Control of community growth and export production by upwelled iron in the equatorial Pacific Ocean

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Coale, K. H., Fitzwater, S. E., Gordon, R. M., Johnson, K. S., & Barber, R. T. (1996). Control of community growth and export production by upwelled iron in the equatorial Pacific Ocean. Nature, 379(6566), 621-624. doi:10.1038/379621a0
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TitleControl of community growth and export production by upwelled iron in the equatorial Pacific Ocean
AuthorsH. Coale, E. Fitzwater, M. Gordon, S. Johnson, T. Barber
AbstractThe iron hypothesis states that phytoplankton growth and biomass are limited by low concentrations of available iron in large regions of the world's oceans where other plant nutrients are abundant. Such limitation has been demonstrated by experiments in which iron has been added to both enclosed and in situ (un-enclosed) phytoplankton populations. A corollary of the iron hypothesis is that most 'new' iron is supplied by atmospheric deposition, and it has been suggested that changes in the deposition rates of iron-bearing dust have led to changes in biological productivity and, consequently, global climate. Here we report surface-water measurements in the equatorial Pacific Ocean which show that the main iron source to equatorial waters at 140°W is from upwelling waters. Shipboard in vitro experiments indicate that sub-nanomolar increases in iron concentrations can cause substantial increases in carbon export to deeper waters in this region. These findings demonstrate that equatorial biological production is controlled not solely by atmospheric iron deposition, but also by processes which influence the rate of upwelling and the iron concentration in upwelled water.
JournalNature
Date1996
Volume379
Issue6566
Start page621
End page624
ISSN00280836
Subjectscarbon, iron, article, atmosphere, biomass, controlled study, global climate, nonhuman, nutrient, pacific ocean, phytoplankton, priority journal, productivity, biological production, nutrient availability, production, upwelling, Pacific, (Equatorial)
NoteCited By (since 1996):221 Seaweeds, CODEN: NATUA

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