Global warming watch: Atlantic current changing
Key warming ocean current slowing down: scientists:
The Atlantic Conveyor, a life-giving ocean current that keeps northern Europe warm, is slowing down, scientists said on Wednesday.The Atlantic Conveyor is a complex system of currents which includes the Gulf Stream.
If the 30 percent slowdown seen over the past 12 years is not just a blip, temperatures in northern Europe could drop significantly, despite global warming, they added.
Scientists have long forecast that the Atlantic Conveyor that carries warm surface water north and cold deep water back to the equator could break down because of global warming.
"This is the first time we have observed a change in the current on a human timescale," oceanographer Harry Bryden said, noting that it had completely shut down during the ice ages.