Wednesday, April 10th 2013, 4:24 PM EDT
This year the cold and snow are extreme. Researchers say it was because of global warming. An uncalled behind which seems to be a logical connection.
At night it is colder than outside. Similar to this dictum, which stands as a symbol of nonsense, sounds like what we hear from some climate scientists these days through the icy winter and especially in March and read: Ironically, a man-made global warming was responsible for the cold of the last few weeks.
The Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research (AWI) over to this thesis, as well as the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK). The claim may sound contradictory. It hides behind quite a logical relationship, first. But ultimately, it is difficult with the - bring Done between heaven and earth together - unfathomable.
We will have a few days or even weeks to ponder it. Still no real spring weather is in sight, who or whatever it may be responsible. The news of recent days vote anything but hopeful: Large parts of Poland are due to heavy snowfall without electricity, the cold usual Moscow announces snow records in Germany for the winter break for ferry services to many places, the growers is the spring business ruined forever, the brave when Anbaden in Berlin's Wannsee beach would almost have to resort to the pickaxe. May slow the thumbs are pressed, 2013, that we still experience a spring.
The relationship "hot and ice", that the climate scientists are now promoting again, might work as follows: As the weather gets warmer, melting Arctic sea ice last summer yes indeed to a record low. The dark water reflects less sunlight than the glistening ice (the "albedo" effect is weaker).
The result: the northern North Atlantic is heating up as a black sedan in the Italian summer. This reduces the difference between the Arctic and the tropical Atlantic, between Iceland low and Azores high: The air pressure difference, the "North Atlantic Oscillation" (NAO) weakens off.
This oscillation, then, is the force with which the Atlantic's weather. Weakens it, we are no longer exposed to the mild coastal climate, but the extreme continental climate from the east: the summer heat, winter cold. The Potsdam Institute (PIK) looks particularly the Barents-Kara Sea in the north of Scandinavia and Western Russia as the place that determines our winter weather.
There would be a warmer lake besides a high pressure area created, which - like all the "highs" - the winds rotate clockwise around them and us as the cold, northeastern continental air pushes cause. That's the theory.
First: The whole thing would have sounded more credible if not for years, at times milder winters, from climate research came the message: climate change is going to allow this country definitely no more winter weather, snow is virtually just water under the bridge. If now, in the last decade after the winter was icy again, claims to the contrary, but it sounds very arbitrary.
It depends on the suspicion that it was no matter how develop weather and climate, everything can be pushed to climate change through carbon dioxide. The rest have calculated the day struggling for their credibility climatologist in earlier years, when meteorologists in the 90s made the cyclical NAO fluctuations for the time warmer winter responsible, this view always fought and out of man-made global warming admitted no other causes, even no natural.
Global warming since no one and a half decades
Too late for a credible turning, you could say. This, however, also for another reason. It has been a good decade and a half the global average not become warmer. Although the carbon dioxide emissions continue to rise faster - the temperature stubbornly stagnant (the British Met Office wrote to standstill in thermometers now continue until at least 2017).
If but only now, in the summer of 2012, the Arctic ice is melting at a record minimum, so it is difficult, therefore, this is due to man-made global warming. The cause is likely to be contrary to the very special, almost detached from the rest of world climate conditions and trends, which are still largely unknown. This means that even if the second hypothesis would be consistent with each other, yet shake the basic assumptions.
A look into the past confirms the renewed vision of climate scientists but not necessarily. The last record Eisschwund - the summer of 2007 - was followed by a winter in Germany, which was more than two degrees warmer than the long term average. Also, one would think that the dwindling albedo is - if at all - especially in the early winter months on the air currents affect, to coincide with the melting ice.
The superior cold this winter, however, a continued until the end, waited with her climax even up to the first - weather - spring month of March. Since September 2012, however, before the Arctic sea ice was frozen in record time again and is already back in the average range, while in the polar night was the issue of solar reflectance of secondary importance itself.
Effect of Ostwetterlage
What is the theory coincides with the reality: We stand for many weeks under the influence of a Ostwetterlage, are coupled to meteorological Russia. This is nothing new, we know from other winter periods in previous years. The answer to the question why we are seeing this year a particularly cold winter with record temperatures, so we should not be looking at the wind direction, which is specified by a warming climate.
It is located in the extreme cold that prevails even in places where our weather comes from: from Russia. It's more of the global Frost, who gave us the cold winter. As for our latitudes around the globe, so it was this winter that is largely above average cold, significantly warmer than the long-term average only in the Atlantic region of Canada.
In Russia, our current weather cuisine, you complained in the past months, hundreds of cold dead, the Eiswalze hit the country with up to minus 60 degrees in Moscow is currently 4.5 degrees colder than normal. Traffic was paralyzed in many ways, as did parts of the USA.
Not only interesting theories about the new refrigerant currently penetrate from climate research to the public. The PIK is also of the opinion that even the winter (December to February) "to" rather warm, so be have been warmer than the long-term average temperature. In this they agree with the German Weather Service, while others assert German meteorologist Dominik Jung as of wetter.net the opposite.
Both are right, the difference is due to different reference periods. While the former use as "long-term average" 1961 to 1990, it is at a later another thirty year period in young about 1971 to 2000. The climate scientists from NASA to compare the values even with the margin 1981 to 2010.
Winter was feeling too cold
The world was warmer. 1970 to 2000, especially in the 90s, so a comparison is made with current temperatures and more dramatic the farther back, the reference period is Some consider this to be untrustworthy, the term "long-term average" suggesting finally a timely and not a comparison with earlier years, who have not even seen many of his contemporaries.
Price increases, crime rates and other statistics were not compared with figures from the 60s. Felt was the winter for most of his contemporaries, who are used better, too cold anyway.
The theory that the global higher temperatures over the Arctic ice melt in this country can make for cold winter may in itself not be illogical. That it can explain the current weather conditions in March, may however be doubted.