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By Erik Quiroga *
The Nineties, the warmest of the millennium, was marked by the year with the highest temperature since 1.860, the year 1.998, it is not by chance that the year that preceded it (1.997) was the one with the highest concentration of Carbon Dioxide in the atmosphere in 160,000 years. Nine of the ten warmest years are after 90, including 99 and 2000.
"Arctic Effect": The Thaw of the Arctic, as a consequence of Global Warming, can affect the Gulf Stream, altering the Climate of Western Europe and the Eastern Region of North America, which leads to very hot Summer cycles that tend to extend up to Autumn and intense winters that can last until Spring, which could create Arctic climatic conditions in regions of Northern Europe and North America. "
Cold Winter "Arctic Effect"?
If we look at a world map, we can see that north of the East Coast of North America on the 50 ° parallel where the cold and dense Labrador Current flows, there are only small towns. The opposite occurs in Europe, London, Dublin, Berlin, Rotterdam, just to name some of the large cities, are located above the aforementioned parallel, this is a consequence of the thermoregulatory effect of the Gulf Stream that makes winters in Western Europe milder . The current global warming may increase the melting of Greenland's arctic glaciers by increasing the flow of fresh water over the warm and salty Gulf Stream, which could minimize its thermoregulatory effect on Western Europe and affect the cold and dense Labrador Current, affecting the it also forms the east coast of North America.
Global Warming and the Azores Anticyclone
Global warming affects the Azores Anticyclone, altering the General Circulation System of West Winds, in which the Jet Stream is included. The referred Anticyclone accelerates in summer ascending in latitude, and with it brings with it the humid and warm tropical maritime air, which due to its stability does not produce precipitation, displacing the jet stream and with it low pressures towards Northern Europe and the Arctic , which means that a warm and stable air mass (high pressure) is installed on the Iberian Peninsula and the Mediterranean Region. As summer progresses, clear weather causes greater solar irradiation to occur, which produces superficial heating that raises the temperature of the lower layers of the air, the longer duration of the days compared to the nights increases considerably temperature. The exceptionally warm years of current global warming are responsible for further accelerating the Anticyclone of the Azores, displacing the intense drought to the Alpine region. The current year, probably the warmest of the millennium (according to specialized organizations on the subject), has influenced by a greater impact of the aforementioned anticyclone, which in part could explain the high temperatures of the current European Summer.
North Atlantic Oscillation (NOA) and Global Warming
The pressure variations between Iceland and the Azores Region is called the North Atlantic Oscillation, it is the version of the El Niño phenomenon in the North Atlantic. Its positive phase is when the low pressure centers over Iceland and the Arctic and the high pressure centers in the Azores are reinforced, generating unusually stronger winds at high latitudes. This phase therefore means drier weather in southern Europe and the Middle East, and wetter and stormy winters in northern Europe and the east coast of the United States. Its reverse phase is called the negative phase. Since the beginning of global warming (1976) to the present day, most of its phase has been positive.
Current Arctic Thaw
Research from the University of Colorado's Atmospheric Science Program last year reported that the thaw affected 685,000 km2 in Greenland. The NASA Wallops Center in Virginia after 7 years of observation showed that 80% of the ice that covers Greenland is melting at a rate of one meter per year, the report also suggests that the rate of thaw contributes 51,000 cubic meters of fresh water to the ocean. According to the aforementioned research, the melting of global warming this year could affect more than 700,000 km2 of Greenland, equivalent to the territory of Spain and the island of Great Britain together.
According to the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) in the twentieth century, the temperature increased by more than 0.6 ° C, the highest growth occurred from 1976 when it rose at a rate three times higher than expected. The Nineties, the warmest of the millennium, was marked by the year with the highest temperature since 1.860, the year 1.998, it is not casuistic that the year that preceded it (1997) was the one with the highest concentration of Carbon Dioxide in the atmosphere (360 parts per million) in 160,000 years (Keeling and Whorf, World Environment Outlook 2,000, United Nations Environment Program-UNEP). Nine of the ten warmest years are after 90, including 99 and 2000.
The warmest year of the millennium
According to projections of the British Meteorological Office, the current year of 2003 could be the hottest in documented history, leaving behind 1860 and 1998, which would place the increase in the average temperature of the planet at 0.55 BC with respect to the values recorded media between 1961 and 2000.
Within the "Arctic Effect" Hypothetical Framework: Extreme Rains, Exceptionally Cold Winter ?.
Extreme Rains? The gradual weakening of the Azores Anticyclone, allows the displacement of jet currents from Northern Europe and the Arctic, bringing with them depressions and storms typical of temperate regions, the Mediterranean Sea very warm due to the intense summer and an atmosphere saturated with water vapor, are in part key elements that could bring a cycle of extreme rains and Cold Drops. In winter, the cold fronts will find in the still warm Mediterranean Sea the minimum conditions for heavy snowfalls in the Mediterranean Region (from Barcelona to the Palestinian coast).
As a consequence of global warming, the Melting of the Arctic Glaciers allows the permanently frozen soil (Permafrost) to release large amounts of trapped greenhouse gases into the atmosphere (According to scientific calculations, 14% of the planet's Carbon Dioxide is found under these frozen lands), in this way the Arctic temperature is notably increased. Added to the above is the notable reduction in albedo (the percentage of reflected energy) of 90% in glaciers, which only absorb 10% of heat, to 10% of the soil, which translates into an absorption of 90% more surface heat. According to the conclusions of the Eighth Section of Working Group I, of the Intergovernmental Team on Climate Change of the World Meteorological Organization (Shanghai, 20/17/2001), Climate Models indicate that local warming in Greenland is likely to be one to three times greater than global warming, which in part explains the accelerating thaw in Greenland.
Last year 51,000 cubic meters of fresh and cold waters from Greenland fell on the warm and salty Gulf Stream, considering the current historical summer and the aforementioned WMO conclusions, this year (2003) the flow of water should be increased. Freshwater (extreme levels of precipitated rains over the North Atlantic could also affect, to a lesser extent) the aforementioned Current, which could bring in the Hypothetical Framework of the "Arctic Effect" an exceptionally cold Winter in Western Europe and the East Coast North America.-
This "Arctic Effect" Hypothetical Framework was developed on August 28, 2003.
* Erik quiroga
Creator of the International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer,
approved by the UN General Assembly, resolution 49/114
from 01/23/95 Celebrated on September 16.