Hurricane Harvey links to ocean heat content and climate change adaptation

While hurricanes occur naturally, human‐caused climate change is supercharging them and exacerbating the risk of major damage. Here, using ocean and atmosphere observations, we demonstrate links between increased upper ocean heat content due to global warming with the extreme rainfalls from recent hurricanes. Hurricane Harvey provides an excellent case study as it was isolated in... Continue Reading →

Ocean dynamics plays a key role in driving the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO)

The recently proposed atmosphere-forced thermodynamics mechanism of the AMO challenged the well-known ocean dynamics mechanism, and thus it is important to identify a key feature associated with the AMO that can be used to distinguish between the two mechanisms. In this study, the spatial structure of AMO is analyzed and compared between the observations and... Continue Reading →

Is AMOC slowing down?

A recent article appeared in Nature  suggested that the AMOC has been very weak during the past 150 years since the end of the Little Ice Age (LIA) , and that enhanced freshwater fluxes from the Arctic and Nordic seas towards the end of the LIA weakened Labrador Sea convection and thus the AMOC. They... Continue Reading →

Recent wind-driven change in subantarctic mode water and its impact on ocean heat storage

The subduction and export of Subantarctic Mode Water (SAMW) supplies the upper limb of the overturning circulation and makes an important contribution to global heat, freshwater, carbon and nutrient budgets. Upper ocean heat content has increased since 2006, helping to explain the so-called global warming hiatus between 1998 and 2014, with much of the ocean... Continue Reading →

Active Pacific meridional overturning circulation (PMOC) during the warm Pliocene

An essential element of modern ocean circulation and climate is the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation (AMOC), which includes deep-water formation in the subarctic North Atlantic. However, a comparable overturning circulation is absent in the Pacific, the world’s largest ocean, where relatively fresh surface waters inhibit North Pacific deep convection. We present complementary measurement and modeling... Continue Reading →

Multidecadal weakening of Indian summer monsoon circulation induces an increasing northern Indian Ocean sea level

North Indian Ocean sea level has shown significant increase during last three to four decades. Analyses of long-term climate data sets and ocean model sensitivity experiments identify a mechanism for multidecadal sea level variability relative to global mean. Our results indicate that North Indian Ocean sea level rise is accompanied by a weakening summer monsoon... Continue Reading →

Deep oceans may acidify faster than anticipated due to global warming

Oceans worldwide are undergoing acidification due to the penetration of anthropogenic CO2 from the atmosphere. The rate of acidification generally diminishes with increasing depth. Yet, slowing down of the thermohaline circulation due to global warming could reduce the pH in the deep oceans, as more organic material would decompose with a longer residence time. To... Continue Reading →

Meridional Overturning Circulation (MOC) in Europa?

This article appeared in Nature Geoscience in 2014 used a numerical model to hypothesize that a meridional overturning circulation (MOC) exists in the ocean beneath the icy surface of Jupiter's moon Europa. The geothermal heat generated from tidal flexing drives Europa's MOC, which carries heat toward the surface in the low latitudes then poleward. This study... Continue Reading →

Highlights of the findings of the U.S. global change research program climate science special report

This executive summary presents the Fourth National Climate Assessment (NCA4), an authoritative assessment of the science of climate change, with a focus on the United States. This represents the first of two volumes of the Fourth National Climate Assessment, mandated by the Global Change Research Act of 1990. https://science2017.globalchange.gov/chapter/executive-summary/

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