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Astronomers estimate Titan's largest sea is 1,000-feet deep
Far below the gaseous atmospheric shroud on Saturn's largest moon, Titan, lies Kraken Mare, a sea of liquid methane. Cornell University astronomers have estimated that sea to be at least 1,000-feet deep near its center - enough room for a potential robotic submarine to explore. (2021-01-20)

Dinosaur-era sea lizard had teeth like a shark
New study identifies a bizarre new species suggesting that giant marine lizards thrived before the asteroid wiped them out 66 million years ago. (2021-01-19)

Intertropical Convergence Zone limits climate predictions in the tropical Atlantic
The strongest climate fluctuation on time scales of a few years is the so-called El Niño phenomenon, which originates in the Pacific. A similar circulation pattern exists in the Atlantic, which scientists under the leadership of GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel have studied in more detail. Their results, now published in the international journal Nature Communications, contribute to a better understanding of this climate fluctuation and pose a challenge for prediction models. (2021-01-15)

Environment: Seagrass meadows may facilitate marine plastic removal from the sea
Underwater seagrass meadows may trap, extract and carry marine plastic debris to shore, thereby helping to remove plastic litter from the sea, according to a study published in Scientific Reports. (2021-01-14)

Posidonia marine seagrass can catch and remove plastics from the sea
Posidonia oceanica seagrass -an endemic marine phanerogam with an important ecological role in the marine environment- can take and remove plastic materials that have been left at the sea, according to a study published in the journal Scientific Reports. The article's first author is the tenure-track 2 lecturer Anna Sànchez-Vidal, from the Research Group on Marine Geosciences of the Faculty of Earth Sciences of the University of Barcelona (UB). (2021-01-14)

Greenland melting likely increased by bacteria in sediment
Bacteria are likely triggering greater melting on the Greenland ice sheet, possibly increasing the island's contribution to sea-level rise, according to Rutgers scientists. That's because the microbes cause sunlight-absorbing sediment to clump together and accumulate in the meltwater streams, according to a Rutgers-led study - the first of its kind - in the journal Geophysical Research Letters. The findings can be incorporated in climate models, leading to more accurate predictions of melting, scientists say. (2021-01-14)

A bucket of water can reveal climate change impacts on marine life in the Arctic
We know very little about marine life in the Arctic. Now researchers from the University of Copenhagen, among others, are trying to change that. They have shown that a simple water sample makes it possible to monitor the presence, migration patterns and genetic diversity of bowhead whales in an otherwise hard-to-reach area. The method can be used to understand how climate changes and human activities impact life in the oceans. (2021-01-12)

Researchers speed up analysis of Arctic ice and snow data through AI
Professors at University of Maryland, Baltimore County have developed an artificial intelligence technique to quickly analyze newly collected data based on Arctic ice and snow thickness. Researchers previously analyzed these data manually; this AI will assist them by automating how they detect and analyze patterns in the thickness of the ice. Climate change necessitates a rapid understanding of new developments in the Arctic ice, and this tool provides a faster solution. (2021-01-12)

Harbor porpoises on the decline in the German North Sea
The harbor porpoise population is declining in the German North Sea, according to a recent study which surveyed the species over a 20-year time period. Harbor porpoises are known as a ''sentinel species'' - animals which indicate the health of an ecosystem and point to potential risks (think of the canary in the coal mine) - and their decreasing numbers indicate the extent to which human activities have affected marine wildlife. (2021-01-07)

Native biodiversity collapse in the Eastern Mediterranean
An international team led by Paolo G. Albano from the Department of Palaeontology at the University of Vienna quantified a dramatic biodiversity collapse of up to 95 per cent of native species in the Eastern Mediterranean. The study is published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences. (2021-01-07)

Israel can expect a major earthquake of 6.5 on the Richter scale in the coming years
The researchers warn: In the coming years, it is likely that a devastating earthquake will hit, causing hundreds of deaths. (2021-01-06)

In changing oceans, sea stars may be 'drowning'
New Cornell University-led research suggests that starfish, victims of sea star wasting disease (SSWD), may actually be in respiratory distress - literally 'drowning' in their own environment - as elevated microbial activity derived from nearby organic matter and warm ocean temperatures rob the creatures of their ability to breathe. (2021-01-06)

Pollutants rapidly changing the waters near Ieodo Island
Professor Kitack Lee's research team identifies the cause of ocean fertilization in northeast Asian waters. (2021-01-04)

Researchers discover a new tool for reconstructing ancient sea ice to study climate change
A previously problematic molecule turns out to be a reliable proxy for reconstructing sea ice, a new study by Brown University researchers shows. (2021-01-04)

Scientists find the error source of a sea-ice model varies with the season
Scientists evaluated the sea-ice simulations of the Arctic regional ocean-ice coupling configuration of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology general circulation model (MITgcm) and found there were disagreements between the simulations and observations in both March and September. (2020-12-30)

Caspian crisis: Sinking sea levels threaten biodiversity, economy and regional stability
Coastal nations are rightly worried about a sea level rise, but in the countries around the Caspian Sea over a hundred million people are facing the opposite problem: an enormous drop in sea level. Since the '90s, the water level has been dropping a few centimeters every year. This drop will accelerate during the upcoming decades, scientists from the German universities of Gießen and Bremen calculated, together with Dutch geologist Frank Wesselingh. (2020-12-23)

Climate crisis is causing lakes to shrink
Climate change is impacting not only the oceans, but also large inland lakes. As the world's largest lake, the Caspian Sea is a perfect example of how a body of water can and will change. In an article in the Nature journal Communications Earth & Environment, Dr. Matthias Prange of MARUM - Center for Marine Environmental Sciences at the University of Bremen, and his colleagues discuss the possible ecological, political and economic consequences, as well as viable solutions. (2020-12-23)

Wa­ter and genes flow between the two largest Baltic sal­mon rivers
Salmon from upstream reaches of the two northernmost Baltic rivers are different from downstream salmon. A recent study found that upstream salmon from the large Tornio and Kalix Rivers in Finland and Sweden are genetically distinct and migrate at different times and ages than their downstream counterparts. However, there seems to be no such distinction between salmon from these two neighbouring rivers. (2020-12-21)

New population of blue whales discovered in the western Indian ocean
An international team of researchers has discovered what it believes to be a new population of blue whales in the western Indian Ocean. (2020-12-21)

Ice sheet uncertainties could mean sea level will rise more than predicted
Sea level could rise higher than current estimates by 2100 if climate change is unchallenged, according to a new assessment. (2020-12-18)

NASA finds what a glacier's slope reveals about Greenland Ice Sheet thinning
As glaciers flow outward from the Greenland Ice Sheet, what lies beneath them offers clues to their role in future ice thinning and sea-level rise contribution. (2020-12-18)

More than half of Hudson River tidal marshes were created accidentally by humans
In a new study of tidal marsh resilience to sea level rise, geologist and first author Brian Yellen at the University of Massachusetts Amherst and colleagues observed that Hudson River Estuary marshes are growing upward at a rate two to three times faster than sea level rise, ''suggesting that they should be resilient to accelerated sea level rise in the future,'' he says. (2020-12-18)

Greenland 'knickpoints' could stall spread of glacial thinning
The jagged terrain of Greenland's mountains is protecting some of the island's outlet glaciers from warm coastal waters, according to a team of researchers that included scientists from The University of Texas at Austin and NASA. However, in regions where the flat bedrock offers no such protection, runaway thinning can reach far into the ice sheet and eat away at previously unaffected ice and contribute to sea level rise. (2020-12-17)

The most consumed species of mussels contain microplastics all around the world
''If you eat mussels, you eat microplastics.'' This was already known to a limited extent about mussels from individual ocean regions. A new study by the University of Bayreuth reveals that this claim holds true globally. (2020-12-17)

Weddell sea: Whale song reveals behavioral patterns
Experts from the Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research (AWI) have now used permanently installed underwater microphones, which have been recording for the past nine years, to successfully gather and analyse whale observation data from the Weddell Sea. (2020-12-17)

Scientists warn of likely massive oil spill endangering the Red Sea, region's health
A paper to be published in Frontiers in Marine Science on December 15 is calling for action to remove the oil from a decaying and inactive tanker in the Red Sea that holds approximately one million barrels of oil - four times the amount of oil contained in the Exxon Valdez, the tanker that had a disastrous environmental oil spill in 1989 - before its current seepage turns into a massive oil spill into the sea. (2020-12-15)

Delayed Arctic ice advance tracked back to atmospheric conditions near Alaska months prior
Experts in Japan recently discovered that atmospheric conditions near Alaska can affect sea ice conditions in the Arctic Ocean months later. The team used various data, including ship-based data from 2018, to uncover how a single atmospheric event over the northern Pacific Ocean caused significantly delayed sea ice formation in the Pacific Arctic region. (2020-12-15)

The melting of the Greenland ice sheet could lead to a sea level rise of 18 cm in 2100!
A new study, headed by researchers from the Universities of Liège and Oslo, applying the latest climate models, of which the MAR predicts a 60% greater melting of the Greenland ice sheet than previously predicted. Data that will be included in the next IPCC report. This study is published in Nature Communications. (2020-12-15)

Effects of organohalogen pollution are coded in gene expression profiles of Baltic salmon
Researchers of Ehime University and the University of Helsinki measured hepatic organohalogen (OHC) concentrations and gene expression profiles in Atlantic salmon collected from three areas in the Baltic Sea. The results showed that OHCs and gene expression profiles were individually grouped in three areas and the covariation of the two datasets provided by a multivariate method was significantly similar. This suggests that the gene expression profiles in salmon are affected by OHC contamination. (2020-12-15)

Scientists discover compounds that could have helped to start life on Earth
Scientists from St Petersburg University and Ben-Gurion University of the Negev have discovered natural cyclophosphates. These are possible precursors of phosphorus-containing molecules that are believed to have contributed to the emergence of primordial life on Earth. Cyclophosphates could have been formed billions of years ago in regions of elevated geothermal activity or during meteorite bombardments of the Earth. (2020-12-14)

Mangroves lock away carbon
Researchers uncover an overlooked process enhancing the carbon-removal potential of mangroves. (2020-12-13)

Sea star listed as critically endangered following research by Oregon State University
The iconic sunflower sea star has been listed as critically endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature following a groundbreaking population study led by Oregon State University and The Nature Conservancy. (2020-12-11)

The edible marine snail now contains a new species
Recognizing species is important for understanding regional biodiversity and for environmental conservation. However, taxonomic identity is sometimes obscure even with the organisms that are closest to human life. (2020-12-10)

Warm oceans helped first human migration from Asia to North America
New research reveals significant changes to the circulation of the North Pacific and its impact on the initial migration of humans from Asia to North America. It provides a new picture of the circulation and climate of the North Pacific at the end of the last ice age, with implications for early human migration. (2020-12-09)

New 'sea dragon' discovered off UK coastline
An amateur fossil hunter has unearthed a new type of prehistoric 'sea dragon' on the beach of the UK's Dorset coast. (2020-12-09)

One-two punch: sea urchins stuck belly-up in low-oxygen hot water
Low oxygen seawater (hypoxia) may be more stressful to reef organisms than high water temperatures and ocean acidity, which are usually considered the most serious stressors associated with global change. Researchers at the Smithsonian in Panama test all three by flipping sea urchins. (2020-12-09)

Satellite tracking finds turtle foraging areas in Australia's north-west
Marine scientists have mapped previously unknown foraging grounds and migratory routes of Western Australia's green turtles to support conservation of the iconic threatened species. (2020-12-08)

The climate changed rapidly alongside sea ice decline in the north
Researchers from the Niels Bohr Institute, University of Copenhagen have, in collaboration with Norwegian researchers in the ERC Synergy project, ICE2ICE, shown that abrupt climate change occurred as a result of widespread decrease of sea ice. This scientific breakthrough concludes a long-lasting debate on the mechanisms causing abrupt climate change during the glacial period. It also documents that the cause of the swiftness and extent of sudden climate change must be found in the oceans. (2020-12-04)

Archaeology: Palaeolithic sea voyage to Japanese islands beyond the horizon
Modern humans may have deliberately crossed the sea to migrate to the Ryukyu Islands of southwestern Japan, even though the islands would not have been visible on the horizon when they set out, according to a study published Scientific Reports. (2020-12-03)

Red Sea turtle hatchlings are feeling the heat
The balance of the sexes in marine turtle hatchlings may be disrupted by high sand temperatures at nesting sites around the Red Sea. (2020-12-03)

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