The analysis of precipitation trends for Vietnam revealed that early-monsoon precipitation has increased over the past three decades but to varying degrees over the northern, central and southern portions of the country. Upon investigation, it was found that the change in early-monsoon precipitation is associated with changes in the low-level cyclonic airflow over the South China Sea and Indochina that is embedded in the large-scale atmospheric circulation associated with a “La Niña-like” anomalous sea surface temperature pattern with warming in the western Pacific and Indian Oceans and cooling in the eastern Pacific. The Community Climate System Model version 4 (CCSM4) was subsequently used for an attribution analysis. Over northern Vietnam an early-monsoon increase in precipitation is attributed to changes in both greenhouse gases and natural forcing. For central Vietnam, the observed increase in early-monsoon precipitation is reproduced by the simulation forced with greenhouse gases. However, over southern Vietnam the early-monsoon precipitation increase is less definitive where aerosols were seen to be preponderant but natural forcing through the role of the Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation may well be a factor that is not resolved by CCSM4. Increased early-monsoonal precipitation over the coastal lowland and deltas has the potential to amplify economic and human losses.
Li, Rong; Wang, S.-Y. Simon; Gillies, Robert R.; Buckley, Brendan; Yoon, Jin-Ho; and Cho, Changrae, "Regional Trends in Early-Monsoon Rainfall over Vietnam and CCSM4 Attribution" (2018). Plants, Soils, and Climate Faculty Publications. Paper 806.