Java-Sumatra Niño/Niña: two long-lost siblings of El Niño

There are many siblings, cousins, and distant relatives of El Niño spanning the Pacific, Atlantic, and Indian Oceans who share a feature in common: ocean surface temperature anomalies along eastern boundaries linked to changes in the upwelling of cooler water from below. So far, climate scientists have identified a total of 14 members of this... Continue Reading →

Nearshore sea ice shield Antarctic ice shelves from the damaging impact of ocean waves

The Larsen ice shelves extend along the east coast of the Antarctic Peninsula over the northwest part of the Weddell Sea. From north to south, these segments are called the Larsen A, B, C, and D, bordered by Filchner–Ronne Ice Shelf south of the Weddell Sea. In 1995, the Larsen A ice shelf completely disintegrated,... Continue Reading →

North Atlantic zonal winds will shift northward and become more extreme in the future

The warming response of the upper atmosphere is much stronger in the tropics due to higher water vapor content and frequent deep tropical convection that maintains the atmosphere column well-mixed. As a result, the zonal jet strength, which is largely proportional to the meridional gradient of atmosphere temperature via "thermal wind relationship" is projected to... Continue Reading →

Why climate models are unable to reproduce the observed Antarctic sea-ice expansion

Antarctic sea-ice has expanded over the period of continuous satellite monitoring, which seemingly contradicts ongoing global warming resulting from increasing concentrations of greenhouse gases. A variety of hypotheses have been proposed to explain the observed Antarctic sea-ice expansion and corresponding model–observation discrepancy, but the issue remains unresolved. In a new study published in Nature Climate... Continue Reading →

An overlooked role of the subtropical gyre circulation in regulating the AMOC

It is a common practice in Physical Oceanography to separate the Atlantic Ocean circulations into the meridional overturning and wind-driven gyre components with an assumption that the two components are largely independent of each other. An article published in Nature Communications suggests that the two components are not at all independent. The study shows that... Continue Reading →

Sea-ice retreat may invigorate the weakening Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation

Due to rapidly rising air temperature over the Arctic and subarctic regions, the ocean-to-air turbulent (i.e., sensible and latent) heat flux over the Greenland, Iceland, and Norwegian Seas (GINS) has diminished (i.e., less cooling of the surface ocean) steadily during the satellite period (i.e., since the 1970s). This may lead to a reduction of deep... Continue Reading →

Future El Niño events will develop faster and persist longer

Previous studies based on the climate models participating in the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP) have suggested an increase in the frequency of extreme El Niño events in the 21st Century in response to increasing greenhouse gases. Several studies have attributed these shifts in El Niño frequency and amplitude to the projected changes in the... Continue Reading →

Craig’s List of 12 leadership maxims and precepts

Craig Mclean is a former acting chief scientist and assistant administrator for Oceanic and Atmospheric Research (OAR) of NOAA. Craig recently retired from his 40-year career with NOAA. Among many of his lifetime achievements and contributions to NOAA, he initiated an investigation as to why NOAA's then-leadership backed Trump over its experts on Hurricane Dorian's... Continue Reading →

Tips for making a science paper easy to follow

The editorial team of Nature's Communication Earth & Environment recommends a few achievable ways of making a science paper easier to follow: Scientific writing closely follows a formula that has proven successful. Simply answer a few questions in your paper, one after the other: why is your topic of interest? What has been done before?... Continue Reading →

ENSO plays little role in early-season Atlantic hurricane activity

This is a guest blog by Robert West. Robert is a postdoctoral research associate in the Northern Gulf Institute (NGI) at the Mississippi State University and is also affiliated with NOAA's Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory. Differences in sea surface temperature anomalies (SSTAs) between the tropical Atlantic and Pacific oceans are known to influence atmospheric... Continue Reading →

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