Tag Archives: pacific ocean

Pacific Ocean shift could see 1.5C limit breached within a decade

civil society protests
Civil Society Protests at COP21, Paris Credit: Takver/Flickr

Global average temperatures could pass 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels within the next decade, new projections suggest

May 8, 2017 — The timing of when we actually hit the 1.5°C threshold will depend heavily on a natural cycle in the Pacific Ocean, the study finds, which can either dampen or accelerate global temperature rise. Continue reading Pacific Ocean shift could see 1.5C limit breached within a decade

Marine ‘hotspots’ under dual threat from climate change and fishing

marine hotspots
Credit: RainervonBrandis/E+/Getty Images.

The parts of the world’s oceans with the most varied mix of species are seeing the biggest impacts from a warming climate and commercial fishing, a new study warns

February 26, 2017 — The research, published in Science Advances, identifies six marine “hotspots” of “exceptional biodiversity” in the tropical Pacific, southwestern Atlantic, and western Indian Oceans. Continue reading Marine ‘hotspots’ under dual threat from climate change and fishing

Clouds dampened warming since 1980s, study shows

sea of clouds
Shanghai’s skyline in a sea of clouds. Credit: zorazhuang/E+/Getty Images

A new study helps unravel one of the biggest uncertainties for scientists making climate change projections – how clouds will be affected as the Earth’s warms up

October 31, 2016 — Clouds can have both a warming and cooling effect on the Earth. They insulate the Earth’s surface like a blanket, while simultaneously cooling it by reflecting away energy from the sun.  Continue reading Clouds dampened warming since 1980s, study shows

Pacific Ocean behind recent Antarctic sea ice growth

sea ice
A small hole in the clouds revealed newly formed sea ice in the Bellingshausen Sea next to an iceberg on Nov. 5, 2014 flight. Credit: NASA/Digital Mapping System.

Scientists have long been searching for an explanation for the contrasting fortunes of sea ice at the Earth’s poles. While the Arctic has seen a rapid decline in sea ice extent in recent decades, the seas around Antarctica have slowly gained ice.

July 7, 2016 — Now, a new study suggests a natural shift from one state to another in the Pacific Ocean is responsible for the increase in Antarctic sea ice.  Continue reading Pacific Ocean behind recent Antarctic sea ice growth

Great Barrier Reef, 93% of reefs hit by coral bleaching

Comprehensive aerial survey reveals full extent of the devastation caused by abnormally warm ocean temperatures

April 19, 2016 — Almost 93% of reefs on the Great Barrier Reef have been hit by coral bleaching, according to a comprehensive survey revealing the full extent of the devastation caused by abnormally warm ocean temperatures sweeping the globe.

Continue reading Great Barrier Reef, 93% of reefs hit by coral bleaching

El Niño is Earth’s rechargeable heat battery

rechargeable batteries
Rechargeable batteries. Photograph: Linda Nylind for the Guardian
El Niño has a major impact on energy within Earth’s climate

April 18, 2016 — The recent El Niño has been in the news of late because the warm waters in the Pacific have helped lift Earth’s temperatures to new records. Recent research is helping to track energy flows between the ocean waters and the atmosphere as the Continue reading El Niño is Earth’s rechargeable heat battery

Earth is Experiencing a Global Warming Spurt

coral bleaching
High temperatures are bleaching corals, such as this bent sea rod off Florida. Credit: U.S. Geological Survey/Flickr
Cyclical changes in the Pacific Ocean have thrown earth’s surface into what may be an unprecedented warming spurt, following a global warming slowdown that lasted about 15 years.

January 7, 2016 — While El Niño is being blamed for an outbreak of floods, storms and unseasonable temperatures across the planet, a much slower-moving cycle of the Pacific Ocean has also been playing a role in record-breaking warmth. The recent effects of both ocean cycles are being amplified by climate change.

Continue reading Earth is Experiencing a Global Warming Spurt