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Stressors in the Marine EnvironmentPhysiological and ecological responses; societal implications$
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Martin Solan and Nia Whiteley

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780198718826

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198718826.001.0001

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Ecological impacts of ultraviolet-B radiation on marine ecosystems

Ecological impacts of ultraviolet-B radiation on marine ecosystems

(p.261) Chapter 15 Ecological impacts of ultraviolet-B radiation on marine ecosystems
Stressors in the Marine Environment

Sébastien Moreau

Francesca Vidussi

Gustavo Ferreyra

Behzad Mostajir

Oxford University Press

Ultraviolet B radiation (UVBR, 280–320 nm), the most biologically damaging portion of the solar spectra reaching the Earth’s ground, received considerable scientific attention after the discovery of the spring stratospheric ‘ozone hole’ formation in the late 1970s over Antarctica. Recently, similar low ozone conditions were observed over the Arctic and occasionally at lower latitudes. Furthermore, expected ocean acidification, increased surface water temperatures, and modifications in the structure of the water column due to global change expanded the concerns regarding the potential damage of global change to the structure of marine food webs. This chapter reviews the effects of UVBR on various marine ecosystems. Introduction of the chapter gives a description of factors that influence the UVBR intensities that reach these ecosystems such as latitude, season, stratospheric ozone layer thickness, and penetration within the water column. Then, the chapter depicts the effects of UVBR on the food webs of some important marine ecosystems, such as polar oceans, coastal waters, fronts and upwellings, oceanic gyres, and benthic ecosystems including coral reefs. Finally, this chapter investigates the potential interactions of enhanced UVBR along with other climate change stressors such as global warming and ocean acidification.

Keywords:   UVBR—ultraviolet B radiation, ozone hole, marine food webs, global change, acidification, warming

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