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Climate of the Past An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

  02 Mar 2020

02 Mar 2020

Review status
A revised version of this preprint was accepted for the journal CP.

Wet/dry status change in global closed basins between the mid-Holocene and the Last Glacial Maximum and its implication for future projection

Xinzhong Zhang, Yu Li, Wangting Ye, Simin Peng, Yuxin Zhang, Hebin Liu, Yichan Li, Qin Han, and Lingmei Xu Xinzhong Zhang et al.
  • Key Laboratory of Western China's Environmental Systems (Ministry of Education), College of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Center for Hydrologic Cycle and Water Resources in Arid Region, Lanzhou University, Lanzhou 730000, China

Abstract. Closed basins, mainly located in subtropic and temperate drylands, have experienced alarming decline in water storage in recent years. However, a long-term assessment of hydroclimate changes in the region remains unquantified at a global scale. By intergrating the lake records, PMIP3/CMIP5 simulations and modern observations, we assess the wet/dry status during the Last Glacial Maximum, mid-Holocene, pre-industrial, 20th and 21th century periods in global closed basins. Results show comparable wetting at a global scale during the mid-Holocene and modern warming periods with regional mechanism differences, attributed to the boreal winter and summer precipitation increasing, respectively. The long-term moisture change pattern is mainly controlled by the millennial-scale insolation variation, which lead to the poleward moving of westerlies and strengthening of monsoons during the interglacial period. However, modern moisture change trends are significantly associated with ENSO in most of closed basins, indicating strong connection with ocean oscillation. Our research suggests that moisture changes in global closed basins are more resilient than previous thought to warm periods.

Xinzhong Zhang et al.

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Xinzhong Zhang et al.

Xinzhong Zhang et al.


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Latest update: 20 Sep 2020
Publications Copernicus
Short summary
Most closed basins are located in arid and semi-arid climate zones. In recent years, many lakes are drying leading to serious water stress; however, back to 6000 years ago, the Sahara is covered by lakes in a similar warmer world. Why it responses differently and will it be wetter or drier? we assesses the wet/dry status at different timescales and suggests that moisture changes there are more resilient than previous thought, which mainly controlled by seasonal variations in precipitation.
Most closed basins are located in arid and semi-arid climate zones. In recent years, many lakes...