On the assessment of the wave modeling uncertainty in wave climate projections

Hector Lobeto, Alvaro Semedo, Melisa Menendez, Gil Lemos, Rajesh Kumar, Adem Akpinar, Mikhail Dobrynin, Bahareh Kamranzad

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
31 Downloads (Pure)


This study investigates the epistemic uncertainty associated with the wave propagation modeling in wave climate projections. A single-forcing, single-scenario, seven-member global wave climate projection ensemble is used, developed using three wave models with a consistent numerical domain. The uncertainty is assessed through projected changes in wave height, wave period, and wave direction. The relative importance of the wave model used and its internal parameterization are examined. The former is the dominant source of uncertainty in approximately two-thirds of the global ocean. The study reveals divergences in projected changes from runs of different models and runs of the same model with different parameterizations over 75% of the ensemble mean change in several ocean regions. Projected changes in the wave period shows the most significant uncertainties, particularly in the Pacific Ocean basin, while the wave height shows the least. Over 30% of global coastlines exhibit significant uncertainties in at least two out of the three wave climate variables analyzed. The coasts of western North America, the Maritime Continent and the Arabian Sea show the most significant wave modeling uncertainties.

Original languageEnglish
Article number124006
Number of pages12
JournalEnvironmental Research Letters
Issue number12
Early online date8 Oct 2023
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2023


  • wave climate
  • climate change
  • uncertainty
  • wave modeling


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