Science Highlights

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In the eastern tropical Indian Ocean, intraseasonal variability (ISV) affects the regional oceanography and marine ecosystems. The ISV has been found to be modulated by the Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD), but the impact of ENSO is ambiguous. 

The ocean temperatures continued a trend of breaking records in 2020. A new study, authored by 20 scientists from 14 institutes around the world, reported the highest ocean temperatures since 1955 from surface level to a depth of 2,000 m.

In the tropical Pacific and Atlantic Oceans, easterly trade winds prevail and upwelling occurs in the eastern equatorial basin. In contrast, the Indian Ocean is subject to intense seasonally reversing monsoon wind forcing, and the annual mean prevailing winds in the equatorial basin. This provides unique features of interannual variability of the upwelling in the tropical Indian Ocean.

ENSO in the Pacific Ocean has major worldwide social and economic consequences through its global scale effects on atmospheric and oceanic circulation, marine and terrestrial ecosystems, and other natural systems. Ongoing climate change is projected to significantly alter ENSO’s dynamics and impacts.

The paper uses an unprecedented ensemble of regional climate model (RCM) projections over seven regional CORDEX domains to provide, for the first time, an RCM based global view of monsoon changes at various levels of increased greenhouse gas (GHG) forcing.

The ‘butterfly effect’ is used by climate scientists to refer to an infinitesimal random perturbation to an identical initial condition (for example, in surface temperatures) causing drastically different trajectories. A recent study published in Nature (Cai et al.

Climate models are core tools for understanding the mechanisms underlying climate change and making long-term and short-term predictions.

A new article was published in the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society that reviews the current knowledge on detection, attribution and projection of global and regional monsoons (South Asian, East Asian, Australian, South American, North American, and African) under climate change. 

The writing team of the decadal Indian Ocean Observing System review has recently published a research article on the BAMS titled A roadmap to IndOOS-2: Better observations of the rapidly-warming Indian ocean, by presenting the core findings from the IndOOS review. 

A new framework for global ocean-sea-ice model simulations based on phase 2 of the Ocean Model Intercomparison Project (OMIP-2), was presented recently by CLIVAR Ocean Model Development Panel (OMDP) and other ocean model communities.

An assessment of the Indian Ocean mean state and seasonal cycle in a suite of interannual CORE-II global ocean–sea-ice model simulations is presented.

From 7-9 May 2019, 90 observational and modeling experts met in Boulder CO, USA to review and document progress, identify outstanding issues, and propose approaches for future integrated process studies in atmospheric convection and air-sea interactions over the tropical oceans, over a broad range of spatio-temporal scales. 

The CLIVAR Science Steering Committee (SSG) coordinated the co-chairs of its panels and research foci to produce a white paper for OceanObs’19 entitled ‘Ocean Climate Observing Requirements in Support of Climate Research and Climate Information’, that has recently been published in Frontiers in Marine Science.

Schematic of a cyberinfrastructure-based vision for SOOS (Meredith et al., 2013; reproduced with permission). Combined with satellite remote sensing, data from both autonomous and non-autonomous platforms would be relayed to ground stations in real time. Assimilating ocean models would produce near-real time state estimates of each of the parameters in the system and associated error fields would then be used to re-task the autonomous platforms in real time. This will maximize the spatial–temporal coverage

The major scientific and observational progress of the last decade and  an assessment of key priorities for the coming decade with the goal of achieving the SOOS vision and delivering essential data to all end-users were presented in the paper jointly contributed by SOOS and SORP, in addition with other authors.

Because of the existing confusion about multiple perspectives on high-end scenarios, there needs to be a reconciliation of those perspectives by integrating the best scientific information and guidance to provide consensus on actionable science. 

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