The oceanic memory of climate: The circulatory system of a living planet

Josep Lluís Pelegrí, Alícia Duró


In the early sixth century, Leonardo da Vinci compared the ocean currents with the blood flow of a human body. Now we have enough information to explore the idea that the Earth has a circulatory system responsible for capturing, transforming and distributing solar energy. The role of the ocean as a climate regulator is extraordinary, and it truly determines the present and the future of our planet.


ocean circulation; climate change; oceanography

Full Text: PDF (Català) PDF (Español) PDF



Benítez-Barrios, V. M., 2011. «Multiscale Variability in the North Atlantic Ocean». PhD dissertation, Universidad de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria.

Broecker, W. S., 1991. «The Great Ocean Conveyor». Oceanography, 4(2): 18-89. DOI: <10.5670/oceanog.1991.07>.

Castellanos, P., 2012. «Wind-Driven Currents in the Coastal and Equatorial Upwelling Regions». PhD dissertation, Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya.

Claret, M.; Rodríguez, R. and J. L. Pelegrí, 2012. «Salinity Intrusion and Convective Mixing in the Atlantic Equatorial Undercurrent». Scientia Marina, 76(S1): 117-129. DOI: <10.3989/scimar.03611.19B>.

Paillard, D., 2001. «Glacial Cycles: Towards a New Paradigm». Reviews of Geophysics, 39: 325-346. DOI: <10.1029/2000RG000091>.

Pelegrí, J. L., 2008. «A Physiological Approach to Oceanic Processes and Glacial-Interglacial Changes in Atmospheric CO2». Scientia Marina, 72: 185-202. DOI: <10.3989/scimar.2008.72n1185>.

Pelegrí, J. L., Marrero-Díaz, A. and A. W. Ratsimandresy, 2006. «Nutrient Irrigation of the North Atlantic». Progress in Oceanography, 70: 366-406. DOI: <10.1016/j.pocean.2006.03.018>.

Pelegrí, J. L.; De la Fuente, P.; Olivella, R. and A. García-Olivares [en revisión]. «Global Constraints on Net Primary Production and Inorganic Carbon Supply During Glacial and Interglacial Cycles». Paleoceanography.

Rahmstorf, S., 2002. «Ocean Circulation and Climate During the Past 120,000 Years». Nature, 419: 207-214. DOI: <10.1038/nature01090>.

San Antolín Plaza, M. A.; Pelegrí, J. L.; Machín, F. J. and V. M. Benítez, 2012. «Inter-Decadal Changes in Stratification and Double Diffusion in a Transatlantic Section Along 7.5º N». Scientia Marina, 76(S1): 189-207. DOI: <10.3989/scimar.03616.19G>.

Talley, L. D., 2013. «Closure of the Global Overturning Circulation Through the Indian, Pacific, and Southern Oceans: Schematics and Transports.» Oceanography, 26(1): 80-97. DOI: <10.5670/oceanog.2013.07>


  • There are currently no refbacks.