NOT SO GREEN  |  Rossby Responds

By steven d keeler | Mar 17, 2016
Source: Chuck Weise


What follows regards Francis and Vavrus (2012), hereinafter FV (2012), by atmospheric scientists Jennifer Francis from Rutgers University and Steve Vavrus of the University of Wisconsin. Their paper can be downloaded here:


FV (2012) claims a measured decrease in the zonal or west to east wind component due to “arctic amplification” (AA) would increase jet stream meandering, increase the amplitude or “waviness” of the flow, and increase persistent long wave blocking patterns around the northern hemisphere. This, in turn, would increase severe weather, droughts, floods and temperature extremes.  These claims were subsequently picked up by media outlets and offered as further gist for the fodder of catastrophic, CO2 caused, water vapor amplified, global warming.

HOWEVER, as often is the case, current science is NOT the " settled science ".

“The reader needs to understand that anytime we experience severe weather, it is proof that adequate COLD in the high latitudes and Arctic has been generated by the normal radiational cooling process by the earth that creates the adequate potential energy across the latitude lines to cause amplification of the jet stream waves and speeds that pushes this colder air southward to warmer latitudes that then creates the necessary temperature gradients to liberate that energy, creating storms as well as high pressure systems.”


“If the occurrence of severe weather is increasing worldwide, it is not a sign of a warming earth. It is the opposite of what climate hysteria claims, and an indication of a cooling, not warming earth.”



More about Francis and Vavrus [2012]

Similarly, Francis and Vavrus [2012] suggest that atmospheric Rossby waves have elongated meridionally in recent decades due to Arctic amplification. They hypothesize that these elongated waves propagate more slowly and favor more extreme weather conditions.  They speculate that as the earth continues to warm, Arctic amplification will increasingly influence the North Atlantic atmospheric circulation, potentially causing more extreme weather in association with the slower waves.

Motivated by these previous studies linking Arctic amplification to increased slow-moving Atlantic weather patterns, we seek to answer the following three questions:  (1) Have wave extents increased over the past 30 years ?  (2) Have the phase speeds of large-scale atmospheric waves decreased ? (3) Has the frequency of blocking events increased ?


Comments (1)
Posted by: Steve Guinn | Apr 07, 2016 18:18

I'm confused.

What are we talking about? Climate or weather?

Can't have it both ways, steven.

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