News

Seasonal Variability of the Mauritania Current and Hydrography at 18°N

Abstract.

"Extensive field campaigns in the Mauritanian upwelling region between 2005 and 2016 provide the database for analyzing the seasonal variability of the eastern boundary circulation (EBC) and associated water mass distribution at 18°N. The data set includes shipboard upper ocean current, hydrographic, and oxygen measurements from nine research cruises conducted during upwelling (December to April) and relaxation (May to July) seasons. [...]"

Source: JGR Oceans
Authors: T. Klenz, M. Dengler and P. Brandt
DOI: 10.1029/2018JC014264

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Deglacial to Holocene Ocean Temperatures in the Humboldt Current System as Indicated by Alkenone Paleothermometry

Abstract.

"The response of the Humboldt Current System to future global warming is uncertain. Here we reconstruct alkenone‐derived near‐surface temperatures from multiple cores along the Peruvian coast to infer the driving mechanisms of upwelling changes for the last 20 kyr. Our records show a deglacial warming consistent with Antarctic ice‐core temperatures and a Mid‐Holocene cooling, which, in combination with other paleoceanographic records, suggest a strengthening of upwelling conditions. [...]"

Source: Geophysical Research Letters
Authors: Renato Salvatteci et al.
DOI: 10.1029/2018GL080634

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Effects of Coastal Upwelling and Downwelling on Hydrographic Variability and Dissolved Oxygen in Mobile Bay

Abstract.

"Upwellling and downwelling events are important coastal processes that strongly influence shelf ecosystem dynamics. Though changes on the shelf have been well studied, the impact of these events on estuarine systems has received less focus. In summer 2016 a downwelling and upwelling event were observed near the mouth of Mobile Bay. The impact of these events were examined throughout the bay with high spatial resolution observations. Five boat surveys were conducted to capture the spatial response of offshore forcing and its changes in the estuary. In addition to the surveys, 16 CTDs were deployed and measured temporal changes. [...]"

Source: JGR Oceans
Authors: Jeffrey Coogan, Brian Dzwonkowski and John Lehrter
DOI: 10.1029/2018JC014592

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Pacific Decadal Oscillation and recent oxygen decline in the eastern tropical Pacific Ocean

Abstract.

"The impact of the positive and negative phases of the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) on the extension of the poorly oxygenated regions of the eastern Pacific Ocean was assessed using a coupled ocean circulation–biogeochemical model. We show that during a “typical” PDO-positive phase the volume of the suboxic regions expands by 7 % over 50 years due to a slowdown of the large-scale circulation related to the decrease in the intensity of the trade winds. Changes in oxygen levels are mostly controlled by advective processes between 10∘ N and 10∘ S, whereas diffusive processes are dominant poleward of 10∘: in a “typical” PDO-positive phase the sluggish equatorial current system provides less oxygen to the eastern equatorial part of the basin while the oxygen transport by diffusive processes significantly decreases south of 10∘ S. [...]"

Source: Biogeosciences
Authors: Olaf Duteil, Andreas Oschlies, and Claus W. Böning
DOI: 10.5194/bg-15-7111-2018

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Tool to Capture Marine Biological Activity Gets Coastal Upgrade

"Upwelling hinders an efficient method to estimate a key measure of biological productivity in coastal waters, but accounting for surface temperatures could boost accuracy.

 

Although coastal waters make up only about 10% of the surface area of the ocean, they harbor most of its life. Measuring biological activity in these regions can reveal their impact on fisheries, low-oxygen dead zones, and the global carbon cycle, but coastal zones remain understudied. Now new research by Teeter et al. suggests how to improve the accuracy of a method that uses oxygen and argon measurements to quickly estimate marine biological activity. [...]"

Source: EOS

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Reconstructing Aragonite Saturation State Based on an Empirical Relationship for Northern California

Abstract.

"Ocean acidification is a global phenomenon with highly regional spatial and temporal patterns. In order to address the challenges of future ocean acidification at a regional scale, it is necessary to increase the resolution of spatial and temporal monitoring of the inorganic carbon system beyond what is currently available. One approach is to develop empirical regional models that enable aragonite saturation state to be estimated from existing hydrographic measurements, for which greater spatial coverage and longer time series exist in addition to higher spatial and temporal resolution. [...]"

Source: Estuaries and Coasts
Authors: Catherine V. Davis et al.
DOI: 10.1007/s12237-018-0372-0

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Modulation of the vertical particle transfer efficiency in the oxygen minimum zone off Peru

Abstract.

"The fate of the organic matter (OM) produced by marine life controls the major biogeochemical cycles of the Earth's system. The OM produced through photosynthesis is either preserved, exported towards sediments or degraded through remineralisation in the water column. The productive eastern boundary upwelling systems (EBUSs) associated with oxygen minimum zones (OMZs) would be expected to foster OM preservation due to low O2 conditions. But their intense and diverse microbial activity should enhance OM degradation. To investigate this contradiction, sediment traps were deployed near the oxycline and in the OMZ core on an instrumented moored line off Peru. [...]"

Source: Biogeosciences
Authors: Marine Bretagnon et al.
DOI: 10.5194/bg-15-5093-2018

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Biogeochemical Role of Subsurface Coherent Eddies in the Ocean: Tracer Cannonballs, Hypoxic Storms, and Microbial Stewpots?

Abstract.

"Subsurface eddies are known features of ocean circulation, but the sparsity of observations prevents an assessment of their importance for biogeochemistry. Here we use a global eddying (0.1°) ocean-biogeochemical model to carry out a census of subsurface coherent eddies originating from eastern boundary upwelling systems (EBUS) and quantify their biogeochemical effects as they propagate westward into the subtropical gyres.  [...]"

Source: Global Biogeochemical Cycles
Authors: Ivy Frenger et al.
DOI: 10.1002/2017GB005743

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Multifarious anchovy and sardine regimes in the Humboldt Current System during the last 150 years

Abstract.

"The Humboldt Current System (HCS) has the highest production of forage fish in the world, although it is highly variable and the future of the primary component, anchovy, is uncertain in the context of global warming. Paradigms based on late 20th century observations suggest that large-scale forcing controls decadal-scale fluctuations of anchovy and sardine across different boundary currents of the Pacific. We develop records of anchovy and sardine fluctuations since 1860 AD using fish scales from multiple sites containing laminated sediments and compare them with Pacific basin-scale and regional indices of ocean climate variability. [...]"

Source: Global Change Biology
Authors: Renato Salvatteci et al.
DOI: 10.1111/gcb.13991

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The Northern Gulf of Mexico During OAE2 and the Relationship Between Water Depth and Black Shale Development

Abstract.

"Despite their name, Oceanic Anoxic Events (OAEs) are not periods of uniform anoxia and black shale deposition in ancient oceans. Shelf environments account for the majority of productivity and organic carbon burial in the modern ocean, and this was likely true in the Cretaceous as well. However, it is unlikely that the mechanisms for such an increase were uniform across all shelf environments. Some, like the northwest margin of Africa, were characterized by strong upwelling, but what might drive enhanced productivity on shelves not geographically suited for upwelling? [...]"

Source: Plaeoceanography
Authors: Christopher M. Lowery
DOI: 10.1002/2017PA003180

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