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Role of coral reefs in global ocean production

Journal Article:

Abstract

Coral reefs cover some 600 thousand square kilometres of the earth's surface (0.17% of the ocean surface). First order estimates show coral reefs to contribute about 0.05% of the estimated net CO{sub 2} fixation rate of the global oceans. Gross CO{sub 2} fixation is relatively high (of the order 700 x 10{sup 12}g C year{sup -1}), but most of this material is recycled within the reefs. Excess (net) production of organic material (E) is much smaller, of the order 20 x 10{sup 12}g C year{sup -1}. 75% of E is available for export from coral reefs to adjacent areas. Comparison of estimates for net production by reefs and their surrounding oceans indicates that the excess production by coral reefs is similar to new production in the photic zone of oligotrophic oceans. Consequently, estimates for global ocean production should as a first approximation include reefal areas with the surrounding ocean when assigning average net production rates. It can be concluded that organic production by reefs plays a relatively minor role in the global scale of fluxes and storage of elements. In comparison, the companion process of biologically-mediated inorganic carbon precipitation represents a major role for reefs. While reef production does respond  More>>
Authors:
Crossland, C J; Hatcher, B G; Smith, S V [1] 
  1. CSIRO Institute of Natural Resources and Environment, Dickson, ACT (Australia)
Publication Date:
Jan 01, 1991
Product Type:
Journal Article
Reference Number:
CLA-92-030280; EDB-92-035667
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Coral Reefs; (Germany); Journal Volume: 10:2
Subject:
54 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES; CORALS; CARBON DIOXIDE FIXATION; PRODUCTION; CARBON SINKS; GLOBAL ASPECTS; GREENHOUSE EFFECT; ORGANIC MATTER; REEFS; SEAS; ANIMALS; CLIMATIC CHANGE; CNIDARIA; COELENTERATA; GEOLOGIC STRUCTURES; INVERTEBRATES; MATTER; SINKS; SURFACE WATERS; 540320* - Environment, Aquatic- Chemicals Monitoring & Transport- (1990-)
OSTI ID:
6030562
Country of Origin:
Germany
Language:
English
Other Identifying Numbers:
Journal ID: ISSN 0722-4028; CODEN: CORFD
Submitting Site:
CLA
Size:
Pages: 55-64
Announcement Date:

Journal Article:

Citation Formats

Crossland, C J, Hatcher, B G, and Smith, S V. Role of coral reefs in global ocean production. Germany: N. p., 1991. Web. doi:10.1007/BF00571824.
Crossland, C J, Hatcher, B G, & Smith, S V. Role of coral reefs in global ocean production. Germany. doi:10.1007/BF00571824.
Crossland, C J, Hatcher, B G, and Smith, S V. 1991. "Role of coral reefs in global ocean production." Germany. doi:10.1007/BF00571824. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/10.1007/BF00571824.
@misc{etde_6030562,
title = {Role of coral reefs in global ocean production}
author = {Crossland, C J, Hatcher, B G, and Smith, S V}
abstractNote = {Coral reefs cover some 600 thousand square kilometres of the earth's surface (0.17% of the ocean surface). First order estimates show coral reefs to contribute about 0.05% of the estimated net CO{sub 2} fixation rate of the global oceans. Gross CO{sub 2} fixation is relatively high (of the order 700 x 10{sup 12}g C year{sup -1}), but most of this material is recycled within the reefs. Excess (net) production of organic material (E) is much smaller, of the order 20 x 10{sup 12}g C year{sup -1}. 75% of E is available for export from coral reefs to adjacent areas. Comparison of estimates for net production by reefs and their surrounding oceans indicates that the excess production by coral reefs is similar to new production in the photic zone of oligotrophic oceans. Consequently, estimates for global ocean production should as a first approximation include reefal areas with the surrounding ocean when assigning average net production rates. It can be concluded that organic production by reefs plays a relatively minor role in the global scale of fluxes and storage of elements. In comparison, the companion process of biologically-mediated inorganic carbon precipitation represents a major role for reefs. While reef production does respond on local scales to variation in ocean climate, neither the absolute rates nor the amount accumulated into organic pools appear to be either sensitive indicators or accurate recorders of climatic change in most reef systems. Similarly, the productivity of most reefs should be little affected by currently predicted environmental changes resulting from the greenhouse effect. 86 refs., 2 figs., 1 tab.}
doi = {10.1007/BF00571824}
journal = {Coral Reefs; (Germany)}
volume = {10:2}
journal type = {AC}
place = {Germany}
year = {1991}
month = {Jan}
}