08/22/2014

Oceans Act As the World’s Thermostat

12:21 minutes

The earth heated up quickly in the second half of the 20th century, but about a decade ago, average global temperatures hit a plateau. Now researchers say they’ve discovered where that missing heat is hiding: in the oceans. And as the oceans warm, they expand, pushing up sea levels around the globe and increasing flooding. Rick Spinrad, chief scientist at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, surveys what future climate change has in store for the oceans.

Segment Guests

Rick Spinrad

Rick Spinrad is chief scientist at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in Washington, D.C.

Meet the Producer

About Christopher Intagliata

Christopher Intagliata is Science Friday’s senior producer. He once served as a prop in an optical illusion and speaks passable Ira Flatowese.