Journal Highlights

Two ice core records reconstruct paleoclimate in North Pacific

Editor’s Highlight—

 

This paper presents a long-term record of sea salt accumulation in the Denali ice core from Alaska, which is interpreted as a time series of the strength of the wintertime Aleutian Low pressure system. The main conclusions are that the strength of the Aleutian Low has been increasing since the mid-18th century, and the Aleutian Low strength during the instrumental time period is exceptional for the last millennium. The authors hypothesize that a rise in tropical sea surface temperatures may be the cause of this trend. This is an impactful piece of work on recent climate. The remarkable replication in the two new ice cores and complimentary data from Mount Logan is significant and will be of great use to other researchers working on the paleoclimate of the North Pacific sector, as well as at lower latitudes and modeling.

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The atmosphere varies naturally on all length scales from millimeters to thousands of kilometers, and on all time scales from seconds to decades and longer.  This special collection of Geophysical Research Letters synthesizes and summarizes that variability through a phenomenological census.  The collection brings together some of the most influential and definitive papers to have been published in this journal in recent years.  The topics covered include turbulence on time scales of seconds and minutes, gravity waves on time scales of hours, weather systems on time scales of days, atmospheric blocking on time scales of weeks, the Madden–Julian Oscillation on time scales of months, the Quasi-Biennial Oscillation and El Niño–Southern Oscillation on time scales of years, and the North Atlantic, Arctic, Antarctic, Pacific Decadal, and Atlantic Multi-decadal Oscillations on time scales of decades.  The collection is accompanied by a Commentary article, which provides an authoritative, concise, and accessible point of reference for the most important modes of atmospheric variability.

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