Author Posting. © American Geophysical Union, 2009. This article is posted here by permission of American Geophysical Union for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Global Biogeochemical Cycles 23 (2009): GB4034, doi:10.1029/2009GB003500.
Climate change is projected to significantly alter the delivery (stratification, boundary currents, aridification of landmasses, glacial melt) of iron to the Southern Ocean. We report the most comprehensive suite of biogeochemical iron budgets to date for three contrasting sites in subantarctic and polar frontal waters south of Australia. Distinct regional environments were responsible for differences in the mode and strength of iron supply mechanisms, with higher iron stocks and fluxes observed in surface northern subantarctic waters, where atmospheric iron fluxes were greater. Subsurface waters southeast of Tasmania were also enriched with particulate iron, manganese and aluminum, indicative of a strong advective source from shelf sediments. Subantarctic phytoplankton blooms are thus driven by both seasonal iron supply from southward advection of subtropical waters and by wind-blown dust deposition, resulting in a strong decoupling of iron and nutrient cycles. We discuss the broader global significance our iron budgets for other ocean regions sensitive to climate-driven changes in iron supply.
T.W. was supported by a BDI grant from CNRS and Région PACA, by CNRS PICS project 3604, and by the “Soutien à la mer” CSOA CNRS-INSU. P.W.B. was supported by the New Zealand FRST Coasts and Oceans OBI. This research was supported by the Australian Government Cooperative Research Centres Programme through the Antarctic Climate and Ecosystems CRC (ACE CRC) and Australian Antarctic Science project 2720.
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