Climatological Analysis of Recent Pluvial Conditions in Northeast Ohio and Implications for Water Management

Head shot of Caitlyn Denes

Name: Caitlyn Denes
Major: Environmental Geoscience
Minor: German Studies
Advisors: Greg Wiles, Meagen Pollock
Second Reader: Shelley Judge

In a day and age where the impacts of global scale climatic change have varying repercussions upon society, it is crucial to gain an understanding of the dynamic relationships changing the ocean-atmosphere interactions and their meteorological manifestations in a given geographic area. In Northeastern Ohio, climate change is most evident in precipitation variability, marked by a pluvial, or wet period. A statistical analysis was performed to examine the possible drivers of precipitation changes, which considered the relationships between regional precipitation and two climate indices that capture aspects of the ocean-atmosphere system: the Pacific North American Pattern (PNA) and the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO). Using Wooster, OH as a proxy for the entire Northeast Ohio region produced spatial correlations between each index and the observational meteorological record that supported existing discoveries in the field of mid-latitude hydroclimatic variability. Both the PNA and the PDO were found to have a marked impact on fall and winter precipitation in the region.

Stormwater management, the primary method in which the region adapts to the ongoing pluvial, has become a primary concern for stakeholders. By outlining the technical and regulatory principles of this increasingly innovative (and lucrative) business, one can understand the risks posed by unprecedented stormwater flows originating from heavier, more frequent precipitation events. Some areas in Northeast Ohio are beginning to adapt to risks posed by a strengthening pluvial and this research suggests communities need to be even more vigilant moving forward, reevaluating the current water management measures in place.

Posted in Comments Enabled, Independent Study, Symposium 2023 on April 12, 2023.

5 responses to “Climatological Analysis of Recent Pluvial Conditions in Northeast Ohio and Implications for Water Management”

  1. Meagen Pollock says:

    So relevant to day-to-day life here in Wooster, OH. The pluvial is wreaking havoc on my yard! Fantastic work, Caitlyn!

  2. Shelley Judge says:

    Awesome job, Caitlyn. I just attended your Symposium talk, too, and it was fantastic. You should be so proud of what you accomplished.

  3. Caitlyn says:

    Thank you so much, Dr. Judge!

  4. Caitlyn says:

    Dr. Pollock, so glad I had the chance to research the impacts of climate change in the local area! A great experience, indeed.

  5. Mary Neagoy says:

    Congratulations on your IS, Caitlyn!