Questions tagged [climatology]

In contrast to the short-term variable weather, climate describes the mean conditions of atmosphere. Thus it is the statistic of weather (mean values, extrema, etc.). Often a 30-year period is considered. When asking questions about climate, use this tag and also include the [atmosphere] tag.

Filter by
Sorted by
Tagged with
20
votes
1answer
3k views

Why do more tornadoes happen late in the day?

According to the graph below, which appears to be sourced from the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, more tornadoes happen late in the day - why is this?
17
votes
3answers
2k views

How do I explain why the Tibetan plateau is colder than lowlands at similar latitudes?

A common layman explanation for why does it get colder to higher elevations (considering only the troposphere here) qualitatively boils down to The Sun heats the Earth's surface and the Earth's ...
15
votes
2answers
17k views

Why are deserts mostly located on the western side of continents?

I read somewhere in a book that mostly desert found in the western part of a continent. So my question is that why is it so? I searched on the internet but I didn't get a reasonable answer for that.
14
votes
1answer
545 views

Who are the 3% in the often cited “97% of climate scientists”?

The media have variously reported that: Ninety-seven percent of climate scientists agree that climate-warming trends over the past century are very likely due to human activities. Based on this ...
14
votes
2answers
481 views

Color of ocean waters and Ekman pumping - what is the connection?

Is there a connection between the colors of oceanic waters near the coast and Ekman pumping? Along the coastal areas of the Bay of Bengal where I live, occasionally during the monsoon, the colors of ...
14
votes
1answer
264 views

How do climatologists define the “start” of a rainy season in a unimodal monsoonal climate?

For a number of gridcells, all between the 500mm and 800mm rainfall isohyets in sub-Saharan Africa, I've got dekadal rainfall (from FEWS). They are pretty spread out over the continent and there are ...
11
votes
2answers
442 views

Is Atacama Desert cloudy or cloudless most of the year?

I saw many contradictions everywhere. For example, my geography textbook says that Atacama Desert is a desert where foggy weather is common, and it persists almost the whole year. Whereas every ...
10
votes
2answers
1k views

Why is q used for specific humidity?

$q$ is the symbol used for specific humidity in many textbooks and papers (at least in meteorology and climatology, I'm not familiar with it in other disciplines). Where does this symbol come from, ...
10
votes
1answer
402 views

What makes a nuclear winter so extreme and destructive?

This may be a sort of, pertinent to the times, and disturbing question, inspired by the difficulties surrounding North Korea and the situation with it and nuclear weapons. I've heard of this idea of "...
9
votes
3answers
394 views

Paper result validation and the scientific method in earth science

The context of this question is computational earth science specifically meteorology/climatology but I am sure it applies to all the scientific disciplines where numerical methods are used. Recently ...
8
votes
2answers
417 views

What are good metrics to compare climates?

I'm interested in visualizing climate data across the conterminous U.S. to determine regions that I would be interested in living in. So far, I've pulled in NOAA data, and I've: averaged the maximum ...
8
votes
1answer
630 views

Confusion with precipitation values in CORDEX MPI-ESM rcp data

I want to analyze climate projection data for the different RCPs for a region in north western India, which has an arid climate. I chose MPI-ESM data downscaled with CORDEX. An example filename looks ...
8
votes
1answer
866 views

Climatology of the Indian Summer Monsoon - A modern consensus

Edmund Halley viewed the monsoon as a glorified sea breeze circulation fueled by different heat capacities of land and ocean. The resulting meridional temperature gradient between warmer air of the ...
8
votes
2answers
313 views

The climatological variance of albedo, soil moisture in weather models

Looking at WRF currently but I am sure this applies to most weather models there is a file (specifically LANDUSE.TBL) that specifies USGS derived albedo, soil ...
8
votes
1answer
80 views

Should total ground heat flux be 0?

In the context of the land surface, the ground absorbs heat from radiation (also some times from precipitation and advection), and releases heat through evapotranspiration, advection and radiation, ...
8
votes
3answers
269 views

Climatology Career

I am a high school Biology teacher with a crazy passion for climate and environmental changes. I wish I had known this before I started college. I have been out of college for a year and have been ...
7
votes
2answers
14k views

What are the differences between Climatology, Meteorology and Atmospheric Science?

Please explain the main differences between Climatology, Meteorology and Atmospheric Science. Thank you
7
votes
3answers
580 views

Correlation and causation

Linear correlation (Pearson's) is vastly applied in meteorology/climatology to assess the relationship between two variables, say precipitation and SST, for example. However, we know that correlation ...
7
votes
2answers
844 views

Long-term Wind Speed Forecasting: reality or wishful thinking?

I have been studying/working with Wind Energy for a while and, one of my main responsabilities right now is to search for adequate long-term wind speed forecasting models. However, 2 things strike me ...
7
votes
0answers
79 views

Can we see the circulation cells in wind maps?

Earth famously possesses three distinct circulation cells per hemisphere. Now out of curiosity one could use a weather app, like windy, to display the wind structures at ground level globally, and ...
7
votes
0answers
115 views

Oceanic-atmospheric coupling between the Indian Ocean and the Pacific Ocean basins

The two great basins - Indian Ocean and Pacific Ocean have their respective oscillations Indian Ocean Dipole and El Nino Southern oscillation that affect the climate of the regions as well as the ...
6
votes
3answers
258 views

Are Ice Ages Affected by the Freezing Out of CO2 in Antarctica?

The freezing point of carbon dioxide is -78.5 $\small\mathsf{^o}$C. Occasionally this low is exceeded in Antarctica, and small quantities of CO2 are frozen out, but are returned soon after to the ...
6
votes
4answers
1k views

Easterly Jet Stream

If most of jet streams are westerly, that is to say, they blow from west to east, why does the tropical/equatorial jet stream blow from east to west?
6
votes
2answers
633 views

Why do winter temperatures account for most of the increase in global temperature?

If you examine the detailed temperature records that form the basis for our understanding of global warming, there are some strange anomalies (at least from a naive point of view where warming affects ...
6
votes
1answer
143 views

Does the regional localisation of global temperature trends suggest contamination by urban development?

Much of the raw data behind the various datasets reporting the average temperature of the world are now available. So it is possible to look for strange patterns in the daily or monthly temperature ...
6
votes
2answers
115 views

Which part of solar radiation (VIS, NIR) keeps Earth warm?

Which part of solar radiation (visible light vs. infrared radiation) plays main part in keeping Earth's surface warm?
5
votes
2answers
2k views

What percentage of Earth's surface is arid?

Is there available information on how much of Earth surface is arid climate?
5
votes
1answer
302 views

“steep slope” when cold fronts encounter warm fronts: Confusing sentence in textbook

I'm currently reading a university textbook on processes that result in rainfall events. In the current processes, I'm reading there is a cold front that basically pushes warm air upwards which ...
5
votes
1answer
103 views

Technical term for percentage of CO2 remaining in the atmosphere

I have a theoretical exercise where I calculated the amount of CO2 that is released to the atmosphere per year (4.6 ppm). We assume that the relative increase of CO2 is 2 ppm, hence the percentage of ...
5
votes
1answer
84 views

Why is not snow melting in Ladakh at a rapid pace

I am a novice and thus would like you not to mind too much if the answer to my question seems "obvious" to you. I heard that in the cold desert of Ladakh, if you keep your face in sunlight and legs ...
5
votes
1answer
178 views

Why would geostrophic theory be invoked in the tropics with regards to the MJO?

In this paper reviewing the Madden-Julian Oscillation, frequently geostrophic theory (or approximately geostrophic) is often invoked. However, for geostrophic theory to be invoked, $$Ro=\frac{U}{f_0L}&...
5
votes
0answers
68 views

Near Future Precipitation and Temperature estimations?

I was wondering if anyone here is familiar with temperature and precipitation estimation? I need to estimate P and T from April to July 2016. I am planning to use excel to do the calculation because ...
4
votes
1answer
163 views

What kind of temperature unit is “cK”?

An article about ocean temperature history/modeling has this plot: Where the units are given as cK. cK does not seem to be a ...
4
votes
1answer
282 views

How averaging works in GFS model from NOAA?

We have downloaded grib2 files for GFS model from NOAA and extracted irradiance (Downwards shortwave radiation flux) data. Following is a sample output for cordinates at [52.0,4.0]: ...
4
votes
1answer
110 views

Is there consensus amongst climatologists that cold weather extremes are caused by global warming or human influence?

Is there consensus amongst climatologists that cold weather extremes are caused by global warming or human influence? I hear the claim a lot that the recent cold weather extremes (such as the polar ...
4
votes
0answers
69 views

Why does Panama have a dry season?

So, I understand that during much of the year, Panama gets regular rain due to moist air being carried in by the trade winds from the Caribbean. However, the country also has a "dry season" from ...
4
votes
0answers
110 views

Why is wind shear consistently high in the South Atlantic?

I have read that perhaps the largest reason that tropical cyclones are so rare in the South Atlantic is due to chronically-high vertical wind shear which inhibits their structural development. But ...
3
votes
1answer
77 views

CMIP5 Historical experiments, what do they mean?

What are the main characteristics of CMIP5 Historical experiments? e.g. Initial conditions? Greenhouse gases forcing? How they differ from RCPs? And how they are similar to Observed reanalysis data?...
3
votes
1answer
137 views

If today's Earth becomes warmer, how will it compare to the Earth of the Cretaceous period?

Most pessimistic scenarios about climate change predicts a global rise of temperature of several Celsius degrees over the course of the 21st century if no action is taken. While such a shift in ...
3
votes
1answer
2k views

Why do some places have rain frequently? [closed]

There are some places on Earth which holds the record of being "The wettest place on Earth". On what factors these places differ from other normal places? An example of wettest place on Earth is ...
3
votes
3answers
3k views

How to calculate maximum and minimum mean monthly temperatures?

A quite simple question that I hope someone can help me with. I have a massive database of hourly minimum and maximum temperatures, from many automatic weather stations. I need to estimate the average ...
3
votes
0answers
81 views

Why isn't north Quebec a little warmer?

When I saw this map I was surprised to learn that part of Quebec is in the worst winter hardiness zone of North America (including Greenland). Zone 0a, which is defined as "average winters get colder ...
2
votes
1answer
109 views

Interdisciplinary sciences which combine earth sciences with computer science

Are there interdisciplinary sciences which combine earth sciences (like geophysics, climatology, meteorology etc.) and computer science? or something like biotechnology which combine biology with ...
2
votes
2answers
241 views

Huge netcdf files handling

Can any one help me to handle huge netcdf files each of 1gb memory in loop and at least 2 files at a time in ncl or linux or python or matlab. for example era_interim daily pressure level datasets.
2
votes
2answers
209 views

How much area in the world is under SemiArid climate?

I am studying the L.C. King's "Normal Cycle of Erosion". Apparently, he suggests that Davis was incorrect to have assumed Temperate Humid conditions as "normal conditions" of the world when ...
2
votes
1answer
330 views

Do cloud formations change depending on the season?

I'm currently working on some software for cloud masking, and thus far I have only been using satellite data as recent as spring (northern hemisphere). However, I'm wondering if cloud coverage or ...
2
votes
1answer
67 views

Why has the Earth's average sea level risen 'only' by nine inches after one degree C increase in temperature?

I am only doing gross calculations here, but... If the Earth has warmed by about one degree Celsius in the last century or so, and the thermal expansion coefficient of water is about .0002085, then ...
2
votes
0answers
32 views

Is there a collective name given to regions in the ocean which have been studied to affect climate? [closed]

Would calling them hotspots be correct?
2
votes
0answers
81 views

Plotting moist static energy fluxes

I'm trying to plot Moist static energy fluxes (vectors) and their divergence like the attached Figure. I have monthly means of u, v, temperature, specific humidity and geopotential from(1000-100 hPa) ...
2
votes
0answers
123 views

Subterranean Climate System?

Do subterranean habitat have climate system(s)? Could it be placed in any or all of the known ones: tropical, subtropical, temperate etc. ? Is it unique?