Cold snaps still a threat despite global warming

Authors


Abstract

[1] Long stretches of extreme cold weather can cause serious damage to agriculture as well as to transportation, water, and energy infrastructure. Cold snaps have the potential to kill people, with deaths attributed to cold weather often outpacing those caused by extreme heat. With climate projections anticipating at least 2°C increases in global average temperature by the end of the century, some regional planners may be taking solace in the idea that the threat of cold weather extremes could fade as the world warms. Research by Kodra et al., however, suggests that on a global scale the intensity and duration of extreme cold weather events will persist and in some regions will possibly even increase by the end of the 21st century. (Geophysical Research Letters, doi:10.1029/2011GL047103, 2011)