Explain the concept of Carbon Compensation Depth. Discuss the implications of rise in this depth due to anthropogenic activities.

Carbon Compensation Depth (CCD) refers to the level of depth of the ocean till where carbon doesn’t dissolve and is present in an adequate amount.

Features:

  • It is essential for the survival of marine organisms, whose bodies are made up of carbonate shells like corals, mollusks, planktons, etc.
  • Carbon dioxide above the CCD is locked in, however, the carbon below CCD is free and dissolved.
  • Global warming has led to ocean acidification and subsequent increase of carbon in the oceans. It has led to rise in the level of CCD in the oceans.

Implications of rise in its depth:

  • It will lead to exposure of more organisms to water with lesser carbon, leading to the dissolving of their shells in water and subsequently their death.
  • It will disrupt the entire food cycle in the ocean and will have an impact on all life on earth.
  • This rise means less carbon will be trapped in oceans, resulting in the decline of blue carbon in the world and an increase in the level of carbon in the atmosphere. This will further increase global warming.

Thus, there is an urgent need to tackle ocean acidification and global warming. As it will have a catastrophic impact on all the ecosystems.

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