a1 Norwegian Meteorological Institute(DNMI), Box 43, Blindern, 0313 Oslo, Norway
Temperature and precipitation series from Svalbard for the period 1912–2000 were analysed. There was a statistically significant warming from 1912 to the 1930s, a cooling from the 1930s to the 1960s and a warming from the 1960s to present. There was a positive trend in the annual mean temperature during the period 1912–2000, but it was not statistically significant. Spring was the only season when a statistically significant warming was found. For precipitation, statistically significant positive trends during the period 1912–2000 were found on an annual basis and in all seasons except winter. Empirical downscaling was applied on the results from a global climate model to produce scenarios for monthly temperature and precipitation in Svalbard. The 2 m temperature was applied as predictor for temperature. For precipitation, a combination of temperature and sea-level pressure was used. The temperature scenario indicates a warming of about 1°C per decade in winter, and 0.3°C per decade in summer from 1961 to 2050. The projected increase in annual mean temperature is about five times the average warming rate from 1912 to present, and highly significant. The precipitation scenario also indicates that precipitation will increase significantly until 2050. The maximum increase was projected in spring precipitation; however, the trends in seasonal precipitation are quite uncertain.
(Received September 2001)