Impacts of climate change on nutrient enrichment
Suzanne Painting, Jo Foden, Rodney Forster, Johan van der Molen, John Aldridge, Mike Best, Peter Jonas, David Hydes, Pamela Walsham, Lynda Webster, Matthew Gubbins, Mike Heath, Evin McGovern, Claire Vincent, Richard Gowen and Shane O’Boyle
Painting, S., J. Foden, R. Forster, J. van der Molen, J. Aldridge ,M. Best, P. Jonas, P. Walsham, L. Webster, M. Gubbins, et al.(2013) Impacts of climate change on nutrient enrichment, MCCIP Science Review 2013, 219-235, doi:10.14465/2013.arc23.219-235
Download full report:
Nutrient enrichment has been identified as one of the major threats to coastal and marine ecosystems, because of potential risks of eutrophication and impacts such as oxygen depletion and blooms of nuisance macro-algae. Demonstrating causal links between disturbances and nutrient enrichment is challenging, and complicated by other pressures. Climate change, for example, may have similar effects on biological communities and biogeochemical cycling of nutrients and oxygen. In the UK, sources and cycling of nutrients are reasonably well understood, but ongoing research is aimed at improving this understanding, and validating and developing models to predict future impacts of climate change. Impacts of climate change on nutrient enrichment and eutrophication are likely to be complex, and a holistic ecosystem-based approach taking account of multiple anthropogenic pressures is required in order to improve our understanding of the cycling of nutrients in the water column and the coupling between water column and seabed processes. Such an approach requires ongoing research and monitoring, and the use of simulation models for examining fluxes and inter-annual variability in these fluxes. Studies to date have shown that improvements are needed in field measurements and models, and on boundary conditions used in these models.