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Oceans Are Warming 40% Faster Than Predicted



12 January 2019 of Steve Hanley


Flash News! The oceans are heating 40% faster than expected a few years ago. This discovery is contained in a new study published on January 11 in the journal Science. Now let's go back to our usual programming, already under way. Go back to sleep, Mr. President. Nothing to see here. Move along

  ocean warming

For those of you interested in learning more about this report, Zeke Hausfather, an analyst of energy systems at the independent climate research group Berkeley Earth and author of the study, recounts New York Times "2018 will be the hottest year ever recorded for the Earth's oceans. 2017 was the hottest year and 2016 was the year warmer.The oceans are indeed the best thermometer we have for changes in the Earth. "

So the oceans become a little warmer. So? It just means that the water will not be so damn cold when we go to the beach, right? We can simply go right instead of freezing our cajones . This is a good thing, is not it? In fact, researchers say the oceans absorb 93% of the sun's heat. The latest studies suggest that their ability to absorb more heat is rapidly coming to an end.

When that happens, the atmosphere will become warmer than it already is, making the effects of a planet that heats up even more. Faster ice, more desertification, more powerful storms, greater rains and, of course, rising sea levels. The oceans of the world are at a critical point. Think of it as a pot of hot water on a stove. It looks just like any other pot of water until it starts to boil. Then, suddenly, in a few seconds, it becomes a steamy, seething cauldron.

"If the ocean did not absorb so much heat, the surface of the ground would heat up much faster than now," says Malin L. Pinsky, an associate professor in the Department of Ecology, Evolution and Natural Resources at Rutgers University. "In fact, the ocean is saving us from the big heat right now."

How do you measure the temperature of the oceans?

Climate deniers will immediately attack scientists who have prepared the latest studies. The oceans are vast. It is impossible to accurately record and monitor the temperature so that the results are inherently suspect. Only a group of greedy people roamed the world on vacation, hoping to suck a few dollars from the government to support there the desire not to have a real job like overthrowing hamburgers or storage racks like others do.

Well, actually, they have a point. Measuring the temperature of the oceans is really, really difficult. It's like playing three-dimensional chess because temperatures vary according to depth and surface. And any measure is only valid as the tools used to perform the operation.

Not long ago, the researchers towed the actual thermometers behind the ships and recorded their results. Today scientists use a fleet of floating electronic buoys that are part of the Argo network. These buoys go up and down for a period of days, then float to the surface where they transmit the data collected to satellite researchers.

Lijing Cheng of the Institute of Atmospheric Physics in Beijing is the lead author of the latest study. He says that the waters closest to the surface have warmed up more and that heating has accelerated over the past two decades. The latest data indicate that the rate of temperature increase is 40% higher than that estimated by the IPCC in a report published in 2014.

Effects of the warmest oceans

We have heard of the rise in the level of sea ​​caused by melting glaciers and ice caps. Few people realize that much of the increase in ocean levels has so far been caused by one of the laws of nature. Hot water takes up more space than cold water. This means that most of the water level recorded to date is due to the warmer oceans. The increase from melting ice will come later.

The warmest oceans have implications far beyond the most powerful storms and the loss of coral reefs. Dr. Pinsky of Rutgers states: "As the ocean warms up, it is pushing the fish to new places, and we are already seeing that this is causing conflicts between countries, it is spreading far beyond simple fish. in trade wars, it is transformed into diplomatic disputes, in some cases leading to a breakdown of international relations. "

Oh, great. Another reason why humans divide themselves into clans at war instead of meeting to fight a common threat. Is not there anything in the human psyche that allows reason to ignore the fear of our own species? You can probably understand the answer to this question even if you are not an experienced psychologist.

Cautious optimism

Even in the face of these latest discoveries, Zeke Hausfather is cautiously optimistic, saying that efforts to mitigate global warming, including the 2015 Paris climate agreement, will help. "I think there is a reason for trust to avoid the worst results, even if we are not on track for the results we want". As my old Irish grandmother would say, "Hope is not a plan".

  Graph of Globalization

Tip of Hat to Community Member of CT Agelbert

A rational strategy in the future would be to stop electing politicians who propagate lies about how climate science is a whole bunch of things designed to destroy the free enterprise system. There will not be a free business system if all customers who need to buy things to keep the machine working from money are dead.


Tags: IPCC, oceanic temperature, rising sea level


Information on the author

Steve Hanley Steve writes about the interface between technology and sustainability from his home in Rhode Island and from anywhere else the Singularity can bring it. His motto is "Democracy is socialism". Do you have a problem with that?

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