New evidence for a glacioeustatic influence on deep watercirculation, bottom water ventilation and primaryproductivity in the South China Sea
2009 (English)In: Dynamics of atmospheres and oceans (Print), ISSN 0377-0265, Vol. 47, no 1-3, 138-153 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
We provide new evidence for the development of a stable estuarinecirculation characterized by stagnating water bodies, nutrientrecycling and increased primary productivity in the South ChinaSea (SCS) during glacial intervals. This circulation was caused bythe closure of the shallow and narrow straits connecting the SCSin the south and west. Our main evidence is derived from newlymeasured Mn concentrations and Mn/Al ratios in two sedimentcores from the northern and southeastern SCS covering the last500 ky. Concentrations and Mn/Al ratios of the redox sensitive elementMnshowclearglacial–interglacial cycles with maxima duringinterglacial periods and minima during glacial periods. These cyclesindicate ventilation cycles of the bottom water, and are connectedto the glacial–interglacial changes in sea level. In contrast, totalorganic carbon (TOC) concentrations display an opposite patternwith pronounced maxima during glacial times, especially in thesouthern part of the basin. The variations in TOC can be ascribed totwo factors. Firstly, variations in primary productivity are controlledby variations in the intensity of the winter monsoon. Secondlyto the degree of preservation of TOC controlled by variations inventilation, which in turn is ultimately controlled by sea level.
Consequently, variations in TOC represent a superimposition ofprimarily sea level influenced preservation control and wintermonsoon driven variations in primary productivity intensity. Thedecrease in Mn correspond to times when sea level dropped40–60m below the present level. The larger amplitude of the variationsin TOC and Mn in the southern part of the basin compared tothe northern site suggest that oxygen depletion and nutrient recyclingwas stronger in the parts of the basin situated the furthest away from the only remaining opening to the open Pacific, the LuzonStrait.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier , 2009. Vol. 47, no 1-3, 138-153 p.
Bottom water oxygen depletion, South China Sea, Productivity, Organic carbon preservation, Sea level, Monsoon
Earth and Related Environmental Sciences
Research subject Oceanography
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-32813DOI: doi:10.1016/j.dynatmoce.2008.08.004ISI: 000265174800009OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-32813DiVA: diva2:281607