Does it seem as though the weather gods have gone crazy lately? It is not your imagination. The question on everyone’s minds is why? And is it related to climate change? In Arctic Meltdown: Why It Matters To Us, Dr. Jennifer Francis explains how increasing extreme weather events are connected with the rapidly warming and melting Arctic during recent decades. Check out the talk recording on the GBH Forum Network.
Evidence suggests that Arctic warming is causing weather patterns to become more persistent, which can lead to extremes such as prolonged droughts, cold spells, heat waves, snowy winters, and flooding events. After her presentation, Dr. Francis took part in conversation with Heather Goldstone and answered audience questions.
Watch Dr. Francis’ presentation below:
Dr. Jennifer Francis’ interest in Arctic weather and climate was sparked by a summer spent sailing near Svalbard in her 20s. Throughout her career, she has pioneered the use of satellite data to understand the dramatic changes taking place in the Arctic, and how disproportionate warming there is affecting temperate regions on Earth—where billions of people live. Her groundbreaking work suggests that rapid Arctic warming may be linked to shifting weather patterns in North America and Eurasia, driving more persistent weather regimes that can generate periods of extreme temperature and/or precipitation.
Dr. Heather Goldstone oversees Woodwell Climate Research Center’s communications activities. She has extensive experience as both a scientist and a journalist, and is passionate about melding data and narrative in climate change stories that build awareness and inspire action. Dr. Goldstone came to Woodwell Climate from WGBH, where she founded and hosted a weekly science-focused radio show, Living Lab Radio. Previously, she wrote the Climatide blog about coastal communities facing climate change. Her extensive reporting on science and the environment has appeared in outlets ranging from Cape Cod Times and Commercial Fishery News to NPR’s Morning Edition, The Takeaway, and PBS News Hour.