Download The Ocean: A Driving Force for Weather and Climate Earth`s surface

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The Ocean: A Driving Force for Weather and Climate Earth’s surface is heated unevenly by the sun (through radiation) ‐ Remember that different surfaces will absorb and store heat differently (surface temperature lab) Heat drives ocean and atmospheric circulation (convection currents) The ocean absorbs and stores more heat than the atmosphere (think back to our surface temperature lab) ‐ The atmosphere moves heat quickly and the ocean slowly Winds drive the ocean’s surface currents, but the changes in density drive the great ocean conveyer ‐ The change in density is caused by salinity and temperature ‐ The lower the temperature of the water, the more dense it will become ‐ The higher the salinity of the water, the denser it becomes The topography and temperature of the ocean affects the atmospheric circulation as well ‐ Ocean currents affect air temperature swings and humidity o Warm currents will bring heat and moisture to the land it is near ƒ The temperature will be warmer and the weather more moderate ƒ This also influences storms and rainfall