Trends and drivers in global surface ocean pH over the past 3 decades

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Author(s) Lauvset, Siv K., Gruber, Nicolas, Landschützer, Peter, Olsen, Are, Tjiputra, Jerry F.
Publication Type Journal Items, Publication Status: Published
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Title Trends and drivers in global surface ocean pH over the past 3 decades
Author(s) Lauvset, Siv K.
Gruber, Nicolas
Landschützer, Peter
Olsen, Are
Tjiputra, Jerry F.
Journal or Series Title Biogeosciences
Volume Number 12
Issue Number 5
Start Page 1285
End Page 1298
ISSN 1726-4170
Publisher Copernicus
Publication Place Göttingen
Publication Date 2015-03
Abstract We report global long-term trends in surface ocean pH using a new pH data set computed by combining fCO2 observations from the Surface Ocean CO2 Atlas (SOCAT) version 2 with surface alkalinity estimates based on temperature and salinity. Trends were determined over the periods 1981–2011 and 1991–2011 for a set of 17 biomes using a weighted linear least squares method. We observe significant decreases in surface ocean pH in ~70% of all biomes and a mean rate of decrease of 0.0018 ± 0.0004 yr−1 for 1991–2011. We are not able to calculate a global trend for 1981–2011 because too few biomes have enough data for this. In half the biomes, the rate of change is commensurate with the trends expected based on the assumption that the surface ocean pH change is only driven by the surface ocean CO2 chemistry remaining in a transient equilibrium with the increase in atmospheric CO2. In the remaining biomes, deviations from such equilibrium may reflect that the trend of surface ocean fCO2 is not equal to that of the atmosphere, most notably in the equatorial Pacific Ocean, or may reflect changes in the oceanic buffer (Revelle) factor. We conclude that well-planned and long-term sustained observational networks are key to reliably document the ongoing and future changes in ocean carbon chemistry due to anthropogenic forcing.
DOI 10.5194/bg-12-1285-2015
Additional Notes Received 5 October 2014, Revised 4 February 2015, Accepted 10 February 2015, Published 2 March 2015
Document Type Article
Publication Status Published
Language English
Assigned Organisational Unit(s) 03731
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NEBIS System Number 006289717
Source Database ID SCOPUS-84924047135
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  author = "Lauvset, Siv K. and Gruber, Nicolas and Landsch{\"{u}}tzer, Peter and Olsen, Are and Tjiputra, Jerry F.",
  title = "{T}rends and drivers in global surface ocean p{H} over the past 3 decades",
  journal = "Biogeosciences",
  year = 2015,
  volume = "12",
  number = "5",
  pages = "1285--1298",
  month = mar,

E-Citations record created: Tue, 17 Mar 2015, 14:06:09 CET