Joint Environmental Data Analysis Center, Scripps Institution of Oceanography
Data Center Description
Scientific Objectives of the Joint Environmental Data Analysis (JEDA) Center:
Research into interannual and decadal change in upper ocean temperature over the global ocean is important because of the possible threat of global warming in response to the anthropogenic increase in greenhouse gases of the atmosphere during the past century (Schlesinger, 1991). The magnitude of this natural variability needs to be determined for comparison with expected anthropogenic changes predicted by climate models. Furthermore, such endeavors will elucidate components in the integrated heat budget of the North Pacific and North Atlantic oceans in support of research goals. The latter addresses a long-standing question on the relative intensity of heat transported from the tropics to the middle latitudes by the ocean, as compared to that transported by the atmosphere (Trenberth and Soloman, 1993).
A principal objective Tropical Ocean-Global Atmosphere (TOGA) research program of the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is to describe and understand climate and global change well enough to allow its prediction (International TOGA Project Office, 1985). This depends upon being able to determine the thermodynamical mechanisms responsible for ocean-atmosphere coupling leading to ENSO and decadal changes. A principal objective of the World Ocean Circulation Experiment (WOCE) of the National Science Foundation (NSF) is to describe and understand annual and interannual changes in the heat budget of the global ocean (World Climate Research Programme, 1986). Both WOCE and the Atlantic Climate Change (ACC) program seek to determine whether this meridional oceanic transport of heat varies significantly from year-to-year. Realization of these objectives requires a global observing system be constructed that can provide the necessary in situ observations for upper ocean temperature (Joint Oceanographic Institutions, 1991).