Learn how climate and climate change are driven by interactions between the ocean and the atmosphere, the two key components of the Earth system. Discuss global energy balance, atmospheric circulation, surface winds and ocean circulation, deep-sea thermohaline circulation, Holocene climate, the El Niño Southern Oscillation, projections of future atmospheric CO2 and other greenhouse-gas concentrations, and the effects of climate change on marine environments. Create, analyze, and present predictions using the latest atmosphere-ocean coupled general circulation models (CMIP) to assess potential effects of climate change on ocean-atmosphere systems. Explore past global changes and those anticipated in the future due to anthropogenic carbon releases, based upon IPCC future climate change scenarios and past climate records. Develop tools to describe the influence of climate change on ocean environments quantitatively, and to consider potential outcomes for marine ecosystems on which students' own research is focused.
First, this course covers key components of the Earth system: global energy balance, the greenhouse effect, blackbody radiation, global distributions of temperature, effects of the Earth’s rotation, geostrophic balance, seasonal variability, Hadley circulation, surface winds and ocean circulation, Ekman layers, western boundary currents, and the thermohaline conveyor belt, etc.
Second, the course addresses global change on short and long time scales: long-term climate records, Holocene climate, the last glacial maximum, the El Niño Southern Oscillation, the Pacific Decadal Oscillation, projections of future atmospheric CO2 concentrations, etc.
Furthermore, atmosphere-ocean coupled general circulation models will be introduced. Effects of climate change, such as projected global warming scenarios, on marine environments will be discussed through exercises based on model predictions.
- Gerold Siedler, Stephen M. Griffies, John Gould, John A. Church. Ocean Circulation and Climate: A 21st Century Perspective. Elsevier, 2013.
- Lee R. Kump, James F. Kasting, Robert G. Crane. The Earth System, 3rd Edition. Pearson, 2010.
- Earth, Our Living Planet, by Philippe Bertrand and Louis Legendre (2021) Springer