Towards reliable extreme weather and climate event attribution


Bellprat, O., Guemas, V., Doblas-Reyes, F. et al.
Towards reliable extreme weather and climate event attribution. Nat Commun 10, 1732 (2019)

Climate change is shaping extreme heat and rain. To what degree human activity has increased the risk of high impact events is of high public concern and still heavily debated. Recent studies attributed single extreme events to climate change by comparing climate model experiments where the influence of an external driver can be included or artificially suppressed. Many of these results however did not properly account for model errors in simulating the probabilities of extreme event occurrences. Here we show, exploiting advanced correction techniques from the weather forecasting field, that correcting properly for model probabilities alters the attributable risk of extreme events to climate change. This study illustrates the need to correct for this type of model error in order to provide trustworthy assessments of climate change impacts.