[Coral-List] New Paper on the Monitoring the Biogeochemistry of Coral Reefs

Thomas DeCarlo thomas.decarlo at uwa.edu.au
Fri Jan 12 18:07:13 EST 2018

Dear Tyler,

Thank you for this interesting work. Nicely done. It would also be interesting to compare to the rather extreme NEC (and large TA/DIC changes) that we have reported on Dongsha Atoll:


On Jan 12, 2018, at 22:20, Tyler Cyronak <tcyronak at gmail.com<mailto:tcyronak at gmail.com>> wrote:

Hello Coral Listers,

I just wanted to bring your attention to our recent publication in PLOS ONE highlighting the potential of using dissolved inorganic carbon and total alkalinity measurements to monitor the metabolic pulse of coral reefs.




Worldwide, coral reef ecosystems are experiencing increasing pressure from a variety of anthropogenic perturbations including ocean warming and acidification, increased sedimentation, eutrophication, and overfishing, which could shift reefs to a condition of net calcium carbonate (CaCO_3 ) dissolution and erosion. Herein, we determine the net calcification potential and the relative balance of net organic carbon metabolism (net community production; NCP) and net inorganic carbon metabolism (net community calcification; NCC) within 23 coral reef locations across the globe. In light of these results, we consider the suitability of using these two metrics developed from total alkalinity (TA) and dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) measurements collected on different spatiotemporal scales to monitor coral reef biogeochemistry under anthropogenic change. All reefs in this study were net calcifying for the majority of observations as inferred from alkalinity depletion relative to offs
hore, although occasional observations of net dissolution occurred at most locations. However, reefs with lower net calcification potential (i.e., lower TA depletion) could shift towards net dissolution sooner than reefs with a higher potential. The percent influence of organic carbon fluxes on total changes in dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) (i.e., NCP compared to the sum of NCP and NCC) ranged from 32% to 88% and reflected inherent biogeochemical differences between reefs. Reefs with the largest relative percentage of NCP experienced the largest variability in seawater pH for a given change in DIC, which is directly related to the reefs ability to elevate or suppress local pH relative to the open  ocean. This work highlights the value of measuring coral reef carbonate chemistry when evaluating their susceptibility to ongoing global environmental change and offers a baseline from which to guide future conservation efforts aimed at preserving these valuable ecosystems.

Coral-List mailing list
Coral-List at coral.aoml.noaa.gov<mailto:Coral-List at coral.aoml.noaa.gov>

More information about the Coral-List mailing list