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Average global ocean temperatures have been warming consistently over the past century with a notable exception, a region in the North Atlantic dubbed the “warming hole,” which has shown a cooling pattern. This persistent anomaly is often attributed to a slow-down of a global ocean circulation system called the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC), but a new modeling study supported in part by the Climate Program Office’s Climate Variability & Predictability (CVP) Program suggests a different driver. Results from a Community Earth System Model (CESM) simulation shows that most of the cooling trend can be explained by atmospheric processes alone.

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