Climate change making stronger El Ninos
Climate change is making stronger El Ninos, which change weather worldwide and heat up an already warming planet, a new study finds.
Scientists examined 33 El Ninos — natural warming of equatorial Pacific that triggers weather extremes across the globe — since 1901. They found since the 1970s, El Ninos have been forming farther to the west in warmer waters, leading to stronger El Ninos in some cases.
A powerful El Nino can trigger drought in some places, like Australia and India. And it can cause flooding in other areas like California. The Pacific gets more hurricanes during an El Nino and the Atlantic gets fewer.
The shift for the origin of El Nino by hundreds of miles from the east of the International Dateline to the west of that point is important because the water to the west is naturally warmer.
Before 1978, 12 of the 14 El Ninos formed in the east. After 1978, all 11 were more central or western, according a study in Monday’s Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
There have been three “super” El Ninos, starting in 1982, 1997 and 2015 and all started in the west. During each of those El Ninos, the world broke new average temperature records.
Ozone Hole Shrinks
Abnormal weather patterns in the upper atmosphere over Antarctica dramatically limited ozone depletion in September and October. This resulted in the smallest ozone hole observed since 1982, NASA and NOAA scientists said.
Endangered Antarctic Glacier Could Soon Calve a Massive New Iceberg
Two cracks are growing in western Antarctica’s Pine Island Glacier, and they are an ominous warning that major ice loss is on the way. Two large rifts have widened near the edge of Pine Island Glacier on the West Antarctic ice sheet. If they continue to grow, they could release an iceberg four times bigger than Manhattan.