Wind speeds drop across US and northern Europe

Worldwide: Wind speeds were generally below normal In the first quarter of 2013 across northern North America and Eurasia, the west coast of the US, the Sahara region of Africa and southern Argentina and Chile, a report from renewable energy consultants AWS Truepower has revealed.

Map showing wind-speed anomalies
Map showing wind-speed anomalies

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However, winds were well above normal across southern Europe and northern Africa, as well as in southern Africa, eastern Australia, and most of South America.

The largest wind speed anomalies of the quarter, both positive and negative, were found in Europe and northern Africa, a pattern that AWS believes can be explained in part by the Arctic Oscillation (AO).

The AO index was negative throughout the quarter and strongly negative in March. A negative AO is often associated with a more southerly European winter storm track than usual, bringing much higher than average winds to the Mediterranean, while depressing winds in northern Europe

AWS has released a redesigned and expanded version of its Wind Trends Bulletin, a free quarterly report that examines deviations in global wind conditions from historical norms. The new bulletin has expanded from Europe, India and North America to include South America, Africa and the Middle East, Asia, and Oceania.

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