According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the preeminent ocean temperature measuring buoy system named “ARGO,” is helping oceanographers and climate scientists answer one of the most important climate question of the decade. Why has the Pacific Ocean dramatically warmed during the last 12 months when the atmosphere hasn’t warmed in 18 years 8 months?
A very important question to be sure. However, sometimes asking the proper question is more important than the answer, because properly formulated questions often lead to amazing new insights. As an example, climate scientists, politicians, and the public should actually be asking this question: Why has the tropical Pacific Ocean dramatically warmed during the last 12 months when the atmosphere and all other oceans haven’t warmed?
Lost in the rush to judge whether the currently warming Pacific Ocean and associated 2015 El Niño is atmospherically or naturally induced, many people have neglected to properly consider one other hugely important factor. None of Earth’s other oceans are warming. This is a very telling piece of information. It strengthens the likelihood that current Pacific Ocean warming is related to natural deep ocean geological forces and not man-made atmospheric warming. This article will discuss how one dataset, specifically the ARGO ocean buoy system measurements, support this contention.
The ARGO buoy system is modern, sophisticated, and very precise. It is a network of 3,881 GPS-monitored, independently operating buoys that act autonomously to vary their depth from surface to 6,000 feet while continuously recording ocean temperatures and pressures. The data is remotely sent in real time to a central computer. A quick glance at a distribution map of the worldwide position of these buoys is quite impressive (Figure 1). Wow that’s a lot of buoys!
Many universities and government agencies that have used the ARGO data to map, study, and computer model ocean temperature variations, including those associated with the emerging 2015 Pacific Ocean El Niño. The results of all this research has been presented in the media as smartly packaged scientific write-ups. Typically, these write-ups contain a very well-written storyline accompanied by colorful, precise, and supposedly definitive / “smoking gun” ARGO temperature maps.
The storyline is that the ARGO temperature maps have helped identify the hiding place of nearly twenty years of global man-made global warming, a limited geographical and ocean depth portion of the far western Pacific Ocean. Climate scientists provide the following explanation of how this 18.7 year hiding process worked:
Heat energy from years of man-made atmospheric warming from every region of Earth has somehow been continuously captured and concentrated.
Concurrently the energy has been transported from every atmospheric region on earth by an unknown process to a limited geographical portion of the western Pacific Ocean where it has resided at a constant ocean depth interval of 900-1,800 feet for 18.7 years.
Finally, for reasons not well understood, this energy / heat stock pile has decided it’s now time to move east and fuel the 2015 El Niño.
This man-made global warming explanation lacks credibility for many reasons as documented in several previous CCD write-ups. This article will address one additional reason, misinterpretation of the ARGO buoy system dataset temperatures.
Let’s start by taking a different look at the geographical distribution of ARGO buoys, a more rigorous mathematical look. The oceans cover 139,700,000 square miles of earth and there are 3,881 buoys. This equates to one buoy every 36,000 square miles. That doesn’t sound like a lot because it isn’t. Then it gets worse.
The oceans can be divided into three district depth ranges; shallow, mid-level and deep. So there are therefore three times 139.7 million square miles of area to measure with 3,881 buoys. This equates to 108,000 square miles per buoy. Lastly, many deep-ocean geological heat and fluid sources are…well deep. Most, but not all, are located at depths greater than 6,000 feet which is beneath the ARGO Buoy depth capability.
Given these ARGO depth and spacing restrictions it’s easy to understand why climate scientists attempting to locate heat flow sources for the warming Pacific Ocean have never considered geological point sources. They can’t directly measure / image their temperature fingerprint. Stated another way typical fixed limited-area geological heat sources are at depths greater than 6,000 feet and occupy an area less than 10,000 square miles (100 x 100 miles), making it difficult to directly measure their affect.
However there is a very reliable way to use the ARGO data to discern the indirect affect of the smaller and deeper geological heat areas. The ARGO buoy system data does clearly show the smeared “effect” of a deep-ocean limited-area geological heat point sources in the shallow Sea Surface Temperature (SST) maps (Figure 2.). As the heat from a geological point source is moved laterally and dispersed outward and upward by ocean current, the heat signature will appear as a well-defined cone-shaped anomaly that points back to the region of the deep geological heat point source (Figure 2.). Realizing that this pattern represents a deep-fixed geological heat point source has not been given proper consideration by atmospherically biased climate scientists. You can never see what you are not looking for.
Importantly, current ARGO maps of the remaining oceans does not show significant temperature variations / patterns that compare in magnitude or intensity to the Pacific Ocean anomaly. Why? If the atmosphere is warming as contended by climate scientists advocating the theory of global warming, wouldn’t some of that atmospheric heat energy hide in another ocean? If so, it’s doing a very good job hiding, because it does not show up on any ARGO generated SST maps. The absence of significant heating anomalies in other oceans is taken here as yet another piece of solid evidence that the 2015 Pacific Ocean El Niño is geological in nature.
Truly understanding the vastness of the world’s oceans is difficult to conceive, especially in an era of high tech communication, over-population, and the ease of worldwide travel. There is actually more dry land on the surface of our moon than there is on our planet. All of us incorrectly assume that every inch of earth has been explored, mapped, and defined. It hasn’t.
The world’s oceans are like another planet. Only 1% of the oceans have been properly explored and viewed with human eyes. It should come as no surprise that the forces controlling the oceans are virtually unknown. Sure, we get remote sensing glimpses of these forces now and then, but a clear view…no way! This includes the ARGO buoy dataset.
The Pacific Ocean is warming, but the atmosphere and all other oceans are not. Why? The answer has been hidden from view by our inability to consider non-atmospheric heat sources.
James Edward Kamis is a Geologist and AAPG member of 41 years and who has always been fascinated by the connection between Geology and Climate. Years of research / observation have convinced him that the Earth’s Heat Flow Engine, which drives the outer crustal plates, is also an important driver of the Earth’s climate.