“Mother Nature is not happy right now and she’s trying to tell us, in many ways,” says Kimberly Prather, Professor of Climate, Atmospheric Science, and Physical Oceanography at UC San Diego.
New weather patterns and events are causing concern but how do we know these changes are caused by human activity? Climate scientists are looking at trends over time to determine our impact on the planet.
Prather discusses recent CAICE studies aimed at advancing our understanding of how the oceans influence human and planetary health including novel experiments being conducted in a unique ocean-atmosphere simulator.
Mangroves, trees that form forests in the transition between land and sea, provide a habitat for a great diversity of plants and animals worldwide. These coastal ecosystems are invaluable to humans, supplying a number of services essential for our survival. We still do not know how much these ecosystems are worth from an economic perspective – but they are essential from an ecological perspective. Scripps Oceanography’s Octavio Aburto examines mangrove ecosystems and explains why it is vital to put enormous efforts into understanding their value.
Leopard sharks are a special species of shark found only along the West coast of North America, their territory spanning from Washington to Baja California. A distinctive characteristic of these creatures is their mild temperament. Unlike most sharks, which will bite anything that might be food, leopard sharks are timid and have such small mouths that they pose essentially no danger to humans. In fact, a leopard shark bite on a human has never been recorded by the International Shark Attack File.
Every Summer La Jolla Shores is the gathering site of hundreds of leopard sharks. A common misconception of this behavior is that these sharks convene here to mate or give birth, but in fact scientists are not quite certain what they do at this annual conference.
Did you know there are unheard sounds in the Earth’s atmosphere that can travel all the way around the world?
Dr. Michael Hedlin of UC San Diego’s Scripps Institution of Oceanography explains that when massive events occur in the atmosphere low frequency sounds are generated that can be received all over the earth, depending on the magnitude of the event. Much like when there is an earthquake and seismic waves can be read on seismometers around the planet.
Although we cannot hear these sounds because of their low frequencies, there is still a lot they can tell us about things like volcanic eruptions and meteorite impacts.
When people want to learn about the ocean, they turn to Birch Aquarium at Scripps’ “Perspectives on Ocean Science” lecture series, available on TV and online through UCSD-TV and its sister station, UCTV.
How do we know? The collection of 130+ videos, available on the channels’ websites, YouTube and iTunes, just surpassed 10 million views, making it UCSD’s most popular science series and UCTV’s 14th most popular series, out of a whopping 350!