Foras na Mara

A Changing Ocean Climate

Our ocean and climate are inextricably linked - the ocean plays a crucial role in the global climate system in a number of ways. These include absorbing excess heat from the atmosphere and absorbing 30 per cent of the carbon dioxide added to the atmosphere by human activity. Our marine ecosystems are coming under increasing pressure due to climate change.

The Marine Institute, with its national and international partners, works to observe and understand how our ocean is changing and analyses, models and projects the impacts of our changing oceans. Advice and forecasting projections of our changing oceans and climate are essential to create effective policies and management decisions to safeguard our ocean.

The Marine Institute's annual ocean climate research survey, which has been running since 2004, facilitates long term monitoring of the deep water environment to the west of Ireland. This annual survey, which takes place on board RV Celtic Explorer, enables scientists to establish baseline oceanic conditions in Irish waters that can be used as a benchmark for future changes.

The Irish Marine Data Buoy Observation Network is managed by the Marine Institute in collaboration with Met Éireann and is designed to improve weather forecasts and safety at sea around Ireland. The data buoys have instruments which collect weather and ocean data including wind speed and direction, pressure, air and sea surface temperature and wave statistics. This data provides vital information for weather forecasts, shipping bulletins, gale and swell warnings as well as data for general public information and research.

To find out more, dive deep into the Oceans of Learning resources available below: