Summer heat waves may have roots in rapid Arctic warming




Before the summer of 2010, Moscow had never recorded a triple-digit temperature, with records going back to 1879. But during a weeks-long heat wave that June and July, the city’s temperatures soared well above normal, setting an all-time record high of 102°F on July 30. A new study suggests that Arctic warming could have helped trigger that epic heat wave.

As with other extreme weather events, particularly heat waves, the role that climate change may have played was a major topic of discussion that summer. The new study, detailed in the March 13 issue of the journal Science, suggests that the persistent patterns that drove this and other prolonged heat waves in recent years may have their roots in the the rapid warming of the Arctic. It has linked that warming to a decline in the intensity and duration of storms over North America, Europe and Asia, which allows for the intense build-up of heat. Read more…

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