Ocean Currents

Upload to this page

Add your photos, text, videos, etc. to this page.

The oceans make a big difference to the weather on Earth. They absorb heat from the sun and store it as they flow around the world. During the winter the ocean currents heat the air and the land. During the summer, they help to cool them.

Do you know what an ocean current is? It is a regular flow of water in the ocean. It can travel for thousands of kilometres across the world.

Have you ever heard of the Gulf Stream ?

The Gulf Stream is a very warm ocean current. It starts its journey in the Gulf of Mexico and travels all the way up along the coast of America and Newfoundland. A branch of the Gulf Stream flows across the Atlantic Ocean to northwest Europe. This is called the North Atlantic Drift and it helps to keep the climate of northwest Europe warm. That includes Ireland!

The North Atlantic Drift also helps to keep the climate of Norway much warmer than it would be without it. Do you know where Norway is? It is one of the most northern countries in Europe and is very close to the Arctic. Even though the Arctic is covered with thick snow and ice, there is hardly any ice or snow along the coast of Norway. This is thanks to the warm North Atlantic Drift!

Did you know?

When the Gulf Stream is really warm it can cause very strong storms. These are called cyclones. They can even be form underneath the Gulf Stream itself. They can be as deep as 3,500 metres!