SS1.05 How Will Aquatic Ecosystems Respond to Climate Change?
Date: Tuesday, June 11, 2002
Time: 11:45:00 AM
Location: Oak Bay
 
JusticD, Coastal Ecology Institute, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, USA, djusti1@lsu.edu
Rabalais, N, N, Louisiana Universities Marine Consortium, Chauvin, USA, nrabalais@lumcon.edu
Turner, R, E, Coastal Ecology Institute, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, USA, euturne@lsu.edu
 
PERSPECTIVES FOR COASTAL EUTROPHICATION AND HYPOXIA IN A WARMER WORLD
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In contrast to a relatively high degree of confidence associated with the projected temperature increases, the effects of global climate change on hydrological cycle are less certain, particularly on regional scales. The annual Mississippi River runoff, for example, was projected to decrease by 30% for the Canadian model, but increase by 40% for the Hadley model by the year 2099. Retrospective analyses and model simulations suggest that altered freshwater and nutrient fluxes would have important implications for water column stability, net productivity and global oxygen cycling in the northern Gulf of Mexico. Large-scale hypoxia in Gulf’s coastal waters, recently exceeding 20,000 square kilometers, overlaps with habitat and fishing grounds of commercially important fish and shrimp species. Direct and indirect fisheries losses would likely be exacerbated if hypoxia expands in space or time as a result of global climate change.