Ocean Temperature In 2019 Was The Warmest In Recorded Human History

Eloise Marshall
January 15, 2020

The study, published in the journal Advances in Atmospheric Sciences, said that past year the ocean was 0.075 Celsius hotter than the historical average between 1981-2010.

It's important to pay attention to ocean temperatures, scientists say, because that's where most of the heat on the planet is stored, and the changes in temperature are undeniable evidence of climate change.

A study released this week from the Institute of Atmospheric Physics/Chinese Academy of Sciences, and Science Press and Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, claimed the world's oceans are warming at the same rate as if five atomic bombs were dropped into the sea every second.

The researchers used new analysis methods to measure ocean temperature from the surface to 2,000 meters deep.

Scientists believe it has decimated marine life from plankton to whales and killed 100 million cod.

For the study, scientists compiled ocean water temperature measurements from across the globe, mostly measurements recorded by Argo floats. "We found that 2019 was not only the warmest year on record, it displayed the largest single-year increase of the entire decade, a sobering reminder that human-caused heating of our planet continues unabated", says co-author an Penn State professor Michael Mann.

Researchers found that between 1987-2019, ocean warming was 450 percent greater than during the earlier time period.

Writing in the journal Advances in Atmospheric Sciences, study author Professor John Abraham, of St Thomas University in the U.S., said: 'Global warming is real, and it's getting worse.

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"The key to answering this question is in the oceans-that's where the vast majority of heat ends up", said Abraham.

"I'm particularly anxious about the effect of Southern Ocean warming on the destabilization of the Antarctic Ice Shelves, which could lead to not only feet but meters of sea level rise by the end of this century", Mann told UPI.

However, the oceans will take more time to respond to atmospheric and land environments.

The new study of ocean heat content strengthens other recent signs of global warming. "There are no reasonable alternatives aside from the human emissions of heat trapping gases to explain this heating", Cheng added.

One such marine heat wave in the North Pacific, dubbed "the blob", was first detected in 2013 and continued through 2015. Nevertheless, the ocean surface, where hurricanes draw their energy, and the air just above it has warmed nearly 1 degree Celsius from the pre-industrial era.

The following year, a hotspot in the Atlantic Ocean near the Carolinas led to Hurricane Florence.

"The more we reduce greenhouse gasses, the less the oceans will warm", said Cheng, suggesting that reduce, reuse and recycle are the major ways forward to clean-energy development.

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