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‘Global warming hiatus could last 10 more years’ say researchers 22.08.14

BBC: naturally occurring cycle in the Atlantic Ocean could explain current slowdown

Scientists have published a theory to explain the reasons behind a slowdown in global warming temperatures.

According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) a naturally occurring 30-year cycle in the Atlantic Ocean is the reason why temperatures haven’t risen since 1998, the hottest year on record. It is thought that a slow-moving current in the ocean diverts heat into the deep after 30 years flips to a warmer phase.

The leading academic Prof Ka-Kit Tung from the University of Washington, USA, said the current warms and cools the world  by submerging large amounts of heat beneath deep waters.“The Pacific is a symptom of the hiatus but not the ultimate cause. The Atlantic is the driver.”

Prof Reto Knutti from the ETH Zurich, who has recently reviewed several related theories, said: “I see the studies as complementary, and they both highlight that natural variability in ocean and atmosphere is important in modifying long term anthropogenic trends.

“A better understanding of those modes of variability is critical to understand past changes (including differences between models and observations during the hiatus period) as well as predicting the future, in particular in the near term and regionally, where variability dominates the forced changes from greenhouses gases.”

Read the full story from the BBC