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Article: Caribbean octocorals record changing carbon and nitrogen sources from 1862 to 2005

TitleCaribbean octocorals record changing carbon and nitrogen sources from 1862 to 2005
Authors
KeywordsΔ 13C
Δ 15N
Agriculture
Carbon
Caribbean
Coral
Gorgonian
Nitrogen
Stable Isotope
Issue Date2010
PublisherBlackwell Publishing Ltd. The Journal's web site is located at http://www.blackwellpublishing.com/journals/GCB
Citation
Global Change Biology, 2010, v. 16 n. 10, p. 2701-2710 How to Cite?
AbstractDuring the last century, the global biogeochemical cycles of carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) have been drastically altered by human activities. A century of land-clearing and biomass burning, followed by fossil fuel combustion have increased the concentration of atmospheric CO 2 by approximately 20%, and since the mid-1900s, the use of agricultural fertilizers has been the primary driver of an approximate 90% increase in bioavailable N. Geochemical records obtained through stable isotope analysis of terrestrial and marine biota effectively illustrate rising anthropogenic C inputs. However, there are fewer records of anthropogenic N, despite the enormous magnitude of change and the known negative effects of N on ecosystem health. We used stable isotope values from independent octocorals (gorgonians) sampled across the Western Atlantic over the last 143 years to document human perturbations of the marine C and N pools. Here, we demonstrate that in sea plumes δ 13C values and in both sea plumes and sea fans δ 15N values declined significantly from 1862 to 2005. Sea plume δ 13C values were negatively correlated with increasing atmospheric CO 2 concentrations and corroborate known rates of change resulting from global fossil fuel combustion, known as the Suess effect. We suggest that widespread input of agricultural fertilizers to near-shore coastal waters is the dominant driver for the decreasing δ 15N trend, though multiple anthropogenic sources are likely affecting this trend. Given the interest in using δ 15N as an indicator for N pollution in aquatic systems, we highlight the risk of underestimating contributions of pollutants as a result of source mixing as demonstrated by a simple isotope-mixing model. We conclude that signals of major human-induced perturbations of the C and N pools are detectable in specimens collected over wide geographic scales, and that archived materials are invaluable for establishing baselines against which we can assess environmental change. © 2010 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
Persistent Identifierhttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/180742
ISSN
2015 Impact Factor: 8.444
2015 SCImago Journal Rankings: 5.379
ISI Accession Number ID
References

 

DC FieldValueLanguage
dc.contributor.authorBaker, DMen_US
dc.contributor.authorWebster, KLen_US
dc.contributor.authorKim, Ken_US
dc.date.accessioned2013-01-28T01:42:10Z-
dc.date.available2013-01-28T01:42:10Z-
dc.date.issued2010en_US
dc.identifier.citationGlobal Change Biology, 2010, v. 16 n. 10, p. 2701-2710en_US
dc.identifier.issn1354-1013en_US
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/180742-
dc.description.abstractDuring the last century, the global biogeochemical cycles of carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) have been drastically altered by human activities. A century of land-clearing and biomass burning, followed by fossil fuel combustion have increased the concentration of atmospheric CO 2 by approximately 20%, and since the mid-1900s, the use of agricultural fertilizers has been the primary driver of an approximate 90% increase in bioavailable N. Geochemical records obtained through stable isotope analysis of terrestrial and marine biota effectively illustrate rising anthropogenic C inputs. However, there are fewer records of anthropogenic N, despite the enormous magnitude of change and the known negative effects of N on ecosystem health. We used stable isotope values from independent octocorals (gorgonians) sampled across the Western Atlantic over the last 143 years to document human perturbations of the marine C and N pools. Here, we demonstrate that in sea plumes δ 13C values and in both sea plumes and sea fans δ 15N values declined significantly from 1862 to 2005. Sea plume δ 13C values were negatively correlated with increasing atmospheric CO 2 concentrations and corroborate known rates of change resulting from global fossil fuel combustion, known as the Suess effect. We suggest that widespread input of agricultural fertilizers to near-shore coastal waters is the dominant driver for the decreasing δ 15N trend, though multiple anthropogenic sources are likely affecting this trend. Given the interest in using δ 15N as an indicator for N pollution in aquatic systems, we highlight the risk of underestimating contributions of pollutants as a result of source mixing as demonstrated by a simple isotope-mixing model. We conclude that signals of major human-induced perturbations of the C and N pools are detectable in specimens collected over wide geographic scales, and that archived materials are invaluable for establishing baselines against which we can assess environmental change. © 2010 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.en_US
dc.languageengen_US
dc.publisherBlackwell Publishing Ltd. The Journal's web site is located at http://www.blackwellpublishing.com/journals/GCBen_US
dc.relation.ispartofGlobal Change Biologyen_US
dc.subjectΔ 13Cen_US
dc.subjectΔ 15Nen_US
dc.subjectAgricultureen_US
dc.subjectCarbonen_US
dc.subjectCaribbeanen_US
dc.subjectCoralen_US
dc.subjectGorgonianen_US
dc.subjectNitrogenen_US
dc.subjectStable Isotopeen_US
dc.titleCaribbean octocorals record changing carbon and nitrogen sources from 1862 to 2005en_US
dc.typeArticleen_US
dc.identifier.emailBaker, DM: dmbaker@hku.hken_US
dc.identifier.authorityBaker, DM=rp01712en_US
dc.description.naturelink_to_subscribed_fulltexten_US
dc.identifier.doi10.1111/j.1365-2486.2010.02167.xen_US
dc.identifier.scopuseid_2-s2.0-77956232547en_US
dc.relation.referenceshttp://www.scopus.com/mlt/select.url?eid=2-s2.0-77956232547&selection=ref&src=s&origin=recordpageen_US
dc.identifier.volume16en_US
dc.identifier.issue10en_US
dc.identifier.spage2701en_US
dc.identifier.epage2710en_US
dc.identifier.isiWOS:000281676700006-
dc.publisher.placeUnited Kingdomen_US
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridBaker, DM=55449577100en_US
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridWebster, KL=36669482100en_US
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridKim, K=8080143000en_US

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