Oceans By riley wolfinger

Seawater: The oceans make up 71 percent of the world and 97 percent of the worlds water. Even thought the seawater may look drinkable it is not. Seawater is water from a sea or ocean. On average, seawater in the world's oceans has a salinity of approximately 3.5%, or 35 parts per thousand. This means that for every 1 litre (1000 mL) of seawater there are 35 grams of salts (mostly, but not entirely, sodium chloride) dissolved in it. Human kidneys can only make urine that is less salty than salt water. Therefore, to get rid of all the excess salt taken in by drinking seawater, you have to urinate more water than you drank. Eventually, you die of dehydration even as you become thirstier.

So then why are oceans so important? Oceans are the lifeblood of planet Earth and humankind. They flow over nearly three-quarters of our planet, and hold 97% of the planet's water. They produce more than half of the oxygen in the atmosphere, and absorb the most carbon from it. The air that you breathe, the water you drink, the food you eat, the products that keep you warm, safe, informed, and entertained all can come from or be transported by the ocean. About half of the world’s population lives within the coastal zone, and ocean-based businesses contribute more than $500 billion to the world’s economy. Historically, we thought that we could never take too much out of, or put too much waste into, the oceans. The sheer number of people who use and depend on the ocean, and the sometimes unwise practices we adopt, have created problems such as over harvest of resources, reduction in biodiversity, and degradation of marine habitats and species, among others. We risk the very ecosystems on which our survival depends.

Ocean Currents:The world’s ocean is crucial to heating the planet. While land areas and the atmosphere absorb some sunlight, the majority of the sun’s radiation is absorbed by the ocean. Particularly in the tropical waters around the equator, the ocean acts a as massive, heat-retaining solar panel. Earth’s atmosphere also plays a part in this process, helping to retain heat that would otherwise quickly radiate into space after sunset. The ocean doesn't just store solar radiation; it also helps to distribute heat around the globe. When water molecules are heated, they exchange freely with the air in a process called evaporation. Ocean water is constantly evaporating, increasing the temperature and humidity of the surrounding air to form rain and storms that are then carried by trade winds, often vast distances. In fact, almost all rain that falls on land starts off in the ocean. The tropics are particularly rainy because heat absorption, and thus ocean evaporation, is highest in this area. Outside of Earth’s equatorial areas, weather patterns are driven largely by ocean currents. Currents are movements of ocean water in a continuous flow, created largely by surface winds but also partly by temperature and salinity gradients, Earth’s rotation, and tides (the gravitational effects of the sun and moon). Major current systems typically flow clockwise in the northern hemisphere and counterclockwise in the southern hemisphere, in circular patterns that often trace the coastlines. Ocean currents act much like a conveyor belt, transporting warm water and precipitation from the equator toward the poles and cold water from the poles back to the tropics. Thus, currents regulate global climate, helping to counteract the uneven distribution of solar radiation reaching Earth’s surface. Without currents, regional temperatures would be more extreme—super hot at the equator and frigid toward the poles and much less of Earth’s land would be habitable.

Ocean Zones

Sunlight Zone

Sunlit Zone: The is the uppermost zone that gets the most light. Lots of plants grow here including seaweed. There are also lots of animals that live here including seals, sea turtles, sea lions, manta rays, and sharks. This zone starts at 0 ft and ends at 656 ft.

Twilight Zone

Twilight Zone: The Twilight Zone is the middle layer of the world's oceans receives only faint, filtered sunlight during the daytime. This is because the seawater absorbs the sunlight. This barely-lit ocean layer is called the twilight zone. This zone appears deep blue to black in color. The depth of this zone depends on the clarity or murkiness of the water. In clear water, the twilight zone can begin at depths up to 600 feet; in murky water, it can start at only 50 feet deep. It is usually begins somewhere between these two extremes. The twilight zone extends to about 3,300 feet deep. On average, this zone extends from 660 to 3,300 feet. Some animals that live in the twilight zone are jellyfish, octopuses, and squid.

Midnight Zone

Midnight Zone: The Midnight Zone is the part of the pelagic zone that extends from a depth of 3300 to 13000 feet below the ocean surface. It lies between the twilight zone above, and the abyss zone below. Some animals that live here are viperfish, anglerfish, snipe eel, and tripod fish.

Abyss Zone

Abyss Zone: The abyss zone is a layer of the pelagic zone of the ocean. . At depths of 13,123 to 19,685 feet, this zone remains in perpetual darkness and never receives daylight. Most creatures living here lack a backbone like spider crabs. Some other animals are anglerfish, deep sea jellyfish, sea shrimp, and dumbo octopus.

Hadal Zone

Hadal Zone: The most common organisms include jellyfish, viperfish, tube worms and sea cucumbers. The hadal zone can reach far below 20,000 feet deep and the deepest known extends to 35,814 ft.

Pressure, Temperature, and Ocean Depth: Pressure increases with ocean depth. Pisces V is a three-person submarine that can operate at depths up to 6,500 feet. This submarine allows scientists to observe the deep sea under tremendous ocean pressure. At sea level, the air that surrounds us presses down on our bodies at 14.5 pounds per square inch . Ocean 28.5 degrees fahrenheit. That means at high latitudes sea ice can form. The average temperature of the ocean surface waters is about 62.6 degrees fahrenheit. The ocean depth goes all the way down to 35,814 ft. The very last ocean layer is the hadal zone.

Ocean Resources: The ocean provides treasure chest full of resources for humans. The ocean is mined for minerals like salt, sand, gravel, and some manganese, copper, nickel, iron, and cobalt can be found in the deep sea and drilled for crude oil. The ocean plays a critical role in removing carbon from the atmosphere and providing oxygen. We can also go fishing in the deep sea and sell the fish.

Credits:

Created with images by colours an colours - "Ocean" • popofatticus - "hatteras14 022" • jdnx - "Pacific Ocean" • skeeze - "divers scuba reef" • Claudia14 - "dolphin marine mammals water" • NeuPaddy - "wave atlantic pacific" • lpittman - "divers underwater ocean" • kevin dooley - "Fishing Michigan" • James St. John - "Dendrogyra cylindrus (pillar coral) (San Salvador Island, Bahamas) 1" • NOAA Photo Library - "reef3860" • Derek Keats - "Sea cucumber, Psolus phantapus, Newfoundland" • Pexels - "animal blue water dangerous" • Pexels - "dark ocean sea" • Pexels - "animals deep ocean deep sea" • skeeze - "humpback whale breaching jumping" • Unsplash - "water sea churning" • tpsdave - "faroe islands mountains sea" • Moyan_Brenn - "Fishing" • Nelson Lourenço - "fishing birds" • Lawrie83 - "fish" • lpittman - "divers underwater ocean"

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