Rapid and Highly Variable Warming of Lake Surface Waters Around the Globe

Geophysical Research Letters (Dec. 16, 2015;DOI: 10.1002/2015GL066235 ) / by  Catherine M. O’Reilly, et al.
http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/2015GL066235/full

[NASA Press Release] Climate change is rapidly warming lakes around the world, threatening freshwater supplies and ecosystems, according to a new NASA and National Science Foundation-funded study of more than half of the world’s freshwater supply.

Using more than 25 years of satellite temperature data and ground measurements of 235 lakes on six continents, this study — the largest of its kind — found lakes are warming an average of 0.61 degrees Fahrenheit (0.34 degrees Celsius) each decade. The scientists say this is greater than the warming rate of either the ocean or the atmosphere, and it can have profound effects…

As warming rates increase over the next century, algal blooms, which can rob water of oxygen, are projected to increase 20 percent in lakes. Algal blooms that are toxic to fish and animals are expected to increase by 5 percent. Emissions of methane, a greenhouse gas 25 times more powerful than carbon dioxide on 100-year time scales, will increase 4 percent over the next decade, if these rates continue…

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