Oceans account for 50% of the anthropogenic CO2 released into the atmosphere. During the past 15 years an international programme, the Joint Global Ocean Flux Study (JGOFS), has been studying the ocean carbon cycle to quantify and model the biological and physical processes whereby CO2 is pumped from the ocean's surface to the depths of the ocean, where it can remain for hundreds of years. This project is one of the largest multi-disciplinary studies of the oceans ever carried out and this book synthesises the results. It covers all aspects of the topic ranging from air-sea exchange with CO2, the role of physical mixing, the uptake of CO2 by marine algae, the fluxes of carbon and nitrogen through the marine food chain to the subsequent export of carbon to the depths of the ocean. Special emphasis is laid on predicting future climatic change.
Overall representation of the role of the ocean in the global carbon cycle