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A Warming Arctic Would Not Cause Increased Severe Weather or Temperature Extremes

by Chuck Wiese, Meteorologist, Weatherwise, Inc.

14 Comments

    1. Hi Stephen: I read your article and find it interesting. It is quite probable that there is a tie to changing planetary wave behavior with the sun- earth connection and shifts in stratospheric ozone could occur from this that act as a "barometer" to predicting behavior.

      But with that connection, you will still find that amplifying Rossby waves result from the greater latidudinal temperature disparity caused by the cooling processes at high latitude. But if the sun is a key player in climate ( which I believe it to be and not atmospheric CO2 ) the processes you are speaking of could very well intensify high latitude cooling and cause an amplification of the waves. And vica versa with a more energetic sun.

      But I am not carrying my argument there. My article was written focused on the flawed assumptions of the Francis/Vavrus paper, and I think I demonstrated that quite well with the true application of Rossby wave physics.

  1. Here is my 'peer review' for what its worth: Very sophisticated. Defn: the use of clever but false arguments, especially with the intention of deceiving.

    In this case I don't believe that there is an intention to deceive. Right conclusion, wrong argument.

    Re this paragraph: '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.'

    This interpretation ignores the 'Arctic Oscillation' also known as the Northern Annular Mode whereby there is a change in atmospheric pressure in high versus the mid latitudes. Air travels from high pressure zones of dense air to low pressure zones of less dense air. Gordon Dobson who designed and build his 'Dobsonmeters' to measure total column ozone in the 1920s found that high pressure cells have 20% less ozone in their cores than on their perimeter. Low pressure cells have the greatest levels of total column ozone and they are generated in high latitudes, on average at 50-70° of latitude.A belt of low pressure cells surrounds the Antarctic continent at these latitudes all year round. A high pressure cell manifests over the Antarctic continent. In the northern hemisphere the parallel phenomenon is the East Asian High. In the Northern hemisphere low pressure cells that exhibit high total column ozone occur primarily over the Pacific and Atlantic oceans generating uplift that extends to the limits of the stratosphere.

    The density and level of activity of these low pressure cells (Polar Cyclones) is a response to warming above the 300 hPa level generated by the natural greenhouse gas ozone. Ozone levels fluctuate on all time scales, and particularly from year to year producing extreme variations in surface temperature in January (the Arctic) and July (The Antarctic).

    If and when stratospheric ozone levels fall, surface pressure rises in high latitudes and more cold air that descends in high pressure cells from the mesosphere, that provides a taste of the frigidity of space, finds its way to the surface. High surface pressure in high latitudes results in a stronger flow of cold air to mid latitudes within the ambit of the jet stream that defines the Polar Front. The strongest flows of very cold air are normally experienced in the region of lake Baikal. However, Europe is not exempt. Change in the configuration of high and low pressure cells is constant. Look to the stratosphere.

    Re this paragraph: "these atmospheric waves (or commonly called planetary atmospheric waves that generate low and high pressure systems that create our weather, severe and otherwise) behave in the opposite fashion as claimed in FV (2012)"

    So called 'Planetary Waves and Rossby Waves' represent the surface manifestation of the Polar front defined by the Jet stream. Another term used for the same phenomenon is the Polar Vortex. Their origin is in that part of the atmosphere heated by ozone. These waves are effect rather than cause. The jet stream marks the boundary between ozone rich air and ozone deficient air. In summer the polar arm of the jet stream is much weakened as the flow of ozone deficient air from the mesosphere is curtailed. It requires high surface pressure. In winter, the presence of mesospheric air creates the contrast to strengthen the jet stream. The Subtropical arm of the jet stream is located where polar lows interact with mid latitude highs, the latter bringing ozone deficient dense air from the tropics.

    Neither groups of authors, the originator and the critic appear to have a firm grasp of the physical reality. Neither are in a position to describe cause and effect.

    More at https://reality348.wordpress.com/

    1. Mr. Happ: I am the author of this article. Perhaps you could enlighten me because your comments make no sense.

      The Polar Front and vortex is not caused by atmospheric ozone. It is a phenomena generated from strong radiational cooling of the earth's surface at high latitude due to low sun angles and or the onset of the arctic winter. The ground cooling process reduces the thickness of the troposphere at these latitudes and causes the emersion of the polar vortex. But this has nothing to do with the article and you are incorrect about this as well.

      Rossby waves behave according to the earth's rotational characteristics and that is a controlling process with other processes like I mention in my article, as well as poleward transport of mass and heat from storm generation. Potential energy is liberated by this process further amplifying or de-amplifying the waves.

      If there is something I am missing, then perhaps you could provide a reference and hopefully from someone trained in atmospheric science or published in the realm of that kind of literature. I have never read anywhere that ozone has any causation effect to what it is I wrote about in my article and your assertions are incorrect.

      1. Mr Wiese,

        Sorry, my response is late. Thank you for your considered reply. I can't refer you to an article in the literature because the observation is not second hand. For a brief introduction might I suggest this post https://reality348.wordpress.com/2016/01/11/5-the

        Otherwise I have a more formal exposition relating to the origin of cold core polar cyclones that I would be happy to email to you if you can contact me directly.

        I value the fact that you have engaged in a discussion. I do not have your credentials, your engineering background or your facility with mathematics. But I have probably put more time into analysing the reanalysis record than anyone on Earth and I do not make these statements lightly.

        What is 'troposphere' and stratosphere is a matter of definition. The cold point in the atmospheric column that we call the tropopause has no counterpart in mid and high latitudes. The presence of ozone below the coldest point in the atmospheric column at about 100 hPa at 20-40° south latitude is demonstrated by the fact that the tropopause is warmer in winter than it is in summer following the pattern of air temperature in the stratosphere at 70 hPa almost exactly. Air at the 200 hPa level at this latitude is also warmer in winter than in summer. I reiterate: The jet stream manifests at the 300 hPa to 70 hPa level as a result of air density differences due to ozone heating. I reproduce the temperature data for the 20-40° south latitude band in the last diagram in the post here: https://reality348.wordpress.com/2016/03/05/14-or

        As to what is stratosphere and what is troposphere I explore the matter here: https://reality348.wordpress.com/2016/01/09/4-the

        It is frequently maintained that the warmth of the stratosphere is the result of heating by short wave radiation from the sun. The truth lies elsewhere. Ozone is a greenhouse gas that responds to infra-red radiation from the Earth. The pattern of temperature variation at the surface according to longitude is stamped in the stratosphere at 10 hPa with 99% of the atmosphere below. We see marked warming over locations where there is little water vapour in the atmosphere, like off the coast of Chile.

        The absorption of infrared by ozone is pressure dependent. I have read (http://www-ramanathan.ucsd.edu/files/pr24.pdf🙂 that ozone in what is defined as the troposphere absorbs as much energy within the troposphere as it does in the stratosphere.

        The bulk of the cooling of the polar atmosphere above about 200 hPa in winter is not due to radiative cooling from the Earth but the presence of extremely cold air from the mesosphere, descending within the polar vortex. This is a surface pressure dependent phenomenon depending upon the shift of atmospheric mass from the summer hemisphere and the surface pressure reducing properties of ozone. Occasional warmings in the winter stratosphere represent a temporary shift back towards the summer pattern when mesospheric air descends at so much slower a rate (particularly in the Arctic) that there is a temporary shift to the summer pattern where there is a warm core above the pole rather than a cold core. Accordingly, the wind at 10 hPa can reverse during a sudden stratospheric warming as it does between summer and winter.

        Many indeed are my heresies. I would prefer a private rather than a public debate. Too many egocentric rat bags get involved in a public debate. I don't need hecklers.

        There is a lot of literature on the annular modes of inter-annual climate variation. I don't have to rely on that analysis but it describes what I observe. The increase in geopotential height that occurs as the atmosphere warms in high latitudes resulting in latitudinal and inter-hemispheric shifts in atmospheric mass is greatest in the stratosphere.The warmth of the stratosphere is due to ozone as are shifts in atmospheric mass.

        Climate science went off the rails when people took no notice of Gordon Dobbins observation that Total Column Ozone mapped surface pressure. Accordingly, those who research the annular modes of inter-annual climate variation have no idea what the mode of causation is. That mode of causation relates to the strength and density of polar cyclones that result in a planetary low in surface atmospheric pressure at 60-70° south off the margins of Antarctica. Over the last 70 years there has been a reduction in atmospheric pressure at all latitudes south of 50° south as the stratosphere warmed indicating enhanced ozone content. That developed is closely connected with the advance in surface temperature…natural climate change.

        No, the Polar front is in fact a product of the difference in the composition and density of two very different air masses, one ozone rich, the other ozone poor.

        Are you aware of the marked enhancement of ozone partial pressure in the mid to high latitudes in winter due to the extension of the length of the atmospheric path through which the wave lengths that photolyze ozone, must travel. Perhaps not. It's not in the literature. The differences in the air masses either side of the polar front are enhanced in winter.

        Are you aware that inter annual surface temperatures between the Arctic and 30° south latitude are most variable by far in January and February driven by atmospheric processes involving ozone in the Arctic. South of 30° south they are most extreme in July-August driven by atmospheric processes relating to ozone variations over Antarctica. No, you wont be. Its not in the literature but its real nevertheless. I put forward the analysis here: https://reality348.wordpress.com/2016/01/15/8-vol

        I am still learning. The heart of the source of natural climate variation lies in the ozonosphere. The ozonosphere takes in much of what we confusingly call the 'troposphere' , especially so in high latitudes. The tropics in high latitudes…what an absurdity.

        When I started this work I wanted a group project: collaboration rather than contests. I hope you will be the man who is happy to examine the data and think outside the box. We are on the same side in this argument. Same conclusion…different ways of getting there.

  2. There is no such thing as Arctic Amplification. The increase in heat transport to the Arctic since the mid 1990's, is the response to a net decline in climate forcing. Weaker solar plasma states, increasing negative Arctic and North Atlantic Oscillation conditions, driving a warm AMO, and the increased meridional atmospheric circulation driving more humidity events and storms/cyclones into the Arctic region.
    https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/association-betwee

    "Drivers of ocean variability off SE Greenland

    The comparison of our new SST record with a reconstruction of past changes in total solar irradiance (TSI) (Fig. 3a,b) indicates that episodes of warmer SSTs occurred during periods of low solar activity. It is particularly striking that SST maxima are largely concurrent with the well-known Wolf, Spörer, Maunder and Dalton solar minima of the LIA."

    doi:10.1038/s41598-017-13246-x

  3. Norm Roberts: What would be an “appropriate” journal that would “subject” this article to “the same peer review” process that FV “went through”? The same journal that published their work that should have never approved it because of its flaws that I referenced at the beginning of this article? This article was reviewed by Dr. Ed Berry and others with Phd’s in atmospheric science have seen it and agree with the concepts and conclusions as well.

    This was the reason why I countered their nonsense with this article, which is not any new concept being introduced into atmospheric science that was not previously peer reviwed, published and taught at every major university until the climate racket was formed and began publishing incorrect assertions and concepts that are at odds with the founding principles established by many, including the work of Carl Rossby, who published his work on Rossby waves in 1939.

    These are not new concepts. They are employed in atmospheric weather forecast modeling as a requirement to correctly solve for hemispheric wave patterns through time, meaning Francis and Vavrus should have understood the physics involved and realized their claims about weakening jet stream winds causing amplification of Rossby waves are incorrect. The opposite is what is actually true true as my article demonstrates. I invited both Fancis and Vavrus to critique this article before I published it and both declined by not responding or showing any interest.

    Where were the minds of the reviewers when their paper was submitted for publication? They should have realized the flaws immediately but either didn’t or didn’t care. Either way, to have such incorrect concepts being touted as “cutting edge” atmospheric science “licences” media and others to tout a false notion that AGW ( if it was real ) causes increased severe weather and temperature extremes and to tout such a false notion just gives fuel to promote climate hysteria, which frankly, is the reason why I think their paper was written.

    That is disgraceful and promoting what amounts to environmental religion, not atmospheric science and in that realm becomes a form of political science being substituted for real science.

    1. “…weakening jet stream winds causing amplification of Rossby waves are incorrect. The opposite is what is actually true …”
      For a second, let’s just forget the ” causing ” bit. Let’s forget causation.
      How bout we begin with correlated observation.
      Do the observations show, with statistical strength, a weakening or a strengthening jet stream wind being associated with periods of Rossby wave
      amplification?
      Li D
      Australia

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