A review of climate models and their simulation of CO2-induced Warming

Michael E. Schlesinger

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The characteristics of the different types of climate models are reviewed and are tabulated for the model simulations of CO2-induced climatic change. These simulations are discussed in terms of the surface temperature change and the response times of the atmosphere, oceanic mixed layer and deep ocean. A calculation of the time-dependent warming resulting from a time-dependent increase in atmospheric CO2is performed with a simple climate model, and is used to estimate the time of first detectability of the warming signal. Considering the decrease in the climatic noise level with increasing averaging period during the past century and the increase in signal with time in the future, it is found that the time of first detectability is relatively insensitive to the averaging period from 10 to 40 years. However, the time of first detectability is found to be uncertain by about ±10 years due to the uncertainty in the rate at which heat is exchanged between the oceanic mixed layer and deeper ocean. It is recommended that numerical simulations with coupled atmospheric and oceanic general circulation models be performed to reduce these uncertainties.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)103-114
Number of pages12
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Studies
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 1 1983

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Ecology
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution
  • Computers in Earth Sciences


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