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39 votes
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I just read news that Antarctica had set a new record high temperature, above 18 °C. How can this be the case if it is currently winter there?

You just read the news too fast. WMO announced that, after evaluation by a committee, they have validated the 18.3°C temperature recorded in February (i.e., in summer) last year: GENEVA, 1 July 2021 (...
Jean-Marie Prival's user avatar
37 votes
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Why is geothermal heat insignificant to surface temperature?

One kilometer of rock is actually a lot to dig through to get to that very warm condition. The key quantity here is heat flux. The crux of the matter is: Geothermal heat flux is only a small fraction ...
Oscar Lanzi's user avatar
  • 4,041
33 votes

In the northern hemisphere summer, why are places in the north cooler than those in the south?

The image below (apparently from "physicalgeography.net" is somewhat instructive: Notice that even in the middle of summer, India (at about 30 °N) still gets slightly more sun than the ...
James K's user avatar
  • 797
28 votes
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Where is the calmest place on Earth?

The main resistance that winds have to their movements comes from the topography and surface obstacles. Therefore, as a general rule the closer to the surface the less wind you will find. But I guess ...
Camilo Rada's user avatar
  • 17.7k
26 votes

Why don't green house gases escape into space?

The reason the atmosphere (including GHGs) stays attached to the earth is gravity. This is called the Hydrostatic Equilibrium. There is one GHG that this does not fully apply to: water vapor. While ...
BarocliniCplusplus's user avatar
23 votes
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Do satellites decrease the amount of solar radiation reaching Earth?

Does this huge collective quantity of objects (together with space trash) reflect away enough solar radiation to have a measurable effect? Could this affect Earth's climate, mitigating climate change? ...
David Hammen's user avatar
  • 23.7k
23 votes

Why do colder climates have more rugged coasts?

Have you had a look at the northern coast of Russia or Alaska, in the cold Arctic? Having just looked at them on Google Earth, they are lengthy and seem very "un-rugged". The northern coast ...
Fred's user avatar
  • 24.8k
23 votes
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Why do colder climates have more rugged coasts?

As Fred's answer and some comments wrote, this is of course not so generally true. What is true is that many rough coasts were formed by past glaciation. Obviously you don't tend to get many glaciers ...
leftaroundabout's user avatar
20 votes
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What is the consensus among geologists about climate change being caused by humans?

First, a correction. Most climate scientists are climatologists rather than meteorologists. Climatology and meteorology, while related, are quite distinct sciences. Meteorologists and climatologists ...
David Hammen's user avatar
  • 23.7k
19 votes

Is the Unified Theory of Climate (Nikolov & Zeller) compatible with the AGW/GHG theory in any respect?

The paper you linked lists as its first reference Volokin and ReLlez, 2014; a paper that addresses the magnitude of the Earth's greenhouse effect. The validity of the paper you found largely hinges on ...
kingledion's user avatar
  • 3,376
19 votes
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What was the highest temperature ever recorded on the surface of Earth?

The record the article is referring about seems to be the same as registered at Guiness World Records: On 13 September 2012 the World Meteorological Organisation disqualified the record for the ...
Camilo Rada's user avatar
  • 17.7k
18 votes

If the earth is a globe, what causes temperature differences across lines of latitude?

Polar regions are colder than equatorial ones for a simple reason - geometry. More specifically, it is caused by the greater angle of the Sun's rays to the surface of the Earth. As you go farther ...
Spencer's user avatar
  • 3,638
17 votes
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Looking for evidence against some points raised in Ivar Giaever's speech on climate change

Ivar's graph is mischievous in trying to imply that there should be an exact correlation. The global air temperature is not a good parameter to chart against CO2 emissions because the increasing heat ...
Gordon Stanger's user avatar
17 votes

Why don't errors accumulate in climate models when the time horizon increases?

Error does accumulate in climate models out into the future -- that's why the forecasts include a range of possible results, that gets wider the further into the future you look. See, for instance, ...
LShaver's user avatar
  • 1,410
16 votes

Is global warming nonsense?

No, global warming is not nonsense, and if you are suspicious of the above 'graph' then you are acting wisely. Climate deniers, like flat Earthers, Biblical literalists and many more, use pseudo-...
Gordon Stanger's user avatar
14 votes

Does the elliptical orbit of the Earth have effect on Earth's climate?

Short answer. When the Earth is closest to the sun in January that softens the seasonal variation in the Northern Hemisphere and it increases the seasonal variation in the Southern Hemisphere, so ...
userLTK's user avatar
  • 5,897
14 votes
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Why do human populations concentrate near fault lines, volcanoes, etc.?

You're asking Why do human populations concentrate near fault lines, volcanoes, etc.? But the real question is Do human populations concentrate near fault lines, volcanoes, etc.? And the ...
Gimelist's user avatar
  • 23.2k
14 votes
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Is Atacama Desert cloudy or cloudless most of the year?

The Atatacma desert comprise a very large area of more than 100,000 square kilometers, that host very different climates. The main factors driving the climatic variability are the distance to the ...
Camilo Rada's user avatar
  • 17.7k
14 votes

Why don't green house gases escape into space?

Trapping compounds and changing composition are two very different things. The composition of an atmosphere is set by equilibrium chemistry. Equilibrium chemistry can be understood as mapping of a set ...
AtmosphericPrisonEscape's user avatar
13 votes

Is the Mauna Loa CO$_\mathsf{2}$ record affected by the nearby mantle plume?

How is ist possible that Mauna Loa Observatory is the International Reference Observatory for CO2 Global Meassurments I don’t know that it is ‘the International Reference Observatory’. The Mauna Loa ...
Pont's user avatar
  • 5,429
13 votes
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How authentic was the movie scene in "The day after tomorrow" related to the understanding of the north Atlantic current system?

I'm not sure how much I can comment about it, but here we go (that's a joke... maybe). Is it realistic in the collapse of the current system? Well kind of, but not in the timespan that is suggested. ...
BarocliniCplusplus's user avatar
12 votes

In the northern hemisphere summer, why are places in the north cooler than those in the south?

Hours of sunlight are not the only factor that determines insolation (solar energy at the surface). Thought experiment: spread a bed sheet on the floor, switch the lights off, and shine a flashlight ...
G_B's user avatar
  • 221
11 votes
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Which percentage of $\text{CO}_2$ emissions are human made emissions?

First of all, the amount of carbon cycling trough the Earth's system is irrelevant to the discussion of the changes in atmospheric $\text{CO}_2$ concentration or ocean acidification. In the same way ...
Camilo Rada's user avatar
  • 17.7k
11 votes
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What caused peak CO2 to rise, starting about 400,000 years ago?

First things first: There's nothing per se wrong in science with answering "We don't know" to a vexing problem. This might well be one of those cases. The question you are asking was asked by Imbrie ...
David Hammen's user avatar
  • 23.7k
10 votes

How much of the current global warming is due to human influence?

From the IPCC Fifth Assessment Report (2014 / current): It is extremely likely that human activities caused more than half of the observed increase in global average surface temperature from 1951 ...
elliot svensson's user avatar
10 votes
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How to calculate w-wind?

Omega, ω is closely related to w in meteorology. It can be moved towards w using the chain (this reminder from Watkins at SJSU helped)... ...
JeopardyTempest's user avatar
10 votes
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Did climate cool down when underground hydrocarbons stocks formed?

Possibly One thing you have to understand is that natural carbon sequestration via the formation of fossil fuel is VERY slow, it can take millions of years to build up the coal we burn in a day. In ...
John's user avatar
  • 7,016
10 votes

Does general relativity influence climate (vs Newtonian mechanics)

In short: No. Unless multi-million timescales are considered. The reason we keep teaching Newtonian mechanics, is because it is a VERY accurate approximation of a more general theory (general ...
Camilo Rada's user avatar
  • 17.7k
10 votes

Why don't errors accumulate in climate models when the time horizon increases?

There is a huge confusion between errors in weather forecasting and climate prediction. While weather predictability is fundamentally limited to a few weeks, in climate modelling we are interested in ...
Vladimir F Героям слава's user avatar
9 votes

What sort of climate zones would be present if Earth was tilted like Uranus?

A paper on this topic just appeared: Multiple Climate States of Habitable Exoplanets: The Role of Obliquity and Irradiance. In case of 90° obliquity, summer and winter would appear together with day ...
Barlach's user avatar
  • 91

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