A new analysis confirmed that the Gulf Stream is weakening, but whether it’s due to climate change is hard to tell.
The Gulf Stream Is Weakening
A study just found that the Gulf Stream is slowing and the warm water’s flow through the Florida Straits has slowed by 4 percent in the last four decades, with grave implications for the climate of the world.
Wionews reported that the ocean current begins near Florida and a stream of warm water streams along the U.S. East Coast and Canada before it transits the Atlantic to Europe. The heat that the stream is transporting is essential for regulating sea levels and keeping temperate conditions.
However, this stream has slowed down, wrote the researchers in a study that was published in the journal Geophysical Research Letters on September 25.
The Gulf Stream Is A Global Conveyor Belt Of Ocean Currents
“This is the strongest, most definitive evidence we have of the weakening of this climatically-relevant ocean current,” stated lead author Christopher Piecuch, a physical oceanographer at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in Massachusetts, in a statement.
The Gulf Stream is only a small component of the thermohaline circulation which is a global conveyor belt of ocean currents that has been moving carbon, heat, nutrients, and oxygen around the planet, while also contributing to controlling hurricane activity and sea levels.