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The Source of Europe's Mild Climate
American Scientist ^ | July 2006 | Richard Seager

Posted on 11/22/2006 8:37:41 AM PST by annie laurie

That the Gulf Stream is responsible for Europe's mild winters is widely known and accepted, but...it is nothing more than the earth-science equivalent of an urban legend...

The countries of northern Europe do indeed have curiously mild climates...why do so many people credit the Gulf Stream?

Like many other myths, this one rests on a strand of truth. The Gulf Stream carries with it considerable heat when it flows out from the Gulf of Mexico and then north along the East Coast before departing U.S. waters at Cape Hatteras and heading northeast toward Europe. All along the way, it warms the overlying atmosphere. In the seas between Norway and Newfoundland, the current has lost so much of its heat, and the water has become so salty (through evaporation), that it is dense enough to sink. The return flow occurs at the bottom of the North Atlantic, also along the eastern flank of North America. This overturning is frequently referred to as the North Atlantic thermohaline circulation, or simply the "Atlantic conveyor."...

The Gulf Stream indeed contributes to Europe's warmth, but it is wrong to conflate the climate difference across the North Atlantic with the northward flow of warm water in the Gulf Stream...

I took a temporary postdoctoral position at the University of Washington in Seattle, where I should have immediately realized that something was wrong with the Gulf Stream-European climate story. Seattle and British Columbia, just to the north, I discovered, have a winter climate with which I was very familiar—mild and damp, quite unlike the very cold conditions that prevail on the Asian side of the Pacific Ocean. This contrast exists despite the fact that the circulation of currents in the Pacific Ocean is very different from the situation in the Atlantic...

(Excerpt) Read more at americanscientist.org ...


TOPICS: Miscellaneous
KEYWORDS: atlantic; atlanticconveyor; climate; climatechange; climatology; conveyor; currents; europe; globalwarming; gulfstream; ocean; pacific; weather
Excerpt-only site.

Long, but fascinating reading. Non-doomsday climatology; it's well worth the click-through to read the entire article.

1 posted on 11/22/2006 8:37:42 AM PST by annie laurie
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To: SunkenCiv

Thought this might interest you.


2 posted on 11/22/2006 8:38:57 AM PST by annie laurie (All that is gold does not glitter, not all those who wander are lost)
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To: annie laurie

This still means that "Day After Tomorrow" is crap.


3 posted on 11/22/2006 8:43:21 AM PST by MinstrelBoy (If you're a Republican today, you're a hero.)
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To: MinstrelBoy

Yep.


4 posted on 11/22/2006 8:43:52 AM PST by annie laurie (All that is gold does not glitter, not all those who wander are lost)
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To: annie laurie

So it is or it isn't America's fault?


5 posted on 11/22/2006 8:44:34 AM PST by The_Englishman
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To: annie laurie
Non-doomsday climatology

The consensus is we are doomed. Only a quack in the pocket of big oil would suggest otherwise. We are doomed! I am not sure if we will overheat or enter or ice age or get hit by massive hurricanes, but we are doomed no matter what.

6 posted on 11/22/2006 8:45:26 AM PST by Always Right
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To: annie laurie

Saving...


7 posted on 11/22/2006 8:49:50 AM PST by Edgerunner (Better RED than DEAD)
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To: annie laurie

ping


8 posted on 11/22/2006 8:51:50 AM PST by Old Professer (The critic writes with rapier pen, dips it twice, and writes again.)
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To: The_Englishman

The source of Europe's mild climate is Karl Rove's Weather Machine - which he can shut off at any time if he chooses to.


9 posted on 11/22/2006 8:56:05 AM PST by keithtoo (Moveon.org is a cult, Freerepublic is the cure.....)
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To: annie laurie

The coastal-moderated climate that is noted in the article can be observed in Connecticut.

In Connecticut, the wind generally blows towards the east-northeast. In the summer, coastal cities are generally cooler than inland Hartford. Likewise, the coastal cities are considerably warmer in the winter.


10 posted on 11/22/2006 9:13:17 AM PST by kidd
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To: Andrewksu

Uh Oh! Some pesky scientist who has somehow failed to sign up for the global warming caused by humans and we're all going to die dogma has gone and done it again.

There goes the notion that global warming is going to turn off the Gulf Stream, thereby plunging the Northern Hemisphere into a new ice age, thus proving the evil effects of capitalist enterprise no matter what happens with climate.


11 posted on 11/22/2006 9:27:24 AM PST by centurion316 (Democrats - Supporting Al Qaida Worldwide)
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To: kidd
"The coastal-moderated climate that is noted in the article can be observed in Connecticut."

Yes, but on west coast areas the effect is much enhanced by the added contribution from the earth's rotation from east to west. In east coast areas, the only driver is the temperature difference between sea and land. As I recall, the geography types call this a "west coast marine" type climate.

12 posted on 11/22/2006 9:31:55 AM PST by Wonder Warthog (The Hog of Steel-NRA)
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To: Always Right
Yes, doomed! DOOMED! DOOMED!

There, I feel better.



Crusader Bumper Sticker
13 posted on 11/22/2006 9:40:49 AM PST by Mad Dawg (Now we are all Massoud)
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To: Wonder Warthog

added contribution from the earth's rotation from east to west - if I turn a ball the same as the earth's rotation does it not go west to east?


14 posted on 11/22/2006 9:42:08 AM PST by SF Republican
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To: kidd
In my misspent yout', sailing in the bays and harbors on the North Shore of Long Island Sound, on sunny days we knew a southerly would come up in the afternoon as the mainland heated up.
15 posted on 11/22/2006 9:42:32 AM PST by Mad Dawg (Now we are all Massoud)
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To: annie laurie; Ernest_at_the_Beach; 75thOVI; Alice in Wonderland; AndrewC; Avoiding_Sulla; ...
It does, thanks!

· Catastrophism ping list · join · view topics · view or post blog · bookmark ·

16 posted on 11/22/2006 10:15:00 AM PST by SunkenCiv (I last updated my profile on Thursday, November 16, 2006 https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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To: annie laurie

This article completely ignores anothr major warming influence, the jet stream, which brings alot of warm air right across North America from the pacific. When it moves north it pushes back the arctic air mass during winter months when the earth is tilted away from the sun, and when "winter" is at it's coldest. This warm air current not only warms up North Americas Canada's, but it travels into northern Europe as well.


17 posted on 11/22/2006 11:46:43 AM PST by Nathan Zachary
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To: Nathan Zachary
It also produces some wicked blizzards where this moist warm pacific air, often called a pineapple express(?) on the west coast, and turns into what's called a Colorado low in the mid west collides with a very cold and dry, high pressure arctic air mass. This occurs right along the jet stream which is the dividing line between these two currents.

When the Jet stream is lower down, which is normally is, somewhere in the middle of the continent during the winter months, it produces a lot of rain. If the Jet stream moves higher up into Canada, who ever is on the low pressure side of it has above normal, warm temps, above it very cold counter rotating arctic air blowing from the north, and where the two systems meet, it terrible blizzards and lots of wet heavy snow.

It's all normal weather, no matter how hard "global warming" nutters cry.

18 posted on 11/22/2006 12:13:39 PM PST by Nathan Zachary
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To: SunkenCiv

This morning I heard on the radio that snow was seen in Orlando. It snowed 2-3 times during the forty years I lived there, but never before Christmas! Of course some environmentalist wacko is going to claim it's caused by global warming, but I don't see how they can rationally explain it.


19 posted on 11/22/2006 4:26:52 PM PST by Berosus ("There is no beauty like Jerusalem, no wealth like Rome, no depravity like Arabia."--the Talmud)
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To: Berosus

Yeah, it's a heads I win, tails you lose scenario when trying to deal with the global warming demagogues. Too hot? Global warming. Too cold? Global warming. They grew up in the thermostat comfort zone and think everything is synthetic, with a side disorder of class warfare.


20 posted on 11/22/2006 8:04:20 PM PST by SunkenCiv (I last updated my profile on Thursday, November 16, 2006 https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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To: Nathan Zachary
It's all normal weather, no matter how hard "global warming" nutters cry.
Bingo!
21 posted on 11/22/2006 8:04:25 PM PST by SunkenCiv (I last updated my profile on Thursday, November 16, 2006 https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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To: annie laurie

Wally Broecker might have some interesting words for his colleague.


22 posted on 11/27/2006 1:13:19 PM PST by cogitator
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