Decomposing monthly declines in subsurface-water pH and aragonite saturation state from spring to autumn in the North Yellow Sea

Highlights

• Controlling processes of the North Yellow Sea (NYS) seasonal acidification were quantified.
• Net calcification rate declines to zero when seawater aragonite saturation state reaches 1.5-1.6.
• Calcification-unfavourable waters may exist in NYS subsurface layers all year round in the 2050 s.

Abstract

The North Yellow Sea (NYS) is a western North Pacific marginal sea of major ecological and economic importance, where seasonal thermocline and subsurface cold water mass are well developed from spring to autumn. Earlier researchers have shown monthly/bimonthly declines of pH (ΔpH) and aragonite saturation state (ΔΩarag) in the NYS cold water mass. To quantify the biogeochemical processes controlling these variations, we applied a systematic decomposition methodology to ΔΩarag and ΔpH values, using the Redfield ratio and published data sets of NYS carbonate and ancillary parameters for 2011 and 2013. Results show that the contributions of the NYS cold water mass community respiration (ΔΩResp), calcification (ΔΩCalc) and temperature changes (ΔΩΔT) to the monthly ΔΩarag from spring to summer were 84±9%, 30±16%, and −13±10%, while the ΔΩResp, ΔΩΔT and contributions of CaCO3 dissolution (ΔΩDiss) to the bimonthly ΔΩarag from late summer to autumn were 103%, 1% and −5%. Meanwhile, the contributions of the NYS cold water mass community respiration (ΔpHResp), temperature changes (ΔpHΔT) and calcification (ΔpHCalc) to the monthly ΔpH from spring to summer were 50±23%, 39±23%, and 13±4%, while the ΔpHResp, ΔpHΔT and contributions of CaCO3 dissolution (ΔpHDiss) to the bimonthly ΔpH from late summer to autumn were 110%, −5%, and −5%. Our results suggest that the NYS cold water mass net calcification rate declines to nearly zero when Ωarag reaches a critical level of 1.5−1.6. Using a future scenario to predict the impacts of rising atmospheric CO2 levels on seasonal variations of Ωarag and pH values, we show that very low Ωarag values of <1.5 may exist all year round in the NYS subsurface waters by the 2050 s, while aragonite undersaturated water (Ωarag <1) may appear in autumn months, causing great stress to its benthic faunal community.

Li C.-L. & Zhai W.-D., in press. Decomposing monthly declines in subsurface-water pH and aragonite saturation state from spring to autumn in the North Yellow Sea. Continental Shelf Research. Article (subscription required).

0 Responses to “Decomposing monthly declines in subsurface-water pH and aragonite saturation state from spring to autumn in the North Yellow Sea”



  1. Leave a Comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.




Subscribe to the RSS feed

Powered by FeedBurner

Follow AnneMarin on Twitter

Blog Stats

  • 1,130,100 hits

OA-ICC HIGHLIGHTS

Ocean acidification in the IPCC AR5 WG II

OUP book