The formation of the ocean’s anthropogenic carbon reservoir

Iudicone, Daniele; Rodgers, Keith B.; Plancherel, Yves; Aumont, Olivier; Ito, Takamitsu; Key, Robert M.; Madec, Gurvan; Ishii, Masao. 2016 The formation of the ocean’s anthropogenic carbon reservoir. Scientific Reports, 6. 35473.

Before downloading, please read NORA policies.
srep35473.pdf - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution 4.0.

Download (913kB) | Preview


The shallow overturning circulation of the oceans transports heat from the tropics to the mid-latitudes. This overturning also influences the uptake and storage of anthropogenic carbon (Cant). We demonstrate this by quantifying the relative importance of ocean thermodynamics, circulation and biogeochemistry in a global biochemistry and circulation model. Almost 2/3 of the Cant ocean uptake enters via gas exchange in waters that are lighter than the base of the ventilated thermocline. However, almost 2/3 of the excess Cant is stored below the thermocline. Our analysis shows that subtropical waters are a dominant component in the formation of subpolar waters and that these water masses essentially form a common Cant reservoir. This new method developed and presented here is intrinsically Lagrangian, as it by construction only considers the velocity or transport of waters across isopycnals. More generally, our approach provides an integral framework for linking ocean thermodynamics with biogeochemistry.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI):
ISSN: 2045-2322
Date made live: 24 Nov 2016 12:03 +0 (UTC)

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item

Document Downloads

Downloads for past 30 days

Downloads per month over past year

More statistics for this item...