This winter surprised many people around the world. On some days, Texas was colder than Alaska. Cold persisting weather in areas with no recent history of heavy snowfall may raise questions about the connection between climate change and these unusual weather events. Even some wonder whether this voids reasonings of global warming. The cold spells are natural parts of weather cycles. They are rare but are natural. Their occurrence does not defy global warming, as no single event can be proof of acceptance or rejection. Global warming does not mean that extreme cold weathers will disappear, rather they might be less frequent. But what was the possible connection between global warming and the last cold spells? There are certain atmospheric patterns that shape our perception of local climates. One of these patterns is the difference between the temperature of poles and lower latitudes that causes air circulation. This circulation leads to jet streams. Jet streams are like rivers in the atmosphere that drive air. Global warming has caused the poles to become warm. The disruption in the balance of temperature difference between poles and equator can weaken these jet streams. A weak jet stream simply moves slowly and stays longer than expected in an area hit by cold spells. Another effect of global warming on these jet streams can be spread of them where they have been less frequent previously. A jet stream in normal conditions, i.e. without any disturbance of global warming, is expected to have some predicted passages. But upon interruptions, a weak jet stream tends to deviate from the predicted passage and becomes a divergent stream instead of moving in a pre-defined pathway. As can be seen, there can be connections between climate change and recent cold spells, however, further research is required. Until then, these justifications, suggest the responsibility of all of us in the climate crisis. What happens in Texas may have connections to the behavior of people who live thousands of miles away. Therefore, we all have our role to stop climate change, and this public engagement is the key action to be taken to ensure that we are moving toward net-zero goals.

References:

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2021/02/17/global-warming-record-cold-intense-storms-tornadoes/6780433002/

https://public.wmo.int/en/media/news/extreme-weather-hits-usa-europe

https://abcnews.go.com/Politics/climate-change-affects-winter-weather/story?id=75971290