Past (1950–2017) and future (−2100) temperature and precipitation trends in Egypt

Abstract : Egypt, located in the Middle East and North Africa region, is considered to be a potential hot-spot of climate change where the warming and increase of the frequency of extreme temperatures could occur faster than at global scale. Precipitation is also expected to decrease in the region. In this work, our aim is to quantify the past and future temperature and precipitation trends at 8 locations selected for being representative of the variety of Egyptian climates. For the past period (1950–2017), we show that the decadal temperature trends derived from the analysis of the assimilated ERA-Interim (ERA-Int) and downscaled CORDEX (Historical and Evaluation) data are consistent. Relative to 1960, the daily maximal and minimal temperatures have increased by 1.3 ± 0.1 and 1.3 ± 0.3 °C, respectively, at the 8 selected locations. However, at the shorter yearly time scale, sub-regional differences of climate variability can be evidenced: this variability is less at the coastal and Nile Delta sites than at the drier inland locations. For the future, we use an ensemble of 6 CORDEX Africa models. Under the RCP45 scenario, the temperatures are predicted to increase at a rate ranging from 0.28 ± 0.04 °C/decade (Alexandria) to 0.38 ± 0.09 °C/decade (Hurghada and Aswan) between 2010 and 2040, and to abate afterwards (0.12 ± 0.08 °C/decade). Under the RCP85 scenario, the rates of temperature increase before 2040 are similar to those under RCP45 (from 0.24 ± 0.14 to 0.40 ± 0.12 °C/decade) but considerably larger afterwards (from 0.48 ± 0.18 °C to 0.72 ± 0.11 °C/decade between 2050 and 2100). As compared to the 2006–2015 reference period, the extreme temperatures analysis performed with the CLIMDEX software shows that the hot days and nights will become more frequent at all sites, but that the increase will occur at larger rates at the Red Sea (Hurghada) and upper Egypt (Aswan) sites than at the other ones. These inter-site differences are more pronounced with RCP45 than with RCP85. Considering the latter scenario, in the last decade of this century about 80% of the days in a year would be hotter than the 90th percentile of the 2006–2015 reference period. Regarding the annual precipitation, the analysis of ERA-Interim data of the 1980–2017 period does not reveal any significant trend, but in both RCP45 and RCP85 a significant decrease (from −0.48 to −0.9 mm/y, and from −0.95 to −1.40 mm/y, respectively) is predicted to occur from 2010 to 2100 in the north of Egypt where rain is currently the most abundant.
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Amira Mostafa, Ali Wheida, Mostafa El Nazer, Mona Adel, Lamia Leithy, et al.. Past (1950–2017) and future (−2100) temperature and precipitation trends in Egypt. Weather and Climate Extremes, Elsevier, In press, ⟨10.1016/j.wace.2019.100225⟩. ⟨hal-02311560⟩

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