Changes in Interior Alaska Winter Temperature Distributions in Negative and Positive PDO Phases

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Wednesday, 5 February 2014: 4:30 PM
Room C101 (The Georgia World Congress Center )
Richard Thoman, NOAA/NWS, Fairbanks, AK; and E. Petrescu

"The 1976 change in phase of the Pacific Decdacal Oscillation (PDO) has been demonstrated to be strongly correlated with changes mean cold season near surface temperatures over most of Alaska (e.g. Hartmann and Wendler 2005). This presentation examines changes in daily temperature distribution between the 1946-1976 negative PDO phase and the 1977-2007 positive phase for several locations in Interior Alaska. The analyses demonstrates that daily temperatures distributions were not simply shifted to higher values during the PDO warm phase. Rather, the distribution became more peaked, with a dramatic decline in the frequency of very low temperature but only a modest increase in the number of very mild days, a result with potentially significant societal impacts."