Providing Regional Climate Services to British Columbia

You are here

Xuebin Zhang

Director, President and CEO

Dr. Xuebin Zhang is the Director, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Pacific Climate Impacts Consortium (PCIC). As one of the top scientists in the fields of climate detection, attribution and the study of extremes, Dr. Zhang brings to his role at PCIC an extensive knowledge of the Earth’s climate system, how it is changing and the effects of climate change at the regional scale. He uses this to oversee PCIC’s research programs, making sure that PCIC’s research remains on the cutting edge of climate science and will translate to knowledge and services that will be of the most benefit to PCIC’s users. He draws upon an equally extensive experience guiding large-scale scientific research projects to grow and strengthen PCIC’s network of partnerships, and in turn, climate services and resiliency in the regions that PCIC serves. Prior to joining PCIC, Dr. Zhang was a Senior Research Scientist with Environment and Climate Change Canada. His research expertise includes the detection and attribution of climate change on global and regional scales and the study of past and future changes in weather and climate extremes that are most relevant to climate change impacts. Dr. Zhang has provided important contribution to multiple reports from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) including his role as a Coordinating Lead Author for the chapter on changes of weather and climate extremes of the IPCC 6th Assessment Working Group I Report. He has been active in the World Climate Research Program including his role as co-chair for the Expert Team on Climate Change Detection and Indices and Grand Challenge on Weather and Climate Extremes as well as Global Extremes Platform. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada.

  • Ph.D. Department of Physics (Meteorology), University of Lisbon, Portugal
  • M. Eng. Department of Hydrology (Engineering Hydrology), Hohai University, China
  • B. Eng. Department of Hydrology (Engineering Hydrology), Hohai University, China
Selected Publications: 
  • Ma, S., T. Wang, J. Yan, and X. Zhang, 2023: Optimal Fingerprinting with Estimating Equations. J. Climate, doi:10.1175/JCLI-D-22-0681.1.
  • Tang, B., B. Bonsal, X. Zhang, Q. Zhang, and R. Rong, 2023: Assessing Potential Evapotranspiration Methods in Future Drought Projections across Canada. Atmosphere-Ocean, accepted.
  • Seong, M.G., S.K. Min, X. Zhang, 2022: A Bayesian attribution analysis of extreme temperature changes at global and regional scales. J. Climate, doi:10.1175/JCLI-D-22-0104.1.
  • Li, M., C. Li, Z. Jiang, X. Zhang, F. W. Zwiers, 2022: Deciphering China’s complex pattern of summer precipitation trends. Earth’s Future, doi:10.1029/2022EF002797.
  • Dong, S., Y. Sun, X. Zhang, 2022: Attributing observed increase in extreme precipitation in China to human influence. Environmental Research Letters, doi:10.1088/1748-9326/ac888e,
  • Kirchmeier-Young, M. C., H. Wan, X. Zhang, 2022: Using a model comparison to support the interpretation of extreme event attribution. Weather and Climate Extremes, doi:10.1016/j.wace.2022.100444.
  • Gillett, N. P., A. J. Cannon, E. Malinina, M. Schnorbus, F. Anslow, Q. Sun,  M. Kirchmeier-Young, F. Zwiers,  C. Seiler, X. Zhang, G. Flato, H. Wan, G. Li, A. Castellan, 2022: Human influence on the 2021 British Columbia floods. Weather and Climate Extremes, doi:10.1016/j.wace.2022.100441.
  • Li, C., Z. Wang, F. Zwiers, X. Zhang, 2022: Improving the estimation of human climate influence by selecting appropriate forcing simulations. Geophysical Research Letters, doi:10.1029/2021GL095500.
  • Sun, Q., F. Zwiers, X. Zhang, J. Yan, 2021: Quantifying the human influence on the intensity of extreme 1 1- and 5-day precipitation amounts at global, continental, and regional scales. J. Climate, doi:10.1175/JCLI-D-21-0028.1.
  • Sun Y., X. Zhang, Y. Ding, D. Chen, D. Qin, P. Zhai, 2021: Understanding human influence on climate change in China. National Science Review, doi:10.1093/nsr/nwab113.
  • Wan, H., M. C. Kirchmeier-Young, X. Zhang, 2021: Human influence on daily temperature variability over land. Environmental Research Letters, doi:10.1088/1748-9326/ac1cb9.
  • Li, Y., K. Chen, J. Yan, X. Zhang, 2021: Uncertainty in Optimal Fingerprinting is Underestimated. Environment Research Letters, doi:10.1088/1748-9326/ac14ee.
  • Kirchmeier-Young, M.C., H., Wan, X. Zhang, 2021: Anthropogenic contribution to the rainfall associated with the 2019 Ottawa river flood. Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, doi:10.1175/BAMS-D-20-0191.1.
  • Gudmundsson, L., J. Boulange, H. X. Do, S. N. Gosling, M. G. Grillakis, A. G. Koutroulis, M. Leonard, J. Liu, H. M. Schmied, L. Papadimitriou, Y. Pokhrel, S. I. Seneviratne, Y. Satoh, W. Thiery, S. Westra, X. Zhang, F. Zhao, 2021: Globally observed trends in mean and extreme river flow attributed to climate change. Science, doi:10.1126/science.aba3996.
  • Ben Alaya, M. A., F. Zwiers, X. Zhang, 2020: A bivariate approach to estimating the probability of very extreme precipitation events. Weather and Climate Extremes, doi:10.1016/j.wace.2020.100290.
  • Fowler J. H., G. Lenderink, A. F. Prein, S. Westra, R. P. Allan, N. Ban, R. Barbero, P. Berg, S. Blenkinsop, H. X. Do, S. Guerreiro, J. O. Haerter, E. Kendon, E. Lewis, C. Schaer, A. Sharma, G. Villarini, C. Wasko, X. Zhang, 2020: Anthropogenic intensification of short-duration rainfall extremes. Nature Reviews Earth & Environment, doi:10.1038/s43017-020-00128-6.  
  • Li, C., F. Zwiers, X. Zhang, G. Li, Y. Sun, M. Wehner, 2020: Changes in temperature and precipitation extremes in the new-generation CMIP6 models. Journal of Climate, doi:10.1175/JCLI-D-19-1013.1.
  • Dong, S.,Y. Sun, C. Li, X. Zhang, S-K Min, Y-H Kim, 2020: Attribution of extreme precipitation with updated observations and CMIP6 simulations. Journal of Climate. doi:10.1075/JCLI-D-19-1017.1.
  • Seong, M-G, S-K Min, Y-H Kim, X. Zhang, Y. Sun, 2020: Anthropogenic greenhouse gas and aerosol contributions to extreme temperature changes during 1951-2015. Journal of Climate, doi:10.1175/JCLI-D-19-1023.1.
  • Hu T., Y. Sun, X. Zhang, S-K Min, Y-H Kim, 2020: Human influence on frequency of temperature extremes, Environmental Research Letters, doi: 10.1088/1748-9326/ab8497.
  • Paik S-M, S-K Min, X. Zhang, M. G. Donat, A. D. King, Q. Sun, 2020: Determining the greenhouse gas contribution to the observed intensification of extreme precipitation. Geophysical Research Letters, doi:10.1029/2019GL086875.
  • Kim Y-H, S-K Min, X. Zhang, J. Sillmann, M. Standstad, 2020: Evaluation of the CMIP6 multi-model ensemble for climate extreme indices. Weather and Climate Extremes, doi:10.1016/j.wace.2020.100269.
  • Dunn R., L. Alexander, M. G. Donat, X. Zhang, and additional 48 authors, 2020: Development of an updated global land in-situ-based dataset of temperature and precipitation extremes:HadEX3. Journal of Geophysical Research - Atmosphere, doi:10.1029/2019JD032263.
  • Sun Q., X. Zhang, F. Zwiers, S. Westra, L. V. Alexander, 2020: A global, continental and regional analysis of changes in extreme precipitation. Journal of Climate, doi:10.1075/JCLI-D-19-0892.1.
  • Sun Q., F. Zwiers, X. Zhang, G. Li, 2020: A comparison of intra‐annual and long-term trend scaling of extreme precipitation with temperature in a large-ensemble regional climate simulation. Journal of Climate, doi:10.1075/JCLI-D-19-0920.1.
  • Qian, B., Q. Jing, W. Smith, B. Grant, A.J. Cannon, X. Zhang, 2020: Quantifying the uncertainty introduced by internal climate variability in projections of Canadian crop production. Environmental Research Letters, DOI: 10.1088/1748-9326/ab88fc.
  • Zhou, T., W. Zhang, L. Zhang, X. Zhang, Y. Qian, D. Peng, S. Ma, B. Dong, 2020: The dynamic and thermodynamic processes dominating the reduction of global land monsoon precipitation driven by anthropogenic aerosols emission. Science China Earth Sciences, DOI: 10.1007/s11430-019-9613-9.
  • Ben Alaya, M.A., F. Zwiers, X. Zhang, 2020: Probable maximum precipitation in a warming climate over North America in CanRCM4 and CRCM5. Climatic Change, DOI: 10.1007/s10584-019-02591-7.
  • Ben Alaya, M.A., F. Zwiers, X. Zhang, 2020: An evaluation of block-maximum-based estimation of very long return period precipitation extremes with a large ensemble climate simulation. Journal of Climate, doi:10.1075/JCLI-D-19-0011.1.
  • Kirchmeier-Young M. C., H. Wan, X. Zhang, S. I. Seneviratne, 2019: Importance of framing for extreme event attribution: the role of spatial and temporal scales. Earth’s Future, doi:10.1029/2019EF001253.
  • Kirchmeier-Young M. C, X. Zhang, 2020: Human influence has intensified extreme precipitation in North America, PNAS, doi:10.1073/pnas.1921628117.
  • Li C., Y. Sun, F. Zwiers, D. Wang, X. Zhang, G. Chen, H. Wu, 2020: Rapid warming in summer wet bulb globe temperature in China with human-induced climate change. Journal of Climate, doi:10.1175/JCLI-D-19-0492.1.
  • Qian, B., X. Zhang, W. Smith, B. Grant, Q. Jing, A. Cannon, D. Neilsen, B. McConkey, G. Li, B. Bonsal, H. Wan, Z. Li, 2019: Climate change impacts on Canadian yields of spring wheat, canola and maize for global warming levels of 1.5, 2.0, 2.5 and 3.0°C. Environmental Research Letters, doi:10.1088/1748-9326/ab17fb.
  • Li, C., F. Zwiers, X. Zhang, G. Chen, J. Lu, G. Li, J. Norris, Y. Tan, Y. Sun, M. Liu, 2019: Larger increases in more extreme local precipitation events as climate warms. Geophysical Research Letters, doi:10.1029/2019GL082908.
  • Jeong D-I, A. J. Cannon, X. Zhang, 2019: Projected changes to extreme freezing precipitation and design ice loads over North America based on a large ensemble of Canadian regional climate model simulations. Natural Hazards and Earth System Sciences, doi:10.5194/nhess-19-857-2019.