River mouths are heated twice as fast as the oceans and atmosphere. This conclusion was made by scientists from the University of Sydney, a study of which was published in the journal Nature Communications.
Under current climate change models, the planet will warm by 1.5 degrees Celsius. This will lead to 1.2 billion people suffering from heat stress by 2100.
In a new study, researchers examined data on water temperature and acidification at 166 estuaries located along the coast of New South Wales in Australia, collected over 12 years.
The analysis showed that during this time, the average temperature in the estuaries increased by 2.16°C, that is, by approximately 0.2 ° C per year. After that, scientists examined temperature data in estuaries along the North Sea coast in Germany and the Chesapeake Bay.
In all the studied areas, there was a serious increase in water temperature. A comparative analysis showed that river mouths heat up faster than oceans and the atmosphere. In particular, air and sea temperatures in Australia have increased by about 1°C since 1910. Moreover, over the past 10 years, the country has become 1.5 ° C warmer compared to the average from 1961 to 1990.
The study also showed that acidification of estuaries is increasing by 0.09 pH units per year. Changes in the salinity of estuarine systems also occurred: streams and lagoons became less saline, and river salinity increased.