Climate Extremes

The chill of a warming world

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Science  23 Mar 2018:
Vol. 359, Issue 6382, pp. 1374-1375
DOI: 10.1126/science.359.6382.1374-e

The blizzard Jonas of 2016, in the Bronx, New York, USA

PHOTO: EDDTORO/SHUTTERSTOCK

Why have some winters been so cold in some of the northern midlatitudes, even though global climate is getting hotter? Paradoxically, the answer may be that the Arctic itself is warming so quickly. Cohen et al. show that there is a clear relationship between Arctic temperatures and severe winter weather for the United States over the past two decades and that severe winter weather in the eastern United States has become more frequent as Arctic temperatures have risen. Although they were not included in the analysis, this relationship is likely valid for northern Europe and East Asia as well.

Nat. Commun. 10.1038/s41467-018-02992-9 (2018).

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