Key Indicators of Arctic Climate Change 1971 to 2017

An interesting article by Sue Mitchell called Air temperatures in the Arctic are driving system change was published in the newsprovider phys.org recently stating that air temperature is the "smoking gun" behind climate change in the Arctic.

The article is based on a study or a paper that was published in the journal Environment Research Letters which is a special issue on Arctic climate change indicators. According to the article "The Arctic system is trending away from its 20th century state and into an unprecedented state, with implications not only within but beyond the Arctic," according to lead author Jason Box of the Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland in Copenhagen.

Several University of Alaska Fairbanks researchers are co-authors on the paper, which says that "increasing air temperatures and precipitation are drivers of major changes in various components of the Arctic system."

The study combines observations of physical climate indicators that has never been done before. Those indicators are key pieces of information that capture the essence of a system. The authors of the study correlated records of observations from 1971 to 2017 of nine key indicators that are air temperature, permafrost, hydroclimatology, snow cover, sea ice, land ice, wildfires, tundra and terrestrial ecosystems and carbon cycling. Those indicators correlate with rising temperatures, pointing to a warming climate and a fundamental change in the Arctic.

"The Arctic system is trending away from its 20th century state and into an unprecedented state, with implications not only within but beyond the Arctic," according to lead author Jason Box of the Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland in Copenhagen.

"Because the Arctic atmosphere is warming faster than the rest of the world, weather patterns across Europe, North America and Asia are becoming more persistent, leading to extreme weather conditions. Another example is the disruption of the ocean circulation that can further destabilize climate: for example, cooling across northwestern Europe and strengthening of storms," said Box.

The article by Sue Mitchell ends on saying "The authors of the study hope that these indicator-based observations provide a foundation for a more integrated understanding of the Arctic and its role in the dynamics of the Earth's biogeophysical systems."

Video from AMAP on key indicators of Arctic Climate Change 1971 to 2017

Source: Phys.org