Paris, 30 March 2015

Volcanic eruptions durably impact North Atlantic climate

Particles emitted during major volcanic eruptions cool the atmosphere due to a 'parasol' effect that reflects sunlight. The direct impact of these particles in the atmosphere is fairly short, lasting two to three years. However, they alter for more than 20 years the North Atlantic Ocean circulation, which connects surface and deep currents and influences the climate in Europe. This is the conclusion of a study by researchers from the CNRS, IRD, CEA and Météo‐France1 who combined, for the first time, climate simulations, recent oceanographic data, and information from natural climate records. Their findings2 are published in Nature Communications on March 30th.

To download the press release:Volcans_Climat


1From the Laboratoire Environnements et Paléo-environnements Océaniques et Continentaux (CNRS/Université de Bordeaux), Centre National de Recherches Météorologiques - Groupe d'Etude de l'Atmosphère Météorologique (CNRS/Météo France), and Laboratoire d'Océanographie et du Climat: Expérimentations et Approches Numériques (CNRS/UPMC/MNHN/IRD) and Laboratoire des Sciences du Climat et de l'Environnement (CNRS/CEA/UVSQ), both part of the Institut Pierre Simon Laplace.
2The project was funded by the Agence Nationale de la Recherche via the 'Groenland Vert' project in the 'Changements Environnementaux Planétaires et Société' program (2011-2015).


Bidecadal North Atlantic ocean circulation variability controlled by timing of volcanic eruptions.
Didier Swingedouw, Pablo Ortega, Juliette Mignot, Eric Guilyardi, Valérie Masson‐Delmotte, Paul G.Butler, Myriam Khodri and Roland Séférian. Nature Communications, 30 March 2015.


CNRS researcher l Didier Swingedouw l T +33 (0)5 40 00 89 04 l
CNRS Press Office l Alexiane Agullo l T +33 (0)1 44 96 43 90 l


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