“The impacts are perhaps subtle but profound,” Trenberth told CNN. “To stop this [趋势], we really need to get to net-zero [emissions], and many countries have plans but not enough actions to support those. 同时, we must prepare better and build resilience.”
The far-reaching impact of warmer oceans
Warmer oceans supercharge weather patterns to create more powerful storms
, hurricanes and intense rainfall which leads to deadly flooding
The US witnessed devastating impacts from Hurricane Ida in Louisiana and Mississippi
, as well as the record-breaking rainfall and deadly flooding its remnants brought as it tracked over the Northeast and New York City
. 在十二月, Super Typhoon Rai — known locally as Odette — claimed hundreds of lives in the Philippines during the holiday season
“Warm ocean provides fuel to storms, so ocean warming will naturally support stronger and longer-lasting storms,” 程说.
The rapid rise in ocean temperature threatens marine life and is a significant contributor to sea level rise
“Ocean warming — aside from causing coral bleaching and threatening sea life and fish populations that we rely upon for roughly 25% of our protein intake globally — is destabilizing Antarctic ice shelves and threatens massive meters of sea level rise if we don’t act,” Michael E. Mann, a climate scientist at Pennsylvania State University and one of the authors of the study, 告诉CNN. “So this finding really underscores the urgency of climate action now.”
As the oceans heat up
, the water expands and sea level rises
. Cheng said about one third of the total sea level rise during the 20th century was due to ocean warming alone
. 此外 more high-tide flooding
, sea level rise threatens coastal freshwater supply with saltwater intrusion
, and makes coastal communities and infrastructure more vulnerable to storm surge
Cheng said part of the reason action is so urgently needed is because the oceans will continue warming for decades after fossil fuel emissions are slashed.
“Many countries have set goals to become carbon neutral around the middle of this century,” 他说. 但 “ocean warming will continue after 2060 and sea level will keep rising.”
Trenberth explained that although reaching net-zero emissions would end Earth’s energy imbalance, “the oceans are slow to respond.” Heat will continue to “percolate to greater depths; sea level keeps rising for a lot longer,” 他说.
Even if countries make good on their pledges to reduce emissions soon, researchers say further ocean warming will continue and communities must prepare for the far-reaching consequences. The report’s authors noted that the long-term risks that come with warming oceans — including sea level rise and more frequent flooding — should be accounted for in “engineering design, building codes, and modifications to coastal development plans.”