Investigating the synoptic climatology of precipitation in Mallorca, Spain

G. Spellman

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticlepeer-review


Rainfall in the Mediterranean Island of Mallorca displays a clear seasonal and annual viability as a response to changes in the atmospheric circulation in these latitudes. In recent years water resources have been stretched due to a trend towards increasing dryness accompanied by rises in the demand for water. Regional climate change scenarios suggest that southern Europe could suffer from reductions in rainfall. However there could be a rise in frequency in highmagnitude/intensity rainfall events, and extensive flooding and soil erosion could result. Synoptic climatology is a technique which allows the examination of relationships between regional circulation types and surface environmental variables, in this case, precipitation. This study applies a synoptic climatological classification for the Iberian penisula in an attempt to identify those circulation types most associated with rainfall in Palma de Mallorca. Centred trough patterns and upper air closed depressions in the Catalano-Balearic area are the dominant synoptic controls on rainfall. The study forms the basis of more detailed longer term investigation into the atmospheric circulation and rainfall patterns in this region.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)117-130
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Applied Meteorology
Issue number228
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 1998


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