The role of the ocean in climate change

Temperature and currents at 450 metres depth in the high resolution Kiel ocean model. (Instantaneous values). Source: A. Biastoch, GEOMAR.

The oceans play a central role in global change processes.Major aspects of climate change are associated with the ocean’s heat transport, heat capacity, and the global water cycle. However, oceanic storage, transformation, transport and exchange of radiatively and chemically active gases and particles also exert an influence on climate through their impact on atmospheric radiation transfer. Past climate change has had demonstrable influences on the isotopic and chemical composition of seawater, which permits these signals to be investigated as potential recorders of change. Since exchanges of heat and substances between the ocean, land and the atmosphere operate on time scales ranging from seasons to millennia, they are amongst the most important factors for shaping future global climate change.

Research topics under this headline include:

  • Understanding of Past, Present and Future Overturning Circulation Changes
  • Changes in the Tropics
  • Present and Past Arctic Oceanography and Climate
  • Future Greenhouse Warming: Assessment and Scenarios
  • Past Geochemical Change in the Oceans

 

 

 

News for topic: the role of the ocean in climate change

For a detailed examination of the methane seeps, the scientists used the submersible JAGO. The image shows pilot Jürgen Schauer and Lea Steinle preparing for a dive. Photo: Karen Hissmann, GEOMAR
20.04.2015

Ocean Currents Impact Methane consumption

Study in Nature Geoscience on interactions between marine microbiology and oceanography

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Ferromanganese crusts with typical band structure. Source: Buczkowski, USGS.
09.04.2015

More than just an economic resource: ferromanganese crusts record past climates

Marine scientists reconstruct past variations in Arctic climate

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Lighthouse in Büsum (Schleswig-Holstein, Germany). Sea level rise significantly differs from one coast to another. Photo: Klaus Heinrich Vanselow, Copyright: Uni Kiel / FTZ Westküste
16.03.2015

Sea level rise: More data from the oceans needed

Climate scientists from Kiel show how regional predictions can be enhanced

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