Last updated October 10, 2018

Changes in extreme temperature and precipitation in the Caribbean region, 1961–2010

  • Presents the trends in daily and extreme temperature and precipitation indices in the Caribbean region for records spanning the 1961–2010 and 1986–2010 intervals
  • Overall, the results show a warming of the surface air temperature at land stations
  • Finds that, in general, the indices based on minimum temperature show stronger warming trends than indices calculated from maximum temperature
  • Finds that the frequency of warm days, warm nights and extreme high temperatures has increased while fewer cool days, cool nights and extreme low temperatures were found for both periods.
  • Finds that changes in precipitation indices are less consistent and the trends are generally weak
  • Identifies small positive trends in annual total precipitation, daily intensity, maximum number of consecutive dry days and heavy rainfall events particularly during the 1986–2010 period
  • Correlations between indices and the Atlantic multidecadal oscillation (AMO) index suggest that temperature variability and, to a lesser extent, precipitation extremes are related to the AMO signal of the North Atlantic surface sea temperatures: stronger associations are found in August and September for the temperature indices and in June and October for some of the precipitation indices