Marine dissolved organic matter: can its C:N ratio explain carbon overconsumption?.

Kähler, Paul and Koeve, Wolfgang (2001) Marine dissolved organic matter: can its C:N ratio explain carbon overconsumption?. Deep Sea Research Part I: Oceanographic Research Papers, 48 (1). pp. 49-62. DOI 10.1016/S0967-0637(00)00034-0.

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Carbon overconsumption, i.e. the consumption of inorganic carbon relative to inorganic nitrogen in excess of the Redfield ratio at the sea surface, was examined in relation to the dynamics of dissolved organic carbon and nitrogen (DOC and DON) in the northeast Atlantic. We observed the presence of N-poor dissolved organic matter (DOM) in surface water during summer, requiring the consumption of inorganic carbon and nitrogen in a ratio exceeding the Redfield ratio. The C : N ratio of bulk DOM is not only different from the Redfield ratio but also variable, i.e. no fixed conversion factor of C and N exists where DOM is important in C and N transformations. The existence of N-poor DOM is recognized as a feature typical of oligotrophic systems. At the same time, the C : N ratios of particles conform to Redfield stoichiometry as does deep-ocean chemistry. The implications of this finding are discussed, the conclusion being that, while DOM buildup contributes to CO2 drawdown seasonally, its impact on long-term carbon and nitrogen balance of the ocean is small.

Document Type: Article
Keywords: Biogeochemistry; Dissolved organic carbon; Dissolved organic nitrogen; Redfield ratio; New production; Carbon cycle; Northeast Atlantic
Research affiliation: OceanRep > GEOMAR > FB2 Marine Biogeochemistry > FB2-BM Biogeochemical Modeling
Refereed: Yes
Open Access Journal?: No
DOI etc.: 10.1016/S0967-0637(00)00034-0
ISSN: 0967-0637
Date Deposited: 07 Feb 2012 10:25
Last Modified: 28 Oct 2016 08:05

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