Global warming likely to cause colder and snowier winters, scientists say

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Global warming likely to cause colder and snowier winters, scientists say
This image was captured by NOAA's GOES-East satellite on Jan. 6, 2014, at 11:01 a.m. EST (1601 UTC). A frontal system that brought rain to the coast is draped from north to south along the U.S. East Coast. Behind the front lies the clearer skies bitter cold air associated with the polar vortex.
A blanket of fog covers Lake Michigan along the Chicago shoreline Monday, Jan. 6, 2014 as temperatures dove well below zero and wind chills were expected to reach 40 to 50 below. A whirlpool of frigid, dense air known as a "polar vortex" descended Monday into much of the U.S. (AP Photo/Teresa Crawford)
The Chicago Skyline sits as a backdrop as fog drifts across Monroe Harbor with temperatures well below zero and wind chills expected to reach 40 to 50 below, Monday, Jan. 6, 2014, in Chicago. A whirlpool of frigid, dense air known as a "polar vortex" descended Monday into much of the U.S. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
Jim Houston struggles to cross snow covered streets is in below zero temperatures Monday, Jan. 6, 2014, in Springfield, Ill. A whirlpool of frigid, dense air known as a "polar vortex" descended into much of the U.S. and plunged temperatures to record lows. (AP Photo/Seth Perlman)
Snow blankets trees at the Rosy Mound Natural Area, a park in Ottawa County's Grand Haven Township, Mich., Sunday Jan. 5, 2014. A whirlpool of frigid, dense air known as a "polar vortex" descended Monday into much of the U.S. (AP Photo/The Muskegon Chronicle, Ken Stevens) ALL LOCAL TV OUT; LOCAL TV INTERNET OUT
ONTARIO, CANADA- MARCH 10: A group of ice fishers gather on the frozen surface of Great Lakes after the Niagara Falls frozen over due to the extreme cold weather, Canada, North America, on March 10, 2014. The Polar Vortex brought record cold temperatures from Kansas to Maine. The views attract attention by many photographers and tourists. (Photo by Seyit Aydogan/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
ONTARIO, CANADA- MARCH 10: A group of ice fishers gather on the frozen surface of Great Lakes after the Niagara Falls frozen over due to the extreme cold weather, Canada, North America, on March 10, 2014. The Polar Vortex brought record cold temperatures from Kansas to Maine. The views attract attention by many photographers and tourists. (Photo by Seyit Aydogan/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
ONTARIO, CANADA- MARCH 10:A view of the Niagara Falls frozen over due to the extreme cold weather, Canada, North America, on March 10, 2014. The Polar Vortex brought record cold temperatures from Kansas to Maine. The views attract attention by many photographers and tourists. (Photo by Seyit Aydogan/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
In this Wednesday, Feb. 26, 2014 photo, bundled up pedestrians walk past an advertisement for South America and Central America in the window of a travel agency in Blue Island, Ill. With yet another polar vortex like storm system bearing down on many parts of the country, suffering Midwesterners dream about being anywhere but home. Florida resorts and other tourist operations have been fueling this with email and other ad campaigns dangling a little sunshine and beach scenes in front of us. (AP Photo/M. Spencer Green)
In this Wednesday, Feb. 26, 2014 photo, bundled up commuters walk past an advertisement for the Hawaiian Islands near a train stop in Chicago. With yet another polar vortex like storm system bearing down on many parts of the country, suffering Midwesterners dream about being anywhere but home. Florida resorts and other tourist operations have been fueling this with email and other ad campaigns dangling a little sunshine and beach scenes in front of us. (AP Photo/M. Spencer Green)
This Feb. 18, 2014 photo provided by VISIT FLORIDA shows a fiberglass mannequin atop a taxi in Philadelphia promoting the warmth of Florida as winter rolls on in the northern parts of the country with the return of yet another polar vortex like storm system. Florida resorts and other tourist operations have been fueling this with email and other ad campaigns dangling a little sunshine and beach scenes in front of us. (AP Photo/Courtesy of VISIT FLORIDA)
In this Jan. 10, 2104 photo, the city of Niagara Falls, N.Y., sits peacefully in the background of an ice filled Niagara Falls. A slow thaw has begun with temperatures expected to climb into the low 50's for the upcoming weekend. (AP Photo/Nick LoVerde)
Pedestrians gather at a bus stop during snowfall along Lexington Avenue, Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2014 in New York. A second polar vortex in just a couple of weeks will bring snow to many parts of the country with approximately 4-8 inches expected in the New York City area. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)
This image captured by NOAA's GOES-East satellite on Jan. 6, 2014, at 11:01 a.m. EST shows a frontal system that is draped from north to south along the U.S. East Coast. Behind the front lies the clearer skies bitter cold air associated with the polar vortex. Forecasters said some 187 million people in all could feel the effects of the "polar vortex" by the time it spread across the country on Tuesday, Jan. 7. 2013. (AP Photo/NASA)
U.S. Postal Service letter carrier Jamie Jasmon struggles through snow and below zero temperatures while delivering the mail Monday, Jan. 6, 2014, in Springfield, Ill. A whirlpool of frigid, dense air known as a "polar vortex" descended into much of the U.S. and plunged temperatures to record lows. (AP Photo/Seth Perlman)
NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 08: A man bundles up against the cold on the afternoon of January 8, 2014 in New York City. Today was slightly warmer than yesterday, when a polar vortex descended from the Arctic on much of the country, though today's temperatures were still well below freezing. (Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images)
CHICAGO - JANUARY 07: Chicago Skyline, as steam rises from Lake Michigan due to the 'Polar Vortex' sending temperatures well below zero in Chicago, Illinois on JANUARY 07, 2014. (Photo By Raymond Boyd/Getty Images)
CHICAGO - JANUARY 07: Steam rises from the Chicago River due to the 'Polar Vortex' sending temperatures well below zero in Chicago, Illinois on JANUARY 07, 2014. (Photo By Raymond Boyd/Getty Images)
CROFTON, MD. - JANUARY 7: Canada Geese rest on a frozen pond as bitter temperatures engulfed the Washington area on Tuesday, courtesy of the frigid air mass that descended on Monday and spread across the nation on January, 7 2014 in Crofton, MD. (Photo by Jonathan Newton / The Washington Post via Getty Images)
ONTARIO, CANADA- MARCH 10:A view of the Niagara Falls frozen over due to the extreme cold weather, Canada, North America, on March 10, 2014. The Polar Vortex brought record cold temperatures from Kansas to Maine. The views attract attention by many photographers and tourists. (Photo by Seyit Aydogan/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
In this March 21, 2014 photo released by Lake Superior State University, a 12-foot snowman effigy, dubbed this year "Mr. Polar Vortex," goes up in smoke during Lake Superior State University's annual snowman-burning to welcome spring in Sault Ste. Marie, Mich. The event, which had to be postponed from Thursday due to high winds, has been celebrated since 1971. (AP Photo/Lake Superior State University, John Shibley)
In this Jan. 11, 2014 photo, the United States side of Niagara Falls in New York has begun to thaw after the recent "polar vortex" that affected millions in the United States and Canada. (AP Photo/Nick LoVerde)
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By RYAN GORMAN

Scientists now believe that global warming is to blame for extreme cold snaps in North America during the winter months – and that it will only keep happening.

The "polar vortex" that plunged Canada and the U.S. into historical cold last winter is said by researchers to have occurred because melting polar ice changes weather patterns, according to a study published earlier this month.

A team of Korean and American scientists asserted in a new study that the melting ice causes the northern jet stream (upper level air flow) to shift south and bring polar air with it.

The polar ice is melting because warmer water is riding the Gulf Stream (ocean currents) from tropical regions of the Atlantic Ocean to an area north of Scandinavia.



This causes masses of warm air to destabilize the normally strong polar air mass and send brutally cold air right at Canada and the U.S., according to Slate.

As the atmosphere continues to warm, and ocean water temperatures rise, this effect will only become more pronounced, researchers argue.

The surprising result of global warming, or climate change, will be colder, snowier winters across both countries.

The Eurasian supercontinent also experiences this cooling effect, according to study co-author Seong-Joon Kim.

Kim told Slate the three-year study was inspired by two record-breaking cold snaps over the past decade in his native Korea.

He also blamed a number of other factors, but said the loss of Arctic Sea ice is serving only to intensify the phenomenon.

Are Rumors of Record-Breaking Snowfall This Winter True?
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