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Remineralization of particulate organic carbon in an ocean oxygen minimum zone

Citation

Cavan, EL and Trimmer, M and Shelley, F and Sanders, R, Remineralization of particulate organic carbon in an ocean oxygen minimum zone, Nature Communications, 8 Article 14847. ISSN 2041-1723 (2017) [Refereed Article]


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Copyright 2017 The Author(s). Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

DOI: doi:10.1038/ncomms14847

Abstract

Biological oceanic processes, principally the surface production, sinking and interior remineralization of organic particles, keep atmospheric CO2 lower than if the ocean was abiotic. The remineralization length scale (RLS, the vertical distance over which organic particle flux declines by 63%, affected by particle respiration, fragmentation and sinking rates) controls the size of this effect and is anomalously high in oxygen minimum zones (OMZ). Here we show in the Eastern Tropical North Pacific OMZ 70% of POC remineralization is due to microbial respiration, indicating that the high RLS is the result of lower particle fragmentation by zooplankton, likely due to the almost complete absence of zooplankton particle interactions in OMZ waters. Hence, the sensitivity of zooplankton to ocean oxygen concentrations can have direct implications for atmospheric carbon sequestration. Future expansion of OMZs is likely to increase biological ocean carbon storage and act as a negative feedback on climate change.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:oxygen minimum zone, Pacific, remineralisation
Research Division:Earth Sciences
Research Group:Oceanography
Research Field:Biological Oceanography
Objective Division:Environment
Objective Group:Physical and Chemical Conditions of Water
Objective Field:Physical and Chemical Conditions of Water for Urban and Industrial Use
Author:Cavan, EL (Dr Emma Cavan)
ID Code:116305
Year Published:2017
Web of Science® Times Cited:3
Deposited By:Centre for Ecology and Biodiversity
Deposited On:2017-05-04
Last Modified:2017-08-18
Downloads:5 View Download Statistics

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