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Our planet's oceans are warmer than they've ever been in recorded human history. And ocean temperatures are not only increasing, they are heating up at an accelerating rate, according to a new analysis.
In 2019, the ocean temperature was about 0.135 degrees Fahrenheit (0.075 degrees Celsius) higher than the average between 1981 and 2010, an international group of researchers reported on Jan. 13 in the journal Advances in Atmospheric Sciences.
Ocean - ? - Greenhouse - Gases - Atmosphere
That means that the ocean — which absorbs almost all of the greenhouse gases humans spew into the atmosphere — has taken in 228 sextillian (228,000,000,000,000,000,000,000) joules of heat above its average, according to a statement. By comparison, the energy released by the Hiroshima atom-bomb explosion was about 63,000,000,000,000 Joules.
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Amount - Heat - World - Oceans - Years
"The amount of heat we have put in the world's oceans in the past 25 years equals to 3.6 billion Hiroshima atom-bomb explosions," lead author Lijing Cheng, associate professor with the International Center for Climate and Environmental Sciences at the Institute of Atmospheric Physics (IAP) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), said in the statement. "There are no reasonable alternatives aside from the human emissions of heat-trapping gases to explain this heating."
To analyze temperature changes in the oceans, Cheng and the team used all of the available data — measured from a number of different devices, including 3,800 drifting so-called Argo floats scattered across the oceans — published by the World Ocean Database and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. All of the measurements were taken between the surface of the water and a...
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