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Biogeosciences An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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https://doi.org/10.5194/bg-2020-270
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/bg-2020-270
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

  23 Jul 2020

23 Jul 2020

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This preprint is currently under review for the journal BG.

Ideas and perspectives: A strategic assessment of methane and nitrous oxide measurements in the marine environment

Samuel T. Wilson1, Alia N. Al-Haj2, Annie Bourbonnais3, Claudia Frey4, Robinson W. Fulweiler2,5, John D. Kessler6, Hannah K. Marchant7, Jana Milucka7, Nicholas E. Ray5, Parv Suntharalingham8, Brett F. Thornton9, Robert C. Upstill-Goddard10, Thomas S. Weber6, Damian L. Arévalo-Martínez11, Hermann W. Bange11, Heather M. Benway12, Daniele Bianchi13, Alberto V. Borges14, Bonnie X. Chang15, Patrick M. Crill9, Daniela A. del Valle16, Laura Farías17, Samantha B. Joye18, Annette Kock11, Jabrane Labidi19, Cara C. Manning20,a, John W. Pohlman21, Gregor Rehder22, Katy J. Sparrow23, Philippe D. Tortell20, Tina Treude13,19, David L. Valentine24, Bess B. Ward25, Simon Yang13, and Leonid N. Yurganov26 Samuel T. Wilson et al.
  • 1University of Hawai’i at Manoa, Daniel K. Inouye Center for Microbial Oceanography: Research and Education (C-MORE), Hawai’i, USA
  • 2Boston University, Department of Earth and Environment, Massachusetts, USA
  • 3University of South Carolina, School of the Earth, Ocean and Environment, South Carolina, USA
  • 4University of Basel, Department of Environmental Science, Basel, Switzerland
  • 5Boston University, Department of Biology, Massachusetts, USA
  • 6University of Rochester, Department of Earth and Environmental Science, New York, USA
  • 7Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology, Department of Biogeochemistry, Bremen, Germany
  • 8University of East Anglia, School of Environmental Sciences, Norwich, UK
  • 9Stockholm University, Department of Geological Sciences and Bolin Centre for Climate Research, Stockholm, Sweden
  • 10Newcastle University, School of Natural and Environmental Sciences, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK
  • 11GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel, Düsternbrooker Weg 20, 24105 Kiel, Germany
  • 12Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, Marine Chemistry and Geochemistry, Massachusetts, USA
  • 13University of California Los Angeles, Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, California, USA
  • 14University of Liège, Chemical Oceanography Unit, Liège, Belgium
  • 15University of Washington, Joint Institute for the Study of the Atmosphere and Ocean, Seattle, USA
  • 16University of Southern Mississippi, Division of Marine Science, Mississippi, USA
  • 17University of Concepción, Department of Oceanography and Center for Climate Research and Resilience (CR2), Concepción, Chile
  • 18University of Georgia, Department of Marine Sciences, Georgia, USA
  • 19University of California, Los Angeles, Department of Earth, Planetary, and Space Sciences, Los Angeles, California, USA
  • 20University of British Columbia, Department of Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences, British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada
  • 21U.S. Geological Survey, Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center, Woods Hole, USA
  • 22Leibniz Institute for Baltic Sea Research Warnemünde, Rostock, Germany
  • 23Florida State University, Department of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Science, Florida, USA
  • 24University of California Santa Barbara, Department of Earth Science, California, USA
  • 25Princeton University, Geoscience Department, New Jersey, USA
  • 26University of Maryland Baltimore County, Baltimore, USA
  • acurrent address: Plymouth Marine Laboratory, Plymouth, UK

Abstract. In the current era of rapid climate change, accurate characterization of climate-relevant gas dynamics – namely production, consumption and net emissions – is required for all biomes, especially those ecosystems most susceptible to the impact of change. Marine environments include regions that act as net sources or sinks for a number of climate-active trace gases including methane (CH4) and nitrous oxide (N2O). The temporal and spatial distributions of CH4 and N2O are controlled by the interaction of complex biogeochemical and physical processes. To evaluate and quantify the importance of these mechanisms relevant to marine CH4 and N2O cycling requires a combination of traditional scientific disciplines including oceanography, microbiology, and numerical modeling. Fundamental to all of these efforts is ensuring that the datasets produced by independent scientists around the world are comparable and interoperable. Equally critical is transparent communication within the research community about the technical improvements required to increase our collective understanding of marine CH4 and N2O. An Ocean Carbon & Biogeochemistry (OCB) sponsored workshop was organized to enhance dialogue and collaborations pertaining to marine CH4 and N2O. Here, we summarize the outcomes from the workshop to describe the challenges and opportunities for near-future CH4 and N2O research in the marine environment.

Samuel T. Wilson et al.

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Short summary
Accurate characterization of climate-relevant gas dynamics is required for all biomes, especially those ecosystems most susceptible to the impact of change. Marine environments include regions that act as net sources or sinks for a number of climate-active trace gases including methane and nitrous oxide. This paper describes the challenges and opportunities for near-future marine methane and nitrous oxide research as discussed in a recent Ocean Carbon & Biogeochemistry sponsored workshop.
Accurate characterization of climate-relevant gas dynamics is required for all biomes,...
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