Wednesday, 25 January 2017
Recent extreme weather events in the Northern Hemisphere have been linked to anomalously amplified jet stream patterns. The role of the Arctic in influencing mid-latitude weather and extreme events is a burgeoning topic of climate research that is limited primarily to the recent decades in which Arctic amplification and shrinking Arctic sea ice extent are occurring. Paleo proxy data afford an opportunity to place current amplified wave structures in the longer context of Earth’s climate history. Ice core records from Alaska and Greenland are uniquely situated to capture the phasing of troughs and ridges in the polar jet stream and thereby allow examination of the atmospheric wave structure prior to the instrumental record and identification of periods with conditions analogous to those today. The relationships among these ice core records and various atmospheric circulation features will be presented along with evidence suggesting that the Little Ice Age may have been characterized by persistently amplified wave patterns.
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