News

Record-Setting Ocean Warmth Continued in 2019

"Human-emitted greenhouse gases (GHGs) have resulted in a long-term and unequivocal warming of the planet (IPCC, 2019). More than 90% of the excess heat is stored within the world’s oceans, where it accumulates and causes increases in ocean temperature (Rhein et al., 2013; Abram et al., 2019). Because the oceans are the main repository of the Earth’s energy imbalance, measuring ocean heat content (OHC) is one of the best way to quantify the rate of global warming (Trenberth et al., 2016; Von Schuckmann et al., 2016; Cheng et al., 2018). [...]"

Source: Advances in Atmospheric Sciences
Authors: Lijing Cheng et al.
DOI: 10.1007/s00376-020-9283-7

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Importance of wind and meltwater for observed chemical and physical changes in the Southern Ocean

Abstract.

"The Southern Ocean south of 30° S represents only one-third of the total ocean area, yet absorbs half of the total ocean anthropogenic carbon and over two-thirds of ocean anthropogenic heat. In the past, the Southern Ocean has also been one of the most sparsely measured regions of the global ocean. [...]"

Source: Nature Geoscience
Authors: Ben Bronselaer et al.
DOI: 10.1038/s41561-019-0502-8

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Greenhouse gas cycling by the plastisphere: The sleeper issue of plastic pollution

Abstract.

"Plastic is an allochthonous material to marine ecosystems but is rapidly colonized by marine microbial communities, with an as yet unclear contribution to biogeochemical cycles. In this study, we investigated the influence of an active microbial community grown on microplastic particles (the plastisphere) on CO2 and N2O recycling and its potential role in greenhouse gas inventories and air-sea exchange. Microplastics were collected during two cruises (Cimar 21 and FIP Montes Submarinos) from the surface layer (5 m depth) from several contrasting trophic regions of the South Pacific Ocean, i.e., from a transition zone off the eutrophic coastal upwelling of Chile, to a mesotrophic transition area of oceanic seamounts and, finally, to an oligotrophic zone in the South Pacific Subtropical Gyre. [...]"

Source: Chemosphere
Authors: MarcelaCornejo-D’Ottone et al.
DOI: 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2019.125709

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Diel and tidal pCO2 × O2 fluctuations provide physiological refuge to early life stages of a coastal forage fish

Abstract.

"Coastal ecosystems experience substantial natural fluctuations in pCO2 and dissolved oxygen (DO) conditions on diel, tidal, seasonal and interannual timescales. Rising carbon dioxide emissions and anthropogenic nutrient input are expected to increase these pCO2 and DO cycles in severity and duration of acidification and hypoxia. [...]"

Source: Scientific Reports
Authors: Emma L. Cross et al.
DOI: 10.1038/s41598-019-53930-8

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Response of N2O production rate to ocean acidification in the western North Pacific

Abstract.

"Ocean acidification, induced by the increase in anthropogenic CO2 emissions, has a profound impact on marine organisms and biogeochemical processes1. The response of marine microbial activities to ocean acidification might play a crucial role in the future evolution of air–sea fluxes of biogenic gases such as nitrous oxide (N2O), a strong GHG and the dominant stratospheric ozone-depleting substance2. Here, we examine the response of N2O production from nitrification to acidification in a series of incubation experiments conducted in subtropical and subarctic western North Pacific. [...]"

Source: Nature Climate Change
Authors: Florian Breider et al.
DOI: 10.1038/s41558-019-0605-7

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Meeting climate targets by direct CO2 injections: what price would the ocean have to pay?

Abstract.

"We investigate the climate mitigation potential and collateral effects of direct injections of captured CO2 into the deep ocean as a possible means to close the gap between an intermediate CO2 emissions scenario and a specific temperature target, such as the 1.5 C target aimed for by the Paris Agreement. For that purpose, a suite of approaches for controlling the amount of direct CO2 injections at 3000 m water depth are implemented in an Earth system model of intermediate complexity. [...]"

Source: Earth System Dynamics
Authors: Fabian Reith et al.
DOI: 10.5194/esd-10-711-2019

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Scenarios of Deoxygenation of the Eastern Tropical North Pacific During the Past Millennium as a Window Into the Future of Oxygen Minimum Zones

Abstract.

"Diverse studies predict global expansion of Oxygen Minimum Zones (OMZs) as a consequence of anthropogenic global warming. While the observed dissolved oxygen concentrations in many coastal regions are slowly decreasing, sediment core paleorecords often show contradictory trends. This is the case for numerous high-resolution reconstructions of oxygenation in the Eastern Tropical North Pacific (ETNP). [...]"

Source: Frontiers in Marine Science
Authors: Konstantin Choumiline et al.
DOI: 10.3389/feart.2019.00237

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A Synthesis of Opportunities for Applying the Telecoupling Framework to Marine Protected Areas

Abstract.

"The world’s oceans face unprecedented anthropogenic threats in the globalized era that originate from all over the world, including climate change, global trade and transportation, and pollution. Marine protected areas (MPAs) serve important roles in conservation of marine biodiversity and ecosystem resilience, but their success is increasingly challenged in the face of such large-scale threats. [...]"

Source: Sustainability
Authors: Vanessa Hull et al.
DOI: 10.3390/su11164450

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Organic Heterogeneities in Foraminiferal Calcite Traced Through the Distribution of N, S, and I Measured With NanoSIMS:

A New Challenge for Element-Ratio-Based Paleoproxies?

 

Abstract.

"Oceanic oxygen decline due to anthropogenic climate change is a matter of growing concern. A quantitative oxygen proxy is highly desirable in order to identify and monitor recent dynamics as well as to reconstruct pre-Anthropocene changes in amplitude and extension of oxygen depletion. Geochemical proxies like foraminiferal I/Ca ratios seem to be promising redox proxies. [...]"

Source: Frontiers in Earth Science
Authors: Nicolaas Glock et al.
DOI: 10.3389/feart.2019.00175

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Antarctic offshore polynyas linked to Southern Hemisphere climate anomalies

Abstract.

"Offshore Antarctic polynyas—large openings in the winter sea ice cover—are thought to be maintained by a rapid ventilation of deep-ocean heat through convective mixing. These rare phenomena may alter abyssal properties and circulation, yet their formation mechanisms are not well understood. Here we demonstrate that concurrent upper-ocean preconditioning and meteorological perturbations are responsible for the appearance of polynyas in the Weddell Sea region of the Southern Ocean. [...]"

Source: Nature
Authors: Ethan C. Campbell et al.
DOI: 10.1038/s41586-019-1294-0

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