Video Explains How Loss Of Arctic Ice Weakens Jet Stream, Amplifies Extreme Weather

We’ve written extensively about how how arctic ice loss is driving extreme weather.

Jennifer A. Francis of Rutgers University’s Institute of Marine and Coastal Sciences has been at the forefront of this research. She appears in many videos explaining the connection between climate change and extreme weather (see recent 40 minute video here).

Here’s a short version aimed at a very general audience:

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16 Responses to Video Explains How Loss Of Arctic Ice Weakens Jet Stream, Amplifies Extreme Weather

  1. Mark E says:

    But of course NOAA says it’s got nothing to do with the drought…..

    …at least if you believe the headlines instead of Joe’s post the other day

  2. Sasparilla says:

    Excellent video, thank you for highlighting it Joe.

    Considering the recent history and trends of the Arctic Ice Cap its rather disappointing to see the apparent correlation between sea ice extent decrease/arctic warming and zonal wind speed (jet stream air speed) decrease (as well as the jet stream getting hung in places – since its constant movement brings storms/rain to much of the U.S. breadbasket).

  3. prokaryotes says:

    The main stream media has yet to pick up this breaking story.

    Tagline: “The world around changes today – considerable, because of us and it has advert effects of the greatest order!”

  4. Bob Lang says:

    Bottom line: We are conducting a large-scale uncontrolled experiment with the ecosystem on which humanity depends on for survival.

    We need “normal” weather patterns to grow high-yield grain crops. You can’t survive on tomatoes and cucumbers grown in some futuristic hothouse.

    The Somali refugee camp in Kenya is now Kenya’s third-largest city and growing by leaps and bounds. This is just the tip of the iceberg, considering where we are on the “hockeystick”.

  5. Jack Burton says:

    The Main Stream media is corporate owned, why on earth would they report on the current data and the evidence of global warming? They are not in the news reporting business, they are in the profit business. I bet fossil fuel companies invest more money in corporate media and advertizing that climate scientists and concerned citizens do.
    The corporate media is still being balanced. One guy says the earth is round, so media must put on another guy who swears it is flat, i.e. “just look out the window, common sense shows you it is flat.”

  6. Joan Savage says:

    Francis’s diagram of the shifted slope of the atmosphere is stunning in its simplicity. The diagrams also illustrate what Stu Ostro was saying about shift in the height of the 500 millibar layer.


  7. If anyone is interested in how it effects the southern hemisphere its covered in this section of the NZ website.

  8. Superman1 says:

    Jack, You’re right, but that’s only half the story. The other half is ‘we’ don’t want to hear it. If the public gravitated toward media that told the truth about climate change, you would see papers change their focus in a nanosecond. ‘We’ want to continue ‘business as usual’, and taking climate change off the radar screen puts our collective minds at ease.

  9. Mulga Mumblebrain says:

    Plus the geo-political carnage being unleashed by the Western powers in a bid to keep their 500 year dominance of the planet intact. Plus the social violence being inflicted on societies in the West by ‘austerity’. Plus the implosion of the global economy under tsunamis of funny money being pumped out by the Central Banks of moribund economies. The collapse keeps being postponed at the expense of making the future, inevitable, debacle ever greater. A whole galaxy of malign factors are coming together, bubbling and fermenting, and producing noxious exudations everywhere. This human civilization is a zombie, dead but still lurching about, while decomposing.

  10. Mulga,

    Got to love your style.

    Now I’ll go zone out in front of the tube so I don’t have to think about your content.

  11. You’re right, Superman.

    But “we” is a bit of a simplification. I don’t want to hear it, but I do hear it, and respond as well as I can through my writing and lifestyle. But I find that there are a lot of people who really don’t want to hear it. Even people who know that there is a problem don’t want to hear how bad the climate situation really is.

    That will change, as climate change continues to manifest. Alas, the change might come to late to make any difference.

  12. Seriously, Mulga. You write the best polemic I’ve come across since reading Nietzsche in college. I hope you’re getting published somewhere — besides here, that is — maybe an anti-establishment journal of major import Down Under.

    Keep it up.

  13. Mulga Mumblebrain says:

    I’m sure that you’ll get up in a while and keep doing your bit. That’s all we can do. But if we all hang together…who knows what we might achieve. I’d love knowing before night falls that we were the human cohort that began the task of making humanity a long-term phenomenon, rather than one that burned itself out before it reached its potential.

  14. Mulga Mumblebrain says:

    I mostly get censored out. I’m rather busy at present, but one day, if my gardening and work schedule allows…who knows? But please don’t compare my maunderings to Nietzsche. That’s like comparing an amateur playwright to Shakespeare.

  15. How about this as a way of visualizing the system.
    Jet streams occur where Hadley cells meet. The Tropical Hadley cell is powered by rising, moist air along the Equator. The Polar Hadley cell is caused by cold air sinking over the Arctic. The Ferrel Cell is like an idler wheel inbetween the two and is necessary because the Northern and Southern Cells could not mesh if they met at 45 degrees North. The strength of the Jet streams (all 5 of them) depend on the speed of rotation of the Hadley cells on either side of them. The polar air is no longer as dense because open water is collecting heat and warming it and so doesn’t produce as strong a rotation. The Polar Jet stream is weakening. When there is enough open water for long enough, air will rise over the Arctic, especially in the fall and the Polar Hadley cell and with it the Polar Jet stream will vanish. It will be as if the Ferrel cell has extended to the pole and the Tropical Hadley cell extended northward. This two cell system (in the Northern Hemisphere, will have a jet stream at about 45 degrees North where the two cells meet. Climate zones, and with it, crop growing zones will lurch northward. Read the October NSIDC report to see a hint that this has already happened.

  16. Porter says:

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