Scientists at the World Ocean Watch and the United Nations
Climate Oversight Committee agree about an alarming
development: the thermoplankton web may be dying! Recent
studies show large pockets of the TP web contain "dead
zones," areas where there is little or none of
the infrasound chatter that characterizes healthy TP
communities. At dozens of varied marine sites, the TP,
a "communal" form of phytoplankton, may be
fighting a losing war with unclassified "junk strains"
of genetically similar planktons. In each case, the
zooplankton that coexists in the same ecosystem has
evolved to enjoy the new conditions.
Kurt Hugo, Vice President of the WaterWorks Company,
a leading player in the TP market based in Kyoto, describes
the scenario as "troubling" but "hardly
grave." Pointing out that the sample sites constitute
less than 5% of the TP Web, he noted that the activity
is still confined to "relatively isolated areas"
exhibiting "similar profiles."
Britton disagrees. The UNCOC Research Fellow and professor
at BWU-Dunedin, describes the scenario as "quite
grim and mystifying." He notes that normal AI forensics
and phytoplankton profiling have failed to produce any
answers to the dilemma. In fact, the problems are occurring
at the equator, the poles, and 60 N&S, where TP
production is high, and around 30 N&S, where the
ocean convergences retard TP replication. The same goes
for lively coastal waters versus the open sea. "It
doesn't seem to matter where you are," he says,
"we're seeing dead spots in both quiet and loud
zones, and both in and outside traditional incubators."
Mwanza of World Ocean Watch points out that all of the
weather avatars monitoring these dead zones have experienced
"neural hiccups" and "white fugues."
Obviously frustrated and concerned, he feels he can
only preach caution. "Something's amiss, and it's
getting ugly fast. The TP are not exhibiting the normal,
healthy, 'chatter' we associate with them, instead we
are seeing odd wave-like effects and large scale oscillations,
accompanied by a decrease or loss of standard environmental
activity. We don't have an answer yet, but
we need one soon. Otherwise, we may see a return to
rising seas." Alarming thoughts indeed.