EGU22-7679, updated on 09 Jan 2024
EGU General Assembly 2022
© Author(s) 2024. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Convection-permitting climate models Offer More Certain Extreme Rainfall Projections

Giorgia Fosser1, Marianna Adinolfi2, Nikolina Ban3, Danijel Belušić4,5, Cécile Caillaud6, Rita M. Cardoso7, Erika Coppola8, Marie-Estelle Demory9, Hylke De Vries10, Andreas Dobler11, Hendrik Feldmann12, Marco Gaetani1, Klaus Görgen13, Elizabeth J. Kendon14,15, Geert Lenderink10, Emanuela Pichelli8, Christoph Schär9, Pedro M. M. Soares7, Samuel Somot6, and Merja H. Tölle16
Giorgia Fosser et al.
  • 1Scuola Universitaria Superiore IUSS, Pavia, Italy (
  • 2Fondazione Centro Euro-Mediterraneo sui cambiamenti climatici (CMCC), Caserta, Italy
  • 3Department of Atmospheric and Cryospheric Sciences, University of Innsbruck, Austria
  • 4University of Zagreb, Zagreb, Croatia
  • 5Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute (SMHI), Norrköping, Sweden
  • 6Université de Toulouse, Météo-France, CNRS, Toulouse, France
  • 7Instituto Dom Luiz (IDL), Faculdade de Ciências da Universidade de Lisboa, Campo Grande, Lisbon, Portugal
  • 8The Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics (ICTP), Trieste, Italy
  • 9Institute for Atmospheric and Climate Science, ETH Zürich, Zürich, Switzerland
  • 10Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute KNMI, De Bilt, Netherlands
  • 11Norwegian Meteorological Institute, Oslo, Norway
  • 12Institute for Meteorology and Climate Research (IMK-TRO), Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), Germany
  • 13Institute of Bio- and Geosciences (IBG-3, Agrosphere), Research Centre Juelich, Juelich, Germany
  • 14Met Office Hadley Centre, Exeter, UK
  • 15Bristol University, Bristol, UK
  • 16Universität Kassel, Center for Environmental Systems Research (CESR), Kassel, Germany

Compared to standard regional climate models (RCMs), convection-permitting models (CPMs) provide an improved representation of sub-daily precipitation statistics and extremes thanks mainly to the possibility to switch off the deep convection parameterisation, a known source of model error and uncertainties. The more realistic representation of local processes in CPMs leads to a greater confidence in their projections of future changes in short-duration precipitation extremes.

The quantification of uncertainties on future changes at this resolution has been barely touched. Using the first-ever ensemble of CPMs run within the UK Climate Projections project, Fosser et al. (2020) found that the climate change signal for extreme summer precipitation may converge in CPMs in contrast to RCMs, thanks to a more realistic representation of the local storm dynamics.

Here we use the first multi-model CPMs ensemble over the greater Alpine region, run under the auspices of the World Climate Research Programme’s (WCRP) Coordinated Regional Downscaling Experiment Flagship Pilot Study on Convective phenomena at high resolution over Europe and the Mediterranean (Coppola et al. 2020). Several statistics are used to determine the uncertainties in the climate change signal trying to disentangle model uncertainties from natural variability. We found that the contribution of model to the total uncertainties is substantially reduced in CPMs compared to the driving models in summer. This is likely linked to the removal of the uncertainties associated with the convective parameterisation and to a more realistic representation of convective and local dynamical processes in the CPMs.


Fosser G, Kendon EJ, Stephenson D, Tucker S (2020) Convection‐Permitting Models Offer Promise of More Certain Extreme Rainfall Projections. Geophys Res Lett 47:0–2. doi: 10.1029/2020GL088151

Coppola, E., Sobolowski, S., Pichelli, E. et al.A first-of-its-kind multi-model convection permitting ensemble for investigating convective phenomena over Europe and the Mediterranean. Clim Dyn55, 3–34 (2020).

How to cite: Fosser, G., Adinolfi, M., Ban, N., Belušić, D., Caillaud, C., Cardoso, R. M., Coppola, E., Demory, M.-E., De Vries, H., Dobler, A., Feldmann, H., Gaetani, M., Görgen, K., Kendon, E. J., Lenderink, G., Pichelli, E., Schär, C., Soares, P. M. M., Somot, S., and Tölle, M. H.: Convection-permitting climate models Offer More Certain Extreme Rainfall Projections, EGU General Assembly 2022, Vienna, Austria, 23–27 May 2022, EGU22-7679,, 2022.