Iron deficiency limits phytoplankton growth in Antarctic waters

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Martin, J. H., Fitzwater, S. E., & Gordon, R. M. (1990). Iron deficiency limits phytoplankton growth in Antarctic waters. Global Biogeochemical Cycles, 4(1), 5-12.
TitleIron deficiency limits phytoplankton growth in Antarctic waters
AuthorsH. Martin, E. Fitzwater, M. Gordon
AbstractEnrichment experiments were performed in the Ross Sea to test the hypothesis that iron deficiency is responsible for the phytoplankton's failure to use up the luxuriant major nutrient supplies found in these and all other offshore Antarctic ocean waters. The results suggest that Fe deficiency is the primary reason that the present-day southern ocean biological pump is shut off. In contrast, iron was 50 times more abundant during the last glacial maximum; greater Fe availability may have stimulated the biological pump and contributed to the ice age drawdown of atmospheric CO 2. These results also imply that large-scale southern ocean Fe fertilization is feasible, at least in terms of the total amounts of Fe required; i.e., 100 000 to 500 000 tons yr -1.
JournalGlobal Biogeochemical Cycles
Start page5
End page12
SubjectsAntarctic water, biological pump, enrichment experiment, fertilization, iron deficiency, nitrate, phytoplankton, phytoplankton growth, phytoplankton growth limitation, Antarctica, Ross Sea
NoteCited By (since 1996):277, Downloaded from: (9 June 2014).