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Erratic Asian summer monsoon 2020: COVID-19 lockdown initiatives possible cause for these episodes?

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Title
Erratic Asian summer monsoon 2020: COVID-19 lockdown initiatives possible cause for these episodes?
Author(s)
Kripalani, Ramesh; Kyung‑Ja Ha; Ho, Chang-Hoi; Oh, Jai-Ho; Preethi, B.; Mujumdar, Milind; Prabhu, Amita
Publication Date
2022-09
Journal
CLIMATE DYNAMICS, v.59, no.5-6, pp.1333 - 1352
Publisher
SPRINGER
Abstract
The summer (June through September) monsoon 2020 has been very erratic with episodes of heavy and devastating rains, landslides and catastrophic winds over South Asia (India, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh), East Asia (China, Korea, and Japan), and Southeast Asia (Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Philippines, Indonesia). The withdrawal of the summer monsoon over India was delayed by 2 weeks. The monsoon season over East Asia has been the longest. China recorded a Dam burst in the twentieth century. Furthermore, the Korean Peninsula has experienced back-to-back severe tropical cyclones. Could the lockdown activities initiate to control the COVID-19 spread a possible cause for these major episodes? The strict enforcement of the lockdown regulations has led to a considerable reduction of air pollutants-dust and aerosols throughout the world. A recent study based on satellites and merged products has documented a statistically significant mean reduction of about 20, 8, and 50% in nitrogen dioxide, Aerosol Optical Depth (AOD) and PM2.5 concentrations, respectively over the megacities across the globe. Our analysis reveals a considerable reduction of about 20% in AOD over South as well as over East Asia, more-over East Asia than over South Asia. The reduced aerosols have impacted the strength of the incoming solar radiation as evidenced by enhanced warming, more-over the land than the oceans. The differential warming over the land and the ocean has resulted in the amplification of the meridional ocean-land thermal contrast and strengthening of the monsoon flow. These intense features have supported the surplus transport of moisture from the oceans towards the main lands. Some similarity between the anomalous rainfall pattern and the anomalous AOD pattern is discernable. In particular, the enhancement of rainfall, the reduction in AOD and the surface temperature warming match very well over two regions one over West-Central India and the other over the Yangzte River Valley. Results further reveal that the heavy rains over the Yangzte River Valley could be associated with the preceding reduced aerosols, while the heavy rains over West-Central India could be associated with reduced aerosols and also due to the surface temperature warming.
URI
https://pr.ibs.re.kr/handle/8788114/12234
DOI
10.1007/s00382-021-06042-x
ISSN
0930-7575
Appears in Collections:
Center for Climate Physics(기후물리 연구단) > 1. Journal Papers (저널논문)
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