Record seawater temperature measured at Scripps Pier
Published - 08/12/18 - 02:21 PM | 5614 views | 1 1 comments | 36 36 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Several summer heat waves have plagued San Diego this summer. DON BALCH/VILLAGE NEWS
Several summer heat waves have plagued San Diego this summer. DON BALCH/VILLAGE NEWS
On Aug. 1, Researchers at Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California San Diego logged the warmest sea-surface temperature at Scripps Pier since records began in August 1916.

The record of 25.9°C℃(78.6℉°F) followed a string of days in which individual daily records of sea surface and seafloor temperatures had been set at the pier. It surpassed the previous record of 78.4°F (25.8°C) set on July 30, 1931, during an unusually warm period that year.

Scripps researchers have taken sea surface temperature and salinity readings at the pier since 1916. In 1925, they began taking seafloor water temperature measurements as well.

The daily collection of data is still done by hand and is maintained by the Shore Stations program at Scripps. The program now includes nine stations on the California coast that measure seawater temperature and salinity, its budget funded by the California State Parks Department of Boating and Waterways.

The ocean region off Southern California has been experiencing anomalously warm temperatures for the past week and other observational networks farther off the coast have reported record or near-record temperatures as well.

Researchers said that the record warmth is consistent with similar records for high temperatures set on land as well as a torrent of extreme weather in 2018. This is how global warming will play out, said Scripps scientists: Records related to heat and intense weather will become easier to break having been given a boost from anthropogenic climate change that has added about 1-degree ℃ to ocean temperatures over the past century.

"Like other climate change trends, background warming enhances the probability and magnitude of extreme events," said Scripps oceanographer and Shore Station's principal investigator Reinhard Flick.

Physical oceanographer Dan Rudnick runs a Scripps program that employs underwater gliders to make ocean temperature profiles to points about 200 miles off the California coast as well as in other regions around the world. He has noticed a similar warming throughout Southern California coastal waters.

Rudnick is one of several Scripps researchers who has tracked an uptick in ocean temperatures related to El Niño.

A phenomenon characterized by the movement of warm waters to the eastern equatorial Pacific Ocean, which often affects water temperatures off California.

The rise began in 2014 during a marine heatwave, then an intense El Niño bore down on the West Coast the following year. In times past, the pattern would have been for ocean water temperatures to return to historical averages following the event but that hasn’t been the case.

“It looks like we took a step up during 2014-2016 from which we have not completely recovered,” said Rudnick.

The Coastal Data Information Program (CDIP) also tracks sea surface temperature through a network of wave-measuring buoys deployed throughout U.S. waters, including 14 in Southern California. Near-record high-temperature readings for this time of year have been recorded across the Southern California array during the past few weeks. The Scripps Nearshore Buoy, located approximately a half-mile off the coast of La Jolla, recorded its second highest sea surface temperature of 79.7 degrees on Aug. 1, second only to a reading from Sept. 2015, an El Niño year.

Shore Stations researchers added that seasonal maximum surface temperatures are generally reached in August each year, so new records may be set if warm coastal ocean conditions persist or intensify over the next few weeks.
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August 12, 2018
As an individual who has been following the climate change topic ever since my undergrad days @ UCSD one thing I learned back in the day is,... drought in this region can last longer than a human life time AND that there have been two long term drought events that happened in the past 1200 years, which in geological time is akin to a blink of an eye

Given climate change symptoms like record high water temperates,... the BIG question than needs answers is,... do we have “infrastructure” adequate to meet the challenge of a worst case scenario AND can we cover the cost (which coincidentally also is an unanswered question WRT the local public pension portfolio issue)

State Supreme Court Upends Prop. B, San Diego’s Public Pension Reform

The state Supreme Court ruled Thursday that a San Diego citizens’ initiative that cut back city employee pensions was illegally placed on the ballot, and ordered a lower court to consider a remedy.

One way to look at unfunded public pension debt is consider it akin to stress slowly building up between tectonic plates which is going to cause an “economic” earthquake of biblical proportions since in California the amount of unfunded pension debt is around a TRILLION dollars

Given the dismal financial state of public pensions AND dismal trends associated with climate change (two man made problems caused by idiotic stewardship), seems the perfect storm is brewing because unsustainable debt being built up in various public pension portfolios intersects a period of danger posed by climate change

Scripps says climate change may represent “existential” threat to humanity

There’s a very small but distinct possibility that rapid global warming could pose an “existential threat” to the survival of humans by 2050, UC San Diego said Thursday in one of the most dire forecasts yet about climate change.

So IMHO it is important to address the topic of unsustainable public pensions ASAP, because if there is an economic contagion due to public pensions failing, it will in turn affect the ability of government(s) to finance large scale infrastructure projects needed for mankind to adapt to a world where climate change is a harsh reality

A good place to start addressing the matter at hand is consider one thing that has not been covered in any news story,... basically the topic of how the local pension debt built up in the first place,... because taxpayers ultimately pay the costs two basic “mistakes” of responsible portfolio management should be looked into and reported on.

The first portfolio management mistake made is the local public pension portfolio custodians (i.e. politicians) who have allowed giving away a 13th pension payment (for three decades plus).

This is a problem because unlike an optional 13th home mortgage payment which decreases the time and interest paid on a loan,... things here work in reverse, in other words the pension debt obligation grows over time!

Compounding the basic middle school math “error” of a 13th pension payment is public employ union leadership (i.e. public pension recipients) who see no problem w/ not requiring fully funding the portfolio every fiscal year,... basically this is akin to only paying a “minimum credit card payment.”

Seems all those directly involved in creating the pension debt problem (i.e. politicians and public employee union members) have not acted like fiduciaries for taxpayers money, but more like foxes guarding the henhouse.

Public Pension Funding Crisis: Who Was Jeremy Gold And Why Should You Care?

The bottom line: public pension plans' poor funding levels would be even worse if they were accounted for the way that private pension plans are, the fact that their accounting methods differ has contributed to the funding crisis, and Jeremy Gold was either a prophetic or foolish in attempting to call attention to this fact.


...The U.S. Code of Professional Conduct calls upon actuaries to be loyal to their clients. In the case of public plans, the clients are usually the boards of trustees that administer the plans; the state and local governments that sponsor plans and the unions representing public employees also may hire actuaries.

...The actuarial profession acknowledges, but does not fulfill, its duty to the public.

Since San Diego taxpayers are ultimately paying the bill, it would be nice if the news media watchdogs reported as if they were an outside investor doing a due diligence analysis on the public pension portfolio debt build up, which also considers the implication of “debt” as a limiting responses factor WRT the ability to build infrastructure needed to deal w/ climate change

PS FWIW, a PDF document on GoogleDocs w/ an easy to access means exists (that outlines the pension “debt” problem as a diligent investor might look at the issue),...
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