The average temperature in the United States has risen rapidly and drastically since 1980, and recent decades have been the warmest of the past 1,500 years, according to a sweeping federal climate change report awaiting approval by the Trump administration.

Anthropogenic climate change is expected to strengthen the vertical wind shears at aircraft cruising altitudes within the atmospheric jet streams. Such a strengthening would increase the prevalence of the shear instabilities that generate clear-air turbulence. Climate modelling studies have indicated that the amount of moderate-or-greater clear-air turbulence on transatlantic flight routes in winter will increase significantly in future as the climate changes.

Discriminating the climate impacts of half-degree warming increments is high on the post-Paris science agenda. Here the researchers argue that evidence from the observational record provides useful guidance for such assessments.

The dramatic warming of the Arctic over the last three decades has reduced both the thickness and extent of sea ice, opening opportunities for business in diverse sectors and increasing human exposure to meteorological hazards in the Arctic. It has been suggested that these changes in environmental conditions have led to an increase in extreme cyclones in the region, therefore increasing this hazard.

A likely consequence of global warming will be the redistribution of Earth’s rain belts, affecting water availability for many of Earth’s inhabitants. We consider three ways in which planetary warming might influence the global distribution of precipitation. The first possibility is that rainfall in the tropics will increase and that the subtropics and mid-latitudes will become more arid. A second possibility is that Earth’s thermal equator, around which the planet’s rain belts and dry zones are organized, will migrate northward.