Contributed by Prof. Wyss Yim.

Patches of abnormally hot seawater beneath the ocean surface, referred to as Blobs, are naturally generated by submarine volcanic eruptions. A recent example is the North Pacific Blob which caused weird weather conditions accompanied by major ecological changes in the Pacific northeast including two years without winters in 2013 and 2014. This was featured as a ‘heat wave’ in the September 2016 issue of National Geographic and was used to support the anthropogenic global warming alarm. However, based on the study of available information including satellite and ARGO data buoy records, the release of geothermal heat from the Nishinoshima volcanic eruption 940 km south of Tokyo from March 2013 to August 2015 was identified by the present author instead to be the likely culprit.

This study examines the climatic impacts of another Blob, created by a new submarine volcanic eruption on the floor of southwest
Indian Ocean, off Mayotte in the Comoros.

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In conclusion, severe weather events including tropical cyclones, droughts and floods may be caused by blobs formed by the natural release of geothermal heat through submarine volcanic eruptions acting, in combination with the sun, to warm the surface waters of regional oceans. The warming in the west Indian Ocean was responsible for the development of an exceptionally strong positive phase of the Indian Ocean Dipole. The warm sea-surface water was responsible for oceanic and atmospheric circulation changes regionally which cannot be accounted for by carbon dioxide variations.

The release of geothermal heat into oceans is currently underestimated by the scientific community…

Contributed by Prof. Wyss Yim.

Professor Wyss Yim DSc PhD DIC FGS was at Imperial College, in the Department of Geology, from 1971-1974. After that, he spent thirty-five years, until retirement, at the University of Hong Kong where he taught civil engineering, geosciences and environmental management students, and helped found the Department of Earth Sciences. He was awarded the DSc by the University of London in 1997. Wyss served as the deputy Chairman of the Climate Change Science Implementation Team of UNESCO’s International Year of Planet Earth 2007-2009.

Additional work by Prof. Yim: