The teleconnection pattern between Hawaii rainfall and large-scale circulation in present-day conditions and during the Holocene
The teleconnection pattern between Hawaii rainfall and large-scale circulation in present-day conditions and during the Holocene (in AGU 2016 fall meeting, Anonymous)
American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting (December 2016) 129 (9-10)
Kona lows (KLs) are a type of seasonal cut-off cyclones in the North Pacific around the Hawaiian Islands during the cold season month (Oct.-Apr.). KL are important for the annual rainfall budget of the Hawaiian Islands. In this study, the relationship between KLs and North Pacific climate variability was analyzed in order to understand the interannual variations in the number of KLs. The main objectives were (1) to identify mechanisms that control the activity of KL during the recent decades, and (2) to test the stability of the statistical relationships with respect to decadal-scale variability and/or climate shifts. Our study is based on the new data set of KL counts from 1979-2014 (Kaiser, 2014, Univ. Hawaii). For the analysis of large-scale climate pattern, ERA-interim 6-hourly data from 1979-2014 were used including sea level pressure, geopotential heights of the 500 h Pa level, potential vorticity and zonal wind at 250 h Pa. We derived cold season averages for the mean and 8-16 day synoptic variability. Standard climate indices for tropical-extratropical climate variability included NINO3.4 and PDO index, and NPO index. The results from the linear correlation analysis show that local 8-16 day PV250 variability north of Hawaii can represent Kona Low activity between 1979-2014. KL activity and PV250 variability had both a negative correlation with NINO3.4 index. However, the correlation with NINO3.4 index has diminished after 1995. This shift in correlation coincides with transition of the PDO index from a positive value to negative value during 1990's. Our results suggest that a negative PDO can reduce the ENSO influence on Kona Low activity by modulating the upper zonal jet response. We investigated further the relationship between NPO and Kona Low activity. A strong correlation with the NPO index was found. Two factors that control the time-dependent impacts of ENSO on the KL activity. After the mid-1990s the central tropical Pacific SST were more closely tied to the extratropical NPO mode. In order to test if the results are applicable in the context of paleoclimate applications, where the stability of tropical-extratropical teleconnection mechanisms is crucial for the interpretation of paleoclimate proxy data, we tested the robustness of our results in the TraCE-21 ka simulation during the Holocene.