Ocean Circulation Slowing Down

Scientists say that the Atlantic Ocean’s circulation is slowing down, they estimate by around 15% in the last 70 years. That circulation (called the Thermahaline) transports heat (and cold) around the globe over hundreds of years. A key part of this circulation includes the Gulf Stream – that carries very warm water up the East Coast of the United States. The reason for the slowing? A warmer planet. The circulation is driven by ocean temperatures and salinity. So as the ice melts, it dumps colder and less salty water into the circulation, which slows it down. As this trend continues, it’s not exactly clear what impacts could be felt here in the United States. But in Europe the impacts seem to be much easier to understand: much colder winters and warmer summer. Here’s a link to the entire article:


Categories: Weather Blog