Marine Life Threatened by rising temperatures
Whether it is in the United States or in the Middle-East, it has been hot this summer. A world heat record may have been broken in Kuwait, Iraq this year as temperatures soared to nearly one-hundred and thirty degrees Fahrenheit. Even overnight heat records were broken across the United States as temperatures did not even dip below the usual seventy-two degrees in the coolest hours of the morning. A big question a lot of people have on their minds is; How will this impact the oceans and marine life? A lot of underwater habitats are threatened and many more species could be looking at extinction.
Turning Up The Heat On The Oceans
So what exactly happens when you turn up the heat over the ocean waters? Well, the ocean water temperature gets higher as you would expect. It does not just get warmer in one area, though. It gets warmer in all areas of the ocean. No, not always by a lot but by enough. Enough to melt sea ice in large amounts. We will get to what that could do to marine life in the long run and how this makes the marine life threatened. What about the short term?
That is where things get interesting. Coral reefs do need some sunlight, but with too much of it and heat is filtered through the water, then coral reefs can begin to degrade. This is called bleaching. When a coral reef begins to bleach, it starts to lose its structural integrity and falls apart. This, of course, can eventually cause the loss of an entire coral reef habitat for marine life. Given the long-term effects, this can have, this is a part of marine life threatened.
If the sea ice in the extreme northern and southern areas of our oceans starts to melt more during summer months, then we could be looking at one giant disaster. A lot of coral reefs rely on sunlight to exist. So if the oceans were to rise and further submerge the shallow water reefs, they could all fade into darkness. Deep water coral reefs aren’t safe either. They may not need sunlight, but this little thing called water pressure does affect them. Should the oceans rise, the water pressure on these coral reefs could easily become too great for them to handle? This again is showing marine life threatened.
A Fever-Pitch On Earth
This higher than average temperature or “fever” being felt around the globe is doing far more than we feel. That is obvious with what it is doing to the oceans. It is also creating stronger hurricanes and tropical cyclones. It is also responsible for the flooding seen this year in regions like Louisiana, where flooding was worse than that of Hurricane Katrina in 2005. Even in my native state of Florida, our regular afternoon thunderstorms are considerably more ferocious than they used to be. This can also be a reason for marine life threatened.
Pretty much everything that climate change scientists said would happen over the next century is happening. Not many people believed them back in the late 1990s and early 2000s when they made these claims, though. Now the problem is that it has not been a hundred years and we are already seeing serious side-effects from global warming. A lot of people are asking how we can fix this mess, but in the end, we were only a partial cause in the first place. The very reason most people did not buy into global warming is also the reason we are having trouble finding a solution.
You see the Earth goes through stages like this on its own. We may have helped it along a bit, but it was already heading for this stage a century ago! We may not have had such scientific knowledge a century ago, but we’ve had it for a time since and ignored the warning signs. Now with our marine life threatened, we are finally starting to take notice.
A Good News / Bad News Situation
The bad news is that we’re headed for some trouble with our oceans, weather patterns and general way of life. The good news is that mother nature has her ways of correcting such problems. A lot of marine life and land life might suffer in the mean time, though, and that likely includes us land lovers. Of course, if the oceans were to rise then new coral reefs would likely be made over time. We can always rebuild, even if we have to in other areas.
The fact remains that the Earth we know could be about to reshape itself in a big way. Coastlines could be pushed back and some smaller islands could even be lost entirely. Stronger hurricanes than ever are likely going to sweep well inland and cause flooding farther inland. Our building codes will likely have to be rewritten so that our structures can withstand higher winds. Older structures may be washed into the ocean to create new coral reefs.
There is just a lot that can happen. The standing question is… What will happen? Only time will tell the story in its entirety. What a story it will be, though. It will certainly be a lesson to future generations. By the time this warming phase ends for our planet, there will be no doubt in anyone’s mind that we have to be careful what we do as a species. Only the extremely skeptical individuals will still believe global warming and cooling is a myth. Regardless of what anyone believes now, even folks that live far inland in countries will see the effects, both the good… and the bad.
As beautiful as are oceans are, do we really want to continue creating problems for it, and causing our marine life to be threatened?