A New Look at Preindustrial Carbon Release from the Deep Ocean

Aug. 22, 2022

New research could help inform future studies of how the release of carbon dioxide from the Southern Ocean might affect global climate change.

In the Southern Ocean near Antarctica, deep-ocean water upwells to the surface, where it releases carbon dioxide that entered the ocean prior to the Industrial Revolution. This process is a key component of the global carbon cycle, and recent research has suggested that it returns more carbon dioxide to the atmosphere than previously thought.

A new study by Chen et al. explores exactly where in the Southern Ocean carbon dioxide is released into the atmosphere, where this carbon comes from, and how various factors combine to drive these processes. Former AOS Postdoc Haidi Chen led the study with AOS Associate Research Scholar Alex Haumann and Jorge Sarmiento, Princeton’s George J. Magee Professor of Geoscience and Geological Engineering, Emeritus, among the study's co-authors.

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