Ocean acidification: One potential driver of phosphorus eutrophication

Harmful algal blooms which may be limited by phosphorus outbreak increases currently and ocean acidification worsens presently, which implies that ocean acidification might lead to phosphorus eutrophication. To verify the hypothesis, oxic sediments were exposed to seawater with different pH 30 days. If pH was 8.1 and 7.7, the total phosphorus (TP) content in sediments was 1.52 ± 0.50 and 1.29 ± 0.40 mg/g. The inorganic phosphorus (IP) content in sediments exposed to seawater with pH 8.1 and 7.7 was 1.39 ± 0.10 and 1.06 ± 0.20 mg/g, respectively. The exchangeable phosphorus (Ex-P) content in sediments was 4.40 ± 0.45 and 2.82 ± 0.15 μg/g, if seawater pH was 8.1 and 7.7. Ex-P and IP contents in oxic sediments were reduced by ocean acidification significantly (p < 5%). The reduced phosphorus in sediments diffused into water, which implied that ocean acidification was one potential facilitator of phosphorus eutrophication in oxic conditions.

Ge C., Chai Y., Wang H. & Kan M., in press. Ocean acidification: One potential driver of phosphorus eutrophication. Marine Pollution Bulletin. Article (subscription required).

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