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

Current ocean currents in the North Atlantic with northerly warm and saline surface flow (red), deep water formation in the convection areas and deep water flow (blue) feeding the global ocean circulation.  Graphics: C. Kersten GEOMAR.
18.11.2016

Warm Periods not always the same

New findings about water characteristics in the Nordic Seas during interglacials published

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Brain corpuscles Diploria strigosa. Such corals were studied for the current study. Photo: Steffen Hetzinger, GEOMAR
23.09.2016

The Coral Thermometer Needs to be Readjusted

El Niños and other stressors can influence climate archives

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19.09.2016

Photo exhibition about ocean acidification premiered at GEOMAR

Solvin Zankl and Nick Cobbing provide insight into a fascinating field of research

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