Articles | Volume 14, issue 1
Biogeosciences, 14, 177–186, 2017
https://doi.org/10.5194/bg-14-177-2017
Biogeosciences, 14, 177–186, 2017
https://doi.org/10.5194/bg-14-177-2017

Research article 12 Jan 2017

Research article | 12 Jan 2017

Role of zooplankton in determining the efficiency of the biological carbon pump

Emma L. Cavan et al.

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The biological carbon pump (BCP) plays a key role in regulating atmospheric CO2. Controls on the efficiency at which this occurs are poorly known. Here we combine in situ observations with an ecosystem model to show that zooplankton have an important role in regulating the efficiency of the BCP. Predicted future changes in ocean conditions, such as expansion of oxygen minimum zones, may decrease the role of zooplankton in the BCP globally, increasing its efficiency and altering atmospheric CO2.
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