Consequences of global warming. The ocean around the Akademik Vernadsky station is “greening”
December 8, 21:30 Share:
Melting glaciers are increasing the amount of chlorophyll in the Southern Ocean (Photo: pexels)
Ukrainian scientists working at the Akademik Vernadsky station in Antarctica discovered an unusual increase in chlorophyll content in the ocean near Galindez Island.
According to observation data in November 2023, the level of chlorophyll in water increased by 2.5-3 times compared to the previous year. Station staff reported this on the National Antarctic Science Center Facebook page.
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Researchers suggest that this phenomenon is associated with global warming, which leads to an increase in the area of open water due to a sharp decrease in sea ice in Antarctica. In November 2022, water temperatures at monitoring points ranged from -1.1 to -0.7°C, while in November 2023 they rose to between 0.3 and 0.9°C.
This increase in light output and temperature increase promotes active photosynthesis by plants, including phytoplankton, a major component of the ocean food chain.. An increase in chlorophyll content indicates intensive development of phytoplankton, such as microscopic and nanoalgae.
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Phytoplankton are a key source of nutrition for a variety of marine organisms, from krill to whales, and their increased abundance can trigger cascading processes affecting marine ecosystems. In addition, changes in light conditions contribute to changes in the characteristics of microalgae, affecting the size and structure of their cells.
Scientists are conducting systematic studies of phytoplankton by taking water samples around Galindez Island.
The results of the study will allow scientists to understand the impact of climate change on the composition of phytoplankton and its interaction with other organisms in the marine environment. Earlier, within the framework of COP28, Ukrainian researchers spoke about climate anomalies in Antarctica, including temperature and ice records.