The influence of Arctic amplification on mid-latitude summer circulation

D. Coumou*, G. Di Capua, S. Vavrus, L. Wang, S. Wang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalReview articleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Accelerated warming in the Arctic, as compared to the rest of the globe, might have profound impacts on mid-latitude weather. Most studies analyzing Arctic links to mid-latitude weather focused on winter, yet recent summers have seen strong reductions in sea-ice extent and snow cover, a weakened equator-to-pole thermal gradient and associated weakening of the mid-latitude circulation. We review the scientific evidence behind three leading hypotheses on the influence of Arctic changes on mid-latitude summer weather: Weakened storm tracks, shifted jet streams, and amplified quasi-stationary waves. We show that interactions between Arctic teleconnections and other remote and regional feedback processes could lead to more persistent hot-dry extremes in the mid-latitudes. The exact nature of these non-linear interactions is not well quantified but they provide potential high-impact risks for society.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2959
Pages (from-to)1-12
Number of pages12
JournalNature Communications
Volume9
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 20 Aug 2018

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