The heat in the world’s oceans reached a new record last year, reveals a new analysis.
The authors – a team of US and Chinese scientists who compiled data from nearly 4000 sensors across the oceans – say it shows the irrefutable and accelerating heat of the planet.
The analysis, published in the journal Advances in Atmospheric Sciences, says the past five years have been the five warmest in recorded history.
The oceans absorb most of the heat trapped by greenhouse gas emissions, making them the clearest measure of climate change.
Hotter oceans also lead to more severe storms, a rise in sea levels, and severely disrupts marine life.
It said the rate of warming from 1987 to 2019 is four and a half times faster than from 1955 to 1986.
Heating is distributed throughout the oceans, it said, but was most profound in the Southern ocean.
Published on Radio New Zealand – Pacific, 15 January 2020