Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Ocean Heat Contet Increase Is Accelerating

One of the most common omissions deniers make is to ignore the oceans. Approximately 93% of all heat goes into the oceans. So, when we discuss 'global' warming, in it imperative we make sure to include the ocean. They are, after all, part of the globe.

Now, it looks like it is even more important that we realized. A new paper by Gleckler, et al. recently published in Nature Climate Change reported the results of a study of new data on the deep ocean and found warming is penetrating even into the very deep ocean - below 2300 feet. In fact, they found that 35% of the ocean's heat uptake is going into the deep water. 

That alone is bad because it means another region of the planet is being changed and the results of the change are not likely to be in our favor. But, it gets worse because they found that half of the ocean warming has occurred since 1997. In other words, the amount of heat being stored in the ocean is very large and is increasing at a faster pace than before. Take a look at this figure from their paper.

Source: Gleckler,et al.   
Ocean heat uptake (percentage of total 1865–2015 change) for the CMIP5 MMM layers.

We are currently witnessing what heat stored in the oceans can do to us. The El Nino event we are experiencing - a record large one - is fueled by heat stored in the ocean. As this heat in the oceans increases, it is reasonable to expect that the dangers from severe El Ninos and other events will also increase.

Something to look forward to.

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