1/24/2024: Black Sea could be hot spot for carbon sequestration

The Black Sea. Dmitry Ant/unsplash

AGU News

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Nominate yourself or a colleague for AGU’s 2024 Journalism Awards
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Housing deadline for Ocean Sciences Meeting 1/24
Browse nearly 5,000 abstracts for #OSM24, held 18-23 February in New Orleans, and register with housing before the housing deadline on 24 January. [OSM24 scientific program][OSM24 press registration][press release]

Featured Research

Black Sea could be best spot for some carbon sequestration
One proposed method of carbon sequestration involves storing large volumes of organic carbon, or biomass, on the seafloor, but doing so risks upending the seafloor’s ecological balance and chemistry. A new study of those impacts pinpoints the low-oxygen Black Sea as a potential pot for biomass storage with fewer knock-on effects. The study cautions extensive further evaluation would be needed to implement the plan. [AGU Advances research][AGU-led ethics of geoengineering research]

Marine ecosystem changes are getting more abrupt
Ocean changes, such as acidification, warming, and oxygen loss, stress marine ecosystems, and the more abrupt those changes are, the harder it is for ecosystems to respond. Abrupt changes are occurring more frequently and will continue to increase, factors which have been left out of some climate analyses, according to a new study. The timeline of effective climate mitigation may “close sooner than expected.” [Geophysical Research Letters research]

Soaring temps evaporate away California’s water
Droughts can be caused by high temperatures, a drop in precipitation, or a combination of both. New modeling shows that in California, soaring temperatures alone may be enough to drive severe droughts in the future. [Earth’s Future research]

Volcanism may have breathed life into the “boring billion”
Some geologists call the period from about 1.8 billion years ago to 800 million years ago the “boring billion” because generally, it had low nutrient availability and low oxygen levels. But around 1.4 billion years ago, there’s some evidence of a global puff of oxygen. New mercury measurements, which can indicate volcanic activity, support large-scale volcanism as a potential cause of this brief oxygenation event. [Geophysical Research Letters research]

Mars has equatorial belt of thick, buried ice
New radar results reveal the mystery buried material in Mars’ Medusae Fossae formation are 3.7 kilometers deep, thicker than previously thought, and likely water ice. If the ice melted, it would cover the planet in up to nearly 3 meters of water. [ESA press release][Geophysical Research Letters research]

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