Anything for the Data

Research technician Dave Faber hangs on as waves crash onto the deck of Scripps research vessel New Horizon during the ship’s last cruise for the California Cooperative Oceanic Fisheries Investigations (CalCOFI) program. CalCOFI data are being used to determine the effects of a large, mysteriously warm “blob” of water on climate and ecosystems in the North Pacific. As for the temperature of this wave, let’s hope it wasn’t too chilly. (Photo by James Wilkinson / Scripps Institution of Oceanography – CalCOFI)

Want to see more? Check out the video below.

Unusual ocean weather and climate patterns have been observed throughout 2014 and 2015 across the North Pacific basin. An area of the North Pacific has been as much as 5°C (9° F) warmer than average, earning it the nickname “the blob.”

Scientists have seen evidence that the unusually warm temperatures are affecting weather and climate patterns as well as open ocean ecosystems and fisheries. Scientists studying the blob have been working to develop a series of research and development questions and issues related to these anomalies. They are attempting to understand how these significant oceanographic variations arose, their impacts on water, weather and economic well-being, and ways in which scientists can potentially improve predictive capabilities.

Read the full Scripps Institution of Oceanography story on their May workshop all about the blob.