Jet Stream & Arctic


Extreme Cold Snaps Could Worsen as Climate Change Shifts Polar Vortex 0124

As Simultaneous Crop Failures Threaten Food System Collapse, Plutocrats vs Us 0723 - Falling temperature contrast between the tropics and the polar region weakens and slows the "polar" jet stream (~40-55°N).  So meanders are larger and more frequent in the north polar jet stream, leading to longer and hotter droughts, as well as longer rains and floods.  These can decrease crop yields in North America, Europe and China simultaneously.  The threat is worldwide famine.

‘Virtually Certain’ Extreme Antarctic Events Will Get Worse without Drastic Action 0823  - Some of them will affect the south polar jet stream, in somewhat similar ways to the north polar jet stream.  Problem for crop yields in southern South America, and -somewhat less so - in Australia and New Zealand, south Africa, and temperate South America.

Scorching Heat and Canada Wildfires Could Be Tied to ‘Wavy, Blocky’ Jet Stream 0623

What’s the Role of Climate Change in a ‘Once in a Generation’ Storm? 1222

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Arctic Warming Could Be to Blame for Blasts of Extreme Cold 1222

The Arctic Is Becoming Wetter and Stormier 1222

Loss of Arctic Sea Ice to Give Rise to More of Strong El Niños 0922

How the Jet Stream Is Connected to Simultaneous Heat Waves Across the Globe 0722

‘Drastic’ Rise in High Arctic Lightning Worries Scientists 0122

Climate Change Has Destabilized Earth’s Poles, Imperiling the Rest of the Planet 1221

How Melting Arctic Sea Ice Caused $90 Billion Texas Freeze 0921

Arctic Climate Change May Not Be Making Winter Jet Stream Weird after All 0821

Big Winter Snows in the North Could Be Fueled by Arctic Sea Ice Loss 0421 - Remove sea ice.  More water evaporates.

Climate-Driven Arctic Changes Are Interconnected, Says 2020 Report Card 1220

Warm Arctic, Cold Continents?  - Counterintuitive, but Real 1120

Antarctic Ice Melt Related to Tropical Weather Shifts – a Game Changer? 0420

What an Ice-Free Arctic Really Means, and Why It Matters So Much 0919

Arctic Sea Ice Loss May Not Cause Cold Winters in the U.S. and Asia after All 0819

Lightning Struck within 300 Miles of the North Pole on Saturday 0819

Global Warming Is Messing with the Jet Stream, Bringing More Extreme Weather 1018

Summer Weather Is Getting 'Stuck', due to Arctic Warming 0818

The Controversial Link between Epic Storms and a Warming Arctic 0318

Why So Cold?  Climate Change May Be Part of the Answer 0118

Arctic Warming Linked to Wet Summers and Snowy Winters in the UK 0118

Warmer Arctic Is the ‘New Normal' 1217

Ice Loss and the Polar Vortex - How a Warming Arctic Fuels Cold Snaps 0917

The Arctic as It Is Known Today Is Almost Certainly Gone 0417

An Unusually Warm Arctic Year - Sign of Future Climate Turmoil? 1216

Polar Vortex Shifting due to Climate Change, Extending Winter 1016

Arctic Warming Is Possibly Catastrophic for Planet, Climate Scientist Warns 0216

Rapid Arctic Ice Loss Linked to Extreme Weather Changes in Europe and US 0615

Arctic Melt Brings More Persistent Heat Waves to U.S., Europe 0315

Arctic Spitsbergen Faces an Ice-pocalypse 1114

Cold Winters in Europe, Asia Linked to Sea Ice Decline 1014

Melting Arctic Ice Link to Extreme Weather Explored 1014

Storms Are Becoming More Intense, Moving Toward Poles 1113

94° in Alaska?  Weather Extremes Tied to Jet Stream 0613

Why the Jet Stream Is Slowing and Getting Wavier 0413

Climate Change Alters Jet Stream Patterns 0213

Violent Polar Storms Help Control Earth's Weather 1212

Arctic Ice Melt Could Mean More Extreme Winters for US, Europe 0912

Arctic Meltdown Triggers Colder Winters Nearby 0612

Arctic Warming is Changing World Weather Patterns 0412

Linking Weird Weather to Rapid Arctic Warming 0312

Troposphere Expanded 0606 - PDF

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     As the simple diagrams show, the temperature-gradient between the Arctic and the warmer latitudes has lessened. The strength of the jet stream is influenced by the size of the temperature gradient.  

Wind speed is solid line, Ice area dashed, in million sq km.

Thus, warming the Arctic leads to a weakening of the jet stream (from 13.3 to 12.0 m/s over 30 years, at left) and a greater tendency to meander (right) as it slows down. 

As this meandering develops, troughs may be expected to extend further southwards and ridges to push further northwards.  However, recent research suggests a greater northwards component to this behavior; the Polar jet stream has moved northwards (see turquoise dotted line in the 3rd graph below).

Section Map: Weather & Sea Level Rise