Climate change impacts on eastern boundary upwelling systems

The world’s eastern boundary upwelling systems (EBUSs) contribute disproportionately to global ocean productivity and provide critical ecosystem services to human society. The impact of climate change on EBUSs and the ecosystems they support is thus a subject of considerable interest. Here, we review hypotheses of climate-driven change in the physics, biogeochemistry, and ecology of EBUSs; describe observed changes over recent decades; and present projected changes over the twenty-first century. Similarities in historical and projected change among EBUSs include a trend toward upwelling intensification in poleward regions, mitigatedwarming in near-coastal regions where upwelling intensifies, and enhanced water-column stratification and a shoaling mixed layer. However, there remains significant uncertainty in how EBUSs will evolve with climate change, particularly in how the sometimes competing changes in upwelling intensity, source-water chemistry, and stratification will affect productivity and ecosystem structure. We summarize the commonalities and differences in historical and projected change in EBUSs and conclude with an assessment of key remaining uncertainties and questions. Future studies will need to address these questions to better understand, project, and adapt to climate-driven changes in EBUSs.

Bograd S. J., Jacox M. G., Hazen E. L., Lovecchio E., Montes I., Pozo Buil M., Shannon L. J., Sydeman M. J. & Rykaczewski R. R., 2023. Climate change impacts on eastern boundary upwelling systems. Annual Review of Marine Science 15(1): 303-328. Article.

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