along the elevation gradient since the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) and aim to shed lights on the mechanisms of EDW and implications for the...
Article
Full-text available
Feedbacks of plant phenology to the regional climate system affect fluxes of energy, water, CO2, biogenic volatile organic compounds as well as canopy conductance, surface roughness length, and are influencing the seasonality of albedo. We performed simulations with the regional climate model COSMO-CLM (CCLM) at three locations in Germany covering...
Article
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The performance of a new historical reanalysis, the NOAA-CIRES-DOE 20 th Century Reanalysis Version 3 (20CRv3), is evaluated via comparisons with other reanalyses and independent observations. This dataset provides global, 3-hourly estimates of the atmosphere from 1806 to 2015 by assimilating only surface pressure observations and prescribing sea s...
Article
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Nearshore upwelling along the eastern North Atlantic margin regulates regional marine ecosystem productivity and thus impacts blue economies. While most global circulation models show an increase in the intensity and duration of seasonal upwelling at high latitudes under future human-induced warmer conditions, projections for the North Atlantic are...
Chapter
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Marine ecosystems: Despite covering only 0.82% of the ocean’s surface, the Mediterranean Sea supports up to 18% of all known marine species, with 21% being listed as vulnerable and 11% as endangered. The accelerated spread of tropical non-indigenous species is leading to the “tropicalization” of Mediterranean fauna and flora as a result of warming...
Article
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Early studies of weather, seasonality, and environmental influences on COVID-19 have yielded inconsistent and confusing results. To provide policy-makers and the public with meaningful and actionable environmentally-informed COVID-19 risk estimates, the research community must meet robust methodological and communication standards. When COVID-19 be...
Technical Report
Full-text available
The State of the Climate in Africa report is a multi-agency report involving key international and continental organizations. It provides a snapshot of climate trends, observed high-impact events and associated risks and impacts in key sensitive sectors. The report draws attention to lessons from climate action on the continent, including areas for...
Article
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In this paper, we describe the results of a climate data rescue (DARE) activity conducted at the Ukrainian Hydrometeorological Institute (Kyiv, Ukraine) in cooperation with the Justus Liebig University Giessen (Giessen, Germany), the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and Met Office Hadley Centre (Exeter, United Kingdom). The focus of our work...
Article
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The influence that meteorological, climatological and environmental factors had on historical disease outbreaks is often speculated upon, but little investigated. Here, we explore potential associations between pandemic disease and climate over the last 2,500 years in Mediterranean history, focusing on ancient disease outbreaks and the Justinianic...
Article
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We simulate the response of Asian summer climate to Atlantic multidecadal oscillation (AMO)-like sea surface temperature (SST) anomalies using an intermediate-complexity general circulation model (IGCM4). Experiments are performed with seven individual AMO SST anomalies obtained from CMIP5/PMIP3 global climate models as well as their multimodel mea...
Article
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Despite the fact that tropospheric temperature inversions are thought to be an important feature of climate as well as a significant factor affecting air quality, low-level cloud formation, and the radiation budget of the Earth, a quantitative assessment of their representation in atmospheric reanalyses is yet missing. Here, we provide new evidence...
Article
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Modes of climate variability affect global and regional climates on different spatio-temporal scales, and they have important impacts on human activities and ecosystems. As these modes are a useful tool for simplifying the understanding of the climate system, it is crucial that we gain improved knowledge of their long-term past evolution and intera...
Article
The summertime Eastern Mediterranean experiences among the highest worldwide near-surface ozone values often exceeding the EU air-quality standard for human health protection. Downward transport of stratospheric ozone-rich air masses through tropopause folds has been shown to significantly contribute to these high tropospheric ozone levels. The sum...
Article
1. Research into global change ecology is motivated by the need to understand the role of humans in changing biotic systems. Mechanistic understanding of ecological responses requires the separation of different climatic parameters and processes that often operate on diverse spatiotemporal scales. Yet most environmental studies do not distinguish t...
Article
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This study investigates mechanisms and nonlinearities in the response of the Asian Summer Monsoons (ASM) to high-latitude thermal forcings of different amplitudes. Using a suite of runs carried out with an intermediate-complexity atmospheric general circulation model, we find that the imposed forcings produce a strong precipitation response over th...
Article
Meteorological droughts have large impacts on society and the environment. A better understanding and quantification of their occurrences can be highly relevant for the development of proper climate change mitigation, adaptation and resilience strategies. Here we examine meteorological droughts from observed data covering the 1971–2000 period for t...
Article
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The Mediterranean has been identified as particularly vulnerable to climate change, yet a high-resolution temperature reconstruction extending back into the Medieval Warm Period is still lacking. Here we present such a record from a high-elevation site on Mt. Smolikas in northern Greece, where some of Europe’s oldest trees provide evidence of warm...
Article
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To place recent hydroclimate changes, including drought occurrences, in a long-term historical context, tree-ring records serve as an important natural archive. Here, we evaluate 46 millennium-long tree-ring based hydroclimate reconstructions for their Data Homogeneity, Sample Replication, Growth Coherence, Chronology Development, and Climate Signa...
Article
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A global inventory of early instrumental meteorological measurements is compiled that comprises thousands of mostly nondigitized series, pointing to the potential of weather data rescue.
Article
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The Etesians are the dominant synoptically driven winds observed in the Eastern Mediterranean, usually from late spring to late summer. Due to the complex topography, the Etesians can be very strong and pose significant environmental hazards, especially over wildfire incidents. This study assesses the impacts of climate change on future Etesians by...
Article
Large-scale palaeoclimate reconstructions can be very sensitive to the proxy records they are based on, and hence to the criteria used to select proxy records. Data selection rarely follows objective criteria that are applicable to all types of proxies, including both low- and high-resolution records. Thus, there is a need for a uniform and transpa...
Article
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Instrumental meteorological measurements from periods prior to the start of national weather services are designated “early instrumental data.” They have played an important role in climate research as they allow daily to decadal variability and changes of temperature, pressure, and precipitation, including extremes, to be addressed. Early instrume...
Article
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In the northeast of the Iberian Peninsula, few studies have reconstructed drought occurrence and variability for the pre-instrumental period using documentary evidence and natural proxies. In this study, we compiled a unique dataset of rogation ceremonies – religious acts asking God for rain – from 13 cities in the northeast of Spain and investigat...
Article
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The European summer of 1816 has often been referred to as a ‘year without a summer’ due to anomalously cold conditions and unusual wetness, which led to widespread famines and agricultural failures. The cause has often been assumed to be the eruption of Mount Tambora in April 1815, however this link has not, until now, been proven. Here we apply st...
Article
Provisioning services from grassland ecosystems are strongly linked to physical and chemical grassland traits, which are affected by atmospheric CO2 concentrations ([CO2]s). The influences of increased [CO2]s ([eCO2]s) are typically investigated in Free Air Carbon dioxide Enrichment (FACE) studies via destructive sampling methods. This traditional...
Article
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The long-term relationship between temperature and hydroclimate has remained uncertain due to the short length of instrumental measurements and inconsistent results from climate model simulations. This lack of understanding is particularly critical with regard to projected drought and flood risks. Here we assess warm-season co-variability patterns...
Article
Historical reanalyses that span more than a century are needed for a wide range of studies, from understanding large‐scale climate trends to diagnosing the impacts of individual historical extreme weather events. The Twentieth Century Reanalysis (20CR) Project is an effort to fill this need. It is supported by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric A...
Article
Full-text available
Quantifying precipitation variability beyond the instrumental period is essential for putting current and future fluctuations into long-term perspective and providing a test bed for evaluating climate simulations. For south-eastern Asia such quantifications are scarce and millennium-long attempts are still missing. In this study we take a pseudo-pr...
Article
Full-text available
It has been widely reported that anthropogenic warming is detectable with high confidence after the 1950s. However, current palaeoclimate records suggest an earlier onset of industrial-era warming. Here, we combine observational data, multiproxy palaeo records and climate model simulations for a formal detection and attribution study. Instead of th...
Article
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Temperature and precipitation are the most important factors responsible for agricultural productivity variations. In 2018 spring/summer growing season, Europe experienced concurrent anomalies of both. Drought conditions in central and northern Europe caused yield reductions up to 50% for the main crops, yet wet conditions in southern Europe saw yi...
Conference Paper
Europe experienced exceptional climate conditions in spring and summer 2018. The extreme drought in central and northern Europe heavily affected key socio-economic sectors. While, anomalous wet conditions in southern Europe favoured sectors such as agriculture triggering crop yield gains that partially offset the losses in central and northern Euro...
Article
Full-text available
Quantifying hydroclimate variability beyond the instrumental period is essential for putting current and future fluctuations into long-term perspective and to provide a test-bed for evaluating climate simulations. For South-earstern Asia such quantifications are scarce and millennium-long attempts are still missing. In this study we take a pseudo-p...
Article
Full-text available
Slowing variability in climate system is an important source of climate predictability. However, it is still challenging for current dynamical models to fully capture the variability as well as its impacts on future climate. In this study, instead of simulating the internal multi-scale oscillations in dynamical models, we discussed the effects of i...
Article
Full-text available
The use of documentary evidence to investigate past climatic trends and events has become a recognised approach in recent decades. This contribution presents the state of the art in its application to droughts. The range of documentary evidence is very wide, including general annals, chronicles, memoirs and diaries kept by missionaries, travellers...
Article
Full-text available
Terrestrial ecosystems are considered as carbon sinks that may mitigate the impacts of increased atmospheric CO2 concentration ([CO2]). However, it is not clear what their carbon sink capacity will be under extreme climatic conditions. In this study, we used long-term (1998–2013) data from a C3 grassland Free Air CO2 Enrichment FACE) experiment in...
Article
Full-text available
The drivers of multidecadal- to centennial-scale variability in East Asian temperature, apparent in temperature reconstructions, are poorly understood. Here we apply a multivariate regression analysis to distinguish the influences of large-scale modes of internal variability (Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation and Pacific Multidecadal Oscillation) a...
Article
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Large volcanic eruptions may cause abrupt summer cooling over large parts of the globe. However, no comparable imprint has been found on the Tibetan Plateau (TP). Here, we introduce a 400-yr-long temperature-sensitive network of 17 tree-ring maximum latewood density sites from the TP that demonstrates that the effects of tropical eruptions on the T...
Article
Full-text available
The use of documentary evidence to investigate past climatic trends and events has become a recognised approach in recent decades. This contribution presents the state of the art in its application to droughts. The range of documentary evidence is very wide, including: general annals, chronicles, and memoirs, diaries kept by missionaries, traveller...
Article
Full-text available
The Etesians are among the most persistent regional scale wind systems in the lower troposphere that prevail over the eastern Mediterranean during the extended summer season. The performance of five high-resolution EURO-CORDEX regional climate models (RCMs) in simulating the Etesian climatology as well as the associated large-scale atmospheric circ...