TROPICAL GEOGRAPHY ›› 2016, Vol. 36 ›› Issue (1): 48-54.doi: 10.13284/j.cnki.rddl.002796

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Isotopes of Carbon, Nitrogen, Boron in Reef Coral as Proxies of Ocean Acidification

HAN Tao1,YU Kefu1, 2,TAO Shichen1   

  1. (1.South China Sea Institute of Oceanology,Chinese Academy of Sciences,Guangzhou 510301,China;2.a.Coral Reef Research Center of China; b.School of Marine Sciences,Guangxi University,Nanning 530004,China)
  • Online:2016-01-05 Published:2016-01-05

Abstract: Ocean acidification, caused by the increasing atmospheric CO2 levels, has not only decreased seawater pH, but also changed the carbonate equilibrium so that the aragonite saturation state has decreased, which has lead to the decrease of calcification rates. Researches show that 13C, 11B and 15N of the coral skeleton have the capacity of recording Suess Effect, productivity, seawater pH and nutrient source. The main characteristics are: its 11B records seawater pH, 13C records sea water dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) 13C and productivity, and 15N records terrestrial input. The combination of those proxies can indicate “the shelf carbon pumping” of the South China Sea and the coastal pollution effects on ocean acidification. However, researches on records of ocean acidification in coral reefs are insufficient, our understanding of ocean acidification, climate variability and global carbon, nitrogen cycle can be deepened by the application of such combination, which may be an important tool of revealing sea water pH change regularity.

Key words: reef coral, ocean acidification, Carbon isotope, Nitrogen isotope, Boron isotope