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Precipitation in the Anatolian Peninsula: sensitivity to increased SSTs in the surrounding seas

   Bozkurt, Deniz; Sen, Omer Lutfi

Effects of the increased sea surface temperatures (SSTs) in the surrounding seas of the Anatolian Peninsula on the precipitation it receives are investigated through sensitivity simulations using a state-of-the-art regional climate model, RegCM3. The sensitivity simulations involve 2-K increases to the SSTs of the Aegean, eastern Mediterranean and Black seas individually as well as collectively. All the simulations are integrated over a 10-year period between 1990 and 2000. The model simulations of this study indicate that the precipitation of the peninsula is sensitive to the variations of the SSTs of the surrounding seas. In general, increased SSTs lead to increases in the precipitation of the peninsula as well as that of the seas considered. The statistically significant increases at 95% confidence levels largely occur along the coastal areas of the peninsula that are in the downwind side of the seas. Significant increases do also take place in the interior areas of the peninsula, especially in the eastern Anatolia in winter. The simulations reveal that eastern Mediterranean Sea has the biggest potential to affect the precipitation in the peninsula. They also demonstrate that taking all three seas into account simultaneously enhances the effect of SSTs on the peninsula's precipitation, and extends the areas with statistically significant increases.

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