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Advances in Meteorology
Volume 2018, Article ID 5746191, 12 pages
https://doi.org/10.1155/2018/5746191
Research Article

Continentality and Oceanity in the Mid and High Latitudes of the Northern Hemisphere and Their Links to Atmospheric Circulation

Institute of Geosciences, Vilnius University, Vilnius, Lithuania

Correspondence should be addressed to Egidijus Rimkus; tl.uv.fg@sukmir.sujidige

Received 27 March 2018; Revised 20 July 2018; Accepted 5 September 2018; Published 30 September 2018

Academic Editor: Roberto Fraile

Copyright © 2018 Edvinas Stonevicius et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

The climate continentality or oceanity is one of the main characteristics of the local climatic conditions, which varies with global and regional climate change. This paper analyzes indexes of continentality and oceanity, as well as their variations in the middle and high latitudes of the Northern Hemisphere in the period 1950–2015. Climatology and changes in continentality and oceanity are examined using Conrad’s Continentality Index (CCI) and Kerner’s Oceanity Index (KOI). The impact of Northern Hemisphere teleconnection patterns on continentality/oceanity conditions was also evaluated. According to CCI, continentality is more significant in Northeast Siberia and lower along the Pacific coast of North America as well as in coastal areas in the northern part of the Atlantic Ocean. However, according to KOI, areas of high continentality do not precisely correspond with those of low oceanity, appearing to the south and west of those identified by CCI. The spatial patterns of changes in continentality thus seem to be different. According to CCI, a statistically significant increase in continentality has only been found in Northeast Siberia. In contrast, in the western part of North America and the majority of Asia, continentality has weakened. According to KOI, the climate has become increasingly continental in Northern Europe and the majority of North America and East Asia. Oceanity has increased in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago and in some parts of the Mediterranean region. Changes in continentality were primarily related to the increased temperature of the coldest month as a consequence of changes in atmospheric circulation: the positive phase of North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) and East Atlantic (EA) patterns has dominated in winter in recent decades. Trends in oceanity may be connected with the diminishing extent of seasonal sea ice and an associated increase in sea surface temperature.