Nav: Home

Decadal predictability of North Atlantic blocking and the NAO

July 17, 2020

Climate in different parts of the world is undergoing a warming trend, but also significant interdecadal variations that compensate, or exacerbate the former. These variations are associated not only with changes in the radiative forcing, but also to natural variability in the atmospheric and oceanic circulation patterns. Can multi-annual variations in the frequency of North Atlantic atmospheric blocking and mid-latitude circulation regimes be skillfully predicted? Recent advances in seasonal forecasting have shown that mid-latitude climate variability does exhibit significant predictability. Decadal predictions fill the gap between assessing long-term climate trends (climate projections) and predicting short-term climatic anomalies (seasonal forecasting), thus targeting near-term regional climatic anomalies with multi-annual lead time and responding to an increasingly needed service to society.

A study recently published on the Research Journal Climate and Atmospheric Science led by the CMCC Foundation (in particular, with the contribution of the CMCC scientists Panos Athanasiadis, lead author of the study, Alessio Bellucci and Stefano Tibaldi from CSP - Climate Simulations and Predictions Division) illustrates the latest breakthrough in the field of decadal predictions, with a special focus on the documented predictability for the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) and blocking in the North Atlantic.

The authors made use of a large ensemble of decadal predictions and found remarkable skill in reproducing the observed multi-annual variations of wintertime blocking frequency over the North Atlantic and of the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) itself. Therefore, skillfully predicting the decadal fluctuations of blocking frequency and the NAO may be used in statistical predictions of near-term climate anomalies, and it provides a strong indication that impactful climate anomalies may also be predictable with improved dynamical models.
-end-
The study was designed and led by the CMCC Foundation Euro-Mediterranean Center on Climate Change (CMCC) in collaboration with the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) and the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI). The study received support by the

Read the full paper: Athanasiadis, P.J., Yeager, S., Kwon, Y. et al. 
npj Clim Atmos Sci
 3, 20 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41612-020-0120-6

CMCC Foundation - Euro-Mediterranean Center on Climate Change

Related Climate Articles:

Climate Insights 2020: Climate opinions unchanged by pandemic, but increasingly entrenched
A new survey provides a snapshot of American opinion on climate change as the nation's public health, economy, and social identity are put to the test.
Climate action goes digital
More transparent and accessible to everyone: information and communication technologies bring opportunities for transforming traditional climate diplomacy.
Sub-national 'climate clubs' could offer key to combating climate change
'Climate clubs' offering membership for sub-national states, in addition to just countries, could speed up progress towards a globally harmonized climate change policy, which in turn offers a way to achieve stronger climate policies in all countries.
Review of Chinese atmospheric science research over the past 70 years: Climate and climate change
Over the past 70 years since the foundation of the People's Republic of China, Chinese scientists have made great contributions to various fields in the research of atmospheric sciences, which attracted worldwide attention.
How aerosols affect our climate
Greenhouse gases may get more attention, but aerosols -- from car exhaust to volcanic eruptions -- also have a major impact on the Earth's climate.
Believing in climate change doesn't mean you are preparing for climate change, study finds
Notre Dame researchers found that although coastal homeowners may perceive a worsening of climate change-related hazards, these attitudes are largely unrelated to a homeowner's expectations of actual home damage.
How trees could save the climate
Around 0.9 billion hectares of land worldwide would be suitable for reforestation, which could ultimately capture two thirds of human-made carbon emissions.
Climate undermined by lobbying
For all the evidence that the benefits of reducing greenhouse gases outweigh the costs of regulation, disturbingly few domestic climate change policies have been enacted around the world so far.
Climate education for kids increases climate concerns for parents
A new study from North Carolina State University finds that educating children about climate change increases their parents' concerns about climate change.
Inclusion of a crop model in a climate model to promote climate modeling
A new crop-climate model provides a good tool to investigate the relationship between crop development and climate change for global change studies.
More Climate News and Climate Current Events

Trending Science News

Current Coronavirus (COVID-19) News

Top Science Podcasts

We have hand picked the top science podcasts of 2020.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Listen Again: The Power Of Spaces
How do spaces shape the human experience? In what ways do our rooms, homes, and buildings give us meaning and purpose? This hour, TED speakers explore the power of the spaces we make and inhabit. Guests include architect Michael Murphy, musician David Byrne, artist Es Devlin, and architect Siamak Hariri.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#576 Science Communication in Creative Places
When you think of science communication, you might think of TED talks or museum talks or video talks, or... people giving lectures. It's a lot of people talking. But there's more to sci comm than that. This week host Bethany Brookshire talks to three people who have looked at science communication in places you might not expect it. We'll speak with Mauna Dasari, a graduate student at Notre Dame, about making mammals into a March Madness match. We'll talk with Sarah Garner, director of the Pathologists Assistant Program at Tulane University School of Medicine, who takes pathology instruction out of...
Now Playing: Radiolab

What If?
There's plenty of speculation about what Donald Trump might do in the wake of the election. Would he dispute the results if he loses? Would he simply refuse to leave office, or even try to use the military to maintain control? Last summer, Rosa Brooks got together a team of experts and political operatives from both sides of the aisle to ask a slightly different question. Rather than arguing about whether he'd do those things, they dug into what exactly would happen if he did. Part war game part choose your own adventure, Rosa's Transition Integrity Project doesn't give us any predictions, and it isn't a referendum on Trump. Instead, it's a deeply illuminating stress test on our laws, our institutions, and on the commitment to democracy written into the constitution. This episode was reported by Bethel Habte, with help from Tracie Hunte, and produced by Bethel Habte. Jeremy Bloom provided original music. Support Radiolab by becoming a member today at Radiolab.org/donate.     You can read The Transition Integrity Project's report here.