Sinking in a sea of trouble

Posted on July 01, 2021 | By John Risley | 0 Comments

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<strong>Although I consider myself to be a bit of an “oceans guy”,</strong> I am constantly amazed at how little I really know about the oceans and their importance.<span class=”Apple-converted-space”> </span>

I recently sat in on a virtual conference of international ocean scientists, hosted by Dalhousie’s Ocean Frontier Institute (OFI), discussing their recent research on something called the “biogeochemical carbon pump” or BCP. Frankly, I was shocked by what I heard.

Think of the BCP as a sort of trap door to the single largest component of carbon storage or capture in the world. This carbon sink is a function of the intersection of two vast currents, each responsible for more water flow than all the rivers in the world. These are the Gulfstream and the Arctic Current. As the Arctic Current pours out of the Canadian north and the Greenland basin to meet the Gulfstream winding its way up the North American coast just as it veers eastward toward Europe, the colder, fresher water of the Arctic Current dives under its warmer adversary, taking with it this incredible amount of carbon, which is then stored in the depths of the North Atlantic basin.<span class=”Apple-converted-space”> </span>

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