The ocean currents are moving water that are affected by many factors. These factors include the wind or salinity in the ocean. But in this article, we are going to uncover the 13 Effects of Wind on Ocean Currents. The wind has one of the biggest impacts on how the ocean currents work. By knowing the effects and the causes of the wind then we will understand how the ocean truly works.
Causes of Wind to Affect Ocean Currents
Below are some causes of wind to affect the ocean currents.
- Wind Strength: The power of the wind determines how the ocean currents would flow.
- Ocean Region: Some ocean regions are windy while some are not which cause different ocean currents.
- Earth’s Rotation: The Coriolis Effect plays a role in determining the direction of the wind on Earth which in turn affects ocean currents.
Then, after knowing causes of wind effects, here the information about what effects that occurred because of wind, as follows:
1. Creates Different Types of Ocean Currents
Wind creates the different types of ocean currents out there. The wind determines how the water currents of the ocean will move. The place where the currents flow depends on the wind. The wind will have a major impact on the places the ocean currents will move to such as the Atlantic ocean current and the Brazil current.
2. Helps Form Storms
All the storms that originate from the ocean are mostly affected by the ocean currents. The ocean currents can either bring warm or cold water. The storm that is passing through the ocean currents will be affected by this. It can either gain strength or lose it. Moreover, the wind also has a huge factor in this. It helps the ocean currents in creating the ocean storm. It also carry the storm to the mainland. Read more about Types of Ocean Storms.
3. Give More Power to Currents
Wind can give more power to ocean currents. If the wind is strong enough, it can cause the ocean currents to be stronger and also move faster. Since the oceans currents have gained more power from the wind, they also have a high potential on causing significant impacts on human lives. The impacts could be devastating or useful. You may want to read Effects of Ocean Currents on Coastline
4. Determine Their Direction
The wind helps to determine the direction of the ocean currents. The ocean currents do not move alone. They are also affected by the wind surrounding the ocean. The wind especially give a strong impact on the movement of the surface water since they are more exposed to the atmosphere.
5. Contribute to Surface Ocean Currents
The surface ocean currents are very important to the whole working of the earth. They help in maintaining a normal climate in the world and also create gyres. Moreover, they transport heat through the water across all the oceans. The wind affect these currents. It is able to move the water that stays on the surface of the ocean. Read more about Causes of Ocean Surface Circulation Currents.
6. Weakens Ocean Currents
Even though a wind can cause an ocean currents to becomes stronger, it can also weakens them too. If the strength of the wind blowing across the ocean is low, then the ocean currents may not be able to function to their full potential. Moreover, the wind can also cause the ocean currents to transport the water at a slower rate than usual.
7. Maintain Their Function
The ocean currents can only function with the help of the wind. Without any wind, then the currents won’t be able to flow like they are supposed to. After all, the wind also helps the water to move along into a certain region in the world. Since the ocean currents give great impact to the world, the wind must always be present too.
8. Helps Create Swells
Swelling is an important process for the ocean. It distributes equal amount of needed nutrients to all parts of the ecosystem. Thanks to the wind, the surface ocean currents can undergo a swelling. That way, the deep ocean aquatic plants and marine can get a portion of the healthy nutrients collected on the water surface. In turn, all the nutrients from deep in the water will also get distributed to the top. You may want to read about Causes of Ocean Swells
9. Create Sudden Change in Climate
The wind can also push the ocean currents to create a sudden change in climate. This can be seen in the El Nino or the La Nina phenomenon. Both events are created by the ocean currents, and the wind plays a part in it. The wind distributes the warm and the cold water among the oceans.
10. Transport Essential Nutrients
The wind helps the ocean currents to transport essential nutrients too every part of the sea. These essential nutrients are important to the marine ecosystem. They help the marine species live and grow despite all the troubles that the ocean is facing.
11. Maintain Temperature of Ocean Currents
The wind also affect the temperature in the surrounding environment of the ocean currents. The faster the wind blows along the currents, the cooler the water they carry. If the wind blows gently then the water could end up being warm because the wind can reduce loss of heat in water. Read more about Characteristics of Ocean Temperature
12. Increase the Water Level
The trade winds can blow the surface water in the ocean and make them pile up in one region. That region can end up having a higher level of sea water. This is especially observable during the El Nino season where most water would pile up close to the coastal regions in the Phillipines and Indonesia. You may want to read about Causes of Sea Level Rise
13. Create More Typhoons
The wind cause the ocean currents to help in creating more typhoons. Typhoons are active cyclones in tropical regions. The wind helps create strong typhoons. Furthermore, the wind will blow the typhoons into the direction of the mainland where they often cause home destructions and devastate many lives.
The ocean currents give many benefit to marine creatures and the overall marine ecosystem. They ensure that the ocean can always work properly. Moreover, they can also bring a great impacts on to the world’s climate. Indeed, the ocean currents are not only important for the ocean, but also for everything that lives in the world.