Climate Progress / News Report
Published: Sunday 23 September 2012
Scientists said this year’s sea surface temperatures along the northeast coast of the U.S. set all-time records, with as-yet unknown consequences for marine ecosystems.
Above-average temperatures were found in all parts of the ecosystem, from the ocean bottom to the sea surface and across the region, and the above average temperatures extended beyond the shelf break front to the Gulf Stream, according to an ecosystem advisory issued by NOAA’s Northeast Fisheries Science Center.
The warm waters led to the earliest, most intense and longest-lasting plankton bloom on record, with implications for marine life, from the smallest creatures to the largest marine mammals like whales. Atlantic cod continued to shift northeastward from its historic distribution center.