Climate Change — The Oceans Fight With a Warmer Planet

climate change

We’ve witnessed how climate change is influencing the ocean’s biology so far from algae blooms that cover coastal marine ecosystems, to bleaching events that killed the coral. Our planet is getting warmer due to climate change, and such a thing is also affecting the physics of ocean circulation.

Scientists from the University of British Columbia, the University of Brest, and the University of Southampton teamed up and succeeded to examined the North Atlantic Ocean’s water masses. What they found is genuinely intriguing. As you might know, the oceans have a significant role in shielding our planet from climate change.

The ocean waters can absorb the heat and the carbon dioxide at the surface and move it in its deepness. The team examined more such a phenomenon and published their results in the journal Nature Climate Change.

Oceans Got a Way With the Warming Planet

A layer in the North Atlantic Ocean, a water mass dubbed the STMW (the North Atlantic Subtropical Mode Water), proves to be very efficient. It can draw the carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere, approximately 20 % of the whole carbon dioxide uptake.

The layer is also a significant reservoir of nutrients for phytoplankton. The team of scientists utilized data from two of the world’s biggest-working open-ocean research programs. One is the Hydrostation “S,” and the other is the Bermuda Atlantic Time-series Study, known as BATS. The team’s results indicate that up to 93 % of STMW has been wasted in the last decade.

Such a loss is linked with the relevant warming of the STMW, approximately 0.5 to 0.71 degrees Celsius. Professor Nick Bates, the primary investigator of the BATS program and BIOS senior scientists, released a statement.

The New Study

Bates said: “We find that the loss is correlated with different climate change indicators, such as increased surface ocean heat content, suggesting that ocean warming may have played a role in the reduced STMW formation of the past decade.”

These findings outline a concerning connection where ocean warming is diminishing STMW formation and altering the anatomy of the North Atlantic. Climate change affects everything, anyway!

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