EYEWITNESS WEATHER (WBRE/WYOU-TV) — Snow in Siberia and winter in Pennsylvania don’t seem to go together.
But for Judah Cohen, who is the Director Of Seasonal Forecasting At Atmospheric And Environmental Research says otherwise.
That’s the first thing Chief Meteorologist Josh Hodell asked him: how did he make this connection?
Judah: “It was a bit of an accidental discovery. I was looking at snow cover in North America and see how that influences our weather”
Judah: “And I just happened to change snow cover not only in North America but also Eurasisa to be consistent.”
Judah: “We found when snow cover is high across the whole hemisphere in whole North America; we tend to get more of a Greenland blocking, high pressure across Greenland and more severe winter weather”
Judah: “And it turned out when I looked at it, it wasn’t North American snow cover that had a strong relationship with our weather or east coast, but Eurasia snow cover”
Judah: “It was all Eurasia snow cover that had strongest relationship with our weather”
Josh: “Describe the atmospheric process? Snow cover in Eurasia, so what’s the domino effect that impacts us here?”
Judah: “So when you have the presence of snow cover compared to the absence of snow cover, much more energy is reflected out to space”
Judah: “When you have above normal snow cover, it reflects rays back out into space and this tends to cool Siberian region”
Judah: “It’s easier for that col air to spread west into Europe or north over North Pole and down east side of Rockies into Canada and U.S.”
Judah: “What we found with snow cover is best to think of stratospheric polar vortex. Because it has to go through the 3D, it has to go vertically as well, it takes time for that to happen”
Judah: “I can use snow cover in October to predict weather in January or February because of this expanse of time”
Josh: “Where does this stack up with some of those more common drivers for winter weather?”
Judah: “Snow cover, its impact is not as strong in western North America. It’s influence is stronger in the eastern part of North America, really more of Great Lakes into Northeast.”
Josh: “Thank you, sir. I appreciate your time tonight.”
Judah: “My please, thank you for having me on”
Cohen does not plan to stop now. The research will continue into the polar vortex, Siberian snow cover, and its influences across North America.