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Climatology of Haleakalā

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Title:Climatology of Haleakalā
Authors:Longman, Ryan J.
Giambelluca, Thomas W.
Nullet, Michael A.
Loope, Lloyd L.
LC Subject Headings:Haleakala National Park (Hawaii)
Climatology -- Hawaii -- Maui.
Climatic changes -- Hawaii -- Maui.
Meteorology -- Observations -- Hawaii -- Maui.
Date Issued:Jul 2015
Publisher:Pacific Cooperative Studies Unit, University of Hawaii at Manoa
Citation:Longman RJ, Giambelluca TW, Nullet MA, Loope LL. 2015. Climatology of Haleakalā. Honolulu (HI): Pacific Cooperative Studies Unit, University of Hawaii at Manoa. Technical Report, 193. 126 pages.
Series:Technical Report
Abstract:The steep mountain slopes of Haleakalā Volcano (Maui, HI) support some of the most spatially diverse environments on the planet. Microclimates found across vertical gradients on the mountain slopes can change over relatively short differences in slope exposure and elevation and are strongly influenced by a persistent temperature inversion and northeast trade winds that are characteristic of this region. Eleven climate stations, which comprise the HaleNet climate network, have been monitoring climatic conditions along a 2030-m leeward (960 to 2990 m) and a 810-m windward (1650 to 2460 m) elevational transect, beginning as early as June of 1988. Hourly measurements of solar radiation, net radiation, relative humidity, wind speed, temperature, precipitation and soil moisture, and derived variables including potential evapotranspiration, vapor pressure deficit, soil heat flux, and daytime cloud attenuation of sunlight are analyzed in this study. This report documents the annual, diurnal and elevational characteri tics of these climatic variables as well as their behavior over the period-of-record (~1988 to 2013) in both the 6-month dry (May – October) and wet (November to April) seasons. Results show that the climate gradients along both leeward and windward elevation transects are highly influenced by the trade wind inversion in both dry and wet seasons. Period-of-record trends in the dry-season, show increases in energy and decrease in moisture at high elevations (>2000 m). Significant dry season changes include: decreases in precipitation (5 to 8% decade-1), relative humidity (3 to 5% decade-1) and cloud attenuation of sunlight (-2 to -5% decade-1) and increase in solar radiation (2 to 4% decade-1), vapor pressure deficit (9 to 10 % decade-1), zero precipitation days (4 to 5% decade-1) and potential evapotranspiration (3 to 7% decade -1). For the wet season, an opposite signal of change was observed at high elevation although trends were not as robust as the dry season trends. Reported dry season trends are potenti lly explained by a 4% significant increase in TWI frequency identified over a similar observation period (1991-2013). In addition to a climate variable analysis, this report also highlights other past and ongoing research projects that have taken place on the mountain and provides a summary of the history of the HaleNet climate network, the people and organizations that have contributed to its operation, and a list of publications that have made use of HaleNet climate data. It is the authors’ hope that this information will aid resource managers in protecting the ecosystems and other natural resources, and provide insight into ongoing and future climate changes on Haleakalā.
Rights:CC0 1.0 Universal
Appears in Collections: The PCSU and HPI-CESU Technical Reports 1974 - current

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