Current Acts as Global Conveyor Belt for Heat

The Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation, or AMOC, is a vital distributor of heat in the Atlantic Ocean, says William Johns of UM’s Rosenstiel School. Recent research shows the AMOC is weakening, but scientists do not yet know how much of that is related to global warming and how much to natural variability.

Johns has been involved for years in two projects that deploy arrays of deep-ocean moorings for continual monitoring of the AMOC. “These observational programs are intended to provide benchmarks for global climate models…. The observations also help to understand the physics of the natural variations in the AMOC so that they can be separated from the long-term AMOC variations associated with climate change.”

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