As the planet warms, the world’s oceans reshuffle the heat Today’s Video of the Day comes from the NASA ScienceCast series and features a look at how the Earth’s oceans are absorbing heat as the planet warms.
As sea levels continue to rise, and the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere continues to increase, global surface temperatures seem to have somehow leveled off. So where is the heat going? Scientists began to suspect that extra heat was being stored in the world’s oceans.
The Indian Ocean has the warmest temperatures of the world’s oceans. Ocean water temperature is important to understand, as it affects global climate and marine ecosystems. The Indian Ocean is the warmest in the world. Ocean surface temperatures have risen by about 1.6°F over the past 100 years, due to global warming.
Increasing greenhouse gas concentrations are trapping more energy from the sun. Because changes in ocean systems occur over centuries, the oceans have not yet warmed as much as the atmosphere, even though they have absorbed more than 90 percent of the Earth’s extra heat since 1955.
By Rory Arnold, Earth.com