Climate change | The Mediterranean Sea is witnessing a rise in water surface temperatures, and scientists describe the Mediterranean Sea as a hotspot for climate change

2024-07-04 2024-07-04T12:04:03Z
هشام جمال
هشام جمال
كاتب مُحتوى جوّي

Arabia Weather - Specialists from the Climate Department at the Regional Arab Weather Center are monitoring the latest results of the outputs of computer models for monitoring the temperature of water bodies, through which the specialists have noted that the eastern Mediterranean basin region is witnessing an increase in the temperature of the water surface, reaching 28-29 degrees Celsius, and thus It may have exceeded its usual levels by approximately 1 to 3 degrees Celsius, and the Mediterranean Sea is likely to witness a further rise in light of the dominance of hot air masses during the summer.

Is the Mediterranean basin a hotspot for environmental and climate change?

According to studies, the Mediterranean Basin, which includes the Mediterranean Sea and its neighboring countries, is often referred to as a hotspot for climate change and biodiversity. A new analysis of the scientific literature co-authored by 120 scientists has indicated that the sum of climate change, pollution and unsustainable land use And the sea creates these overlapping risks that are often underestimated.

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Regarding the presence of a hot spot, the answer is yes and no. This is not the case if we mean that the Mediterranean region warmed faster than other regions, but it is true that increases in air temperature have now reached +1.5 degrees Celsius compared to the pre-industrial period (1850-1900), while The global average increase just exceeded +1°C. However, this is not surprising because all of the world's land surfaces have warmed more than the atmosphere above the oceans, and the strongest warming occurs at high latitudes at twice the speed of the global average. The Mediterranean Sea, being semi-enclosed and relatively shallow, is warming It is warming faster than the Global Ocean (+0.3°C to +0.4°C per decade versus about +0.2°C globally).

But temperature is only one factor among many that influence global change, and the answer is yes if we take into account the combination of multiple risks, which makes the Mediterranean Sea particularly vulnerable, especially on its eastern and southern shores.

Very warm temperatures witnessed in the Mediterranean in 2023, reaching 30 degrees Celsius
Biodiversity is under threat in the Mediterranean due to climate change

The Mediterranean region is also a biodiversity hotspot with 25,000 plant species, 60% of which are endemic. They provided a "service" to plant and animal species as refuges during the last ice age (when the climate was colder and sea levels were 120 meters lower). These ecosystems are now under the triple threat of drought, sea level rise, and intensification of land use. Wildfires due to heatwaves and drought will be increasingly dramatic despite prevention efforts and fire response forces. Climate change, pollution and overfishing are having a major impact on marine ecosystems, which contain 18% of known species and cover 0.82% of the global ocean.

The Mediterranean is currently a hotbed of social and political instability, witnessing economic losses, conflicts, and great suffering for the population. Even if causal links with climate change cannot be proven, the expected future changes are so large that the risk of increased instability is great and will require significant adaptation efforts. Economically, the region relies heavily on tourism (30% of global tourism) which faces the dual threat of heat waves and environmental degradation on the one hand, and the necessary decarbonisation of transport on the other.

Climate reading: La Nina continues to grow and will continue during the coming summer months. Does it herald a scorching summer on a global level?

God knows.

This article was written originally in Arabic and is translated using a 3rd party automated service. ArabiaWeather is not responsible for any grammatical errors whatsoever.
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