WP 2 - Past variability of ocean chemistry (paleo-reconstruction)
What do we do? - Science


WP 2 leader: Harry Elderfield    he101 (at) esc.cam.ac.uk   UCAM




  • Determine oceanic carbonate chemistry evolution over a range of time scales in systems of natural variability (Glacial to Interglacial, Holocene) and in human perturbed systems (industrial era)
  • Integrate proxy records with present day observations (link to WP3)
  • Improve understanding of proxy incorporation during calcification (link to WP4)
  • Evaluate the response of calcifying organisms to past changes in ocean acidification
  • Assess the role of carbonate dissolution in the natural carbonate chemistry of the ocean
  • Advance the parameterization of climate and biogeochemical processes affected by ocean acidification in model predictions (link to WP10, WP12)



Description of work and role of participants:

WP2 focuses on changes in chemistry on different scales of space and time. We will determine past variability (industrial era, recent Holocene, Glacial to Interglacial and Cretaceous/Paleogene boundary) linked to WP3 (present day observations) and WP10 (future changes). The existing proxy relationships will be improved and new proxies will be developed, collaborating closely with WPs 3, 4, 5, 7.

T2.1: Analyses of foraminifera and coccoliths (geochemistry, isotopes, morphometry): from marine sediment cores for paleo reconstruction (UCAM, UiB, VU, CEREGE, AWI, UNIVBRIS)

T2.2: Analyses of foraminifera and coccoliths from core-tops, sediment traps and water column samples for integration of proxy and present day records (UCAM, UiB, VU, CEREGE, AWI, UNIVBRIS)

T2.3: Analyses of cold water corals: field calibration and geochemistry (CEA)

T2.4: Determination of the dissolution kinetics of biogenic carbonates (ULB)

T2.5: Model simulation (including a sediment module) of Glacial to Interglacial rain ratio and carbonate compensation response (UiB, UBern, UNIVBRIS)

T2.6: Model simulation of Cretaceous/Paleogene acidification event (ZMT, NERC, UNIVBRIS).


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