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UPSC Mains 2022

What are the forces that influence ocean currents? Describe their role in fishing industry of the world.

General Studies Paper -1, Topic - Oceanography

Dec 28, 2022

2 min read

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Ocean currents are influenced by a variety of forces, including wind, the Earth's rotation, and the distribution of temperature and salinity in the ocean.

 

Wind is one of the main forces that drives ocean currents. When the wind blows over the surface of the ocean, it causes the water to move in a certain direction. This movement of water is known as a wind-driven current. The strength of the wind and the duration of time it blows in a particular direction can both influence the strength of the wind-driven current.

 

The Earth's rotation also plays a role in the movement of ocean currents. As the Earth rotates, it causes the water in the ocean to move in a certain direction, known as the Coriolis effect. This movement is especially pronounced at high latitudes, where the rotation of the Earth has a greater influence on the movement of the water.

 

Temperature and salinity are also important factors that influence ocean currents. Water that is warmer and less dense tends to rise to the surface, while colder, denser water sinks. This movement of water can create currents that flow from the equator towards the poles, or from the surface to the deep ocean. Similarly, water that is more saline tends to be denser than water that is less saline, which can also create currents.

 

Ocean currents play an important role in the fishing industry, as they can affect the distribution of fish and other marine life. For example, warmer currents can bring warm-water species to areas that are normally too cold for them, while colder currents can bring cold-water species to warmer regions. The movement of ocean currents can also affect the availability of nutrients, which can influence the growth and reproduction of marine life. Overall, understanding the forces that influence ocean currents is important for the fishing industry, as it can help fishermen to predict where fish are likely to be found and to plan their fishing activities accordingly.

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