March 19, 2010

Here’s some kelp I photographed this morning along Carbon Beach in Malibu where I’m staying this month. I was curious about the relative lack of kelp and here’s what I found out about the kelp beds off the shore near Malibu:

That the kelp forests along the coast of Southern California were badly affected by 1) the 1982-1984 El Niño and a devastating storm (the worst in 200 years; 2) the 1992-1994 El Niño and subsequent storms; and 3) the 1997-1998 El Niño, which was the warmest of the three. The warm water and storms associated with the El Niño destroyed plants, inhibited kelp growth, and resulted in minimal canopy development throughout the region. For an 18-year period from 1981 to 1998, sea surface temperatures exceeded the previous 60-year mean in all but a single year, 1988. 

Posted by: Seymour Simon

(0) Comments  •   Labels: Global Warming, Oceans, Seymour Photographs   •  Permalink (link to this article)   •  Share: