Auad, G., A. Miller and E. Di Lorenzo, 2006:
Long term forecast of oceanic
conditions off California and
Journal of Geophysical Research-Oceans, 111, C09008, doi:10.1029/2005JC003219.
The impact of global warming due to an increased content of atmospheric CO2 is
studied by forcing a numerical eddy-resolving ocean model with wind stresses, heat
fluxes, and open boundary conditions obtained from a state-of-the-art coupled model.
Specifically, we have compared the 1986-1996 and 2040-2050 decades to describe and
analyze the changes attained by several oceanographic variables in the California Current
System. A richer atmosphere in CO2 leads to increased sea surface and near-surface
temperatures in the model domain and to an increased stratification along the coast that,
however, is not strong enough to overcome the effect of increased upwelling favorable
winds. A mild oceanic cooling is forecast below the 70-m depth, in agreement with
recent studies of global warming trends. Near-surface vertical velocities increase by
about 30% in April, but our simulations also forecast anomalous offshore transports in
most of the coastal areas. The eddy kinetic energy decreases, on an annual mean, along the
California Current main path with maximum negative anomalies in winter. The
upward displacement of the 26.5 isopycnal surface, especially in the northern half of our
study area, leads to an increase in the concentration of nutrients in the subsurface. The
agreement between some results of this forecasting study and recent published
findings would suggest that the current global warming trend would persist in the study
area with similar changes to those observed over the last half century.