Last year, ocean temperatures were the highest they’ve been since scientists started keeping track in the 1950s.
According to a new study, the oceans have absorbed the heat equivalent of 3.6 billion Hiroshima bomb explosions over the last 25 years.
Warmer oceans can kill coral, fish, and seabirds.
Higher ocean temperatures also cause sea levels to rise, leading to coastal flooding and more severe hurricanes.
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Last year, Earth’s oceans were the warmest they’ve been since scientists started keeping track in the 1950s.
According to a study published in the journal Advances in Atmospheric Sciences, that recording-breaking average concludes the warmest-ever decade for global oceans. The average ocean temperature for 2019 broke the 2018 record, which in turn smashed 2017’s.
The study found that average 2019 ocean temperatures were about 0.18 degrees Fahrenheit (0.075 degrees Celsius) above the average between 1981 and 2010. While that might not seem like a lot, it means the ocean has taken in 228 sextillion (that’s 21 zeros) joules of heat.
“That’s a lot of zeros indeed,” Lijing Cheng, the lead author of the study, said in a press release, adding, “the amount of heat we have put in the world’s oceans in the past 25 years equals to 3.6 billion Hiroshima atom-bomb explosions.”
Cheng’s team compared ocean temperatures between 1987 and 2019 to an earlier period: 1955 to 1986. The results showed that the rate of warming increased by a factor of 4.5.
The consequences of a warming ocean are far-reaching: We can expect more severe storms, unprecedented sea-level rise, and the death of marine animals.
Warm waters bleach coral and kill fish and seabirds
Oceans absorb 93% of the extra heat that greenhouse gases trap in the atmosphere. A January 2019 study revealed that the world’s …read more
Source:: Business Insider