Over the past 1600 years, the rather calm Gulf Stream has reached a record slowdown. Several researchers sound the alarm and fear the consequences on the climate.
It is important to note that ocean currents and the Gulf Stream, in particular, play an important role in climate regulation, not only in Europe but also in North America. This slowdown should continue in the coming years especially if we do not reduce carbon dioxide emissions according to researchers at University College London (UCL).
What is the Gulf Stream?
The Gulf Stream is a warm and fast ocean current that originates in the Gulf of Mexico and East Florida. It goes back to the North Atlantic. Going up the whirlwinds stand out and for example, run to Europe. The Gulf Stream transports warm air to Quebec and to Europe. It is thanks to him that we know summer temperatures.
According to researchers at UCL, the ocean current has slowed by 15% in 50 years. That is, in the last 50 years. This slowdown is due, among other things, to the massive melting of the pack ice and ice shelves, which is responsible for the formation of fresh water in the North Atlantic.
The Atlantic meridian circulation (Amoc), which transports warm waters via the Gulf Stream to the North Atlantic, plays a major role in regulating the global climate. It is both a consequence, but also a cause of climate change, a real vicious circle. If the system continues to slow down, there could be weather disruptions in the United States, Europe, and also in Africa. This will have an impact on the trajectory of storms coming from the Atlantic. Waves of cold and intense heat could occur. The sea level could also increase rapidly.
According to the ATLAS research fund, commercial fishing could also be affected by this slowdown phenomenon. This is because of the change in the position and depth of ocean currents.
This is a subject that will have to be followed in the coming years. Quickly determine if this trend was only transient or a reflection of the start of deeper changes…