Global sea surface temperatures hit an all-time high this month. A month ago, sea surface temperatures off the east coast of North America were 13.8 degrees Celsius warmer than the 1981-2011 average.
Never before has the oceans warmed so quickly and so much. How this happens is not entirely clear. But scientists fear the consequences.
more severe weather
“It is not yet clear why such a rapid and massive change has occurred,” says lead study author Karina von Schekmann, an oceanographer with Mercator Ocean International. to the BBC. I can’t say if this is climate change, natural variability, or some combination of the two. But we see change.”
Warmer oceans could have a serious impact. It could kill marine life, lead to more extreme weather and raise sea levels. In addition, it is difficult for them to absorb greenhouse gases, which exacerbate climate change.
Meteorologists also expect a strong El Niño, a weather system that warms the oceans, to be imminent in the coming months. The researchers fear that, along with the findings of the new study, this could push global temperatures to worrying new levels.
“Twitter junkie. Lifelong communicator. Award-winning analyst. Subtly charming internetaholic.”