Study: Marine bacteria are the climate’s chance

October 8, 2016
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The study of the marine biologists from Denmark shows that marine bacteria may be the last climate’s chance to stop the global warming. According to the latest research, the bacteria in the oxygen minimum zone influence how much CO2 the ocean can absorb from the atmosphere.

A marine biologist from the Department of Bioscience, Aarhus University discovered the new feature of the common marine bacteria. According to the data of the co-author of research Jens Würgler Hansen, such a bacteria can be a last chance to the environment in its natural fight with the global climate changes.

The marine biologists have measured oxygen in one of the oceans most oxygen-depleted places, so-called oxygen minimum zones. The results published in a journal PNAS, Hansen says that their research offers new insights into the global nitrogen cycle and global climate. He added:

“The study is a window into a previously little known and little-studied part of the world.” 

The study revealed that marine bacteria in the oxygen minimum zone influence how much CO2 the ocean can absorb from the atmosphere.

“The bacteria determine whether these massive bodies of water release nitrogen to the atmosphere or store it in the water in a form that is available for the algae to use. In that way they decide how much CO2 the algae that live around the oxygen minimum zone can absorb,”

explains the importance of the study its lead-author Bo Thamdrup, professor of Biological Sciences at the University of Southern Denmark (SDU). For the science, it’s important to know what the underlying mechanism is. On the base of this knowledge, marine biologists will be able to model an influence of these useful bacteria in the sea.

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