Editors' ChoiceCLIMATOLOGY

Atmospheric circulation in a warmer world

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Science  28 Oct 2016:
Vol. 354, Issue 6311, pp. 430-431
DOI: 10.1126/science.354.6311.430-d

One of the most visible effects of climate change in recent decades has been the reduction of sea ice in the Arctic, which has raised the question of how weather at lower latitudes might be affected. This question has lately been asked often after a number of particularly cold winters in parts of the Northern Hemisphere. Meleshko et al. conducted a modeling study of how the polar and mid-latitude atmosphere might respond when a summer sea ice–free state is reached in the Arctic, as is projected for the next century. They find that although climate warming enhances northward heat transport, the resulting increase in polar surface air temperatures does not cause increased oscillation of atmospheric planetary waves, as has been proposed elsewhere.

Arctic summer sea ice is expected to disappear by mid-century.


Tellus A, 10.3402/tellusa.v68.32330 (2016).

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