One Response to IPCC: Warming Oceans are Cause for Worry
According to the IPCC’s Fourth Assessment, “discernible human influences now extend to other aspects of climate, including ocean warming, continental-average temperatures, temperature extremes and wind patterns.”
The increases in oceanic temperature are particularly worrisome: “Observations since 1961 show that the average temperature of the global ocean has increased to depths of at least 3000 m and that the ocean has been absorbing more than 80% of the heat added to the climate system.”
As the oceans warm, they expand, and they provide fuel for more intense tropical storms. Also, warmer oceans “reduce… [their] uptake of atmospheric carbon dioxide, increasing the fraction of anthropogenic emissions that remains in the atmosphere.” Less and less will we be able to rely on the ocean to naturally absorb carbon dioxide–one explanation for the accelerated growth in CO2 concentrations in recent years.
Unrestrained Emissions + Feedbacks + Less Oceanic CO2/Heat Absorption = Incalculable Warming…