Land-ocean interactions

The connection of the terrestrial and oceanic systems through fluxes of carbon and nutrients is acknowledged to be of high importance for global carbon cycles (Regnier et al., 2013). However, the land-ocean interface is often underrepresented or even neglected in global climate models. Rivers are important sources of nutrients and carbon to the coastal ocean, where these undergo transformations and can also be transported further offshore. The land-ocean flux has implications for the calculation of regional and global carbon budgets, as neglecting export and respiration of carbon in rivers and the coastal ocean lead to overestimation of land sinks. The coastal ocean primary production could be enhanced due to the added nutrients from land which limit phytoplankton growth, whereas there might also be increased CO2 outgassing in the case of large DIC fluxes from land to the ocean.

We are in the process of implementing the natural dynamic land-ocean fluxes of phosphate, nitrate, silicate, alkalinity and DIC into HAMOCC and evaluating their effects on the ocean biogeochemistry at a regional and global scale. Thereby a weathering module is considered to calculate the carbon and nutrient fluxes in the most important catchment areas of our Earth System model MPI-ESM.

Contact: Fabrice Lacroix

Project: Opens external link in current windowC-CASCADES



Regnier, P., et al. (2013): Anthropogenic perturbation of the carbon fluxes from land to ocean, Nature Geoscience 6, 597–607.