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Winter cold extremes linked to high-altitude polar vortex weakening

Fri, 22 Sep 2017 09:40:27 EDT ~ When the strong winds that circle the Arctic slacken, cold polar air can escape and cause extreme winter chills in parts of the Northern hemisphere. A new study finds that these weak states have become more persistent over the past four decades and can be linked to cold winters in Russia and Europe. Find out more...

We must accelerate transitions for sustainability and climate change, experts say

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 14:12:35 EDT ~ We must move faster towards a low-carbon world if we are to limit global warming to 2 degrees C this century, experts have warned. Find out more...

Diamonds show Earth still capable of superhot surprises

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 09:55:11 EDT ~ Diamonds may be forever but some may have formed more recently than geologists thought. A study of 26 diamonds, formed under extreme melting conditions in the Earths mantle, found two populations, one of which has geologically young ages. The results show that certain volcanic events on Earth may still be able to create super-heated conditions previously thought to have only existed early in the planets history before it cooled. The findings may have implications for diamond prospecting. Find out more...

In times of climate change: What a lakes color can tell about its condition

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 09:50:24 EDT ~ With the help of satellite observations from 188 lakes worldwide, scientists have shown that the warming of large lakes amplifies their color. Lakes which are green due to their high phytoplankton content tend to become greener in warm years as phytoplankton content increases. Clear, blue lakes with little phytoplankton, on the other hand, tend to become even bluer in warm years caused by declines in phytoplankton. Thus, contrary to previous assumptions, the warming of lakes tends to amplify their richness or poverty of phytoplankton. Find out more...

Mathematics predicts a sixth mass extinction

Wed, 20 Sep 2017 18:21:16 EDT ~ Scientists have analyzed significant changes in the carbon cycle over the last 540 million years, including the five mass extinction events. They have identified 'thresholds of catastrophe' in the carbon cycle that, if exceeded, would lead to an unstable environment, and ultimately, mass extinction. Find out more...

Fly away home? Ice age may have clipped bird migration

Wed, 20 Sep 2017 14:46:53 EDT ~ The onset of the last ice age may have forced some bird species to abandon their northerly migrations for thousands of years, says new research led by an ornithologist. The study challenges a long-held presumption that birds merely shortened their migratory flights when glaciers advanced south to cover much of North America and northern Europe about 21,000 years ago. Find out more...

10,000 year-old DNA proves when fish colonialized our lakes

Wed, 20 Sep 2017 10:45:44 EDT ~ DNA in lake sediment forms a natural archive displaying when various fish species colonized lakes after the glacial period. Scientists' analyses of the prevalence of whitefish DNA in sediment reveal that the whitefish came to Lake Stora Lgdasjn in Vsterbotten already 10,000 years ago, whereas Lake Hotagen in Jmtland had its whitefish only 2,200 years ago. Find out more...

Gravity waves influence weather and climate

Wed, 20 Sep 2017 10:00:43 EDT ~ Gravity waves form in the atmosphere as a result of destabilizing processes. The effects of gravity waves can only be taken into consideration by including additional special components in the models. Find out more...

Atmospheric effects of Arctic snowmelt

Wed, 20 Sep 2017 10:00:40 EDT ~ Researchers are exploring the changing chemistry of the Arctic's atmosphere to help answer the question of what happens as snow and ice begin to melt. Find out more...

End-of-summer Arctic sea ice extent is eighth lowest on record

Tue, 19 Sep 2017 16:01:52 EDT ~ Arctic sea ice appeared to have reached its yearly lowest extent on Sept. 13, scientists have reported. Analysis of satellite data showed that at 1.79 million square miles (4.64 million square kilometers), this year's Arctic sea ice minimum extent is the eighth lowest in the consistent long-term satellite record, which began in 1978. Find out more...