How the North Atlantic Oscillation
Drives Climate Change
atmospheric changes cause global warming to heat our planet, climates
are influenced worldwide. The result is not just a blanket change in
temperature. Instead, individual regions of the globe may be influenced
by a variety of mechanisms with a variety of results. Exactly how climates of specific areas are affected and why they are changing are the research
questions for many NCAR scientists. If we could better understand the
mechanisms that are driving climate change on our globally warming
planet, we could better predict how individual regions of the globe
might be affected, where crops will grow, where floods may occur, and
how animal and plant species are influenced.
NCAR scientist James Hurrell is using computer
models to understand
North Atlantic climate change by identifying the driving forces
North Atlantic Oscillation (or NAO), a pivotal force affecting the
climate of the Eastern United States, Europe, the Middle East,
and Northern Africa.
Because of its climatic importance, the NAO is currently of great scientific
interest and researchers such as Hurrell continue to advance our understanding
of this intriguing phenomenon.