Journal article Open Access

Extreme Precipitation Events over North-Western Europe: getting water from the tropics.

Enrico Scoccimarro; Silvio Gualdi; Simon O. Krichak


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    <subfield code="a">&lt;p&gt;Our capability to adapt to extreme precipitation events is linked to our skill in predicting their magnitude and timing. Synoptic features&lt;br&gt;
(such as Atmospheric Rivers) developing over the North Atlantic Ocean are known as the source of the majority of water vapour transport&lt;br&gt;
into European mid-latitudes, and are associated with episodes of heavy and prolonged rainfall over UK and north western Europe.&lt;br&gt;
Thus, a better understanding of the North Atlantic atmospheric conditions prior the occurrence of extreme precipitation events over Europe&lt;br&gt;
could help in improving our capability to predict them. We build on atmospheric re-analyses at high spatial resolution, on a daily&lt;br&gt;
time scale, to highlight the anomalous path of the vertically integrated water content, transferring water from the western tropical North&lt;br&gt;
Atlantic to high latitudes and fuelling the storms developing in the North Atlantic sector, bound to affect Europe as responsible for the&lt;br&gt;
most intense precipitation events. The systematic link between anomalous north-eastward transport of vertically integrated water (precipitable&lt;br&gt;
water) from the western North Atlantic and anomalously high pressure patterns in the central North Atlantic, developing 5 days&lt;br&gt;
prior the extreme precipitation occurrence, suggest the central North Atlantic surface pressure as a potential precursor of extreme precipitation&lt;br&gt;
events.&lt;/p&gt;</subfield>
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