Research published by climate scientists on Monday (September 28) warns that global warming is making oceans more stable. It is increasing surface temperatures and reducing the amount of carbon they can absorb. He warned that these findings have “profound and disturbing” implications.
Man-made climate change has increased the earth’s surface temperature. This is causing atmospheric instability and exacerbating extreme weather events such as storms.
The researchers say that in the ocean, higher temperatures have different effects, slowing down the mixing between the warming surface and the cool, oxygen-rich water below.
This “stratification” of the ocean means that less deep water rises toward the surface of oxygen and nutrients. Meanwhile, the surface water absorbs less atmospheric carbon dioxide to bury it deep.
In a report published in the journal Nature Climate Change, an international team of climate scientists stated that they found that from 1960 to 2018, the global stratification has increased by 5.3% “substantially”.
Most of this stabilization occurs on the surface, mainly due to temperature rise.
They say that the melting of sea ice has also exacerbated the process. This means that more fresh water (lighter than salt water) also accumulates on the ocean surface.
“Seemingly technological discoveries have far-reaching and disturbing effects.”
The study’s co-author, climate science professor Michael Mann at Pennsylvania State University, said in a comment published in Newsweek.
These include the possibility of more “strongly destructive hurricanes” as the ocean surface warms.
Mann also pointed out that reduced carbon dioxide absorption may mean that carbon pollution accumulates faster than expected in the atmosphere.
He warned that sophisticated climate models often underestimate ocean stratification and may underestimate its impact.
As the higher upper waters receive less oxygen, it also has an impact on marine life.
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) stated that by absorbing a quarter of man-made carbon dioxide and absorbing more than 90% of the heat generated by greenhouse gases, the ocean allows the population to survive-but at a high cost.
The ocean has become acidic, which may weaken its ability to absorb carbon dioxide. Warm surface water has expanded the strength and range of deadly tropical storms. Ocean heat waves wiped out coral reefs, accelerated the melting of glaciers and ice sheets, and pushed up sea levels.
Last year, a study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences calculated that by the end of this century, climate change will cause nearly one-fifth of living organisms measured by mass to empty the ocean.
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