The Awfully Long Thermometer!

 In an earlier story I wrote about how the lighthouse keepers have been doing sea water samples since the early 1930s – some of the oldest observations on the BC coast!

Now, with satellites we can get different temperatures of the sea – Sea Surface Temperatures for one – similar to what the lightkeepers do, but globally.

Sea surface temperatures have a large influence on climate and weather. For example, every 3 to 7 years a wide swath of the Pacific Ocean along the equator warms by 2 to 3 degrees Celsius. This warming is a hallmark of the climate pattern El Niño, which changes rainfall patterns around the globe, causing heavy rainfall in the southern United States and severe drought in Australia, Indonesia, and southern Asia. On a smaller scale, ocean temperatures influence the development of tropical cyclones (hurricanes and typhoons), which draw energy from warm ocean waters to form and intensify. – NASA Earth Observatory Continue reading

Ocean Water Samples

One of the duties of a lighthouse keeper on some stations, was to do a daily Sea Water sample. It was started very early on (see the story here), before the advent of Global warming, and the observed data has been beneficial in many ways as you will see at the bottom..

Kains Island (Quatsino) lighthouse

In the above-mentioned story from Kains Island lighthouse, the samples started in 1935, so we have seventy-seven (77) years of ocean data. Also in the story is the fact that in the early years . . . 

. . . the small glass bottles of sea water with cork stoppers were stored in wooden boxes with many little squares, one for each bottle1. These boxes would be shipped out when the supply ship re-supplied the station once a year, usually in July.  Continue reading