Oceans at a record high heat for 2017


Scientists worry that rising ocean heat hints at something bigger (Falln-stock)

Natalia Welzenbach-Marcu | January 30th, 2018

2017 has been widely regarded as one of the hottest years on record. Much of that heat can be measured and cataloged from oceans, which trap around 90% of greenhouse gas emissions, making them perfect record-keepers for climate change. Lijing Cheng and Jiang Zhu, researchers from China, recently released data on their measurements of ocean water temperatures. Their findings were startling: in 2017, the ocean waters measured hotter than in any other previous “record heat-wave” year.

Measurements of the global ocean heat have been fairly consistent since the 1950s, when advancements in environmental technology made detecting degree changes more plausible. Although fluctuations of temperature year-to-year are common, extreme spikes in degrees of heat are indications of dangerously rising climate temperature.

The heat trapped in the ocean waters cause lots of problems for the Earth’s environment–the gas emissions are primary causes for melting ice shelves, declining ocean oxygen, and damaged ocean ecosystems.

Scientists publish data like this in the hopes of piquing public interest in climate change.


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