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Temperature dependence of CO2-enhanced primary production in the European Arctic Ocean

Research Square

Research Square

  • First Author :
    J. M. Holding
  • Co-authors :
    C. M. Duarte, M. Sanz-Martín, E. Mesa, J. M. Arrieta, M. Chierici, I. E. Hendriks, L. S. García-Corral, A. Regaudie-de-Gioux, A. Delgado, M. Reigstad, P. Wassmann & S. Agustí
  • Journal Name :
    Nature Climate Change
  • Read Full text :
  • DOI :

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The Arctic Ocean is warming at two to three times the global rate and is perceived to be a bellwether for ocean acidification. Increased CO2 concentrations are expected to have a fertilization effect on marine autotrophs, and higher temperatures should lead to increased rates of planktonic primary production. Yet, simultaneous assessment of warming and increased CO2 on primary production in the Arctic has not been conducted. Here we test the expectation that CO2-enhanced gross primary production (GPP) may be temperature dependent, using data from several oceanographic cruises and experiments from both spring and summer in the European sector of the Arctic Ocean. Results confirm that CO2 enhances GPP (by a factor of up to ten) over a range of 145–2,099 μatm; however, the greatest effects are observed only at lower temperatures and are constrained by nutrient and light availability to the spring period. The temperature dependence of CO2-enhanced primary production has significant implications for metabolic balance in a warmer, CO2-enriched Arctic Ocean in the future. In particular, it indicates that a twofold increase in primary production during the spring is likely in the Arctic.

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