UC San Diego Hosts Workshop to Figure Out What "The Blob" Is in North Pacific Ocean | NBC 7 San Diego

UC San Diego Hosts Workshop to Figure Out What "The Blob" Is in North Pacific Ocean

On Tuesday, the scientists met for the first of a two part workshop at UC San Diego during the 2014 to 2015 Pacific Anomalies Science and Technology Workshop.

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    San Diego scientists are working to figure out how to explain “the blob,” a nine degree temperature increase in the North Pacific Ocean that is leaving scientists with a lot of questions.

    On Tuesday, the scientists met for the first of a two part workshop at UC San Diego during the 2014 to 2015 Pacific Anomalies Science and Technology Workshop.

    “This is the super bowl of climate anomaly," Art Miller, PhD with Scripps Institution of Oceanography, said.

    Since 2014, the north Pacific Ocean has seen a nine degree jump in its waters, leaving scientists with a lot of questions – some of which they hope to answer on Tuesday and Wednesday.

    More than 100 scientists and researchers from Mexico and Canada are participating in the workshops to provide research and development questions based on “the blob.”

    The goal of the gathering is to ultimately form a community-wide effort that will help scientists better understand and predict the anomalies.

    “The blob” could be the reason so many starving sea lions have washed up on shores. These warmer temperatures are killing off the smaller fish that sea lions depend on for food.

    Researchers will be looking into these topics: 

    • Observing changes in physical and biogeochemical variable in the Northern Central and Eastern Pacific Ocean
    • How “the blob” impacts fisheries and other ecosystems
    • Variations in coastal sea level, currents, temperature, salinity and winds
    • Large-scale climate, ocean, and atmospheric processes and their relation to physical and biogeochemical variations
    • Structure of the California Current System and its interaction with the larger North Pacific system
    • Atmospheric and ocean processes that may translate warming signals between the open ocean and coastal regions
    • Connection of the observed responses to climate processes, such as the El Niño Southern Oscillation and the Pacific Decadal Oscillation
    • The abilities of global and regional models to detect ocean variations seen in observations