Snow modelling to understand the impacts of Little Ice Age climate change

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Parent Project Details
Parent Project Title:Snow Modelling Iceland
Sub Projects: Snow modelling Hörgardalur
Snow modelling Skaftártunga

Project Details

Title:Snow modelling to understand the impacts of Little Ice Age climate change
Abstract:This project aims to use an existing process based snow model to simulate changes in snow cover and distribution for sites in Iceland and in Greenland. Changes in the duration and depth of snow cover through periods of climatic deterioration may have had significant impacts on pastoral farmers, particularly if snow cover extended into the spring. The Little Ice age is a known period of climatic cooling that would have increased the duration of snow cover.

Long term records of snow cover beyond a few decades do not exist so modelling is the only way to determine how snow cover would have changed. Climatic scenarios are drawn from Global Circulation models to show snow cover in good (warm) and bad (cold) years.

Fieldwork in March 2014 at the two study areas took measurements of snow thickness and density allowing a calibration of the model against modern meteorological datasets.

Currently (November 2015) this project is being written up for publication in 2016. Sites in Iceland will be compared to sites in Greenland.

Keywords:Comparative Island Ecodynamics, modelling, LIttle Ice Age, snow
Sponsors/Funders: NSF
Project Start Year:2014
Projected End Year:2016

Account Owner

Contact: Richard Streeter
Institution: University of St Andrews
Postal Address: Institute of Geography and Sustainable Development

Irvine Building

St Andrews

Post Code: KY16 9AL

Project extent

The geographical extent of this project has not been defined.