Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Global Warming Trend Warms the U.S. West, Leaves East Shivering

Weather dichotomy, which leaves two halves of the U.S. in opposite extremes, is a trend tied to climate change, new study says.

A pattern of warm and dry winters in the West, paired with frigid conditions in the East, has become more frequent since 1980, a trend that reflects the influence of global warming on the atmosphere in the Northern Hemisphere.

The pattern, described in a new study in the journal Atmospheres as a "North American winter temperature dipole," has been costly, including a multi-year drought in California and economically disruptive snowstorms in the Northeast, according to the scientists who analyzed climate trends in North America.

"Our historical analysis finds robust changes in the warm-West/cool-East pattern over North America within the last 35 years, " the authors wrote.  "We show that the observed positive trend in the warm-West/cool-East events is attributable to historical anthropogenic emissions including greenhouse gases."

The trend will continue the rest of this century but then level off, as the the East becomes too warm for extreme winter conditions, said Stanford University climate scientist Noah Diffenbaugh, one of the study's co-authors.

Read more at Global Warming Trend Warms the U.S. West, Leaves East Shivering

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