Implications of global climate change and aquaculture on blue carbon sequestration and storage: Submerged aquatic ecosystems
Gallagher, J, Implications of global climate change and aquaculture on blue carbon sequestration and storage: Submerged aquatic ecosystems, Aquaculture Ecosystems: Adaptability and Sustainability, John Wiley & Sons, S. Mustafa, R. Shapawi (ed), United Kingdom, pp. 243-280. ISBN 978-111877853-1 (2015) [Research Book Chapter]
Climate change and aquaculture influence the blue carbon storage in aquatic ecosystems but accurate projections of their separate impacts are difficult owing to the multiplicity of pathways involved. Because of aquaculture's growing contribution to seafood supply, society will find it difficult to impose serious restrictions at a time when fisheries are challenged by changes in the ecosystem caused by climate change. The effect of aquaculture on the ability of coastal vegetation such as seagrass meadows to sequester and store carbon is determined by the type of aquaculture. It is understood that compared to finfish aquaculture, the shellfish aquaculture is generally benign with no significant impact on ecosystem eutrophication, at least on a short-term basis. There are knowledge gaps when it comes to mechanisms that influence blue carbon stocks and more empirical studies are needed to provide accurate assessments. With an ecosystem approach to marine resources and aquaculture management gaining ground, it is evident that the focus will be on a holistic management of activities within the limits of ecosystem thresholds. In this context, investigations are required on nutrient and organic subsidies to coastal marine ecosystems, especially the blue carbon resources. It should also be established whether the ecosystem behaves as a dynamic non-point attractor or point attractor and what influence changes in parameters (light attenuation between the plant communities, mineralized limiting nutrient supply, CO2 supply, pH and temperature) exert of the whole dynamic. The data need to be interpreted under the umbrella of the particular ecosystem's long-term dynamics with the knowledge of the quality of external organic subsidies.