Download Antarctic Ecosystems: Environmental Contamination, Climate by R. Bargagli PDF

By R. Bargagli

This quantity offers an outline of weather switch info, its results at the constitution and functioning of Antarctic ecosystems, and the prevalence and biking of continual contaminants. It discusses the position of Antarctic learn for the security of the worldwide atmosphere. The publication additionally examines attainable destiny situations of weather switch and the position of Antarctic organisms within the early detection of environmental perturbations.

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Extra resources for Antarctic Ecosystems: Environmental Contamination, Climate Change, and Human Impact (Ecological Studies, 175)

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1985; Jones and Shanklin 1995). At the beginning of summer, as the atmosphere warms, the vortex disappears and the atmospheric pressure and winds become more variable. Thus, during the polar spring and summer, there is an enhanced influx of air masses and persistent atmospheric pollutants from lower latitudes. 6 Atmospheric Interactions of Antarctica with Lower Latitudes In spite of its remoteness, Antarctica is linked to the lower-latitude regions through atmospheric and oceanic circulation. The large equator-to-pole tem- Antarctica: Geomorphology and Climate Trends 25 perature difference drives the general circulation of the atmosphere through the poleward transport of heat.

The flow of cold air to the ocean in the shallow boundary layer affects the tropospheric and stratospheric circulation, attributing to Antarctica a major role in the Southern Hemisphere as a sink for heat and persistent airborne pollutants. The transport of heat is mainly due to transient eddies (extra-tropical cyclones). When cyclones formed at mid-latitudes reach the Antarctic coasts, they are in a mature phase and are beginning to decay; however, they can be responsible for wind and precipitation in coastal regions.

The ENSO is generated by ocean–atmosphere interactions internal to the tropical Pacific and the overlying atmosphere. During El Niño events the temperature of the eastern equatorial Pacific increases, and the normally high temperature difference in the sea surface across the tropical Pacific decreases. Consequently, trade winds weaken and the sea-level pressure between Tahiti and Darwin (the Southern Oscillation) becomes anomalously negative. As the warm water extends eastwards along the equator, sea levels fall in the west and rise in the east by as much as 25 cm, and the weakened trade winds reduce the upwelling of cold water, thereby strengthening the temperature anomaly 26 R.

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