Is the Pacific blob terrifying? Oh yeah!

Since I lived in Chile from 1992 to 2000, I’m always interested in any articles about the wonderful country where I found the people charming and the style of living slow and delightfully easy. The country is situated along the western seaboard of South America, and I often think of it like a quilt filled with every type of climate one could look for. That included the southern Antarctic as in cities like Punta Arenas to Antofagasta in the north, which is considered the driest desert in the world. Anto was our home, and we loved it. (see the red cross on the apt across from the ocean)

So…when I read the following article, it stopped my heart. I know there have been weather variables happening everywhere, but for some reason, now that I’m back in Canada, I’ve focused more on the North American situations.

Unfortunately, Mother Nature is sharing her mean streak with everyone. In some areas, more so than in others.

This is the article that scared the daylights outta me:

Researchers from Victoria University of Wellington have helped identify a “blob” of warm water in the Pacific Ocean thought to be responsible for a 10-year drought in parts of South America.

The research showed the area of intense warming in the South Pacific Ocean had shifted storm systems towards Antarctica and away from the west coast of South America, the university said.

That had caused a decade-long, uninterrupted sequence of drought years across central Chile and adjacent portions of the Andes Mountains and Argentina.

The blob covered an area of about 8 million square kilometres – about the size of Australia.

Dr. Kyle Clem, a lecturer at Victoria’s School of Geography, Environment and Earth Sciences, said the winter storm systems that brought most of the rain to the drought-hit areas had been replaced with a large ridge of warm and dry high pressure.

That ridge extended from New Zealand to the central South American coast, and was rooted in the large region of rapid ocean-warming east of New Zealand.

While sea-surface temperatures had risen by a global average of about 0.5 degrees Celsius between 1979 and 2018, the temperature of the blob had risen by 1.5C – three times faster – during the May to September winter season.

The area of warm water reached depths of about 100 metres, and a recent study suggested it accounted for as much as a quarter of total global heat absorption in recent decades.

Computer models had managed to replicate the blob without taking into account greenhouse gas emissions produced by humans. But the speed of the rise in the blob’s temperature could not happen under natural variability.

“So while the blob’s formation may have been triggered by natural processes, greenhouse gases have significantly contributed to the remarkable rate of warming and heat uptake in recent decades,” Clem said.

It was unclear when or if the blob would dissipate and break the Chilean drought, with rainfall and mountain snow. Clem figures 2021 would be another very dry year.

Original post by Michael Daly Aug 27, 202


After the catastrophic recent events closer to home, I ask myself, what can I do? Me… one person? And then I understand. I can vote for the people who care. Those who are most likely to take the climate situation seriously and do something about it.

Does that make me feel any better?

Not really! But it seems like we’ve played around for far too long. Now we must do what we can and pray those with power will step up.

At this moment, I’m writing my 2021 Christmas story and as usual the main character will be a tiny white puppy such as my Holiday Heartwarmers series always showcase. If I can slide in just a small reference to my protagonist’s interests in this climate debate, hopefully, those reading the book will think a little more on the subject too.

My small way of reaching out…