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Comparative biogeochemistry-ecosystem-human interactions on dynamic continental margins

May 12, 2014

The ocean’s continental margins face strong and rapid change, forced by a combination of direct human activity, anthropogenic CO2-induced climate change, and natural variability. Stimulated by discussions in Goa, India at the IMBER IMBIZO III, we (1) provide an overview of the drivers of biogeochemical variation and change on margins, (2) compare temporal trends in hydrographic and biogeochemical data across different margins (3) review ecosystem responses to these changes, (4) highlight the importance of margin time series for detecting and attributing change and (5) examine societal responses to changing margin biogeochemistry and ecosystems. We synthesize information over a wide range of margin settings in order to identify the commonalities and distinctions among continental margin ecosystems. Key drivers of biogeochemical variation include long-term climate cycles, CO2-induced warming, acidification, and deoxygenation, as well as sea level rise, eutrophication, hydrologic and water cycle alteration, changing land use, fishing, and species invasion. Ecosystem responses are complex and impact major margin services including primary production, fisheries production, nutrient cycling, shoreline protection, chemical buffering, and biodiversity. Despite regional differences, the societal consequences of these changes are unarguably large and mandate coherent actions to reduce, mitigate and adapt to multiple stressors on continental margins.

Publication Year 2014
Title Comparative biogeochemistry-ecosystem-human interactions on dynamic continental margins
DOI 10.1016/j.jmarsys.2014.04.016
Authors Lisa A. Levin, Kon-Kee Liu, Kay-Christian Emeis, Denise L. Breitburg, James Cloern, Curtis Deutsch, Michele Giani, Anne Goffart, Eileen E. Hofmann, Zouhair Lachkar, Karin Limburg, Su-Mei Liu, Enrique Montes, Wajih Naqvi, Olivier Ragueneau, Christophe Rabouille, Santosh Kumar Sarkar, Dennis P. Swaney, Paul Wassman, Karen F. Wishner
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Journal of Marine Systems
Index ID 70104181
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization National Research Program - Western Branch