CMIP5-Derived Single-Forcing, Single-Model, and Single-Scenario Wind-Wave Climate Ensemble: Configuration and Performance Evaluation


A Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP5)-derived single-forcing, single-model, and single-scenario dynamic wind-wave climate ensemble is presented, and its historic period (1979–2005) performance in representing the present wave climate is evaluated. A single global climate model (GCM)-forcing wave climate ensemble was produced with the goal of reducing the inter GCM variability inherent in using a multi-forcing approach for the same wave model. Seven CMIP5 EC-Earth ensemble runs were used to force seven WAM wave model realizations, while future wave climate simulations, not analyzed here, were produced using a high-emission representative concentration pathway 8.5 (RCP8.5) set-up. The wave climate ensemble’s historic period was extensively compared against a set of 72 in situ wave-height observations, as well as to ERA-Interim reanalysis and Climate Forecast System Reanalysis (CFSR) hindcast. The agreement between the wave climate ensemble and the in situ measurements and reanalysis of mean and extreme wave heights, mean wave periods, and mean wave directions was good, in line with previous studies or even better in some areas of the global ocean, namely in the extratropical latitudes. These results give a good degree of confidence in the ability of the ensemble to simulate a realistic climate change signal.
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