Global warming weakens Pacific winds
Dwindling circulation could worsen El Niño effect.]
Climate change is weakening a vast system of circulating winds that traverses the Pacific Ocean from coast to coast, say climate experts. Global warming has caused the system, which is crucial for monsoon rains in Southeast Asia and fisheries in South America, to decline since the advent of industrial times.
The system, known as the Walker circulation, has weakened by more than 3% since the mid-nineteenth century, report climate modellers led by Gabriel Vecchi of the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in Princeton, New Jersey. The cause, they say, is greenhouse gases. And with emissions still climbing, Pacific winds could potentially decline by more than 10% by the end of the century, they predict.
EPORT RECONCILES ATMOSPHERIC TEMPERATURE TRENDS First of 21 Reports from the U.S. Climate Change Science Program Significantly Revises, Updates Conclusions from Previous Key Reports
May 2, 2006 — The U.S. Climate Change Science Program issued the first of 21 Synthesis and Assessment S&A Products today with findings that improve the understanding of climate change and human influences on temperature trends.
"Temperature Trends in the Lower Atmosphere: Steps for Understanding and Reconciling Differences," also referred to as S&A Product 1.1, tackles some of the long-standing difficulties that have impeded understanding of changes in atmospheric temperatures and the basic causes of these changes.
According to the published report, there is no longer a discrepancy in the rate of global average temperature increase for the surface compared with higher levels in the atmosphere. This discrepancy had previously been used to challenge the validity of climate models used to detect and attribute the causes of observed climate change. This is an important revision to and update of the conclusions of earlier reports from the U.S. National Research Council and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.