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Marine biodiversity-ecosystem functions under uncertain environmental futures

Marine biodiversity-ecosystem functions under uncertain environmental futures
Marine biodiversity-ecosystem functions under uncertain environmental futures
Anthropogenic activity is currently leading to dramatic transformations of ecosystems and losses of biodiversity. The recognition that these ecosystems provide services that are essential for human well-being has led to a major interest in the forms of the biodiversity-ecosystem functioning relationship. However, there is a lack of studies examining the impact of climate change on these relationships and it remains unclear how multiple climatic drivers may affect levels of ecosystem functioning. Here, we examine the roles of two important climate change variables, temperature and concentration of atmospheric carbon dioxide, on the relationship between invertebrate species richness and nutrient release in a model benthic estuarine system. We found a positive relationship between invertebrate species richness and the levels of release of NH(4)-N into the water column, but no effect of species richness on the release of PO(4)-P. Higher temperatures and greater concentrations of atmospheric carbon dioxide had a negative impact on nutrient release. Importantly, we found significant interactions between the climate variables, indicating that reliably predicting the effects of future climate change will not be straightforward as multiple drivers are unlikely to have purely additive effects, resulting in increased levels of uncertainty.
benthic, climate change, bioturbation, ocean acidification, uncertainty
0962-8436
2107-2116
Bulling, Mark T.
0a9186c7-5457-46f4-8c83-1b26a571e402
Hicks, Natalie
34ffb8be-c88c-4539-8c56-8d75bdab91ea
Murray, Leigh
3cb8a163-2f16-4034-b10a-23d70407970f
Paterson, David M.
cb3a1995-cd31-46b5-970c-71d0f571d63b
Raffaelli, Dave
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White, Piran C.L.
f5623b1d-deab-4e08-8f44-ca733a43d569
Solan, Martin
c28b294a-1db6-4677-8eab-bd8d6221fecf
Bulling, Mark T.
0a9186c7-5457-46f4-8c83-1b26a571e402
Hicks, Natalie
34ffb8be-c88c-4539-8c56-8d75bdab91ea
Murray, Leigh
3cb8a163-2f16-4034-b10a-23d70407970f
Paterson, David M.
cb3a1995-cd31-46b5-970c-71d0f571d63b
Raffaelli, Dave
b6fc5f11-fb9a-420a-bcd3-7d5d7c6f8260
White, Piran C.L.
f5623b1d-deab-4e08-8f44-ca733a43d569
Solan, Martin
c28b294a-1db6-4677-8eab-bd8d6221fecf

Bulling, Mark T., Hicks, Natalie, Murray, Leigh, Paterson, David M., Raffaelli, Dave, White, Piran C.L. and Solan, Martin (2010) Marine biodiversity-ecosystem functions under uncertain environmental futures. Philosophical Transactions of The Royal Society B Biological Sciences, 365 (1549), 2107-2116. (doi:10.1098/rstb.2010.0022).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Anthropogenic activity is currently leading to dramatic transformations of ecosystems and losses of biodiversity. The recognition that these ecosystems provide services that are essential for human well-being has led to a major interest in the forms of the biodiversity-ecosystem functioning relationship. However, there is a lack of studies examining the impact of climate change on these relationships and it remains unclear how multiple climatic drivers may affect levels of ecosystem functioning. Here, we examine the roles of two important climate change variables, temperature and concentration of atmospheric carbon dioxide, on the relationship between invertebrate species richness and nutrient release in a model benthic estuarine system. We found a positive relationship between invertebrate species richness and the levels of release of NH(4)-N into the water column, but no effect of species richness on the release of PO(4)-P. Higher temperatures and greater concentrations of atmospheric carbon dioxide had a negative impact on nutrient release. Importantly, we found significant interactions between the climate variables, indicating that reliably predicting the effects of future climate change will not be straightforward as multiple drivers are unlikely to have purely additive effects, resulting in increased levels of uncertainty.

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More information

Published date: 12 July 2010
Keywords: benthic, climate change, bioturbation, ocean acidification, uncertainty
Organisations: Ocean Biochemistry & Ecosystems

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 339686
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/339686
ISSN: 0962-8436
PURE UUID: 9460a2ff-73d6-4789-a021-b5e6d910785a
ORCID for Martin Solan: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0001-9924-5574

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 28 May 2012 16:04
Last modified: 17 Dec 2019 01:43

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