SOUTH ATLANTIC SARGASSO SEA
SARGASSUM - The giant brown seaweed, having shown that it can spread from North to South Atlantic oceans, could spread to the Indian and Pacific oceans as a potentially invasive species. The proof of which (as a theory) is satellite pictures, and changing wind states. The spread witnessed here, could just as easily migrate between oceans, and thence to the bays and seas within those oceans.
As we already an Equatorial Atlantic Sargasso Sea, as a model of likely development. The next logical stage in the evolution of sargassum, would seem to be a spill over into the South Atlantic proper, presumably, determined by any increase in ocean temperature, linked to the availability of nutrients on which the sargassum seaweed thrives.
Hence, we need to link sargassum spread to temperate, linked to measurements of nutrients and currents speeds.
The North Atlantic Sargasso Sea is where sargassum originates and was contained for hundreds of years, until climate change and intensive farming. But should the unthinkable happen, and the invasive species take hold in the South Atlantic, from whence to spread it's biological advantage, one can imagine the dire consequences, perhaps mirroring that now ruining the Caribbean Sea. Make no mistake, the consequences of climate change and intensive, fertilizer based farming, could become a deadly world contagion, to make other epidemics seem insignificant, in terms of potential human tragedy.
An animal has a means to exhaust toxic waste, essential for a healthy lifestyle. The oceans have nowhere to dump the excrement we dump in it. They just get more polluted. Except for sargassum piling onto the shores, telling us that we have reached the limit.
So, what are the chances of it happening? Could there be a 'South Atlantic Sargasso Sea,' where the present welcoming waters are turned into a cesspit of foul smelling rotten seaweeds, as they release hydrogen sulphide gas.
That all depends on temperature rise of seawater, combined with nutrient supply, and circulating currents, including winds.
At this stage of the formulation of his theory, the innovator is considering the awful prospect, based on the demonstrable and devastating spread of sargassum from the North Atlantic to the Equatorial South Atlantic, but not yet migrating to the more general south, due presumably, to temperatures not yet being to the liking of the buoyant seaweed.
The three major oceans are all interconnected via currents and driving winds. The main barrier to migration at present, is the temperature and level of nutrients, that is lower where the seaweed mats could pass from one to another. But that is by no means a hard point, as the melting of the polar caps indicates. We are living in changeable times, where the unthinkable is taking place, as a pace faster than previously supposed.
In other words, the impossible is rapidly becoming possible. And there is no containment system at present, to prevent that from happening; no international coordination, or action plan. A recipe for disaster you may think!
The sargassum crisis seen in the Caribbean Sea and Gulf of Mexico could be just the beginning of a worldwide plague, stemming from our inability to curb political insatiability for fossil fuels - to power failing economic strategies, based on growth, when we have already used up the planet twice over, in sustainable terms.
The answer to failed political policies is very often a jolly good war, (Russia Vs Ukraine). When all cock-ups get thrown to the wind in the media scrum, and a whitewash ensues, until the next band of post-war cutthroats is elected, each with their hands in the pockets of Lucifer's climate change deniers. That said, it would take a nuclear conflict to reduce earth's population significantly enough to brake global warming - but then the planet would be barren and unable to support human life. Hence, an unthinkable solution to all but the most desperate of homicidal kleptocrats: warmongers.
But, ignoring thermonuclear first strikes for now, even if we transition to renewables immediately, global warming will not reverse for 30-50 years at best, and that is with a fair political wind. Meaning that the conditions for sargassum to populate welcoming equatorial waters (rich in nutrients) around the globe, remains a distinct possibility. Such as the:
Pacific Ocean - North & South, Equatorial Belt (Costa Rica, Ecuador, Panama regions)
Seas and oceans in these latitudes could become inundated with macro algae, if the rafts of floating seaweed manage to navigate less hospitable barriers, such as colder regions. Which at the moment, Cape Horn and the Cape of Good Hope appear to offer some protection from invasion.
This is a theory having been proposed by Nelson Kay (as a volunteer) in August of 2022, based on his work with the SeaVax team from 2016 - 2020. Though that exertion was mostly concerning micro and macro plastic recovery and river containment, the ocean engineering and logistical challenges posed by SeaVax are kindred concepts, and may be sympathetically adapted or even interchangeable to some degree.
Academics and scientific institutions inclined to test such thesis, or otherwise wishing to provide data or technological assistance, positive or negative, should please contact the Cleaner Ocean Foundation in the first instance. The aim being to prove or disprove the concept, to advance our knowledge in this little understood area of Oceanology/Oceanography. Degree level students are welcome and post graduates looking for their Masters or other higher level qualifications.
There are a million reasons for not doing something, and only one for diving into a challenge. Most people will use manifold negatives as an excuse for sitting back in their armchairs, and procrastinating. But, every now and again, someone is foolhardy enough to roll their sleeves up - and have a go - because they feel they must. Despite the enormity of the task. And that is how this website came about, in support of the SeaVax project in 2017.
PLASTIC TIDE - These amazing pictures of a giant plastic tide were taken by Caroline Power. Please note how plastic and sargassum intertwine, creating a separation problem.
ATLANTIC OCEAN SOUTH - SEABED
ATLANTIC OCEAN SOUTH - SEABED
CARIBBEAN ISLANDS UNDER THREAT A-Z
Cayman Islands (UK)
Dominican Republic (Hispaniola)
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