Arctic Climate Rapid Change and Lower Latitude Consequences: Convergences and Divergences in Recent Research
Prof. Xiangdong Zhang
University of Alaska Fairbanks, USA
Rapid climate change has occurred in the Arctic. The representative indicators include a decade-long acceleration in sea ice extent/volume decrease and an amplification of warming trend at a rate of more than twice the global average. Along with these changes, extreme climate events of sea ice cover loss have consecutively occurred in summer 2007, 2012, and 2016. At the same time, many other dramatic changes have also occurred across the boarder areas of the Northern Hemisphere, including a spatial shift of the maximum surface warming trend from the Eurasian continent to the central Arctic Ocean, an enhancement of poleward oceanic and atmospheric heat transport from either the North Atlantic or North Pacific Ocean into the Arctic Ocean, a poleward shift of storm tracks and an intensification of Arctic storm activities, and widespread occurrences of extreme cold weather events and snow storms from the US east coast to Europe and Asia. Many aspects of these changes are obviously beyond the scope of conventional climate fluctuations and the sole warming effects of anthropogenic forcing. This talk will synthesize recent research progresses from both data analysis and modeling experiments to improve understanding of the rapid changes in the Arctic Ocean and the enhanced linkage between Arctic and midlatitude climate and weather.