Rethinking Australian drought risk, its long-term variability and processes
Droughts lasting on the order of several months to a year can cause significant damage to the economy, communities and the environment. Drought risk describes the likelihood that damage will result from exposure to such droughts. This project will fundamentally reshape how we define, characterise and understand drought risk in Australia.
A framework for drought risk will be applied that includes the complete range of characteristics that modulate the impacts of drought, which are the frequency of recurrence, duration, severity, seasonality and spatial extent. Long-term changes in drought risk will be examined and the process-based climatic risk factors will be identified.
This project is funded through the Australian Research Council via a Discovery Early Career Researcher Award.
Climate variability in east Antarctica and links to the tropics
Proxies of the climate in ice cores in the east Antarctic show strong statistical relationships with climate variability from decade-to-decade in sub-tropical and tropical regions of Australia and the South Pacific. But the question is, why?
This project is trying to untangle the reasons behind this connection across vast distances by looking at mechanisms that regulate the variability on these time scales in all regions. This will bring us closer to understanding if we can reliably use climate proxy information from ice cores to tell us about climate variability in other regions of the globe.
This project is a collaboration with researchers at the Co-operative Research Centre for Antarctic Climate & Ecosystems and the Australian Antarctic Division.
Multi-decadal variability in Australia's hydroclimate and its influential processes
Short instrumental records mean that the true magnitude of multi-decadal variability in Australia's hydroclimate, and its influential processes such as the El Niño–Southern Oscillation, are difficult to characterise.
This project employs paleoclimate proxy data, such as tree rings and ice cores, as well as multi-centennial climate model simulations in complement to the instrumental observations. These techniques allow us to better-estimate the magnitude of multi-decadal climate variability and to tease apart some of the influential processes.
This project is in collaboration with researchers at the University of Melbourne and the Australian National University.
Stephanie's project uses weather models to examine the extent to which urban heating can be mitigated by changing characteristics of the land surface. She is also examining the effects that any mitigation of this urban heat has on metrics of human thermal comfort. Read more about Stephanie and her project here.
Cassandra's PhD examines the characteristics of the urban heat island during multi-day heatwave conditions in Australian cities. Cassandra is examining whether heatwaves exacerbate urban heat islands and to what degree. Read more about Cassandra and her project here.
Peter van Rensch
Peter's PhD uses climate models to examine changes in the relationships between climate mechanisms in the Indian and Pacific Oceans, and regional climates in Australia and the Southern Hemisphere. This includes how these relationships change naturally on time scales of multiple decades and longer, and also how these relationships might change in the future with anthropogenic climate change.
Lam, C. K. C.., A. J. E. Gallant and N. J. Tapper 2016: Perceptions of thermal comfort in heatwave and non-heatwave conditions in Melbourne, Australia. Urban Climate, In press. (access here)
Gallant, A. J. E. and S. C. Lewis 2016: Stochastic and anthropogenic influences on repeated record-breaking temperature extremes in Australian spring of 2013 and 2014. Geophysical Research Letters, 43, 2182-2191, doi: 10.1002/2016GL067740. (access here)
Gergis, J., R. Neukom, A. J. E. Gallant and D. Karoly, 2016: Australasian Temperature Reconstructions Spanning the Last Millennium. Journal of Climate, http://dx.doi.org/10.1175/JCLI-D-13-00781.1. In press. (access here)
Vance, T., J. Roberts, A. Moy, M. Curran, C. Tozer, A. Gallant, N. Abram, T. van Ommen, D. Young, C. Grima, D. Blankenship and M. Siegert, 2016: Optimal site selection for a high resolution ice core record in East Antarctica. Climate of the Past, 12, 595-610, http://www.clim-past.net/12/595/2016/doi:10.5194/cp-12-595-2016. (access here)
Batehup, R., S. McGregor and A. J. E. Gallant 2015: The influence of non-stationary teleconnections on palaeoclimate reconstructions of ENSO variance using a pseudoproxy framework. Climate of the Past, 11, 1733-1749, http://www.clim-past.net/11/1733/2015/doi:10.5194/cp-11-1733-2015. (access here)
van Rensch, P., A. J. E. Gallant, W. Cai and N. Nicholls 2015: Evidence of local sea surface temperatures overriding the southeast Australian rainfall response to the 1997-1998 El Niño. Geophysical Research Letters, doi:10.1002/2015GL066319.
Ding, Q., J. M. Wallace, D. S. Battisti, E. J. Steig, A. J. E. Gallant, H. J. Kim and L. Geng, 2014: Tropical forcing of the recent rapid Arctic warming in northeastern Canada and Greenland. Nature, 509, 209-212, doi:10.1038/nature13260. (access here)
Gallant, A. J. E., D. J. Karoly and K. L. Gleason, 2014: Consistent trends in a modified climate extremes index in the U.S.A, Europe and Australia. Journal of Climate, 27, 1379-1394, doi: 10.1175/JCLI-D-12-00783.1. (access here)
Gallant, A. J. E., S. J. Phipps, D. J. Karoly, B. Mullan and A. Lorrey, 2013: Non-stationary Australasian teleconnections and implications for paleoclimate reconstructions. Journal of Climate, 26, 8827-8849, doi:10.1175/JCLI-D-12-00338.1. (access here)
Gallant, A. J. E., M. Reeder, J. Risbey and K. Hennessy, 2013: Seasonal-scale droughts in Australia, 1911–2009. International Journal of Climatology, 33, 1658-1672, doi: 10.1002/joc.3540. (access here)
Phipps, S. J., H. McGregor, J. Gergis, A. J. E. Gallant, R. Neukom, S. Stevenson, D. Ackerley, , J. Brown, M. Fisher and T. van Ommen, 2013: Paleoclimate data-model comparison and the role of climate forcings over the past 1500 years. Journal of Climate, 26, 6915-6936, doi: 10.1175/JCLI-D-12-001808.1. (access here)
Steig, E. J., Q. Ding, J. W. C. White, M. Kuttel, S. B. Rupper, T. A. Neumann, P. Neff, A. J. E. Gallant, P. A. Mayewski, K. C. Taylor, G. Hoffman, D. A. Dixon, S. W. Schoenemann, B. Markle, T. J. Fudge, D. P. Schneider, A. J. Schauer, R. P. Teel, B. H. Vaughn, L. Burgener, J. Williams, E. Korotkikh, 2013: Significance of recent climate and ice sheet changes in West Antarctica, Nature Geoscience, 6, 372-375, doi:10.1038/ngeo1778. (access here)
Gergis, J., A. J. E. Gallant, K. Braganza, D. J. Karoly, R. D’Arrigo, K. Allen, L. Cullen, P. Grierson, and I. Goodwin, 2012: On the long-term context of the 1997–2009 ‘Big Dry’ in south-eastern Australia: insights from a 206-year multi-proxy rainfall reconstruction. Climatic Change, 111, 923-944, doi: 10.1007/s10584-011-0263-x. (access here)
Gallant, A. J. E., A. Kiem, D. Verdon-Kidd, R. Stone and D. J. Karoly, 2012: Understanding climate processes in the Murray-Darling Basin: utility and limitations for natural resources management. Hydrology and Earth Systems Science Discussions, 8, 1-46, doi:10.5194/hess-16-2049-2012. (access here)
Gallant, A. J. E. and J. L. Gergis, 2011: An experimental streamflow reconstruction for the River Murray, Australia, 1783–1988. Water Resources Research, 47, W00G04, doi:10.1029/2010WR009832. (access here)
Gallant, A. J. E. and D. J. Karoly, 2010: A combined Climate Extremes Index for the Australian region. Journal of Climate, 23, 6153-6165, doi: 10.1175/2010JCLI3791.1. (access here)
Gallant, A. J. E., and D. J. Karoly, 2009: The atypical influence of the 2007 La Niña on rainfall and temperature in southeastern Australia. Geophysical Research Letters, 36, L14707, doi:10.1029/2009GL039026. (access here)
Gallant, A. J. E., K. J. Hennessy, and J. S. Risbey, 2007: Trends in rainfall indices for six Australian regions: 1910-2005. Australian Meteorological Magazine, 56, 223-239. (access here)