SWW

Southern Annular Mode

Today, glaciers in Patagonia and Antarctica are receding. In both cases, this has been attributed to changes in the Southern Westerly Winds and the Southern Annular Mode (SAM). The Southern Westerly Winds are an important wind belt that encircles the globe in the southern mid-latitudes1,2, with its core between 50-55°S1. The Southern Annular Mode describes …

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Changes to Circumpolar Deep Water

What is Circumpolar Deep Water? Circumpolar Deep Water is derived from a mixture of all the World’s oceans[1]. It is a relatively salty, warm current, >3.5°C above freezing point, which flows onto the continental shelf at depths of more than 300 m[2]. It is overlain by colder, fresher surface waters. Circumpolar Deep Water is critical …

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Glaciers and Climate

This section of the website highlights how glaciers interact with climate, and how changing climate is changing glaciers around the world today. Globally, glaciers are receding and shrinking in response to atmospheric warming. The signal is remarkably consistent across different continents and mountain ranges. 99% of Antarctica is ice-covered, and so most of the glaciers …

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Patagonian Ice Sheet thinning during a changing climate

J.Boex, C. Fogwill, S. Harrison, N.F. Glasser, A. Hein, C. Schnabel and S. Xu.  Rapid thinning of the Late Pleistocene Patagonian Ice Sheet followed migration of the Southern Westerlies. Scientific Reports 3: 2118, p. 1-6 Download the PDF The Patagonian Ice Sheet This recent open-access paper in the new journal Science Communications, which is part …

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Climate Change

What is climate? | Quaternary climates | Is our climate changing? | The Role of Carbon Dioxide | Climate change in Antarctica | Observed impacts of climate change | References | Comments | What is climate? First, it is important here to note the differences between weather and climate. Weather is local and what you …

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