Nordic Seas cooled 500,000 years before global oceans

Uni Research

The cooling of the Nordic Seas towards modern temperatures started in the early Pliocene, half a million years before the global oceans cooled. The cooling of the oceans toward the modern situation started from 4 million years ago, but a new study now shows that the Nordic Seas cooled 500,000 year earlier. Along east Greenland a cold water current known as the East Greenland Current flows southward and transports the major part of all exported Arctic sea ice. Thermal isolation of Greenland Our study shows that a surface water temperature gradient was only established since 4.5 million years ago, when warm waters continued to flow along the Scandinavian coast and cool water entered the Nordic Seas along Greenland’s east coast, De Schepper says. The cool surface water that arrives from 4.5 million years ago in the western Nordic Seas isolates Greenland from the warmer water in the eastern Nordic Seas.

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