North Sea’s Alarming Temperature Rise Sparks Storm Warnings
After we issued a warning about sea surface temperatures in the Northern Atlantic Ocean last week, temperatures in parts of the North Sea are now over 6°C warmer than usual as well. NOAA’s Marine Heatwave Watch has called a Category 4 (extreme) marine heatwave in relation to this situation. Mika Rantanen, researcher at the Finnish Meteorological institute calls this heatwave “currently the strongest on Earth” (CNN, 2023).
In April and May, global sea surface temperatures reached previously unseen records with June also being underway to reach record heat levels (The Guardian, 2023). According to the Met Office, the current El Niño weather phenomenon is likely to keep these unheard-of temperatures.
With 70% of our planet being covered in oceans, these temperatures affect sea ice melt on both poles and are also linked to extreme weather such as storms. This week, several severe storm warnings were issued in much of Western Europe with heavy rainfall, large hail and strong winds.
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