They also simulated how phytoplankton absorbs and reflects light, learning that climate change will effectively alter the ocean's coloring near the surface. Dutkiewicz said those instruments will probably provide early signals of how climate change is altering the oceans and their colour.
The changes, caused by shifts in populations of tiny marine plants known as phytoplankton, may not be detectable by the naked eye but will affect the appearance of oceans when photographed by satellites.
By simulating the world's oceans up until the year 2100, the model showed that more than 50pc of the oceans will become brighter, with the subtropics becoming more blue, indicating a lack of phytoplankton - and life itself - within the water.
Hickman said: "Crudely speaking, where the water is now quite blue because the phytoplankton [have a] relatively low biomass, you are going to see the water getting more blue, and where the ocean is relatively more green because the biomass is higher, you are going to see [it] getting [greener]". Water molecules alone absorb nearly all sunlight except for the blue part of the spectrum, which is reflected back out.
One way to monitor changes on a global scale is through observing the color of the ocean satellite data. The deeper green hues will reveal larger blooms of more diverse phytoplankton resulting in higher levels of aquatic life.More news: Taliban to meet anti-govt leaders in Moscow
Costa hopes this latest report will reinforce the importance of understanding the effects of climate change on the world's oceans, noting phytoplankton are "very important in the carbon cycle".
The ocean's color depends on how sunlight interacts with whatever is in the water. "That basic pattern will still be there".
"Looking at just the colour of the ocean, and how that is going to change in the future by monitoring it from satellites, is actually going to give us an early warning signal of changes in the phytoplankton", said Hickman. "We are interested in phytoplankton because they are tiny marine plants, they contribute about half of global photosynthesis, they are the base of the marine food web". Phytoplankton are mostly single-celled microscopic organisms that live in watery environments. While chlorophyll levels could be altered by the effects of global warming, natural events such as El Niño can also cause an uptick in chlorophyll.
Scientists already know that climate change is affecting plankton, with warmer waters leading to different algae species blooming in new waters, for instance.
Scientists say there will be less of them in the waters in the decades to come. Scientists have predicted that if this continues, ocean colours would change by the end of the century.More news: White House attributes Trump's tan to 'good genes'
When they increased the global temperatures by up to 3 degrees Celsius by 2100, they found that wavelengths of light in the blue or green wave band responded the fastest.
They believe it will be 30-40 years before they can say for certain that climate change is having an impact on chlorophyll.
The color change won't be obvious to human onlookers, but spectral analysis by satellite cameras could help scientists use color shifts as a proxy for the development of climate change.
The team modelled what would happen to the oceans by the end of this century if the world warmed by 3C, which is close to where temperatures are likely to be, if every country sticks to the promises they have made in the Paris climate agreement.
This research was supported, in part, by NASA and the Department of Energy.More news: 'Y: The Last Man' getting full FX series as 'Y'