Investigating diurnal and seasonal climatic response to land use and land cover change over monsoon Asia with the community earth system model

Zhongfeng Xu, Rezaul Mahmood, Zong Liang Yang, Congbin Fu, Hua Su

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

53 Scopus citations


Land use and land cover change (LULCC) is primarily characterized as forest conversion to cropland for the development of agriculture. Previous climate modeling studies have demonstrated the LULCC impacts on mean climate and its long-term trends. This study investigates the diurnal and seasonal climatic response to LULCC in monsoon Asia through two numerical experiments with potential and current vegetation cover using the fully coupled Community Earth System Model. Results show that LULCC leads to a reduced diurnal temperature range due to the enhanced (reduced) diurnal cycle of the ground heat flux (sensible heat flux). Daily minimum surface air temperature (Tmin) exhibits a clear seasonality over India as it increases most in the premonsoon season and least during the summer monsoon season. Similarly, a strong anticyclonic anomaly is present at 850 hPa over India in spring and over eastern China in autumn, but weak changes in circulation appear in winter and summer. In addition, the LULCC results in significant changes in the variability of the 2 m air temperature, as characterized by an enhanced variability in India and a reduced variability in northern China to eastern Mongolia in autumn and winter. Possible land-atmosphere feedback loops involving surface albedo, soil moisture, evapotranspiration, atmospheric circulation, and precipitation are offered as biogeophysical mechanisms that are responsible for the region-specific LULCC-induced diurnal and seasonal response.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1137-1152
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research
Issue number3
StatePublished - Feb 16 2015
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • Oceanography
  • Forestry
  • Aquatic Science
  • Ecology
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Soil Science
  • Geochemistry and Petrology
  • Earth-Surface Processes
  • Atmospheric Science
  • Space and Planetary Science
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Palaeontology


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