STATES CHRONICLE – Climate scientists argued that the last time when temperatures were so increased and sea levels were so high happened during the last interglacial period. During that period, the oceans’ water were as warm as today and coastlines were farther inland compared to how they are today. On January 19, a new study was published in Science magazine.
In the newly developed study, scientists claim that current temperature registered at the surface of seas indicate a similarity between them and the ones recorded during the last interglacial period. The period under discussion started about 129,000 years ago and ended approximately 116,000 years ago. During the interglacial period, sea levels were six to nine meters higher than they are today.
Climate scientists believe that this similarity between past weather conditions and present weather conditions might be extremely useful to determine current global warming models, allowing researchers to analyze how our planet managed to survive warmer climates.
Jeremy S. Hoffman is the first author of this study and also a climate scientist at Oregon State University. He together with his colleagues used about a hundred records of temperatures registered at the surface of the sea from the last interglacial period. All these files have been made in the past at 83 different marine sediment core sites.
Hoffman and his team have these samples together with temperature data sets which have been registered between 1870 and 1889 and also 1995 and 2014. They have revealed that the peak temperatures at the surface of the sea during interglaciation were only slightly higher than those registered between 1870 and 1889 and almost equal to those recorded in the 1995-2014 period.
What is more, sea levels were even higher than compared to how they are today. Thus, over 100,000 years ago, the temperatures registered at the surface of the sea proved to be almost the same with those we experience today. If sea levels today would be similar to the ones recorded back then, New Orleans or Miami would have suffered serious floods.
Hoffman argues that the fact that they revealed how climate worked back then will help them develop more accurate climate models to evaluate today’s global warming. Dr. Allegra LeGrande, a physical research scientist at NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies, argues that this new study will certainly make a difference regarding new climate models.
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