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Is the Coriolis force affected by climate change on Earth?
Question Date: 2016-09-30
Answer 1:

A The Coriolis force would not actually be affected by climate change. The reason for this is that the Coriolis force is a function of Earth’s rotation. Since Earth rotates faster at the equator than it does at the poles, circulating air becomes deflected.

More specifically, circulating air becomes deflected to the right in the Northern Hemisphere and to the left in the Southern Hemisphere (it does not matter if air is traveling from the equator to the poles or from the poles to the equator, the deflection pattern will not change).

Therefore, since climate change has no effect on Earth’s rotation, and the Coriolis force is dependent on Earth’s rotation, climate change would not affect the Coriolis force. Below is an image of how circulating winds are deflected on Earth in the Northern and Southern Hemispheres; in the case below, warm air is traveling towards the poles from the equator and being deflected to the right in the Northern Hemisphere and to the left in the Southern Hemisphere.

click here to see the picture

Visit the NOAA site below for more details:


Another great article about the Coriolis Effect, by the National Geographic Society, can be found online at the website below:


Answer 2:

The Coriolis Effect is caused by the fact that the Earth is rotating. Its strength depends on two things: (1) how big you are (the bigger, the stronger the effect), and (2) how far you are from the equator (it's strongest at the poles and doesn't exist at the equator). Weather systems are very large, so unless a weather system is located directly on the equator, it will get spun by the Coriolis Effect.

Climate change may affect the size of weather systems, which may change how much the Coriolis Effect can actually affect said weather systems. For example, tropical monsoon thunderstorms are smaller than the warm and cold fronts that develop at temperate latitudes, and climate warming may see an expansion of the monsoon and reduction in frontal weather. However, the Coriolis Effect itself is due purely to the Earth's rotation and has nothing to do with climate change.

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