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“A tremendous threat”: Scientists blame human activity for the appearance of a ‘pool’ of warm water in the Pacific

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Published:

23 Jun 2022 02:13 GMT

The researchers warn that the phenomenon represents a serious problem for marine biological diversity.

The systematic warming of water masses in the northeastern Pacific Ocean is not the result of natural climatic variations, but the effect of human activities on the planet, concludes a recent study by German researchers.

During the last 20 years there have been 31 ocean heat waves in the aforementioned region, a figure that contrasts with the nine detected between 1982 and 1999, point out scientists from the Oceanographic Institute of the University of Hamburg in their article published in Communications Earth and Environment magazine.

They discover the phenomenon that originated the "exceptional" tsunami that spread across almost the entire planet after the eruption of the volcano in Tonga

The study indicates that the warming of this part of the ocean had devastating consequencess between 2014 and 2015: marine productivity weakened, toxic algae abounded, and mass deaths of birds and marine mammals. In addition, this event caused severe droughts on the west coast of the United States, pick up Phys.org.

The most recent marine heat wave lasted three years, between 2019 and 2021, and raised sea temperatures to 6°C above average.

The scientific team blames the emissions of Greenhouse gases of anthropogenic origin due to this phenomenon, pointing out that the probability that it arose without human influence is less than 1%.

“This pool warming up will continue to increase water temperatures in the future, increasing both the frequency and intensity of local marine heat waves. The drastic increase in average water temperature is pushing ecosystems to their limits,” explained Armineh Barkhordarian, one of the study’s authors.

The researcher warns that a greater frequency and intensity of these waves “supposes a tremendous threat to biodiversity” and may “push marine ecosystems beyond the inflection pointafter which they will no longer be able to recover.”

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