Comparative study on long term climate data sources over South Korea

Dongik Kim, Dawei Han

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

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Long term climate data are vitally important in reliably assessing water resources and water related hazards, but in-situ observations are generally sparse in space and limited in time. Although there are several global datasets available as substitutes, there is a lack of comparative studies about their suitability at different parts of the world. In this study, to find out the reliable century-long climate dataset in South Korea, we first evaluate multi-decadal reanalyses (ERA-20cm, ERA-20c, ERA-40 and 20th century reanalysis (20CR)) and gridded observations (CRUv3.23 and GPCCv7) for monthly mean precipitation and temperature. In the temporal and statistical comparisons, CRUv3.23 and GPCCv7 for precipitation and ERA-40 for temperature perform the best, and ERA-20c and 20CR also indicate meaningful agreements. For ERA-20cm, it has only a statistical agreement, but the mean has the difficulty in representing its ensemble. This paper also shows that the applicability of each dataset may vary by region and all products should be locally adjusted before applied in climate impact assessments. These findings not only help to fill in the knowledge gaps about these datasets in South Korea but also provide an useful guideline to the readers on the comparative performance of the global datasets in this part of the world.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Water and Climate Change
Early online date27 Feb 2018
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 27 Feb 2018


  • climate data sources
  • interanuual variability
  • non-parametric trend test
  • skill score
  • reanalysis

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