Ozone sensitivity to varying greenhouse gases and ozone-depleting substances in CCMI-1 simulations
Ozone fields simulated for the first phase of the Chemistry-Climate Model Initiative (CCMI-1) will be used as forcing data in the 6th Coupled Model Intercomparison Project. Here we assess, using reference and sensitivity simulations produced for CCMI-1, the suitability of CCMI-1 model results for this process, investigating the degree of consistency amongst models regarding their responses to variations in individual forcings. We consider the influences of methane, nitrous oxide, a combination of chlorinated or brominated ozone-depleting substances, and a combination of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases. We find varying degrees of consistency in the models’ responses in ozone to these individual forcings, including some considerable disagreement. In particular, the response of total-column ozone to these forcings is less consistent across the multi-model ensemble than profile comparisons. We analyse how stratospheric age of air, a commonly used diagnostic of stratospheric transport, responds to the forcings. For this diagnostic we find some salient differences in model behaviour, which may explain some of the findings for ozone. The findings imply that the ozone fields derived from CCMI-1 are subject to considerable uncertainties regarding the impacts of these anthropogenic forcings. We offer some thoughts on how to best approach the problem of generating a consensus ozone database from a multi-model ensemble such as CCMI1.