The Madden-Julian Oscillation Changing in Warming World

Alex Wierbinski's picture

By Alex Wierbinski - Posted on 03 January 2019


Climate-Changing The Madden-Julian Oscillation
How Climate Changes affect MJO, by Eric Maloney/Colorado State University.
How Warming Climate affects MJO behavior, by Eric Maloney/Colorado State University:

"Current climate is represented in (a), and a warmer climate in (b). As the climate warms, the mean vertical gradient in water vapor (blue) increases. Tropospheric temperature (orange shading) will also increase more than the lower atmosphere."


The Madden-Julian Oscillation

Reliable tropical weather pattern to change in a warming climate,
Colorado State University, December 27, 2018.


“Every month or two, a massive pulse of clouds, rainfall and wind moves eastward around the Earth near the equator, providing the tropics their famous thunderstorms.”

“It has profound effects on weather in distant places, including the United States. Atmospheric scientists have long studied how the Madden-Julian Oscillation modulates extreme weather events across the globe, from hurricanes to floods to droughts.”

Climate Change Effect
“...attributes future changes in the behavior of the Madden-Julian Oscillation to anthropogenic global warming.”

MJO Changes
Precip, not Wind, Increases
“...while the Madden-Julian Oscillation's precipitation variations are likely to increase in intensity under a warmer climate, wind variations are likely to increase at a slower rate, or even decrease. That's in contrast to the conventional wisdom of a warming climate producing a more intense Madden-Julian Oscillation, and thus an across-the-board increase in extreme weather.”

“...we don't think this can be generalized to wind as well."”

Decrease in Temp Shifts
“...the Madden-Julian Oscillation's impact on remote areas may gradually decrease. Degradation in the oscillation's wind signal may thus diminish meteorologists' ability to predict extreme weather events.”


Bottom Line
As the world warms, the difference between the superhot Equator and the frigid North will actually decrease, which will likely lower wind velocities. The Equatorial Zone’s expansion, and the eventual warming of the whole Arctic, will eventually lead to a planet with much less seasonal temperature changes.

It will be more and less hot, with cold no more than a memory.


Here’s some MJO reference materials from the,

HIGH SIERRA WEATHER Theory and Practices: ENSO, the MJO, and the PDO,”


ENSO, MJO, and PDO Information

El Nino Information, Real Time Observations & Information

We observe the cycle of warming and cooling off the Coast of Peru and Western South America.

MJO Madden Julian Oscillation

"The Madden-Julian Oscillation is a major fluctuation in tropical circulation and rainfall that moves eastward along the equator, and circles the entire globe in a span of 30–60 days on average."

PDO Pacific Decadal Oscillation
Currently at a Negative Value
"The Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) is often described as a long-lived El Niño-like pattern of Pacific climate variability."

The PDO can be viewed as a long-term, slow "sloshing" of warm water back and forth across the Central Pacific Ocean, while El Nino-La Nina operates on a quicker cycle.



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