Analysis of tree ring data throughout 'Monsoon Asia' will enable scientists to reconstruct and analyze regional climate histories over timeframes of centuries to millennia. The data will also reveal information on three major process regions that collectively drive much of the variability of the Asian monsoon: 1) Asian land surface air temperatures, 2) sea surface temperatures in the Indian Ocean, and 3) tropical Pacific sea-surface temperatures associated with ENSO. Identifying interrelationships between these three major process regions, and how the Asian monsoon manifests itself in different regions across the globe, will lead to the development of improved models for better long-term forecasting. With approximately one half the world's population impacted by the Asian monsoon, long-term forecasting will have profound social and economic impacts (e.g. long-term agricultural planning and improved risk assessment).
Scientists from the Tree-Ring Laboratory (TRL) are actively involved in pioneering research projects in many parts of the globe, from the high latitudes of both hemispheres to the low-latitude tropics of Asia and the Americas. Many of these studies have successfully developed and used tree-ring analyses to reconstruct and produce better understanding of both continental and oceanic climate variations. Tree-Ring Reconstructions of Asian Monsoon Climate Dynamics is funded by The National Science Foundation and led by Drs. Edward R. Cook, Rosanne D. D'Arrigo, Brendan M. Buckley, and Gordon C. Jacoby, all of the Tree-Ring Laboratory, Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory at Columbia University.