Journal of Geographical Sciences ›› 2022, Vol. 32 ›› Issue (2): 225-240.doi: 10.1007/s11442-022-1944-2

• Special Issue: Climate Change and Its Regional Response • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Mechanism and effects of the increase in winter temperatures in the Arctic region on cold winters in Heilongjiang Province, Northeast China for the period 1961-2018

WANG Xiaodi1(), LI Yongsheng2,3,*(), ZHANG Lijuan4, SONG Shuaifeng5, PAN Tao4, REN Chong4, TAN Yulong6   

  1. 1. School of Geography and Tourism, Harbin University, Heilongjiang Province Key Laboratory of Cold Region Wetland Ecology and Environment Research, Harbin 150086, China
    2. Climate Center of Heilongjiang Province, Harbin 150030, China
    3. Key Opening Laboratory for Northeast China Cold Vortex Research, Shenyang 110166, China
    4. Heilongjiang Province Key Laboratory of Geographical Environment Monitoring and Spatial Information Service in Cold Regions, Harbin Normal University, Harbin 150025, China
    5. The State Key Laboratory of Earth Surface Processes and Resource Ecology, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875, China
    6. Hulin Meteorological Bureau of Heilongjiang Province, Hulin 158499, Heilongjiang, China
  • Received:2021-03-01 Accepted:2021-11-19 Online:2022-02-25 Published:2022-04-25
  • Contact: LI Yongsheng;
  • About author:Wang Xiaodi (1983-), PhD, E-mail:
  • Supported by:
    National Natural Science Foundation of China(41771067);National Natural Science Foundation of China(U20A2082);Key Project of Natural Science Foundation of Heilongjiang Province(ZD2020D002)


With the advent of climate change, winter temperatures have been steadily increasing in the middle-to-high latitudes of the world. However, we have not found a corresponding decrease in the number of extremely cold winters. This paper, based on Climatic Research Unit (CRU) re-analysis data, and methods of trend analysis, mutation analysis, correlation analysis, reports on the effects of Arctic warming on winter temperatures in Heilongjiang Province, Northeast China. The results show that: (1) during the period 1961- 2018, winter temperatures in the Arctic increased considerably, that is, 3.5 times those of the Equator, which has led to an increasing temperature gradient between the Arctic and the Equator. An abrupt change in winter temperatures in the Arctic was observed in 2000. (2) Due to the global warming, an extremely significant warming occurred in Heilongjiang in winter, in particular, after the Arctic mutation in 2000, although there were two warm winters, more cold winters were observed and the interannual variability of winter temperature also increased. (3) Affected by the warming trend in the Arctic, the Siberian High has intensified, and both the Arctic Vortex and the Eurasian Zonal Circulation Index has weakened. This explains the decrease in winter temperatures in Heilongjiang, and why cold winters still dominate. Moreover, the increase in temperature difference between the Arctic and the Equator is another reason for the decrease in winter temperatures in Heilongjiang.

Key words: temperature of Arctic region in winter, cold winter, effect, mechanism, Heilongjiang Province