News

Warming stimulates sediment denitrification at the expense of anaerobic ammonium oxidation

Abstract.

"Temperature is one of the fundamental environmental variables governing microbially mediated denitrification and anaerobic ammonium oxidation (anammox) in sediments. The GHG nitrous oxide (N2O) is produced during denitrification, but not by anammox, and knowledge of how these pathways respond to global warming remains limited. [...]"

Source: Nature Climate Change
Authors: Ehui Tan et al.
DOI: 10.1038/s41558-020-0723-2

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HKU study shows that control of anthropogenic atmospheric emissions can improve water quality in China’s coastal Seas

"A new research led by MPhil student Miss Yu Yan Yau and supervised by Dr Benoit Thibodeau from the Department of Earth Sciences and the Swire Institute of Marine Science, the University of Hong Kong (HKU), highlighted the importance of reducing fossil fuel combustion not only to curb the trend of global warming, but also to improve the quality of China’s coastal waters. The findings were recently published in the prestigious journal Environmental Science & Technology. [...]"

Source: The University of Hong Kong

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Our Vanishing World: Oceans

"As the human onslaught against life on Earth accelerates, no part of the biosphere is left pristine. The simple act of consuming more than we actually need drives the world’s governments and corporations to endlessly destroy more and more of the Earth to extract the resources necessary to satisfy our insatiable desires. In fact, an initiative of the World Economic Forum has just reported that ‘For the first time in history, more than 100 billion tonnes of materials are entering the global economy every year’ – see ‘The Circularity Gap Report 2020’– which means that, on average, every person on Earth uses more than 13 tonnes of materials each year extracted from the Earth. [...]"

Source: GlobalReasearch

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Multi-agency report highlights increasing signs and impacts of climate change in atmosphere, land and oceans

"New York / Geneva, 10 March 2020 - The tell-tale physical signs of climate change such as increasing land and ocean heat, accelerating sea level rise and melting ice are highlighted in a new report compiled by the World Meteorological Organization and an extensive network of partners. It documents impacts of weather and climate events on socio-economic development, human health, migration and displacement, food security and land and marine ecosystems. [...]"

Source: World Meteorological Organization (WMO)

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Uncovering diversity and metabolic spectrum of animals in dead zone sediments

Abstract.

"Ocean deoxygenation driven by global warming and eutrophication is a primary concern for marine life. Resistant animals may be present in dead zone sediments, however there is lack of information on their diversity and metabolism. Here we combined geochemistry, microscopy, and RNA-seq for estimating taxonomy and functionality of micrometazoans along an oxygen gradient in the largest dead zone in the world.  [...]"

Source: Communications Biology
Authors: Elias Broman et al.
DOI: 10.1038/s42003-020-0822-7

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Ocean Conference has potential to be a ‘global game-changer’

"“Life under water is essential to life on land”, said Tijjani Muhammad-Bande. The ocean produces “half of the oxygen we breathe” and provides food for millions of around the world, playing a “fundamental role in mitigating climate change as a major heat and carbon sink”. The Ocean Conference, which will run in Lisbon from 2 to 6 June, aims to propel science-based innovative solutions in the form of global ocean action. The worldwide ocean economy is valued at around $1.5 trillion dollars annually, as aquaculture is the fastest growing food sector and 350 million jobs world-wide are linked to fisheries. [...]"

Source: UN News

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Anaerobic Activity Is a Big Contributor in Marine “Dead Zones”

Climate models that do not account for anaerobic microbial activity may underestimate future expansion of oxygen-depleted waters.

"Certain parts of Earth’s oceans are so oxygen depleted that they can hardly sustain life. Climate models predict that these “dead zones” will expand as global warming progresses, affecting ecosystems, fisheries, and the climate itself. Now Lengger et al. provide new evidence that such predictions do not adequately account for the activity of anaerobic microbes that consume inorganic carbon within dead zones. [...]"

Source: EOS.org

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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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Record-setting ocean warmth continued in 2019

"A new analysis shows the world's oceans were the warmest in 2019 than any other time in recorded human history, especially between the surface and a depth of 2,000 meters. The study, conducted by an international team of 14 scientists from 11 institutes across the world, also concludes that the past ten years have been the warmest on record for global ocean temperatures, with the past five years holding the highest record. [...]"

Source: EurekAlert!

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Quantification of ocean heat uptake from changes in atmospheric O2 and CO2 composition

Abstract.

"The ocean is the main source of thermal inertia in the climate system. Ocean heat uptake during recent decades has been quantified using ocean temperature measurements. However, these estimates all use the same imperfect ocean dataset and share additional uncertainty due to sparse coverage, especially before 2007. Here, we provide an independent estimate by using measurements of atmospheric oxygen (O2) and carbon dioxide (CO2) – levels of which increase as the ocean warms and releases gases – as a whole ocean thermometer. [...]"

Source: Scientific Reports
Authors: L. Resplandy et al.
DOI: 10.1038/s41598-019-56490-z

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