Signatures of the Antarctic ozone hole in Southern Hemisphere surface climate change

David W. J. Thompson, Susan Solomon, Paul J. Kushner, Matthew H. England, Kevin M. Grise, David J. Karoly

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Anthropogenic emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases have driven and will continue to drive widespread climate change at the Earth's surface. But surface climate change is not limited to the effects of increasing atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations. Anthropogenic emissions of ozone-depleting gases also lead to marked changes in surface climate, through the radiative and dynamical effects of the Antarctic ozone hole. The influence of the Antarctic ozone hole on surface climate is most pronounced during the austral summer season and strongly resembles the most prominent pattern of large-scale Southern Hemisphere climate variability, the Southern Annular Mode. The influence of the ozone hole on the Southern Annular Mode has led to a range of significant summertime surface climate changes not only over Antarctica and the Southern Ocean, but also over New Zealand, Patagonia and southern regions of Australia. Surface climate change as far equatorward as the subtropical Southern Hemisphere may have also been affected by the ozone hole. Over the next few decades, recovery of the ozone hole and increases in greenhouse gases are expected to have significant but opposing effects on the Southern Annular Mode and its attendant climate impacts during summer.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)741–749
Number of pages9
JournalNature Geoscience
Early online date23 Oct 2011
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2011

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