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New Evidence: Gulf Stream Not Slowing

By James Donahue

It may have been the book, The Coming Global Superstorm” by Whitley Strieber and Art Bell that first started the story circulating.

That book, published in 1999 and the movie based on that hypothesis, The Day After Tomorrow, perceived a slowing Gulf Stream caused by fresh water from melting ice caps that would trigger a new ice age throughout Europe and Northern Asia.

While neither Strieber or Bell are scientists, their book offered a lot of technical data that appeared to support their warnings. Later, with support from scientists who said the fresh water entering the North Atlantic was already having an effect on the Gulf Stream flow, government leaders throughout the United European Union began pressing hard for a world-wide control on carbon emissions in a frantic attempt to head-off global warming.

Indeed, the stream is believed to keep European countries warmer by from four to six degrees centigrade.

Now a report by the BBC states that a new study shows that the Strieber/Bell Superstorm event is not happening. In a paper published in the journal Geophysical Research Letters, a team of U.S. scientists say they used satellites to monitor an array of detectors in the Atlantic. The report says the study that was conducted over nearly a decade, found dramatic short-term variations, but overall, the Gulf Stream appears to still be running its normal route northward, having its usual warming effect on European weather.

The cold water in the North Atlantic, including the water from the melting ice, sinks to the bottom of the ocean and flows southward until it is warmed near the equator. For some reason, as the warmer water rises to the surface, it joins the northward movement of the Gulf Stream.

At about the time The Coming Global Superstorm was published, research by the UK’s National Oceanography Center found evidence that the Gulf Stream circulation was, indeed, showing down between 2005 and 2009. The newest studies, however, suggest that this was merely a normal trend and that the stream continues to flow regularly, despite the warming planet and the melting ice.

This will be obvious good news for European nations; at least in terms of worrying about a looming ice age. But the report does nothing to ease the dramatic impact of climate change that is already sweeping the planet.

As the planet is ripped by dramatic storms, heat waves, extreme winters, flooding, drought, a growing increase in insects and other warm weather pests, it has become more and more clear that the European Union’s call for a control on carbon emissions was correct.  World leaders must not remain complacent about this growing threat on world food supplies and world health.