Whither the Winds in 2015?

Analysis of the anomalously low winds across the U.S.

Whither the winds in 2015? report

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During the first half of 2015, large swaths of the United States (U.S.) experienced anomalously low winds, whose geographic extent and longevity eclipses any similar event in recent history. Ebbs in windiness are of course commonplace, driven by the passage of weather systems—some fair, some stormy—but rarely do so such lulls last beyond a few days. A number of claims and hypotheses have been made about the connection between the low winds and various climatic drivers—some are highly speculative. Unfortunately, such claims greatly outnumber established results. To help remedy this situation, this note attempts to illuminate the characteristics of the anomalous winds and, through careful quantitative analysis, offers one plausible explanation for their origin.

Whither the winds in 2015?