New Study: Half The 2000-2019 Global Ocean Warming Has Been From Internal Fluxes, Not Surface Forcing

Since 2000 there has been a natural reduction in net air-sea fluxes at the same time there has been rapid warming in the Indian Ocean. This affirms anthropogenic surface forcing cannot explain the recent warming in at least half the global ocean.

The Indian Ocean covers approximately 20% of the ocean surface, but this basin accounts for one-half of the overall warming in the global ocean’s top 700 meters from 2000 to 2019 (McMonigal et al., 2022). The Atlantic and Pacific Ocean sectors have accumulated much less heat content in the last two decades.

It is often assumed that increases in ocean heat content can be attributed to anthropogenic greenhouse gas surface forcing. But scientists have pointed out that internal ocean processes and natural heat transport (circulation) can explain decadal-scale warming (and cooling) trends in the global ocean.

For example, Large and Yeager (2012) determined that the global sea surface temperature (SST) warming trend during the 1984-2006 period can be predominantly explained by “diminished ocean cooling due to vertical ocean processes” rather than anthropogenic climate change.

“A conclusion is that natural variability, rather than long-term climate change, dominates the SST and heat flux changes over this 23-yr period.”

Image Source: Large and Yeager (2012)

Likewise, McMonigal and colleagues have now determined the 0-700 m warming trend in the Indian Ocean “has been driven by significant changes in oceanic fluxes and not by surface forcing.” In other words, it is not the atmospheric greenhouse gas concentration increases driving warming, but “the ocean has been driving a rapid increase in Indian Ocean heat content” because the “change must be due to the gyre circulation.”

Image Source: McMonigal et al., 2022

And if natural processes in ocean heat transport can explain warming in the Indian Ocean, it is not a stretch to assume the same explanation can be applied for warming trends in the rest of the global ocean too.

10 responses to “New Study: Half The 2000-2019 Global Ocean Warming Has Been From Internal Fluxes, Not Surface Forcing”

  1. Still No Global Warming and Even Less Man Made Global Warming + Video: Heatwave Of May 1934 – Newsfeed Hasslefree Allsort

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  2. CO2isLife

    Physics determines the warming of the oceans. Visible radiation between 0.4 and 0.7 Microns penetrates and warms the oceans. No one denies that. CO2 emits 15 micron Low Energy Long Wave Infrared Radiation. No one denies that. 15 Micron Long Wave Infrared Radiation doesn’t penetrate water, no one denies that. Wavelengths are associated with temperatures. No one denies that. Room temperature is associated with 9.5 Microns, no one denies that. Ice emits 10.5 Micron LWIR. CO2 emits 15 microns which is associated with -80 C. Radiation from CO2 won’t even melt ice, let alone warm water. That is a very very simple controlled experiment requiring only a bucket of water, a thermometer, a long pass filter and a light source. Try to find that experiment performed by any climate “scientist.” You won’t because it will debunk all this CO2 drives warming narrative.

    1. Cristi

      What do you mean when you say “CO2 emits”? As far as I know, CO2 absorbs 15um radiation, along with 4.3 and 2.7um.

      1. CO2isLife

        CO2 both emits and absorbs 15,4.3, and 2.7 Micron LWIR. The only one relevant to the GHG effect is 15 microns. 4.3 and 2.7 aren’t found on earth other than maybe over a volcano.

        CO2 absorbs 15 micron, the electron passes to a higher orbital, when that electron falls back to the lower orbital it emits 15-micron LWIR.

        Where are you going with your question?

    2. Tom Anderson

      Well said, CO2isLife. Bravo. Your points are not unknown but seldom are so well or definitively stated. As to your last sentence, isn’t debunking the narrative the business of skepticism, not consensus drones? As a lawyer I have long considered our collective case management very deficient (and tepid). Skeptics, rather than “demurring” outright to the entire claim (which I infer is your meaning) to dismiss it, too often dither at splitting imaginary hairs of the make-believe monster. The aim should be to puncture and dump it. Damn the torpedoes.

      Everything you say should have been broadcast cheaply and abundantly long ago, even in very general lay terms. The last poll I saw finds 55% of Americans unconvinced of calamity. What supports them?

      1. CO2isLife

        Thank you. I’m doing my best to spread the word.

    3. Ross McLeod

      You state “CO2 emits 15 microns which is associated with -80 C.”

      Of course this statement is entirely wrong.

      Minus 80 °C is simply the temperature associated with the peak emissions coinciding with 15 micron as calculated by Wien’s Law.

      An object with a temperature of 30°C emits significant power in W/m2 at 15 micron wavelength. CO2 will absorb and supposedly re-emit at this wavelength.

      Don’t make the mistake of claiming CO2 emits with a temperature of minus 80°C – it is nonsense. CO2 will emit at whatever temperature it is at.

      It is also unlikely that it correct to apply the blackbody radiation laws to CO2 and other gases as blackbody radiation and all the physical relationships (Laws) have only been derived from a continuous emission spectrum. Hence I believe all the climate science based on the Stefan-Boltzmann equation is unsubstantiated gobbledygook. No gas emits “blackbody radiation” – many surfaces imitate such emissions but gases certainly do not.

      What is significant is that CO2 represents only ~420 molecules in every million molecules of air and is hence basically irrelevant.

  3. Lasse

    A relevant video from Jim Steele as just been released:

    How La Nina heats the ocean.

    It is a change in my understanding as the global (air) warming is accelerated during El Nino events.

    1. CO2isLife

      That video is awsome and highlights many of the points I’ve been trying to communicate.

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