Oceans are heating up at a quickening pace

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Oceans are heating up at a quickening pace:UPSC

As per the new study, ocean warming is happening at far increasing rate compared to earlier studies of IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change).The findings in the U.S. journal Science, led by the Chinese Academy of Sciences, debunk previous reports that suggested a so-called pause in global warming in recent years.

Background:

About 93% of excess heat — trapped around the Earth by greenhouse gases that come from the burning of fossil fuels — accumulates in the world’s oceans.

Key Facts:

  • Ocean heating is a very important indicator of climate change
  • Recent study published in journal Science, found that oceans are heating up 40% faster on average than previous studies done by UN report by Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change 5 years ago between 2014 and 2017.
  • A key factor in the more accurate numbers is an ocean monitoring fleet called Argo, which includes nearly 4,000 floating robots that “drift throughout the world’s oceans, every few days diving to a depth of 2,000 m and measuring the ocean’s temperature, pH, salinity and other bits of information as they rise back up.
  • Models predict that the temperature of the top 2,000 metres of the world’s oceans will rise 0.78 degrees Celsius by the end of the century.
  • The thermal expansion — water swelling as it warms — would raise sea level 30 cm, above any sea level rise from melting glaciers and ice sheets.
  • While 2018 will be the fourth warmest year on record on the surface, it will most certainly be the warmest year on record in the oceans, as was 2017 and 2016 before that

About Argo:

  • Argo is an international program that uses profiling floats to observe temperature, salinity, currents, and, recently, bio-optical properties in the Earth’s oceans.
  • It has been operational since the early 2000s.
  • The real-time data it provides is used in climate and oceanographic research.
  • This allows, for the first time, continuous monitoring of the temperature, salinity, and velocity of the upper ocean, with all data being relayed and made publicly available within hours after collection.
  • In Indian ocean there is plan to deploy 450 float by various participating countries out of which India committed to deploy 150 floats.

Source:The Hindu

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