News Home Video Gallery Newsletters Photo Gallery Cruising Int
Sail-World.com : New Study - Southern Ocean winds strengthen, shrink south
New Study - Southern Ocean winds strengthen, shrink south

'Southern Ocean winds'    .

If you have ambitions to sail the Southern Ocean and would like to be carried around by the Roaring Forties, you'd better not delay too long. According to some new results from a scientific group the winds are strengthening and moving south.

For the first time, Dr Nerilie Abram, Queen Elizabeth II Research Fellow, Research School of Earth Sciences has led a team which studied data since the year AD1000, and found that Southern Ocean winds are now stronger than at any time in the past 1000 years, and likely to increase.

In the words of Dr Abram to Sail-World Cruising, 'Rising greenhouse gases are causing the westerly winds that circle around Antarctica to get stronger and shift closer to Antarctica. Over the last 50 years the wind belt has shifted south by around 2-5 degrees of latitude, while also getting around 10-15% faster. This is a trend that looks set to continue as greenhouse gas levels continue to rise over the coming century.'

However, the changes will not occur evenly across the year. 'Strengthening of the westerly winds over the coming decades is expected to be most pronounced in the winter months. But during the summer season, a gradual recovery of the Antarctic ozone hole is expected to offset some of the changes being caused by rising greenhouse gases,' she added.

The study has been published in the latest issue of Nature Climate Change.

Antarctica has been warming relatively slowly compared with the rest of the world. The explanation seems to be that the winds spinning clockwise around the continent have been getting stronger, preventing warm air from entering.

In 2009, it seemed that the hole in the ozone layer above Antarctica was responsible for boosting the winds. Dr Abram and her colleagues have shown the ozone hole is only part of the story. Global warming is just as important.

The team reconstructed Antarctic temperatures over the past 1000 years, using an ice core from James Ross Island near the Antarctic Peninsula. The temperatures correlated with how strong and tight the winds are, so they could construct a record of wind strength.

They found that the current strength of the winds is unprecedented over the past millennium. But the surge in strength started in the 1940s, decades before the ozone hole.

So Abram's team simulated the last millennium using eight climate models, driven by actual greenhouse gas levels previously reconstructed from ice cores. All the models predicted that the winds would pick up by the 1940s, suggesting greenhouse gases were playing a role. That may be because the northern hemisphere is warming faster than the south – because it has more continents – creating a strong temperature gradient that boosts the winds.

However, the stronger winds experienced by sailors in the Southern Ocean is one of the milder side effects that scientists are worried about.

'The west Antarctic ice sheet [adjacent to the peninsula] is probably the bit of the Antarctic ice mass that we’ve be most concerned about for the longest time,' Matthew England, from the University of NSW’s Climate Change Research Centre, and a co-author of the paper, said recently.

'If it all melted, that ice sheet could lift global sea levels by 4 to 5 metres, he said.

The full study can be found in the most recent edition of Nature Climate Change


by Sail-World Cruising round-up


  

Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=122057

8:09 PM Sun 11 May 2014GMT


Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.







Cruising USA































Estimating the diversity of life by Australian Institute of Marine Science,














Will your lifelines pass this sailing test? by Captain John Jamieson, Florida


Aventura's passage to Annapolis by Cornell Sailing,






Earth Wind Map - with typhoons by Sail-World Cruising,














Canadian shipwreck discovery solves 170-year-old mystery
British couple help stranded Syrian refugees to safety
Blue Planet Odyssey yacht completes Northwest Passage transit
World ARC fleet embarks on leg 11, across the Indian Ocean
Pantaenius and Camper & Nicholsons Marinas become strategic partners
How to make a distance scale for faster navigation
New maps of the polar regions reveal unseen world beneath the ice
Naval Commanders talk on-going piracy threat at sea
Erie, Pennsylvania - Small place, big boating
EU Naval Force frigate, ESPS Navarra aids yacht in the Gulf of Aden
Insurance, towing and safety 'provisions' reminder for snowbirds
A guide to steering without a rudder + Video - a must read and watch!!
You scratched my seagrass!
Cocos Keeling Islands - Yet another paradise for the World ARC fleet
Hurricane Odile: Two Brits missing in Mexico after yacht overturns
Sailor texts girlfriend for help after yacht sinks in Bristol Channel
Gas safety: don’t let it go off the boil
Arctic sea ice summer minimum 2014: A scientific perspective
British Virgin Islands, a taste of Caribbean cruising
The Galley Guys take on the Vancouver International Boat Show
Are you ready to enter that marina?   
Cruising the Bay of Quinte and Thousand Islands   
Ten safe and clean refueling tips for boaters   
World ARC fleet moored at Christmas Island   
Blue Planet Odyssey welcomed to Bora Bora   
Remember to properly dispose of obsolete distress beacons   
Blue Planet Odyssey - Aventura makes landfall in the US   
World ARC fleet bids farewell to Bali   
Antarctic Team discovers mechanism for massive ice shelf collapse   
Baltic 4 Nations - Next edition sets sail July 2015   
BoatUS offers 'Boater's Guide To Winterizing'   
Yachts prepare for second Atlantic Odyssey, departing this November   
Thai drama with Phuket yacht clampdown   
Sailing Rallies launch two new events at PSP Southampton Boat Show   
World ARC crews in Bali   
Could your sailing navigation use a tune-up?   
Images of marine sunsets by Tripadvisor   
Citizen science model proposed to fill fundamental ocean data gap   
Ocean Cruising Club celebrates 60th Anniversary with record gatherings   
The Boat Cookbook   


For this week's complete news stories select    Last 7 Days
   Search All News
For last month's complete news stories select    Last 30 Days
   Archive News







Sail-World.com  


















Switch Default Region to:

Social Media

Asia

Australia

Canada

Europe

New Zealand

United Kingdom


http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/Twitter_logo_small.png http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/FaceBook-icon.png  

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World

 

Contact

Commercial

News

Search

Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text

Feedback

Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery

 

Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery

Policies

 

 

 

Privacy Policy

 

 


Cookie Policy

 

 



This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.  Photographs are copyright by law.  If you wish to use or buy a photograph contact the photographer directly.
XLXL NEW Cru USA
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT