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  • 1
    Publication Date: 2019-09-23
    Description: The contribution of carbonate-producing benthic organisms to the global marine carbon budget has been overlooked, the prevailing view being that calcium carbonate (CaCO3) is predominantly produced by marine plankton. Here, we provide the first estimation of the global contribution of echinoderms to the marine carbon cycle, based on organism-level measurements from species of the five echinoderm classes. Echinoderms global CaCO3 contribution amounts to ~0.861 Pg CaCO3 yr-1 (0.102 Pg C yr-1 of inorganic carbon) as a production rate, and ~2.11 Pg CaCO3 (0.25 Pg C of inorganic carbon) as a standing stock globally. Echinoderm inorganic carbon production (0.102 Pg C yr-1) is less than the global pelagic production (0.4-1.8 Pg C yr-1), and similar to the estimates for carbonate shelves globally (0.02-0.12 Pg C yr-1). Echinoderm CaCO3 production per unit area, is ~27.01 g CaCO3 m-2 yr-1 (3.24 g C m-2 yr-1 as inorganic carbon) on a global scale for all areas, with a standing stock of ~63.34 g CaCO3 m-2 (7.60 g C m-2 as inorganic carbon), and ~7.97 g C m-2 as organic carbon. The shelf production is 77.91 g CaCO3 m-2 yr-1 (9.35 g C m-2 yr-1 as inorganic carbon) in contrast to 2.05 g CaCO3 m-2 yr-1 (0.24 g C m-2 yr-1 as inorganic carbon) for the slope on a global scale. The biogeography of the CaCO3 standing stocks of echinoderms showed strong latitudinal variability. Roughly 80% of the global CaCO3 production from echinoderms occurs between 0 and 800 meters. The shelf and upper slope contribute the most. We provide a global distribution of echinoderm populations in the context of global calcite saturation horizons, since undersaturated waters with respect to mineral phases are surfacing. This shallowing is a direct consequence of ocean acidification, and in some places it may reach the shelf and upper slope permanently. These organism-level data contribute substantially to the assessment of global carbonate inventories, which at present are poorly estimated. Additionally, it is desirable to include these benthic compartments in coupled global biogeochemical models representing the “biological pump”, since at present all efforts have focused on pelagic processes, dominated by coccolithophores.
    Type: Article , PeerReviewed
    Format: text
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  • 2
    Publication Date: 2015-10-15
    Description: In this study we present hydrography, biogeochemistry and sediment trap observations between 2003 and 2012 at Porcupine Abyssal Plain (PAP) sustained observatory in the Northeast Atlantic. The time series is valuable as it allows for investigation of the link between surface productivity and deep ocean carbon flux. The region is a perennial sink for CO2, with an average uptake of around 1.5 mmol m−2 day−1. The average monthly drawdowns of inorganic carbon and nitrogen were used to quantify the net community production (NCP) and new production. Seasonal NCP and new production were found to be 4.57 ± 0.85 mol C m−2 and 0.37 ± 0.14 mol N m−2, respectively. The C : N ratio was high (12) compared to the Redfield ratio (6.6), and the production calculated from carbon was higher than production calculated from nitrogen, which is indicative of carbon overconsumption. The export ratio and transfer efficiency were 16 and 4 %, respectively, and the site thereby showed high flux attenuation. Particle tracking was used to examine the source region of material in the sediment trap, and there was large variation in source regions, both between and within years. There were higher correlations between surface productivity and export flux when using the particle-tracking approach, than by comparing with the mean productivity in a 100 km box around the PAP site. However, the differences in correlation coefficients were not significant, and a longer time series is needed to draw conclusions on applying particle tracking in sediment trap analyses.
    Print ISSN: 1726-4170
    Electronic ISSN: 1726-4189
    Topics: Biology , Geosciences
    Published by Copernicus on behalf of European Geosciences Union (EGU).
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  • 3
    Publication Date: 2015-04-01
    Description: In this study we present hydrography, biogeochemistry and sediment trap observations between 2003 and 2012 at Porcupine Abyssal Plain (PAP) sustained observatory in the northeast Atlantic. The time series is valuable as it allows for investigation of the link between surface productivity and deep ocean carbon flux. The region is a perennial sink for CO2, with an average uptake of around 1.5 mmol m−2 d−1. The average monthly drawdowns of inorganic carbon and nitrogen were used to quantify the net community production (NCP) and new production, respectively. Seasonal NCP and new production were found to be 4.57 ± 0.27 mol C m−2 and 0.37 ± 0.14 mol N m−2. The Redfield ratio was high (12), and the production calculated from carbon was higher than production calculated from nitrogen, which is indicative of carbon overconsumption. The export ratio and transfer efficiency were 16 and 4%, respectively, and the site thereby showed high flux attenuation. Particle tracking was used to examine the source region of material in the sediment trap, and there was large variation in source regions, both between and within years. There were higher correlations between surface productivity and export flux when using the particle-tracking approach, than by comparing with the mean productivity in a 100 km box around the PAP site. However, the differences in correlation coefficients were not significant, and a longer time series is needed to draw conclusions on applying particle tracking in sediment trap analyses.
    Print ISSN: 1810-6277
    Electronic ISSN: 1810-6285
    Topics: Biology , Geosciences
    Published by Copernicus on behalf of European Geosciences Union (EGU).
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  • 4
    Publication Date: 2015-02-12
    Description: We present high-resolution autonomous measurements of carbon dioxide partial pressure p(CO2) taken in situ at the Porcupine Abyssal Plain sustained Observatory (PAP-SO) in the northeast Atlantic (49° N, 16.5° W; water depth of 4850 m) for the period 2010–2012. Measurements of p(CO2) made at 30 m depth on a sensor frame are compared with other autonomous biogeochemical measurements at that depth (including chlorophyll a fluorescence and nitrate concentration data) to analyse weekly to seasonal controls on p(CO2) flux in the inter-gyre region of the North Atlantic. Comparisons are also made with in situ regional time series data from a ship of opportunity and mixed layer depth (MLD) measurements from profiling Argo floats. There is a persistent under-saturation of CO2 in surface waters throughout the year which gives rise to a perennial CO2 sink. Comparison with an earlier data set collected at the site (2003–2005) confirms seasonal and inter-annual changes in surface seawater chemistry. There is year-to-year variability in the timing of deep winter mixing and the intensity of the spring bloom. The 2010–2012 period shows an overall increase in p(CO2) values when compared to the 2003–2005 period as would be expected from increases due to anthropogenic CO2 emissions. The surface temperature, wind speed and MLD measurements are similar for both periods of time. Future work should incorporate daily CO2 flux measurements made using CO2 sensors at 1 m depth and the in situ wind speed data now available from the UK Met Office Buoy.
    Print ISSN: 1726-4170
    Electronic ISSN: 1726-4189
    Topics: Biology , Geosciences
    Published by Copernicus on behalf of European Geosciences Union (EGU).
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  • 5
    Publication Date: 2014-08-19
    Description: We present high-resolution autonomous measurements of carbon dioxide partial pressure p(CO2) taken in situ at the Porcupine Abyssal Plain sustained observatory (PAP-SO) in the Northeast Atlantic (49° N, 16.5° W; water depth of 4850 m) for the period 2010 to 2012. Measurements of p(CO2) made at 30 m depth on a sensor frame are compared with other autonomous biogeochemical measurements at that depth (including chlorophyll a-fluorescence and nitrate concentration data) to analyse weekly to seasonal controls on p(CO2) flux in the inter-gyre region of the North Atlantic. Comparisons are also made with in situ regional time-series data from a ship of opportunity and mixed layer depth (MLD) measurements from profiling Argo floats. There is a persistent under saturation of CO2 in surface waters throughout the year which gives rise to a perennial CO2 sink. Comparison with an earlier dataset collected at the site (2003 to 2005) confirms seasonal and inter-annual changes in surface seawater chemistry. There is year-to-year variability in the timing of stratification and deep winter mixing. The 2010 to 2012 period shows an overall increase in p(CO2) values when compared to the 2003–2005 period. This is despite similar surface temperature, wind speed and MLD measurements between the two periods of time. Future work should incorporate daily CO2 flux measurements made using CO2 sensors at 1 m depth and the in situ wind speed data now available from the UK Met Office Buoy.
    Print ISSN: 1810-6277
    Electronic ISSN: 1810-6285
    Topics: Biology , Geosciences
    Published by Copernicus on behalf of European Geosciences Union (EGU).
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