Scientists Look to the (Diminishing) Ice to Explain ‘Weather Weirding’
Lurching from one weather extreme to another seems to have become routine across the Northern Hemisphere. Parts of the United States may be shivering in March, but Scotland is setting heat records. Across Europe, people died by the hundreds during a severe cold wave in the first half of February, but a week later revelers in Paris were strolling down the Champs-Ã‰lysÃ©es in their shirt-sleeves.
Does science have a clue what is going on? The short answer appears to be: not quite. The longer answer is that researchers are developing theories that, should they withstand critical scrutiny, may tie at least some of the erratic weather to global warming. Specifically, suspicion is focused these days on the drastic decline of sea ice in the Arctic, which is believed to be a direct consequence of the human release of greenhouse gases.