The Southern Ocean includes the only latitude band where the ocean circles the earth unobstructed by continental boundaries. This accident of geography has profound consequences for global ocean circulation, biogeochemical cycles, and climate. The Southern Ocean connects the ocean basins and links the shallow and deep limbs of the overturning circulation (Rintoul et al., 2001). The ocean's capacity to moderate the pace of climate change is therefore influenced strongly by the Southern Ocean's circulation.
Authors: Rintoul, Stephen R., Meredith, Michael P., Schofield, Oscar, Newman, Louise