3 years ago

Satellite Evidence that E. huxleyi Phytoplankton Blooms Weaken Marine Carbon Sinks

D. V. Kondrik, O. M. Johannessen, D. V. Pozdnyakov
Phytoplankton blooms of the coccolithophore Emiliania huxleyi are known to produce CO2, causing less uptake of atmospheric CO2 by the ocean, but a global assessment of this phenomenon has so far not been quantified. Therefore, here we quantify the increase in CO2 partial pressure (ΔpCO2) at the ocean surface within E. huxleyi blooms for polar and subpolar seas using an 18 year ocean color time series (1998–2015). When normalized to pCO2 in the absence of bloom, the mean and maximum ΔpCO2 values within the bloom areas varied between 21.0%–43.3% and 31.6%–62.5%, respectively. These results might have appreciable implications for climatology, marine chemistry, and ecology.

Publisher URL: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/resolve/doi

DOI: 10.1002/2017GL076240

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