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New MAPP-funded study highlights the importance of zooplankton representation in Earth System Models (ESMs) to future projections of ocean biogeochemistry


New research highlighted in GFDL’s Spring Bulletin, and led by MAPP-funded PI Colleen Petrik (Scripps) shows that better representation of mesozooplankton-chlorophyll relationships in ESMs will improve the projections of climate change impacts on mesozooplankton biomass globally, as well as regional biomes. Zooplankton are marine animals that are major contributors to the transfer of carbon from the atmosphere to the deep ocean.

This research is important to advance GDFL’s modeling systems because the study shows that including systematic evaluations of zooplankton biomass in models could improve models’ representation of ocean biogeochemistry. GFDL’s COBALT model outperforms some of the other CMIP6 models evaluated in representing zooplankton biomass and their relationship to concentrations of chlorophyll, and further improvements to the representation of this observed relationship will lead to improvements in the understanding of future climate. 

This work is highly supportive of the burgeoning collaboration between OAR and NMFS to provide predictions and projections of fish stocks and ecosystems from seasons to decades into the future, by advancing the understanding of the estimates of carbon transfer into the deep ocean and its impacts on fish populations and marine ecosystems under a changing climate.

More details can be found in the article here.

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