Assessing climate model sensitivity to prescribed deforested landscapes

A. J. Pitman*, T. B. Durbidge, A. Henderson‐Sellers, K. McGuffie

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Citations (Scopus)


The results from a series of 3‐ to 6‐year simulations of the climatic impacts of tropical deforestation using a version of the NCAR Community Climate Model (CCM1–Oz) indicate considerable sensitivity to the specification of the vegetation and soil that replaces the tropical forest. The simulations, which encompass landscapes from forest, through grass with some trees, grass‐only, no vegetation with forest soils, to a devastated terrain, suggest that the predicted climate change depends about equally on at least three factors: (i) the global model and its large‐scale circulation sensitivity, (ii) the length of the model simulation, and (iii) the nature of the prescribed land‐use change, particularly the relative magnitudes of the changes (forested to deforested) in albedo and vegetation roughness length.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)879-898
Number of pages20
JournalInternational Journal of Climatology
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 1993


  • Climate modelling
  • Climate sensitivity
  • Deforestation
  • Land surface processes


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