Brief Communication Arising

Nature 455, E2-E3 (11 September 2008) | doi:10.1038/nature07257; Received 23 January 2008; Accepted 12 May 2008

Recent Arctic warming vertical structure contested

A. N. Grant1, S. Brönnimann1 & L. Haimberger2

Arising from: R. G. Graversen, T. Mauritsen, M. Tjernström, E. Källén & G. Svensson Nature 451, 53–56 (2008); Graversen et al. reply

The vertical structure of the recent Arctic warming contains information about the processes governing Arctic climate trends. Graversen et al. argue1, on the basis of ERA-40 reanalysis2 data, that a distinct maximum in 1979–2001 warm-season (April–October) Arctic temperature trends appears around 3 km above ground. Here we show that this is due to the heterogeneous nature of the data source, which incorporates information from satellites and radiosondes. Radiosonde data alone suggest the warming was strongest near ground.

  1. Institute for Atmospheric and Climate Science, ETH Zurich, Universitätstrasse 16, CH-8092 Zurich, Switzerland.
    Email: andrea.grant@env.ethz.ch
  2. Department of Meteorology and Geophysics, University of Vienna, Althanstrasse 14, A-1090 Vienna, Austria.