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atlantic north surface temperature

Surface temperature of the North Atlantic

Experts stunned by the new rise in the surface temperature of the North Atlantic.

The image impresses: the anomaly stands out in an exaggerated way compared to the rest of the globe, today in Gran Tarajal 24.2 degrees of sea surface temperature was measured


Meteorologists are still puzzled by the increase in the surface temperature of the Atlantic Ocean, especially in the entire northern strip of it, in which the Canary archipelago is fully embedded. In some places, the increase, according to British meteorologists, is four or five degrees Celsius above normal at this time of year.

Specialists are closely monitoring the situation. It is due, they explain, to a combination of factors: from climate change to less dust from the Sahara and ice from the Arctic, which reflects the sun's rays.

According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), some areas of the North Sea are experiencing a Category 4 marine heatwave, defined as "extreme." In some areas, the water temperature is up to 5 °C (9 °F) higher than usual.

The ocean is slow to warm and cool

"In some places, we're talking about seeing temperatures four or five degrees above what we would normally expect at this time of year," says Thomas Rippeth, a physical oceanographer at Bangor University. "The ocean is not like the atmosphere. It does not heat up or cool quickly. It takes a long time to warm up and a long time to cool down."

Rising temperatures affect the entire east coast of the North Atlantic, which can harm underwater life: warmer water, for example, distributes less oxygen to creatures in the deep and contributes fewer nutrients to the phytoplankton. In addition to giving rise to extreme heat phenomena.

Risks are high for marine species, such as fish, corals and seagrass beds, many of which have adapted to survive within certain temperature ranges. Warmer water can stress them out and even kill them.

Storms and hurricanes

"The ocean plays an absolutely key role," explains Rippeth. "About 95% of the energy transfer from solar to infrared radiation takes place at the ocean surface. And the distribution of this energy affects our Weather systems. If you warm the ocean too much, high temperatures cause the strongest storms. Hurricanes, for example, occur when water temperatures exceed 26 degrees."

In addition, El Niño

The British Meteorological Service warns that the temperature of the sea surface of the past April and May has been the highest recorded in those months in a series that began in 1850.

And that the eastern tropical Pacific will continue to warm due to the El Niño phenomenon. It is feared that new highs could be reached this year.

The case of the Canary Islands, the 24.2 degrees measured today in Gran Tarajal

The Canary archipelago is not spared from this situation, and the island of Fuerteventura sees how the water temperature is getting warmer. In this case last June the average surface temperature was up to 22.5 degrees which is what you would expect it to do in a very hot August. And it continues to rise during this month of July, with parameters that could break records this summer. For now today they measured 24.2 degrees in Gran Tarajal.

In addition, the lack of wind, produced by the unusual disappearance of the Azores anticyclone, continues to baffle meteorologists, while causing the system to continue warming. On the other hand, there are fears of the arrival of the hurricane season that under normal conditions feeds on the surface temperature of the sea.

What generates a hurricane? First the warm water of the tropical seas – at least 26 ºC. Several weeks after the sun has warmed the warm seas of the tropics and at the end of June for the northern hemisphere, the tropical ocean waters reach their warmest temperature.

At the moment the average sea temperature in Fuerteventura has reached 23 degrees, (with the peak of 24.2 in Gran Tarajal) when the average is usually 20.6. The trend indicates that it can rise 2 degrees in August, but at the moment and according to meteorologists we are in unknown territory. Reaching 25 degrees in August average sea temperature in Fuerteventura would be an unprecedented record on the island.

Cyclonic activity in July

As explained in his Twitter account JJ Alemán, physicist and doctor in meteorology of the AEMET, "due to the anomalies in the atmospheric circulation and the extraordinary warming of the Atlantic, this year is producing a strange cyclonic activity for the time. It is not yet time to see tropical cyclones derived from East African waves. It looks like August."

link to article for pics/maps
Living my dream
1 user says Thank You to TamaraEnLaPlaya for this post
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I am not surprised by this article, yesterday I was in the sea on the east side of the island and it was as warm if not warmer than it usually is in September or October, our pool at the villa is getting up to 29C without the heater or pool cover on.
John T - Dreaming of A Hole In One  Smile
2 users say Thank You to windermeregolfer for this post
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I swim in the sea nearly every day of the year and I thought yesterday the water temp was minimum 2-3 degrees higher than last week. Never known such a dramatic increase over just a few days.
2 users say Thank You to Joy Division for this post
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Big Grin 
Hopefully the sea is still warm when I'm next back over later this year . Seriously though, it must be of concern for the wider environmental perspective.
3 users say Thank You to Nomark for this post
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We have been looking at our log books and the sea is definitely at least 1.5deg c warmer than normal.
One guy was actually diving in a shortie this week albeit lined.
Baby hammerheads have turned up as well.
3 users say Thank You to DavidP for this post
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I was swimming in the sea at Caleta today and I never experienced the seawater this warm at this time of year, it was like getting into a bath tub
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