California – Arctic sea ice is melting so fast, noted by a new report by the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, that it now threatens to reduce precipitation over California by up to 15 percent over the next twenty to thirty years.
According to scientists, the magnitude of sea ice loss expected over the next few decades could not only reduce the state’s rainfall, but in the process “exacerbate future droughts.”
The study identified a new link between Arctic sea ice loss and the development of an atmospheric ridging system in the North Pacific. Experts believe these sea ice changes can lead to convection changes (how air rises and forms clouds, etc.) over the tropical Pacific. “These convection changes can in turn drive the formation of an atmospheric ridge in the North Pacific, resulting in significant drying over California,” the report asserted.
“This atmospheric feature,” the study confirmed, “also played a central role in the 2012 through 2016 California drought and is known for steering precipitation-rich storms northward, into Alaska and Canada, and away from California.”
To view the report in detail visit https://www.llnl.gov/news/ arctic-sea-ice-loss-could-dry-out-california.