The Stream, March 26: Climate Change Slows Down the Atlantic Ocean

The  Global Rundown

The Global Rundown

Melting ice in Greenland has hindered normal circulation of the Atlantic that brings heat north from the tropics. California residents don’t think their neighbors are doing enough to conserve water, and many citizens of Ireland may refuse to pay their water bills. Flooding has killed four and interrupted copper mining in northern Chile, and cholera will continue to hurt Haiti until the necessary water supply and sanitation improvements are made.

“We’re not paying it. We don’t have it.” — Sarah Murphy, Irish citizen whose family of 5 lives on $73 a week after rent and electricity, on new charges for water in Ireland. (New York Times). 

By the Numbers

By The Numbers

66 percent – portion of Californians that believe others in their part of the state aren’t doing enough to conserve water, according to a poll by the Public Policy Institute of California. The same number agree that regional water supply is a big problem. Mercury News

Four – number dead in floods that swept through northern Chile this week after the heaviest rains in about 80 years. Mining operations were interrupted and residents evacuated from cut off villages. Climatologists have made it clear that the rain will do little to alleviate Chile’s 8 year drought. Reuters

Science

Science, Studies, And Reports

Circulation in the Atlantic Ocean is weakening due to mass glacier melt in Greenland, according to new research published Monday in Nature Climate Change. The AMOC, or Atlantic meridional overturning circulation, is like an ocean conveyor belt that brings heat from the tropics to the northern high latitudes, and it has weakened dramatically since 1970. If the weakening continues, the climate system could bring heat north via alternative pathways, i.e. severe storms. The AMOC also plays an essential role in bringing deep sea nutrients up to fish in shallower regions, so a dying AMOC could harm fisheries. Climate Central

On the Radar

On The Radar

Experts say that cholera will continue to kill Haitians until the necessary improvements in water and sanitation access are made. 1000 new cases of the disease are reported each week in a country where 40 percent of the population do not have access to clean water. Reuters

Some Irish are vowing not to pay newly imposed charges on water. Although the deadline to register with the new water authority has been extended three times and $US 110 (100 Euros) has been offered to families that sign up, one third of households in the country have flat-out refused. There are also expectations of widespread refusal to pay in April, when the bills are sent out. New York Times

 is both a scientist and a journalist, helping to drive Circle of Blue’s reporting with data and research. She holds an MS in Environmental Engineering from Michigan Technological University, and she brings proficiency in ESRI’s ArcGIS mapping software.

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