QR.bizNewsOcean colours will intensify due to climate change, study reveals

Ocean colours will intensify due to climate change, study reveals

Significant changes to global phytoplankton populations and their distributions in the coming decades will intensify the oceans' blues and greens, new research from MIT suggests. As such, the ocean appears blue.

Mayotte, an archipelago in the Indian Ocean. The molecules in the water absorb all of the spectrum of sunlight except blue, refracting it back making it the blue-colored water we see.

The best example is phytoplankton - an aquatic micro-organism.

"But it'll be enough different that it will affect the rest of the food web that phytoplankton supports", said Dutkiewicz, a principal research scientist at MIT. The sensors, which measure the colour of the water, work to calibrate satellite data in real time, providing information about the health of the Salish Sea.

For Mr. Strutton, "What this study has shown is that although the greenness of the oceans, the amount of chlorophyll might only be changing by small amounts, what's important is that the type of phytoplankton might be changing more dramatically". They pull carbon into the ocean while giving off oxygen. However, any organisms living in the area will distort that process and reflect different wavelengths of light. Those waters will look greener.

The numbers of phytoplankton present in oceans is crucial.

Climate change doesn't just happen in the air, in the dirt, or in the fearsome pages of damning studies.

Although optical sensors in satellites will be able to tell the difference, Dutkiewicz notes the naked eye will likely won't be able to pick up on the color changes.

Climate change has always been believed to be affecting our oceans and the marine life residing in them.

Our world's oceans are in trouble there is no doubt about that.

But in some waters, such as those of the Arctic, a warming will make conditions more ripe for phytoplankton, and these areas will turn more green.

Climate scientists have long since warned that human activity and pollution is rapidly warming the Earth, and it's a consensus that we're at or near a "tipping point" where, if we don't do something soon, there may be no going back. They are home to a stunning range of lifeforms of all shapes and sizes, all of which have unique properties and reflect different wavelengths of light. Satellites should detect these changes in hue, providing early warning of wide-scale changes to marine ecosystems.

Not only will climate change have a definitive impact on nature, killing off countless species and thus affecting our own capacity to thrive.

And why does that matter? They then use photosynthesis to create the chemical energy they need to live.

Those kinds of changes could reverberate up the food chain. They also simulated how phytoplankton absorbs and reflects light, learning that climate change will effectively alter the ocean's coloring near the surface.

"This finding reinforces the importance of long-term monitoring of phytoplankton community composition", she added. As the colors change, so too does the sea of life beneath. Scientists have predicted that if this continues, ocean colours would change by the end of the century.

Birdseye shot of green ocean creating waves on a sandy beach

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