Global Warming Fosters High-Latitude Cooling?
Cohen, J., Foster, J., Barlow, M., Saito, K. and Jones, J. 2010. Winter 2009/10: a case study of an extreme Arctic Oscillation event. Geophysical Research Letters 37: 10.1029/2010GL044256.
So what's going on here?
Cohen et al. say that "whether the recent colder winters are a consequence of internal variability or a response to changes in boundary forcings resulting from climate change remains an open question." But like most scientists who love to resolve dilemmas, they go on to propose their answer to the puzzle, suggesting that "summer and autumn warming trends are concurrent with increases in high-latitude moisture and an increase in Eurasian snow cover, which dynamically induces large-scale wintertime cooling."
But, again, who knows? The only thing that is certain, as Cohen et al. describe it, is that "traditional radiative greenhouse gas theory and coupled climate models forced by increasing greenhouse gases alone cannot account for this seasonal asymmetry." And so we have yet another reason why so many scientists are so skeptical about the ability of even the most sophisticated of today's climate models to adequately portray reality.
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