If you think global warming has paused, fear not, say scientists, reports Rob Painting at SkepticalScience.com, as he reviews several studies. The Pacific Ocean and the atmosphere alternate between positive and negative climate phases, in what is known as the Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation. These phases lasted for about 2 and 3 decades, respectively, during the 20th century, although historically each type lasted less than 2 decades. During the positive phase, the surface and deep ocean layers don’t mix as much, so absorbed heat stays near the surface, warming the air above it. Thus, air temperatures rise during the positive phase from global warming. We’re roughly 15 years into a negative phase right now, where oceanic mixing means much of the heat from the continued global warming is being absorbed by deep ocean. But once we transfer into a positive phase – anytime up to the next decade roughly – air temperatures will start rising faster, likely changing rainfall and drought patterns, as well as increasing massive coral die-offs and changing fish catches. And you thought this decade was hot? The next decades will be even hotter – unless we act.
Join the swelling numbers of voters TELLING Congress they’ll vote for Clean Energy candidates here: http://signon.org/sign/we-are-the-clean-99?source=c.em.cp&r_by=487176 . This is an ongoing campaign (the next Congressional election is in 2 years!) so please, spread the word. It’s our way of telling Congress that a strong clean energy voting bloc is out there. This is how YOU can make a difference.
For more on Climate Change, check out my weekly column at the HuffingtonPost, Climate Change This Week : http://www.huffingtonpost.com/author/index.php?author=mary-ellen-harte
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