Come On, Baby, Do the Loco Oceans
Rising ocean temperatures caused by anthropogenic warming, says study
Well here’s a shocker: turns out it’s global warming causing the globe’s oceans to warm, a phenomenon linked to more intense hurricanes. Such is the counter-counter-intuitive conclusion of new research in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Over the 20th century, average sea-surface temperatures in the tropical Atlantic and Pacific Oceans have increased by 1.2 and .58 degrees Fahrenheit, respectively; meanwhile, Category 4 and 5 hurricanes have increased twofold over the last 30 years. Researchers compared observed ocean-temperature changes with the predictions of 22 climate models, and found that only heat-trapping greenhouse-gas emissions from smokestacks and tailpipes could adequately explain the warming. “[T]his study confirms that it cannot be explained by a natural cycle,” says co-author Nathan Gillett. We hate to say “I told you so” … OK, actually we like that.