The Global Warming-Global Runoff Connection
Munier, S., Palanisamy, H., Maisongrande, P., Cazenave, A. and Wood, E.F. 2012. Global runoff anomalies over 1993-2009 estimated from coupled Land-Ocean-Atmosphere water budgets and its relation with climate variability. Hydrology and Earth system Sciences 16: 3647-3658.
Against this backdrop Munier et al. employed two different ways of estimating global runoff over the period 1993-2009, both of which were derived from the coupling of land-atmosphere and ocean-atmosphere water budgets, and where independent data sets (atmospheric reanalyses, land surface models, satellite altimetry and in situ ocean temperature data) were used to estimate water storage variations in several different water budget compartments. And what did their estimates reveal?
First of all, the five researchers found that the results of both sets of calculations of the 1993-2009 global runoff "correlate very well over the study time span, giving confidence in the [two] method[s]." And secondly, they report that for both approaches to the problem, "no significant trend is observed over the whole period."
In the concluding words of the research team, "we show that an intensification of the global water cycle due to global warming is not obvious over the last two decades," which is not exactly what one would expect to be the case during a period of supposedly "unprecedented" over-heating of the planet.
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