How the Climate System Works

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

  •  The Sun is the main source of power for the Earth's climate machine. Space-based measurements, begun in 1978, indicate Earth receives an average of 1,361 W/m<sup>2</sup> of incoming sunlight, and the amount varies by about one-tenth of a percent over the course of the 11-year solar cycle. 

  • The Pacific-North American teleconnection pattern influences regional weather by affecting the strength and location of the East Asian jet stream, and subsequently, the weather it delivers to North America.