Wind patterns mask effects of global warming in ocean

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Washington, Feb 17 (UNI) Natural variability could be masking the effect of global warming in the North Atlantic Ocean, scientists suggests.

Surface temperatures around the globe have risen over the last 30 years in accord with the global warming.

However, heat stored in the North Atlantic Ocean has a more complex pattern, suggesting that natural changes in the atmosphere plays a big role.

After analysing 50 years of North Atlantic temperature records scientists from the University of Liverpool have found that the tropics and mid-latitudes have warmed, while the sub-polar regions have cooled.

''Changes in the heat stored in the North Atlantic corresponded to changes in natural and cyclical winds above it. This pattern of wind movement is called the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO), which is linked to pressure differences in the atmosphere between Iceland and the Azores,'' Science Daily quoted Professor Ric Williams, from the University's School of Earth and Ocean Sciences as saying.

''It was found that the warming over the mid latitudes was due to the wind redistributing heat, while the gain in heat in the tropics and loss in heat at high latitudes was due to an exchange of heat with the atmosphere and which could be linked to global warming effects,'' he added.


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