Jul 8, 2005

Penetration of Human-Induced Warming into the World's Oceans

Tim P. Barnett, David W. Pierce, Krishna M. AchutaRao, Peter J. Gleckler, Benjamin D. Santer, Jonathan M. Gregory, Warren M. Washington
  • States a warming signal has penetrated into the world's oceans over the past 40 years
  • States that the warming signal is complex, with a vertical structure that varies widely by ocean; it cannot be explained by natural internal climate variability or solar and volcanic forcing, but is well simulated by two anthropogenically forced climate models
  • Concludes that it is of human origin, a conclusion robust to observational sampling and model differences
  • Finds that changes in advection combine with surface forcing to give the overall warming pattern
  • Concludes that the study suggests society needs to seriously consider model predictions of future climate change