|Title||Deep ocean communities impacted by changing climate over 24 y in the abyssal northeast Pacific Ocean|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||2013|
|Authors||Smith KL, Ruhl H.A, Kahru M, Huffard C.L, Sherman AD|
|Journal||Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America|
|Type of Article||Article|
|Keywords||abundance; carbon cycle; chlorophyll; climate change; deep-sea ecology; discrepancy; ecosystems; fluxes; ne pacific; reveals; sea-floor; time-series station; trends|
The deep ocean, covering a vast expanse of the globe, relies almost exclusively on a food supply originating from primary production in surface waters. With well-documented warming of oceanic surface waters and conflicting reports of increasing and decreasing primary production trends, questions persist about how such changes impact deep ocean communities. A 24-y time-series study of sinking particulate organic carbon (food) supply and its utilization by the benthic community was conducted in the abyssal northeast Pacific (similar to 4,000-m depth). Here we show that previous findings of food deficits are now punctuated by large episodic surpluses of particulate organic carbon reaching the sea floor, which meet utilization. Changing surface ocean conditions are translated to the deep ocean, where decadal peaks in supply, remineralization, and sequestration of organic carbon have broad implications for global carbon budget projections.