Sea-ice cover anomalies in the Arctic Basin associated with atmospheric variability from multi-decadal trends to intermittent quasi-biennial oscillations
Arctic Ocean sea ice has been diminishing since 1970, as shown by National Snow and Ice Data Center data. In addition to decadal variability, low ice anomalies in the Pacific-Siberian region have been occurring at shorter timescales. The influence of the widely-known Northern Annular Mode (NAM) occurs across all seasons. In this study, empirical orthogonal function (EOF) analysis was applied to sea-level pressure in National Centers for Environmental Prediction Reanalysis data for 1960-2007, showing the NAM to be the leading mode of variability and the Arctic Dipole Mode (ADM) to be the second leading mode. The ADM changes markedly across seasons. In autumn-winter, it has a pole over Siberia and a pole over Greenland, at opposite signs at a several-year scale, whereas the spring-summer ADM (ADMSS) has a pole over Europe and a pole over Canada. In the 1980s, the most influential mode shifted from the NAM to the ADM, when the Pacific sector had low ice cover at a 1-year lag from the positive ADM, which was marked by low pressure over Siberia. In years when the ADMSS was pronounced, it was responsible for distinct ice variability over the East Siberian-Laptev seas. The frequency separation in this study identified the contributions of the ADM and ADMSS. Effects of the latter are difficult to predict since it is intermittent and changes its sign biennially. The ADM and ADMSS should be closely watched in relation to the ongoing ice reduction in the Pacific-Siberian region.
Keywords: Sea ice; sea-level pressure; Arctic interannual variability; EOF analysis
(Published: 12 June 2012)
This article repeats an error in the list of authors of an article published in the Journal of Oceanography. Please see the erratum issued by the Journal of Oceanography http://www.terrapub.co.jp/journals/JO/abstract/2010/6606/66060885.html
Citation: Polar Research 2012, 31, 18690, http://dx.doi.org/10.3402/polar.v31i0.18690
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