World Oceans Heating As If 5 Hiroshima Bombs Are Dropped Every Second: Scientists

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A new study reveals that the world's oceans are now heating at the same rate as if five Hiroshima atomic bombs were dropped into the water every second.

Written By Bhavya Sukheja | Mumbai | Updated On:

A new study reveals that the world's oceans are now heating at the same rate as if five Hiroshima atomic bombs were dropped into the water every second. According to scientists, 2019 was yet another year of record-setting ocean warming as ocean temperatures reportedly reached the highest ever recorded. An international team of 14 scientists reportedly examined data going back to the 1950s and looked at temperatures from the ocean surface to 2,000 meters deep. 

According to the study, the oceans are warming at an increasing speed and while the past decade has been the warmest on record for global ocean temperatures, the hottest five years ever recorded all came in the last five. The study further also reveals that warming has accelerated rapidly.

Kevin Trenberth, a distinguished senior scientist in the Climate Analysis Section at the National Center for Atmospheric Research reportedly said that the upward trend is relentless and most of the warming is man-made climate change. 

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Lijing Cheng, the study's lead author further said that the ocean temperature was 0.075 degrees Celsius above the 1981-2010 average in 2019 and there are no reasonable alternatives aside from the human emissions of heat-trapping gases to explain such rapid heating. He later added that the amount of heat that people have put in the world's oceans in the past 25-years equals to 3.6 billion Hiroshima atom-bomb explosions.

Cheng also added that oceans serve as a good indicator of the real impact of climate change, but the speed at which warming is taking place, it's equivalent to dropping roughly four Hiroshima bombs into the oceans every second over the past quarter of a century.

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Trapped greenhouse gases 

Scientists have also found hidden time bombs in the form of large reservoirs of carbon dioxide and methane that are scattered all across the ocean, under the sea-floor. Frozen carbon dioxide and methane deposits that are present under the sea are slowly dissolving as the global temperature continues to rise due to climate change. With the growing temperature of the oceans, hydrate caps that contain CO2 and methane deposits melting the oceans can turn into big carbon emitters instead.

According to Lowell Stott, a paleoceanographer at the University of Southern California, if the hydrate caps melt then an enormous volume of CO2 and methane will be released in the atmosphere. This discovery of melting hydrate caps come right after scientists said that the world is surpassing a number of climate tipping points, the ocean temperature is reaching record highs.  

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(with inputs from agencies)

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