Drylanders don't see it. If only they did.
The oceans are heating. They're spawning oceanic heat waves that play proper hell with the marine ecology. Here, just off the west coast of Vancouver Island, we have "The Blob" - an area of superheated ocean that can stretch nearly all the way to Hawaii. It's associated with oceanic dead zones, the sharp decline in marine species and who knows what else - hey, this is pretty new stuff.
You may not have heard much about heavy floods in Africa but, if you've followed the news at all, you've heard about the extreme brush fires plaguing
Australia and the seemingly endless drought across that country's agricultural zones.
Guess what? Those African floods and the Australian conflagration are now being put down to superheating of the Indian Ocean. It's called the Indian Ocean Dipole.
Scientists and humanitarian officials say this year’s record Indian Ocean dipole, as the phenomenon is known, threatens to reappear more regularly and in a more extreme form as sea surface temperatures rise.
Of most concern are years in which the sea surface off the coast of Africawarms up, provoking increased rains, while temperatures off Australia fall, leading to drier weather.
It is similar to El Niño and La Niña in the Pacific, which cause sharp changes in weather patterns on both sides of the ocean (and into the Atlantic, north and south).India is also impacted.
Recent research suggests ocean heat has risen dramatically over the past decade, leading to the potential for warming water in the Indian Ocean to affect the Indian monsoon, one of the most important climate patterns in the world.The oceanic events are the stuff for hydrologists and oceanographers. We lay people can get the loss of Arctic sea ice or the retreat of glaciers, that sort of thing, but ocean currents and heat absorption/release, that's much harder to grasp.
Waiting in the wings is the Pacific Decadal Oscillation, PDO, which is an extended play version of El Nino lasting 20 to 30 years. I won't dwell on it but you can read about it here.
Like it or not, the oceans are reshaping our lives, our societies, and they're just getting started. You can't fix these things with penny ante carbon taxes.