Global warming is creating a climate time bomb by storing enormous amounts of heat in the waters of the north Atlantic, UK scientists have discovered.The oceans have been storing up massive amounts of CO2 and heat, but eventually that heat is going to be belched back up in to the atmosphere. A 9-degree rise in air temperature would be a disaster - say goodbye to Greenland and a good chunk of Antarctica. The article - being from the Guardian - doesn't give an indication of how quickly that heat would be released. But so long as you posit continued human civilization, it doesn't really matter - a 9-degree increase, over any likely time frame, would be disastrous and more than we can handle.
Marine researchers at Southampton and Plymouth universities have found that the upper 1,500 metres of the ocean from western Europe to the eastern US have warmed by 0.015C in seven years. The capacity of the oceans to store heat means that a water temperature rise of that size is enough to warm the atmosphere above by almost 9C.
Anyone have access to the journal Geophysical Research Letters?