Global Warming may Lead to Depletion in Fish Growth

It has been long suspected that global warming has contributed to rising temperatures. However, not very many scientists have really studied the impact that global warming will have on the ocean and its billions of inhabitants.

A team of ichthyologists from the Fisheries Centre at the University of British Columbia have published studies suggesting that drastic changes in oceanographic conditions could lead to the rapid depletion of fish populations.

The study surmised that if global warming continues at the current rate over the next 40 years, the marine environment could be altered to the extent that most fish species and water invertebrates will no longer be capable of maintaining the energy needed for sustainable growth.

The primary problem is the reduction of oxygen content in the ocean. Rising temperatures decreases the water’s ability to hold onto oxygen. Oxygen is critical for a fish’s metabolic and respiratory functions. Less oxygen also impairs a fish’s behavioral and biochemical processes and impedes its ability to swim and even to lay eggs.

Aside from a decrease in population, the size and weight of fish may also gradually begin to decrease by up to 10 percent within the next 40 years. Scientists project that tropical areas and particularly the Indian Ocean will suffer the gravest consequences. Additional factors such as pollution and overfishing can further exacerbate the problem.

Global Warming continues to be a heated debate. Skeptics claim it is a myth caused by hysteria and the liberal media and has no scientific basis. Believer, on the other hand, have cautioned that climate change is directly responsible for severe droughts and variations in weather patterns.

If global warming is as serious as some scientists contend it is, then our scaly friends in the ocean will suffer the dire consequences just as much as we will.

Arctic Ocean to be Free of Summer Ice in 20 Years

So says Peter Wadhams, professor of ocean physics at Cambridge. Winter ice should be OK, though. The artistic implications are that the top of the Earth will be blue instead of white as seen from space, and ships will have a new route to sail through.


“The data supports the new consensus view — based on seasonal variation of ice extent and thickness, changes in temperatures, winds and especially ice composition — that the Arctic will be ice-free in summer within about 20 years,” Wadhams said in a statement. “Much of the decrease will be happening within 10 years.”

Much of the evidence for this was gathered earlier by British explorer Pen Hadow, who explored the area by submarine. His team drilled 1,500 holes to find the average thickness of the ice, and found it to be 1.8 meters, which is too thin to survive the melting of the ice in the summer.

If that happens, the water in the arctic will dramatically heat the earth even faster, as water absorbs heat while ice reflects it. I don’t want to think about the consequences of a dramatically warmer world, as we already live in a dramatically warmer world as it is.

I’m almost hoping that the added fresh water in the oceans will shut down the North Atlantic current, which in turn will cool the planet once more as warm water stops being transported from the equator to the polls. That’s what that movie, The Day After Tomorrow, depicted. It might just be the Earth’s tipping point and cooling mechanism once this sort of thing happens.

I just hope, along with others, that we all survive the ride.

Search for Air France Flight 447 Reveals Ocean Garbage

Brazilian naval personnel were astonished to initially discover that what they thought to be remains of the missing Air France flight 447 in the Atlantic Ocean turned out to be nothing more than garbage and other debris located at or near the surface of water. Even the supposed oil slick that they thought came from the missing plane has now been attributed to being bilge oil from a passing ocean vessel. And what was thought to be pieces of the plan’s fuselage turned out to the pieces of plastic as well as a wooden pallet!

oceanic gyresOceanographers have been studying for years the disturbing effects of floating garbage on the world’s seas and oceans; and one extremely large patch of floating debris, in the mid-Pacific Ocean, is estimated to be twice the American state of Texas. The large patches of floating plastic material, waste oil (also from damaged supertankers) and other material are said to form in parts of the ocean known as gyres and are formed between a strong and narrow “western boundary current,” and a weak and broad “eastern boundary current.

When looking on the global map, as shown here (note the circled areas), gyres are found in all the world’s ocean; and this may include the Arctic and Antarctic oceans as well. Although the suspected crash site of Flight 447 appears to be south of the North Atlantic Gyre, it doesn’t mean that aquatic debris isn’t located there; it most certainly is.

Besides being a food source for the world’s populations the world’s oceans are also a supplier of a good portion of our oxygen supply which is produced by aquatic plant life – especially kelp. The “floating garbage dumps” are a big hazard for marine life, including birds which often feed their young small pieces of plastic that the birds think is food. In addition, all kinds of chemicals, sewage and poisons are present in the waters which eventually can be dangerous to animal and human health.

The bottoms of our seas and oceans are as bad or worse, and some areas have even been declared as “dead zones” are virtually devoid of marine plant and animal life. Most people don’t thing much of this problem, unless they are swimming of diving somewhere and find this garbage themselves. The problem will also manifest itself when less fish are caught, and those that are discovered will be unfit to eat.

Undoubtedly the plane’s wreckage will be found sooner or later; but at least now, people may begin to see how Mankind has literally “trashed” the world’s seas and oceans.

Have you seen this duck?

Ninety bathtub toys were hurled into a drainage hole on the Greenland ice in September – an experiment to see how melt waters find their way to the base of the ice sheet.

It was hoped the ducks would flow along subglacial channels and eventually pop out into the sea. They may still, but nothing has been seen of them so far.

“We haven’t heard anything from them yet,” said NASA’s Alberto Behar. “If somebody does find one, it will be a great breakthrough for us.”

This duck belongs to NASA

FW: Colorful Antarctica

Amazing striped icebergs!

Icebergs in the Antarctic area sometimes have stripes, formed by layers of snow that react to different conditions.

Blue stripes are often created when a crevice in the ice sheet fills up with meltwater and freezes so quickly that no bubbles form.

When an iceberg falls into the sea, a layer of salty seawater can freeze to the underside. If this is rich in algae, it can form a green stripe.

Brown, black and yellow lines are caused by sediment, picked up when the ice sheet grinds downhill towards the sea.

Continue reading “FW: Colorful Antarctica”

Winds of Change

One of the most interesting competitions in the 2008 Beijing Olympics is the Sailing race.

Today Shahar Tzubery of Israel surprised everyone as he won the Bronze medal.

Shahar Tzubery

Shall we have any more action during these games?