August 9, 2020

Grothe Pens Article on El Niño in ‘Geophysical Research Letters’

UMW Assistant Professor of Earth and Environmental Sciences Pam Grothe has published a paper – Enhanced El NiñoSouthern Oscillation Variability in Recent Decades – in Geophysical Research Letters. The biweekly peer-reviewed scientific journal of geoscience is published by the American Geophysical Union.

The article includes the following plain language summary:

Recent modeling studies suggest El Niño will intensify due to greenhouse warming, Grothe’s paper states. Here, new coral reconstructions of the El Niño‐Southern Oscillation (ENSO) record sustained, significant changes in ENSO variability over the last 7,000yrs, and imply that ENSO extremes of the last 50 years are significantly stronger than those of the pre‐industrial era in the central tropical Pacific. These records suggest that El Niño events already may be intensifying due to anthropogenic climate change.

“In short, this work suggests that El Nino events may already be more extreme than before the industrial era,” Grothe said, “suggesting that anthropogenic climate change may be the reason, as the climate models predict.”