Posts Tagged 'regionalmodeling'

Past and future evolution of the carbonate system in a coastal zone of the Northern Antarctic Peninsula


• Anthropogenic carbon concentrations are estimated within the mixed layer using three different methods.
• There is a large increasing rate of anthropogenic carbon penetration in the deep waters.
• Undersaturated aragonite saturation state at sea surface could be reached before year 2060.
• An alternative method for calculating anthropogenic carbon is purposed for regions with low carbonate system datasets.


It is arduous to gather a good spatial and temporal dataset of marine carbonate properties, especially in the Southern Ocean. In this study, we have reconstructed the carbonate system in the Gerlache Strait, a coastal zone of the Northern Antarctic Peninsula. We also analyzed the impact of ocean acidification by calculating the tipping points of the calcium carbonate saturation states and pH (i.e., when saturation state and pH goes below one and 7, respectively). Hydrographic and carbonate data from three distinct data sets (GOAL – 2013 to 2016, FRUELA – 1996, and World Ocean Database – 1965 to 2004) have been joined and used to reconstruct the carbonate system from the past 50 years. Temporal annual mean trends were determined depending on the water column depth-layer. The northern Gerlache Strait showed a significant increasing trend of CT concentrations (1.0024 ± 0.34 µmol kg–1) and related pH decreasing trend (–0.0026 ± 0.0009 sws) in the surface mixed layer (> 60 m). The properties variability is relatively different (magnitudes and signs) between the northern and southern sectors of the Gerlache Strait, which indicate that adjacent regions to the Gerlache Strait to the southwest and north, respectively, may major influence the regional carbonate dynamics. Results also show that episodic under-saturation conditions, in relation to aragonite within the surface mixed layer, may already occur, especially in regions close to large glaciers.

Continue reading ‘Past and future evolution of the carbonate system in a coastal zone of the Northern Antarctic Peninsula’

Impacts of ocean acidification in the coastal and marine environments of Caribbean Small Island Developing States (SIDS)

Oceans have absorbed one third of the carbon dioxide (CO2) released to the atmosphere from human activities causing the seawater pH to decrease by 0.1 units since the Industrial Revolution. There is certainty that ocean acidification caused by anthropogenic activities is currently in progress and will increase in accord with rising atmospheric CO2. There is medium confidence that these changes with significantly impact marine ecosystems. Throughout the Caribbean small islands, ocean acidification effects could be exacerbated due to local processes within coastal zones. Ocean surface aragonite saturation state (Ωarg) has declined by around 3% in the Caribbean region relative to pre-industrial levels potentially already impacting tropical marine calcifying organisms. In addition to the effect on living organisms, ocean acidification is likely to diminish the structural integrity of coral reefs through reduced skeletal density, loss of calcium carbonate, and dissolution of high-Mg carbonate cements which help to bind the reef. This would make coastal areas of the Caribbean small islands increasingly more vulnerable to the action of waves and storm surge. This is likely to have knock-on effects to the tourism sector, fisheries and coastal infrastructure. More studies about the present and projected impacts of ocean acidification on Caribbean small islands are necessary in order to evaluate alternative adaptive strategies accounting for the different island’s environmental, socioeconomic, and political settings.

Continue reading ‘Impacts of ocean acidification in the coastal and marine environments of Caribbean Small Island Developing States (SIDS)’

Temporal changes in seawater carbonate chemistry and carbon export from a Southern California estuary

Estuaries are important subcomponents of the coastal ocean, but knowledge about the temporal and spatial variability of their carbonate chemistry, as well as their contribution to coastal and global carbon fluxes, are limited. In the present study, we measured the temporal and spatial variability of biogeochemical parameters in a saltmarsh estuary in Southern California, the San Dieguito Lagoon (SDL). We also estimated the flux of dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) and total organic carbon (TOC) to the adjacent coastal ocean over diel and seasonal timescales. The combined net flux of DIC and TOC (FDIC + TOC) to the ocean during outgoing tides ranged from − 1.8±0.5 × 103 to 9.5±0.7 × 103 mol C h−1 during baseline conditions. Based on these fluxes, a rough estimate of the net annual export of DIC and TOC totaled 10±4 × 106 mol C year−1. Following a major rain event (36 mm rain in 3 days), FDIC + TOC increased and reached values as high as 29.0 ± 0.7 × 103 mol C h−1. Assuming a hypothetical scenario of three similar storm events in a year, our annual net flux estimate more than doubled to 25 ± 4 × 106 mol C year−1. These findings highlight the importance of assessing coastal carbon fluxes on different timescales and incorporating event scale variations in these assessments. Furthermore, for most of the observations elevated levels of total alkalinity (TA) and pH were observed at the estuary mouth relative to the coastal ocean. This suggests that SDL partly buffers against acidification of adjacent coastal surface waters, although the spatial extent of this buffering is likely small.

Continue reading ‘Temporal changes in seawater carbonate chemistry and carbon export from a Southern California estuary’

Climate change projections for the surface ocean around New Zealand

The future status of the surface ocean around New Zealand was projected using two Earth System Models and four emission scenarios. By 2100 mean changes are largest under Representative Concentration Pathway 8.5 (RCP8.5), with a +2.5°C increase in sea surface temperature, and decreases in surface mixed layer depth (15%), macronutrients (7.5–20%), primary production (4.5%) and particle flux (12%). Largest macronutrient declines occur in the eastern Chatham Rise and subantarctic waters to the south, whereas dissolved iron increases in subtropical waters. Surface pH projections, validated against subantarctic time-series data, indicate a 0.335 decline to ∼7.77 by 2100. However, projected pH is sensitive to future CO2 emissions, remaining within the current range under RCP2.6, but decreasing below it by 2040 with all other scenarios. Sub-regions vulnerable to climate change include the Chatham Rise, polar waters south of 50°S, and subtropical waters north of New Zealand, whereas the central Tasman Sea is least affected.

Continue reading ‘Climate change projections for the surface ocean around New Zealand’

Ocean changes to come

Key messages

  • Oceans are key to the climate system’s carbon, heat and freshwater cycles.
  • Oceans are changing, and further physical, chemical and biological changes are projected for Australian waters this century.
  • Ocean warming, acidification, deoxygenation and sea-level rise have important implications for marine ecosystems and the ocean services on which humans depend.
  • Climate models are essential tools for exploring mitigation options and integrating climate predictions with human systems such as agriculture and fisheries.

Continue reading ‘Ocean changes to come’

Can empirical algorithms successfully estimate aragonite saturation state in the subpolar North Atlantic?

The aragonite saturation state (ΩAr) in the subpolar North Atlantic was derived using new regional empirical algorithms. These multiple regression algorithms were developed using the bin-averaged GLODAPv2 data of commonly observed oceanographic variables [temperature (T), salinity (S), pressure (P), oxygen (O2), nitrate (NO  3  NO3- ), phosphate (PO 3 4  PO4-3 ), silicate (Si(OH)4), and pH]. Five of these variables are also frequently observed using autonomous platforms, which means they are widely available. The algorithms were validated against independent shipboard data from the OVIDE2012 cruise. It was also applied to time series observations of T, S, P, and O2 from the K1 mooring (56.5°N, 52.6°W) to reconstruct for the first time the seasonal variability of ΩAr. Our study suggests: (i) linear regression algorithms based on bin-averaged carbonate system data can successfully estimate ΩAr in our study domain over the 0–3,500 m depth range (R2 = 0.985, RMSE = 0.044); (ii) that ΩAr also can be adequately estimated from solely non-carbonate observations (R2 = 0.969, RMSE = 0.063) and autonomous sensor variables (R2 = 0.978, RMSE = 0.053). Validation with independent OVIDE2012 data further suggests that; (iii) both algorithms, non-carbonate (MEF = 0.929) and autonomous sensors (MEF = 0.995) have excellent predictive skill over the 0–3,500 depth range; (iv) that in deep waters (>500 m) observations of T, S, and O2 may be sufficient predictors of ΩAr (MEF = 0.913); and (iv) the importance of adding pH sensors on autonomous platforms in the euphotic and remineralization zone (<500 m). Reconstructed ΩAr at Irminger Sea site, and the K1 mooring in Labrador Sea show high seasonal variability at the surface due to biological drawdown of inorganic carbon during the summer, and fairly uniform ΩAr values in the water column during winter convection. Application to time series sites shows the potential for regionally tuned algorithms, but they need to be further compared against ΩAr calculated by conventional means to fully assess their validity and performance.

Continue reading ‘Can empirical algorithms successfully estimate aragonite saturation state in the subpolar North Atlantic?’

Ship emissions and the use of current air cleaning technology: contributions to air pollution and acidification in the Baltic Sea

The shipping sector is a significant contributor to emissions of air pollutants in marine and coastal regions. In order to achieve sustainable shipping, primarily through new regulations and techniques, greater knowledge of dispersion and deposition of air pollutants is required. Regional model calculations of the dispersion and concentration of sulfur, nitrogen, and particulate matter, as well as deposition of oxidized sulfur and nitrogen from the international maritime sector in the Baltic Sea and the North Sea, have been made for the years 2011 to 2013. The contribution from shipping is highest along shipping lanes and near large ports for concentration and dry deposition. Sulfur is the most important pollutant coupled to shipping. The contribution of both SO2 concentration and dry deposition of sulfur represented up to 80 % of the total in some regions. WHO guidelines for annual concentrations were not trespassed for any analysed pollutant, other than PM2.5 in the Netherlands, Belgium, and central Poland. However, due to the resolution of the numerical model, 50 km  ×  50 km, there may be higher concentrations locally close to intense shipping lanes. Wet deposition is more spread and less sensitive to model resolution. The contribution of wet deposition of sulfur and nitrogen from shipping was up to 30 % of the total wet deposition. Comparison of simulated to measured concentration at two coastal stations close to shipping lanes showed some underestimations and missed maximums, probably due to resolution of the model and underestimated ship emissions.

A change in regulation for maximum sulfur content in maritime fuel, in 2015 from 1 to 0.1 %, decreases the atmospheric sulfur concentration and deposition significantly. However, due to costs related to refining, the cleaning of exhausts through scrubbers has become a possible economic solution. Open-loop scrubbers meet the air quality criteria but their consequences for the marine environment are largely unknown. The resulting potential of future acidification in the Baltic Sea, both from atmospheric deposition and from scrubber water along the shipping lanes, based on different assumptions about sulfur content in fuel, scrubber usage, and increased shipping density has been assessed. The increase in deposition for different shipping and scrubber scenarios differs for the basins in the Baltic Sea, with highest potential of acidification in the southern basins with high traffic. The proportion of ocean-acidifying sulfur from ships increases when taking scrubber water into account and the major reason for increasing acidifying nitrogen from ships is increasing ship traffic. Also, with the implementation of emission control for nitrogen, the effect of scrubbers on acidification is evident. This study also generates a database of shipping and scrubber scenarios for atmospheric deposition and scrubber exhaust from the period 2011 to 2050.

Continue reading ‘Ship emissions and the use of current air cleaning technology: contributions to air pollution and acidification in the Baltic Sea’

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Ocean acidification in the IPCC AR5 WG II

OUP book