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Respiration in Aquatic Ecosystems$
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Paul del Giorgio and Peter Williams

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780198527084

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2007

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198527084.001.0001

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The global significance of respiration in aquatic ecosystems: from single cells to the biosphere

The global significance of respiration in aquatic ecosystems: from single cells to the biosphere

Chapter:
(p.267) CHAPTER 14 The global significance of respiration in aquatic ecosystems: from single cells to the biosphere
Source:
Respiration in Aquatic Ecosystems
Author(s):

Paul A. del Giorgio

Peter J. le B. Williams

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198527084.003.0014

This chapter synthesizes existing information regarding the magnitude and regulation of respiration in the major aquatic ecosystems of the biosphere, and draws from the main conclusions of the different chapters of this book. It also provides a contextual background to place this information, and to identify the major gaps in our current knowledge and future areas of research. The largest and also most uncertain component of this global estimate is the respiration in the surface layers of the open oceans, which can be proscribed no better than a range from 9 to 12 Pmol C/a. Globally, the rounded-off estimates for respiration in aquatic ecosystems appear to be in the range of 14-17 Pmol C/a, higher than current estimates of global terrestrial respiration. Global estimates of respiration suggest that primary production, carbon export, and total carbon flux in aquatic ecosystems, particularly in the open oceans, have been severely underestimated.

Keywords:   aquatic respiration, respiration rates, biosphere, global estimates

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