Salinity is one measure of the interaction of the global hydrological cycle and ocean circulation, and salinity also plays a role in setting the ocean circulation. Salinity is considerably more difficult to measure than temperature, and for that reason the historical database of quality salinity measurements in the ocean is relatively small compared to temperature. The amount of measurements is now increasing rapidly due to modern technology, and as a result we are getting a much better view of the interaction of the ocean and the global hydrological cycle.

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