Iron from eroded rocks causes Antarctic algae to bloom

06/3/2013 | Chemical & Engineering News

Rocks eroded by wind and seawater release iron into the waters of Antarctica's Southern Ocean, where phytoplankton use it to absorb atmospheric carbon dioxide, according to research directed by Bernhard Dold of Chile's University of Concepcion. The scientists discovered that the photosynthetic microbes bloom when the highest levels of iron are released from the rocks. They suggest that climate change will accelerate the process, leading to increased carbon dioxide uptake in the region.

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