Crazy Weather and Climate Change - Are They Connected?

March 02, 2015

Meteorologist Dr. Jennifer Francis gave an excellent talk at Midland as the Mason Willrich lecturer on global environmental issues. Her data sets, slides, and stories described anomalous but persistent weather extremes - cold winter weather across the Northeast while California is stuck in a drought - as an outcome of Arctic warming. In short, a warmer Arctic results in weaker jet stream winds blowing west to east. Weaker winds lead to a wavier jet stream, which persists longer and whose bends span 35 degrees of longitude. North of the jet stream's bends, the weather is cold and wintry whereas to the south, it is warmer and drier.


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