Abstract : Air-sea fluxes, open-sea deep convection and cyclogenesis are studied in the Mediterranean
with the development of a regional coupled model (AORCM). It accurately simulates
these processes and their climate variabilities are quantified and studied. The regional
coupling shows a significant impact on the number of winter intense cyclogenesis as well
as on associated air-sea fluxes and precipitation. A lower interannual variability than in
non-coupled models is simulated for fluxes and deep convection. The feedbacks driving
this variability are understood. The climate change response is then analysed for the 21st
century with the non-coupled models : cyclogenesis decreases, associated precipitation
increases in spring and autumn and decreases in summer. Moreover, a warming and salting
of the Mediterranean as well as a strong weakening of its thermohaline circulation occur.
This study also concludes with the necessity of using AORCMs to assess climate change
impacts on the Mediterranean.