Melting ice in the Arctic and Siberian rivers rise leads to reduced salinity of the Arctic Ocean, which could ultimately lead to a restructuring of the circulation of currents in the Atlantic, and, according to one scenario, a marked cooling in northern Europe, told RIA Novosti the head of Hydromet Alexander Frolov.
However, he emphasized that this is only one of many possible scenarios and further research is needed, the new observations, new calculations to narrow down the uncertainty and find out which scenario will become reality.
During the last two decades the area of drifting ice in the Arctic is constantly decreasing. In addition, according to Frolov, increasing runoff into the ocean from the Siberian rivers — for 40 years it has grown by about 13% due to an increase in rainfall in the river basins in the Asian part of Russia. As a result, more and more fresh water enters the Arctic Ocean.
"This is the smallest of the oceans and relatively shallow. Influence of river flow on it is great. Plenty of fresh cold water, which comes from the melting of ice and water inflow from rivers, creates a cold surface film. It moves into the northern Atlantic Ocean and begins to escape more warm Atlantic waters, shutting them from the atmosphere. This causes significant changes in the exchange of heat between the ocean and atmosphere, "- said the head of Hydromet.
He added that in recent years has significantly increased the speed of currents.
"We found that the flow rate was almost two times faster than during the Amundsen. This leads to the fact that the ice faster and at a higher level shall be in southern latitudes, in the area of Greenland, and there it melts at a higher level," — Frolov said.
Altogether, this results in a "cold screen" on the surface of water in the North Atlantic, which affects the circulation of currents in this region of the ocean. According to the head of Roshydromet, there are scenarios, according to which these processes can be changes in the Gulf Stream.
"There is a possibility that the Gulf Stream, which now comes off of Cape Hatteras, in the form of the North Atlantic Current passes through the north of Europe, can get stuck in a ring, the internal circulation in the North Atlantic," — said the source.
The result can be a significant cooling in northern Europe, which is now heated by this trend. "It will turn out that some of the Gulf Stream ceases to be supplied to northern Europe and the Arctic. In northern Europe in the next 30-40 years could begin sharp local cooling. Moreover, the global warming trend continues," — said the head of Hydromet.
He stressed that these events provided only one of the possible scenarios.
"These scenarios do exist, they are internally consistent, but the main problem is that we do not know which one is realized. Main scenario: that the process that we see — warming — will continue, and with the Gulf Stream did not happen. Can be a warming trend in Europe offset by cooling, then it simply will not increase the temperature. All of these features require very careful consideration, "- said Frolov.
According to him, the main task of meteorologists — to narrow this uncertainty. This requires the concerted effort of different countries need expensive experiments, field work, highly qualified specialists.
"We need the processing power, new observations, and new people groups are large. Therefore, Russia proposes to organize an International Polar Decade" — concluded Frolov.