Summertime warming in the Northeast United States is fueled by climate change in the North Atlantic.


Summertime warming in the Northeast United States is fueled by climate change in the North Atlantic.

According to new research published Thursday in the journal Nature Climate Change, the Northeastern United States is warming faster than the rest of the country.

Shifts in ocean and atmospheric conditions across the North Atlantic, according to climate scientists at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, have already spurred 2 degrees Celsius of summertime warming.

The Northeast was fast warming, according to researchers. They also knew that the northwestern Atlantic Ocean’s temperatures were rising quicker than those in other parts of the world.

In a press release, main author Ambarish Karmalkar, professor of geosciences and researcher at the Northeast Climate Adaptation Science Center at Amherst, said, “I wanted to see if there was a link between these two patterns, and if so, what that link is.”

Warming along the Atlantic coast, from Delaware to Maine, is certainly “extraordinary,” according to temperature data collected over the last several decades.

“This warming is being driven by changes in air circulation patterns as well as equally rapid trends in the Atlantic Ocean,” Karmalkar said.

Both wintertime averages and midsummer highs are fast climbing in the Northeast, according to temperature data.

Previous research has found a correlation between rising ocean temperatures and the slowing of the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation.

AMOC is the name given to the conveyor belt-like movement that transports warm water from the tropics to Greenland, where it sinks and wanders southward.

While the pattern brings warm water to the North Atlantic, it also helps to maintain stability by ensuring that ocean water is replenished on a regular basis. The water has gotten more stagnant as the AMOC slows, allowing places to heat up more quickly.

“One result of this conveyor belt slowing is increased ocean heating off the Northeastern coast, which helps to explain the increase in ocean temperatures in the Mid-Atlantic Bight and Gulf of Maine regions,” Karmalkar explained.

Changes in the North Atlantic Oscillation, a regional climate trend that determines the strength of winds blowing from the United States across the Atlantic to Europe, were also discovered.

The NAO has developed a pattern that enhances the influence of ocean air on coastal weather patterns in the Northeast over the previous few decades.

To put it another way, air from the warming North Atlantic is increasingly being blown into the Mid-Atlantic and New England shores.

The new paper’s authors propose their findings… Article Summary from Nokia News


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