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Strong Constraints on Aerosol-Cloud Interactions from Volcanic EruptionsAerosols have a potentially large effect on climate, particularly through their interactions with clouds, but the magnitude of this effect is highly uncertain. Large volcanic eruptions produce sulfur dioxide, which in turn produces aerosols; these eruptions thus represent a natural experiment through which to quantify aerosol-cloud interactions. Here we show that the massive 2014-2015 fissure eruption in Holuhraun, Iceland, reduced the size of liquid cloud droplets - consistent with expectations - but had no discernible effect on other cloud properties. The reduction in droplet size led to cloud brightening and global-mean radiative forcing of around minus 0.2 watts per square metre for September to October 2014. Changes in cloud amount or cloud liquid water path, however, were undetectable, indicating that these indirect effects, and cloud systems in general, are well buffered against aerosol changes. This result will reduce uncertainties in future climate projections, because we are now able to reject results from climate models with an excessive liquid-water-path response.
Document ID
20170009009
Document Type
Reprint (Version printed in journal)
External Source(s)
Authors
Malavelle, Florent F. (Exeter Univ. United Kingdom)
Haywood, Jim M. (Exeter Univ. United Kingdom)
Jones, Andy (MET Office (Meteorological Office) Exeter, United Kingdom)
Gettelman, Andrew (National Center for Atmospheric Research Boulder, CO, United States)
Clarisse, Lieven (Free Univ. Brussels, Belgium)
Bauduin, Sophie (Free Univ. Brussels, Belgium)
Allan, Richard P. (Reading Univ. United Kingdom)
Karset, Inger Helene H. (Oslo Univ. Norway)
Kristjansson, Jon Egill (Oslo Univ. Norway)
Oreopoulos, Lazaros (NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Greenbelt, MD United States)
Cho, Nayeong (Universities Space Research Association Columbia, MD, United States)
Lee, Dongmin (Morgan State Univ. Baltimore, MD, United States)
Bellouin, Nicolas (Reading Univ. United Kingdom)
Boucher, Olivier (Laboratoire de Meteorologie Dynamique Paris, France)
Grosvenor, Daniel P. (Leeds Univ. United Kingdom)
Carslaw, Ken S. (Leeds Univ. United Kingdom)
Dhomse, Sandip (Leeds Univ. United Kingdom)
Mann, Graham W. (Leeds Univ. United Kingdom)
Schmidt, Anja (Leeds Univ. United Kingdom)
Coe, Hugh (Manchester Univ. United Kingdom)
Hartley, Margaret E. (Manchester Univ. United Kingdom)
Dalvi, Mohit (MET Office (Meteorological Office) Exeter, United Kingdom)
Hill, Adrian A. (MET Office (Meteorological Office) Exeter, United Kingdom)
Johnson, Ben T. (MET Office (Meteorological Office) Exeter, United Kingdom)
Johnson, Colin E. (MET Office (Meteorological Office) Exeter, United Kingdom)
Knight, Jeff R. (MET Office (Meteorological Office) Exeter, United Kingdom)
O’Connor, Fiona M. (MET Office (Meteorological Office) Exeter, United Kingdom)
Partridge, Daniel G. (Stockholm Univ. Sweden)
Stier, Philip (Oxford Univ. Oxford, United Kingdom)
Myhre, Gunnar (Center for International Climate and Environmental Research (CICERO) Oslo, Norway)
Platnick, Steven (NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Greenbelt, MD United States)
Stephens, Graeme L. (Jet Propulsion Lab., California Inst. of Tech. Pasadena, CA, United States)
Takahashi, Hanii (Jet Propulsion Lab., California Inst. of Tech. Pasadena, CA, United States)
Thordarson, Thorvaldur (Iceland Univ. Reykjavik, Iceland)
Date Acquired
September 26, 2017
Publication Date
June 22, 2017
Publication Information
Publication: Nature
Volume: 546
Issue: 7659
ISSN: 0028-0836
Subject Category
Meteorology and Climatology
Report/Patent Number
GSFC-E-DAA-TN46440
Funding Number(s)
CONTRACT_GRANT: NNG11HP16A
CONTRACT_GRANT: ERC FP7-280025
CONTRACT_GRANT: NorStore ns2345k
CONTRACT_GRANT: Res Council Norway 229771
CONTRACT_GRANT: UK Met Office GA01101
CONTRACT_GRANT: UK NE/N006054/1
CONTRACT_GRANT: ERC FP-633080
CONTRACT_GRANT: ERC FP-283576
CONTRACT_GRANT: NOTUR nn2345k
CONTRACT_GRANT: UK NE/I020148/1
CONTRACT_GRANT: UK NE/M021130/1
Distribution Limits
Public
Copyright
Other
Keywords
atmospheric science
volcanology