PerspectiveClimate Change

Whither Arctic Climate?

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Science  10 Jan 2003:
Vol. 299, Issue 5604, pp. 215-216
DOI: 10.1126/science.1080855

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Large changes in Arctic climate have been observed. In his Perspective, Shindell shows that models have difficulty reproducing these changes, raising doubt over their ability to elucidate the causes of the observed changes or predict future trends. He argues that these difficulties can largely be attributed to gravity waves, which are not yet well represented in the models. These waves are generated by atmospheric disturbances such as storm fronts, strong wind shears, and flow over mountains and play a key role in many of the observed changes.