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News and media
Three surveys conducted over the past year to gather data for the project
In the first year of the CE2COAST project, Irish partner NUI Galway (NUIG) has participated in three surveys to gather data for the project, under shiptime grants from the Irish Marine Institute. The first survey took place in August and September 2020 in the Norwegian Sea, in collaboration with scientists investigating past climate change in the Arctic region (PI Dr Audrey Morley, https://www.morpalaeolab.com/), the second survey was carried out in March 2021 as part of the Irish Marine Institute’s annual climate survey on the Irish Shelf & Rockall Trough (PI Dr. Caroline Cusack, https://www.marine.ie/Home/site-area/news-events/press-releases/annual-health-check-atlantic-ocean-climate-survey), and the third survey was completed just last week (early July 2021) in the Celtic Sea as part of a survey targeting Harmful Algal Bloom species (PI Dr. Robin Raine). These surveys collected hydrographic data from CTDs, surface underway data for temperature, salinity and pCO2, and full ocean depth water samples for ocean acidification, nutrients, oxygen and in the case of the Celtic Sea survey, also included organic carbon and phytoplankton samples. The Celtic sea survey also carried out a test of the new HABScope system in Irish waters, as part of a pilot study with NOAA. On the map, the blue dots are Stations where CTD data and water samples were collected.
New paper on best practices in downscaling ocean projections for living marine resource models emerging from an International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES) and North Pacific Marine Science Organization (PICES) workshop
Efforts to manage living marine resources (LMRs) under climate change need projections of future ocean conditions, yet most global climate models (GCMs) poorly represent critical coastal habitats. GCM utility for LMR applications will increase with higher spatial resolution but obstacles including computational and data storage costs, obstinate regional biases, and formulations prioritizing global robustness over regional skill will persist. Downscaling can help address GCM limitations, but significant improvements are needed to robustly support LMR science and management. We synthesize past ocean downscaling efforts to suggest a protocol to achieve this goal. The protocol emphasizes LMR-driven design to ensure delivery of decision-relevant information. It prioritizes ensembles of downscaled projections spanning the range of ocean futures with durations long enough to capture climate change signals. This demands judicious resolution refinement, with pragmatic consideration for LMR-essential ocean features superseding theoretical investigation. Statistical downscaling can complement dynamical approaches in building these ensembles. Inconsistent use of bias correction indicates a need for objective best practices. Application of the suggested protocol should yield regional ocean projections that, with effective dissemination and translation to decision-relevant analytics, can robustly support LMR science and management under climate change.
First CE2COAST paper published
Offshore Wind Farm Footprint on Organic and Mineral Particle Flux to the Bottom
Offshore wind farms (OWFs) are an important source of renewable energy accounting for 2.3% of the European Union's electricity demand. Yet their impact on the environment needs to be assessed. Here, we couple a hydrodynamic (including tides and waves) and sediment transport model with a description of the organic carbon and mineral particle dynamics in the water column and sediments. The model is applied to the Belgian Coastal Zone (BCZ) where OWFs currently occupy 7% of its surface area which is estimated to double in the next 5 years. The impact of OWFs on the environment is represented through the filtration of the water column and fecal pellets production by the blue mussel, the dominant fouling organism. Our model simulations show that the impact of biodeposition on the mud particle sedimentation and on sediment composition is small compared to the fluxes associated with tidal deposition and resuspension and the lateral inputs. In contrast, the total organic carbon (TOC) flux to the sediment is significantly altered inside the OWF perimeters and TOC deposition is increased up to 50% in an area 5 km around the monopiles. Further away, the TOC flux to the bottom decreases with a notable effect up to 30 km away. The major changes are found along the direction of the main residual current and tidal ellipse's major axis. In addition, sub-mesoscale gyres act as retention areas with increased carbon deposition. A future OWF in the BCZ will be located close to gravel beds in a Natura 2000 area, considered as vulnerable habitats and biodiversity hotspots. The different scenarios for this OWF, varying in turbine number and positioning, are compared in terms of impact on the carbon and mineral particle deposition flux in the BCZ and, particularly, to these gravel beds. The scenarios show that the number of turbines has only a slight impact on the TOC deposition flux, unlike their positioning that significantly alters the TOC flux to the gravel beds. The TOC deposition flux exceeds 50%, when the turbines are placed next to the gravel beds; while a limited increase is simulated, when the turbines are located the farthest possible from them.
CE2COAST is now a partner in the Global Ocean Oxygen Decade (GOOD) under the Global Ocean Oxygen Network (GO2NE)
Oxygen in the ocean supports the largest ecosystems on the planet. However, the ocean is at risk, it is losing oxygen, termed ocean deoxygenation, at a rapid rate. The decrease of ocean oxygen is primarily due to global warming by greenhouse gas emissions, and pollution by nutrients and organic wastes particularly in coastal waters. The Decade Programme will raise global awareness about ocean deoxygenation, provide knowledge for action and develop mitigation and adaptation measures through local, regional and global efforts, including intensified monitoring, transdisciplinary research, bi-directional knowledge transfer among stakeholders and scientists, innovative outreach and ocean education and literacy. The high-level objective of the Decade Programme is to provide data and knowledge to enable society, stakeholders, and scientists to co-design and develop measures that can mitigate the drivers and impacts of ocean deoxygenation and provide appropriate adaptation measures where mitigation is not possible. Developing mitigation of and/or adaptation approaches to deoxygenation are of paramount importance for ensuring the provision of ecosystem services, addressing threats to the climate system and minimizing the impact of ocean deoxygenation on the ocean economy.
2-year postdoctoral fellowship position available
A 2-year postdoctoral fellowship position (with a possibility for extension) is available in the research topic of multi-ESMs process-based assessment and benchmark for regional downscaling at the biogeochemistry group of NORCE Climate and the Bjerknes Centre for Climate Research. The Bjerknes Centre is the largest climate research centre in the Scandinavian countries and among the leading centres in Europe.
We are seeking an enthusiastic and highly motivated climate scientist to work in the newly funded project CE2COAST (Downscaling Climate and Ocean Change to Services). The project, involves international and interdisciplinary researchers, aims to deliver observation-driven synthesis of statistical and dynamical downscaling methodology to provide improved process resolution and system representations tailored to regional/coastal domains and their associated pressures/services.
Closing date is 31st of January 2021.
New booklet: Next Generation Climate for Oceans – Research projects 2020-2023
CE2COAST included in the information booklet produced from the JPI Oceans and JPI Climate joint kick-off meeting “Next Generation Climate for Oceans – Research projects 2020-2023”. The booklet provides a brief overview of the scope and objectives of each project focusing on interactions between oceans and climate by analysing model simulations and observational data, as well as details on the respective partner consortia.
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