Amir AghaKouchak


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The challenge of unprecedented floods and droughts in risk management
Heidi Kreibich, Anne F. Van Loon, Kai Schröter, Philip J. Ward, Maurizio Mazzoleni, N. Sairam, Guta Wakbulcho Abeshu, Svetlana Agafonova, Amir AghaKouchak, Hafzullah Aksoy, Camila Álvarez-Garretón, Blanca Aznar, Laila Balkhi, Marlies Barendrecht, Sylvain Biancamaria, Liduin Bos-Burgering, Chris Bradley, Yus Budiyono, Wouter Buytaert, Lucinda Capewell, Hayley Carlson, Yonca Cavus, Anaïs Couasnon, Gemma Coxon, Ioannis Ν. Daliakopoulos, Marleen de Ruiter, Claire Delus, Mathilde Erfurt, Giuseppe Esposito, François Dagognet, Frédéric Frappart, Jim Freer, Natalia Frolova, Animesh K. Gain, Manolis Grillakis, Jordi Oriol Grima, Diego Alejandro Guzmán Arias, Laurie S. Huning, Monica Ionita, М. А. Харламов, Đào Nguyên Khôi, Natalie Kieboom, Maria Kireeva, Aristeidis Koutroulis, Waldo Lavado‐Casimiro, Hong Yi Li, M. C. Llasat, David Macdonald, Johanna Mård, Hannah Mathew-Richards, Andrew McKenzie, Alfonso Mejía, Eduardo Mário Mendiondo, Marjolein Mens, Shifteh Mobini, Guilherme Samprogna Mohor, Viorica Nagavciuc, Thanh Ngo‐Duc, Thi Thao Nguyen Huynh, Pham Thi Thao Nhi, Olga Petrucci, Hồng Quân Nguyễn, Pere Quintana-Seguí, Saman Razavi, Elena Ridolfi, Jannik Riegel, Md. Shibly Sadik, Elisa Savelli, А. А. Сазонов, Sanjib Sharma, Johanna Sörensen, Felipe Augusto Arguello Souza, Kerstin Stahl, Max Steinhausen, Michael Stoelzle, Wiwiana Szalińska, Qiuhong Tang, Fuqiang Tian, Tamara Tokarczyk, Carolina Tovar, Thi Van Thu Tran, M.H.J. van Huijgevoort, Michelle T. H. van Vliet, Sergiy Vorogushyn, Thorsten Wagener, Yueling Wang, Doris Wendt, Elliot Wickham, Long Yang, Mauricio Zambrano‐Bigiarini, Günter Blöschl, Giuliano Di Baldassarre
Nature, Volume 608, Issue 7921

Abstract Risk management has reduced vulnerability to floods and droughts globally 1,2 , yet their impacts are still increasing 3 . An improved understanding of the causes of changing impacts is therefore needed, but has been hampered by a lack of empirical data 4,5 . On the basis of a global dataset of 45 pairs of events that occurred within the same area, we show that risk management generally reduces the impacts of floods and droughts but faces difficulties in reducing the impacts of unprecedented events of a magnitude not previously experienced. If the second event was much more hazardous than the first, its impact was almost always higher. This is because management was not designed to deal with such extreme events: for example, they exceeded the design levels of levees and reservoirs. In two success stories, the impact of the second, more hazardous, event was lower, as a result of improved risk management governance and high investment in integrated management. The observed difficulty of managing unprecedented events is alarming, given that more extreme hydrological events are projected owing to climate change 3 .

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Status and prospects for drought forecasting: opportunities in artificial intelligence and hybrid physical–statistical forecasting
Amir AghaKouchak, Baoxiang Pan, Omid Mazdiyasni, Mojtaba Sadegh, Shakil Jiwa, Wenkai Zhang, C. A. Love, Shahrbanou Madadgar, S. Papalexiou, Steven J. Davis, K. Hsü, Soroosh Sorooshian
Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences, Volume 380, Issue 2238

Despite major improvements in weather and climate modelling and substantial increases in remotely sensed observations, drought prediction remains a major challenge. After a review of the existing methods, we discuss major research gaps and opportunities to improve drought prediction. We argue that current approaches are top-down, assuming that the process(es) and/or driver(s) are known—i.e. starting with a model and then imposing it on the observed events (reality). With the help of an experiment, we show that there are opportunities to develop bottom-up drought prediction models—i.e. starting from the reality (here, observed events) and searching for model(s) and driver(s) that work. Recent advances in artificial intelligence and machine learning provide significant opportunities for developing bottom-up drought forecasting models. Regardless of the type of drought forecasting model (e.g. machine learning, dynamical simulations, analogue based), we need to shift our attention to robustness of theories and outputs rather than event-based verification. A shift in our focus towards quantifying the stability of uncertainty in drought prediction models, rather than the goodness of fit or reproducing the past, could be the first step towards this goal. Finally, we highlight the advantages of hybrid dynamical and statistical models for improving current drought prediction models. This article is part of the Royal Society Science+ meeting issue ‘Drought risk in the Anthropocene’.


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Open Science: Open Data, Open Models, …and Open Publications?
Martyn P. Clark, Charles H. Luce, Amir AghaKouchak, Wouter Berghuijs, Cédric H. David, Qingyun Duan, Shemin Ge, Ilja van Meerveld, Kewei Chen, M. B. Parlange, S. W. Tyler
Water Resources Research, Volume 57, Issue 4

This commentary explores the challenges and opportunities associated with a possible transition of Water Resources Research to a publication model where all articles are freely available upon publication (“Gold” open access). It provides a review of the status of open access publishing models, a summary of community input, and a path forward for AGU leadership. The decision to convert to open access is framed by a mix of finances and values. On the one hand, the challenge is to define who pays, and how, and what we can do to improve the affordability of publishing. On the other hand, the challenge is to increase the extent to which science is open and accessible. The next steps for the community include an incisive analysis of the financial feasibility of different cost models, and weighing the financial burden for open access against the desire to further advance open science.

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Biases Beyond the Mean in CMIP6 Extreme Precipitation: A Global Investigation
Hebatallah Mohamed Abdelmoaty, S. Papalexiou, Chandra Rupa Rajulapati, Amir AghaKouchak
Earth's Future, Volume 9, Issue 10

Climate models are crucial for assessing climate variability and change. A reliable model for future climate should reasonably simulate the historical climate. Here, we assess the performance of CMIP6 models in reproducing statistical properties of observed annual maxima of daily precipitation. We go beyond the commonly used methods and assess CMIP6 simulations on three scales by performing: (a) univariate comparison based on L-moments and relative difference measures; (b) bivariate comparison using Kernel densities of mean and L-variation, and of L-skewness and L-kurtosis, and (c) comparison of the entire distribution function using the Generalized Extreme Value () distribution coupled with a novel application of the Anderson-Darling Goodness-of-fit test. The results reveal that the statistical shape properties (related to the frequency and magnitude of extremes) of CMIP6 simulations match well with the observational datasets. The simulated mean and variation differ among the models with 70% of simulations having a difference within 10% from the observations. Biases are observed in the bivariate investigation of mean and variation. Several models perform well with the HadGEM3-GC31-MM model performing well in all three scales when compared to the ground-based Global Precipitation Climatology Centre data. Finally, the study highlights biases of CMIP6 models in simulating extreme precipitation in the Arctic, Tropics, arid and semi-arid regions.


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Climate Extremes and Compound Hazards in a Warming World
Amir AghaKouchak, Felicia Chiang, Laurie S. Huning, C. A. Love, Iman Mallakpour, Omid Mazdiyasni, Hamed Moftakhari, S. Papalexiou, Elisa Ragno, Mojtaba Sadegh
Annual Review of Earth and Planetary Sciences, Volume 48, Issue 1

Climate extremes threaten human health, economic stability, and the well-being of natural and built environments (e.g., 2003 European heat wave). As the world continues to warm, climate hazards are expected to increase in frequency and intensity. The impacts of extreme events will also be more severe due to the increased exposure (growing population and development) and vulnerability (aging infrastructure) of human settlements. Climate models attribute part of the projected increases in the intensity and frequency of natural disasters to anthropogenic emissions and changes in land use and land cover. Here, we review the impacts, historical and projected changes,and theoretical research gaps of key extreme events (heat waves, droughts, wildfires, precipitation, and flooding). We also highlight the need to improve our understanding of the dependence between individual and interrelated climate extremes because anthropogenic-induced warming increases the risk of not only individual climate extremes but also compound (co-occurring) and cascading hazards. ▪ Climate hazards are expected to increase in frequency and intensity in a warming world. ▪ Anthropogenic-induced warming increases the risk of compound and cascading hazards. ▪ We need to improve our understanding of causes and drivers of compound and cascading hazards.

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COSORE: A community database for continuous soil respiration and other soil‐atmosphere greenhouse gas flux data
Ben Bond‐Lamberty, Danielle Christianson, Avni Malhotra, Stephanie C. Pennington, Debjani Sihi, Amir AghaKouchak, Hassan Anjileli, M. Altaf Arain, Juan J. Armestó, Samaneh Ashraf, Mioko Ataka, Dennis Baldocchi, T. Andrew Black, Nina Buchmann, Mariah S. Carbone, Shih Chieh Chang, Patrick Crill, Peter S. Curtis, Eric A. Davidson, Ankur R. Desai, John E. Drake, Tarek S. El‐Madany, Michael Gavazzi, Carolyn-Monika Görres, Christopher M. Gough, Michael L. Goulden, Jillian W. Gregg, O. Gutiérrez del Arroyo, Jin Sheng He, Takashi Hirano, Anya M. Hopple, Holly Hughes, Järvi Järveoja, Rachhpal S. Jassal, Jinshi Jian, Haiming Kan, Jason P. Kaye, Yuji Kominami, Naishen Liang, David A. Lipson, Catriona A. Macdonald, Kadmiel Maseyk, Kayla Mathes, Marguerite Mauritz, Melanie A. Mayes, Steven G. McNulty, Guofang Miao, Mirco Migliavacca, S. D. Miller, Chelcy Ford Miniat, Jennifer Goedhart Nietz, Mats Nilsson, Asko Noormets, Hamidreza Norouzi, Christine O’Connell, Bruce Osborne, Cecilio Oyonarte, Zhuo Pang, Matthias Peichl, Elise Pendall, Jorge F. Perez‐Quezada, Claire L. Phillips, Richard P. Phillips, James W. Raich, Alexandre A. Renchon, Nadine K. Ruehr, Enrique P. Sánchez‐Cañete, Matthew Saunders, K. E. Savage, Marion Schrumpf, Russell L. Scott, Ulli Seibt, Whendee L. Silver, Wu Sun, Daphne Szutu, Kentaro Takagi, Masahiro Takagi, Masaaki Teramoto, Mark G. Tjoelker, Susan E. Trumbore, Masahito Ueyama, Rodrigo Vargas, R. K. Varner, Joseph Verfaillie, Christoph S. Vogel, Jinsong Wang, G. Winston, Tana E. Wood, Juying Wu, Thomas Wutzler, Jiye Zeng, Tianshan Zha, Quan Zhang, Junliang Zou
Global Change Biology, Volume 26, Issue 12

Globally, soils store two to three times as much carbon as currently resides in the atmosphere, and it is critical to understand how soil greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and uptake will respond to ongoing climate change. In particular, the soil-to-atmosphere CO2 flux, commonly though imprecisely termed soil respiration (RS ), is one of the largest carbon fluxes in the Earth system. An increasing number of high-frequency RS measurements (typically, from an automated system with hourly sampling) have been made over the last two decades; an increasing number of methane measurements are being made with such systems as well. Such high frequency data are an invaluable resource for understanding GHG fluxes, but lack a central database or repository. Here we describe the lightweight, open-source COSORE (COntinuous SOil REspiration) database and software, that focuses on automated, continuous and long-term GHG flux datasets, and is intended to serve as a community resource for earth sciences, climate change syntheses and model evaluation. Contributed datasets are mapped to a single, consistent standard, with metadata on contributors, geographic location, measurement conditions and ancillary data. The design emphasizes the importance of reproducibility, scientific transparency and open access to data. While being oriented towards continuously measured RS , the database design accommodates other soil-atmosphere measurements (e.g. ecosystem respiration, chamber-measured net ecosystem exchange, methane fluxes) as well as experimental treatments (heterotrophic only, etc.). We give brief examples of the types of analyses possible using this new community resource and describe its accompanying R software package.