Marine Geosciences and Oceanography

Oceanography is a richly interdisciplinary science encompassing the study of the deep sea and shallow coastal oceans. Oceanography comprises the study of biology, chemistry, geology and physics in the form they apply to the ocean. Physical oceanography deals with studying and understanding the changing patterns of ocean circulation, in addition to the distribution of its properties like salinity, temperature and the concentration of dissolved chemical elements and gases. Chemical oceanography is the study of the oceans’ chemistry, the pathways that chemical species follow on their journey through the oceans. The chemistry of the ocean is closely tied to the exchange of material with the atmosphere, cryosphere, continents, and the mantle, ocean circulation, climate, the plants and animals that live in the ocean. Biological oceanography seeks to understand the population dynamics of marine organisms and their interaction with their environment. Unfortunately, in spite of all the studies and endeavors, the oceans are bearing the brunt of anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions thus leading to what is called ocean acidification. The acidity of oceans has been decreased by twenty-five percent and is estimated to decrease at an accelerated rate. Coral and other shell forming organisms are being gravely affected by this. Greenhouse gas emissions have not only increased the acidity of the ocean but also their temperature. The average annual temperature of the earth has risen by 1°F over the last century. This warming has taken place both on land as well as in the water, from the surface to a depth of around 700 meters. Warmer oceans pose diverse threats including coral bleaching, higher sea levels, stronger storms including other consequences.

 

  • Paleoceanography
  • Physical Oceanography
  • Chemical Oceanography
  • Biological Oceanography
  • Ocean Acidification
  • Rise in Ocean Temperatures and Coral Bleaching
  • Global Sea Level rise

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