‘Headed off the charts’: world’s ocean surface temperature hits record high — The Guardian #ActOnClimate #KeepItInTheGround

A global map using data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration showing areas in orange and red where temperatures have been above the long-term average. Credi: University Of Maine

Click the link to read the article on The Guardian website (Graham Readfearn). Here’s an excerpt:

Climate scientists said preliminary data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (Noaa) showed the average temperature at the ocean’s surface has been at 21.1C since the start of April – beating the previous high of 21C set in 2016.

“The current trajectory looks like it’s headed off the charts, smashing previous records,” said Prof Matthew England, a climate scientist at the University of New South Wales…

According to the Noaa data, the second-hottest globally averaged ocean temperatures coincided with El Niño that ran from 2014 to 2016.

Credit: NOAA

The data is driven mostly by satellite observations but also verified with measurements from ships and buoys. The data does not include the polar regions. More than 90% of the extra heat caused by adding greenhouse gases to the atmosphere from burning fossil fuels and deforestation has been taken up by the ocean. A study last year said the amount of heat accumulating in the ocean was accelerating and penetrating deeper, providing fuel for extreme weather.

England, a co-author of that study, said: “What we are seeing now [with the record sea surface temperatures] is the emergence of a warming signal that more clearly reveals the footprint of our increased interference with the climate system.”

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