The record of Atlantic sea-surface temperature has been released, and the statistics are worrying. According to the team of climate scientists that realized the research, the warmest period has been in the last decade.
The recently extended record indicates that the coldest temperatures were approximately 1400-1600 A.D., while the warmest period was during the last 10 years. Here is what you need to know.
The Ocean Atlantic Under Investigation
When temperatures are cold over the North Atlantic, a standard atmospheric pattern is present over much of the Greenland and the Canadian High Arctic. Such a “phenomenon” is related to higher titanium levels in the sediments and slower snow melt in that area.
The opposite can exist and is when the ocean is warmer, meaning that the snow melt is fast, the atmospheric pressure is higher, and the concentration of titanium lowers.
The team of climate scientists led by Raymond Bradley and Francois Lapointe from the Climate System Research Center of the University of Massachusetts of Quebec-INRS realized some measurements of almost “perfectly preserved” annual layers of sediment found on northern Ellesmere Island, Nunavut. The team’s findings are truly astonishing.
By analyzing the titanium concentration in the numerous layers, the scientists succeeded in estimating the relative atmospheric pressure and temperature over time.
The Team’s Findings
The team reported that the recently reconstructed record is highly connected with several other independent sediment records from the Atlantic Ocean extending from north of Iceland to offshore Venezuela. Such a thing confirms its reliability as a substitute for the long-term variability of ocean temperatures over a wide area of the Atlantic.
The record is also resembling the European temperatures recorded over the past 2,000 years.
Lapointe, who realized extensive fieldwork in the Canadian Arctic over the last 10 years, offered some essential details. He said: “Conditions like this are currently not properly captured by global climate models, underestimating the potential impacts of future warming in Arctic regions.”
Last year, Greenland Ice Sheet, for instance, suffered a loss of over 500 billion tons of mass.
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