The arrival in Europe of a "long winter" could have been predicted in the fall, scientists say. According to the latest figures, which were researchers from the National Center for the Study of snow and ice in Boulder, Colorado, the ice cover in the summer of 2012 dropped to historic lows indicators.

"Floating ice is melting before our eyes. It is 80% less than it was 20 years ago. This is a serious loss — as well as a symptom of global warming. This sign tells us that warming is taking place in the Arctic, "- says Professor of American Institute of Marine Sciences of Rutgers Jennifer Francis.

Melting ice allows air to warm up and change the position of the jet stream. Jet stream air currents are responsible for the formation of cyclones and anticyclones. They determine the weather in the northern hemisphere, in Europe, Russia and the United States.

"This warming is having an impact on the jet stream. It allows cold Arctic air to penetrate far to the south. That weather that prevails now, entrenched for a long time, "- says Professor Francis.

Drifts in Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk

Winter 2012-2013 year was one of the worst in recent memory. In Russia, Europe and the U.S. dropped a record rainfall. On continental Europe hit by three snow cyclone. One of them is "struck" at the end of December, the second — in the middle of February and the third — at the end of March.

Unexpected for the inhabitants of the continent was the March cyclone. Snow fell, even in regions of Europe, where it exists in the winter is almost forgotten. In Hungary, the cyclone three times blocked the traffic on the main roads that connect the country with Austria, Italy and Ukraine. According to witnesses, in the suburbs of Budapest locals refused conventional bikes and get to work on skis.

Difficult situation in neighboring Hungary, Ukraine. The precipitate March 22 snow paralyzed traffic on the roads of Kiev. People were moving around in skiing and tobogganing. City officials could hardly cope with drifts to March 25.

In Moscow snowfall came on the night of March 23 to 24. It had been snowing non-stop for two days. The wind had dropped only by the morning of March 26. According to the forecasts of meteorologists, cold weather will stay in the capital of Russia until the end of the month, and that warming is possible only at the beginning of April.