CR 67:15-29 (2016)  -  DOI: https://doi.org/10.3354/cr01349

Arctic sea ice and warm season North American extreme surface air temperatures

Dagmar Budikova1,*, Leonardo Chechi2

1Department of Geography-Geology, Illinois State University, Normal, IL 61790-4400, USA
2Agronomy, Universidade federal da Fronteira Sul (Federal University of South Border), Erechim, RS 99700-000, Brazil
*Corresponding author:

ABSTRACT: A growing amount of evidence points to a notable linkage between the changing Arctic cryosphere and weather in the middle latitudes of the Northern Hemisphere. Recent studies propose a series of mechanisms that make plausible the connection between Arctic amplification/sea ice decline and extreme weather. Using composite analyses, this study examines associations between the frequency of occurrence of boreal summer daily extreme surface air temperatures across North America and simultaneous mean Arctic sea ice concentration (SIC) conditions during the period 1979-2013. Four distinct regions show coherent relationships including large sections of  the eastern USA, Canada and the Canadian Arctic, central North America, southeast USA, and the west coast from southern Canada to Alaska. Across the eastern USA and Canada, as well as in western North America, the connections are principally shaped by low ice conditions with an expected decline in the incidence of cool nights/days and an increase in the incidence of warm nights/days. The ice-temperature relationships observed in the other regions are mostly shaped by high ice conditions. Synoptic analyses indicate the associations to be reflected in mean summer surface air temperature (SAT) and surface anomaly flows, as well as in the 500 and 200 hPa geopotential height flow and mean zonal wind anomaly patterns. Areas with the greatest atmospheric flow modifications have been generally associated with regions that display most notable extreme temperature frequency modifications.


KEY WORDS: Arctic ice · Summer extreme temperature · North America


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Cite this article as: Budikova D, Chechi L (2016) Arctic sea ice and warm season North American extreme surface air temperatures. Clim Res 67:15-29. https://doi.org/10.3354/cr01349

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