NICOPP - Nitrogen Cycle in the Ocean, Past and Present

 
Major sources (green arrows) and sinks (white arrows) of fixed N in the marine environment and their most important controlling factors over time (italics). From Galbraith et al., 2008, Nitrogen in Past Marine Environments, in: Capone et al. (Eds) Nitrogen in the Marine Environment, 1497-1535.

NICOPP is a joint working group of PAGES and IMAGES. NICOPP studies Nitrogen isotope (d15N) dynamics as recorded in the sedimentary record in order to learn about the dynamics of the marine nutrient cycle in the Quaternary and the present.

Marine nutrient cycling is a globally important biogeochemical process that, if perturbed, can shift carbon and nutrient budgets significantly within the Earth System, with immediate implications for global climate. However, projections for the coming decades disagree even on the sign of the cumulative climatic feedback of marine nutrient cycling and associated biological changes.

If we wish to be able to meaningfully assess the potential impact of marine nutrient cycling on ecosystems and atmospheric composition, and ultimately the feedbacks with the climate system, we need to better understand the processes and effects involved. The large oceanographic and biogeochemical changes that occurred during the last glacial cycle provide pronounced and accessible targets for paleoceanographic studies (reconstruction and modeling) of marine nutrient cycles.

Nitrogen cycling is considered to be a dominant component of the marine biogeochemistry, and is the focus of this working group. With nitrogen isotopes there is a paleo-oceanographic proxy that seems well understood and frequently applied.

Accordingly, NICOPP aims to compile a quantitative global synopsis of the d15N data, to reveal patterns of nitrogen cycling processes, such as N-fixation, denitrification, and nitrate utilization, and to synthesize the findings and implications.

 

NICOPP brings together international colleagues active in marine N-isotope research as applied to the past ocean, and carries out activities such as workshops aimed at synthesizing currently available paleo data and publishing review papers.

Specifically, NICOPP has four goals:

1) Compilation, mapping and synthesis of modern (surface sediment) sedimentary d15N variability, and comparison of this data set to modern oceanographic and biogeochemical parameters and modeling. This will further and refine our understanding of this proxy.

2) Compilation and synthesis of sedimentary d15N records covering the last glacial-interglacial cycle (last 150,000 years) with the aim of defining regionally (or globally) consistent patterns and trends.

3) Comparison of the modern, surface sediment d15N variations to the sedimentary d15N distribution during past time periods, e.g. the Last Glacial Maximum (following MARGO approaches and criteria).

4) Comparing results from biogeochemical ocean modeling with the new quantitative synthesis of sedimentary d15N records.

The NICOPP working group is comprised of scientists who have attended NICOPP workshops and/or co-authored a NICOPP paper. It is generally open to all interested scientists who are willing to share their data.  

Images below, R-L: 2010 NICOPP workshop in Montreal / 2011 NICOPP workshop in Halifax

NICOPP workshop 2010 Montreal  NICOPP workshop 2011 Halifax

Co-leads

Markus Kienast (Dalhousie University, Canada)
Eric Galbraith (McGill, Canada)
Thorsten Kiefer (PAGES, Switzerland) 

Working group participants

Albuquerque, Ana Luiza 
Altabet, Mark
Batista, Fabian
Bianchi, Daniele 
Calvert, Stephen E. 
Carriquiry, José
Contreras, Quintana Sergio
Crosta, Xavier 
De Pol Holz, Ricardo
Dubois, Nathalie
Etourneau, Johan 
Francois, Roger
Ganeshram, Raja 
Haug, Gerald 
Hsu, Leon Ting-Chang
Ivanochko, Tara
Jaccard, Sam
Kao, Shuh-Ji
Kienast, Stephanie 
Lehmann, Moritz F. 
Martinez, Philippe
MacCarthy, Matthew
Meckler, Anna Nele 
Mix, Alan 
Möbius, Jürgen
Nakatsuka, Takeshi 
Pedersen, Tom
Pichevin, Laetitia 
Quan, Tracy
Rafter, Patrick
Robinson, Rebecca
Ryabenko, Evgenia
Schmittner, Andreas
Schneider, Ralph
Schneider-Mor, Aya
Shigemitsu, Masahito
Sigman, Daniel
Sinclair, Dan
Somes, Christopher 
Studer, Anja S.
Tesdal, Jan-Erik
Thunell, Bob 
Van Geen, Lex
Yang, Jin-Yu Terence

Group: nicopp

Journal articles

1.
Tesdal JE, Galbraith ED & Kienast M,
(2013),
Nitrogen Isotopes in Bulk Marine Sediment: Linking Seafloor Observations With Subseafloor Records,
Biogeosciences,
Vol. 10,
Issue 1,
101-118.

2.
Galbraith ED, Kienast M & NICOPP working group members,
(2013),
The acceleration of oceanic denitrification during deglacial warming,
Nature Geoscience,
Vol. 6,
579-584.

3.
Robinson RS, Kienast M, Albuquerque AL, Altabet M et al.,
(2012),
A Review of Nitrogen Isotopic Alteration in Marine Sediments,
Paleoceanography,
Vol. 27,
Issue 4.

4.
Dubois N & Kienast M,
(2011),
Spatial Reorganization in the Equatorial Divergence in the Eastern Tropical Pacific During the Last 150 kyr,
Geophysical Research,
Vol. 38,
Issue 16.

The NICOPP database, hosted by NOAA Paleoclimatology, is a collection of global ocean marine sedimentary δ15N measurements, from both seafloor samples and subseafloor records.

> Access database

 

2013

 

5 July

Past nitrogen cycle may shed light on ocean changes
IGBP e-bulletin July 2013: Research highlights

2 July

Study of oceans' past raises worries about their future
environmentalresearchweb

20 June

The Sands of Time: What 30,000 Years of Sediment Can Teach US About the Changing Ocean
newswise

18 June

Study of Oceans’ Past Raises Worries About Their Future
Innovations Report

Study of oceans' past raises worries about their future
Terradaily

15 June

The Precarious Nature Of Global Ocean Chemistry
redOrbit

14 June

Study of Oceans’ Past Raises Worries About Their Future
newswise

Data from end of the last ice age illuminate the precarious nature of global ocean chemistry
Phys.org

Study of oceans’ past raises worries about their future
AlphaGalileo Foundation

13 June

The sands of time: What 30,000 years of sediment can teach us about the changing ocean
Dalhousie University

Oceans need time to adapt to fast nitrogen cycle
Futurity.org

Study of oceans’ past raises worries about their future
McGill University

Si le passé n’était pas garant de l’avenir des océans?
McGill University

8 June

Study shows melting ice age increased ocean denitrification
Environmental Monitor

6 June

Denitrification of the Oceans Increases Due to Warming
Advanced Aquarist

Wie schnell reagiert der chemische Zustand des Ozeans auf die Klimaerwärmung?
Future Ocean – Kiel Marine Sciences

Denitrification of the Oceans Increases Due to Warming
New Wave News

Researchers document acceleration of ocean denitrification during deglaciation
Terradaily

5 June

How Fast Does the Chemical State of the Ocean React to Climate Change?
Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel 

4 June

Researchers document acceleration of ocean denitrification during deglaciation
Grid Arendal

Researchers document acceleration of ocean denitrification during deglaciation
Fishbio

3 June

Acceleration of Ocean Denitrification During Deglaciation Documented
Science Daily

Acceleration of ocean denitrification during deglaciation documented
e! Science News

Ocean Denitrification
Environmental News Network

Acceleration of ocean denitrification during deglaciation documented
Gnao.net

Acceleration of ocean denitrification during deglaciation documented
Science News

Acceleration of ocean denitrification during deglaciation documented
Oceanographers Net

Researchers document acceleration of ocean denitrification during deglaciation
Phys Org

2 June

Researchers Document Acceleration of Ocean Denitrification During Deglaciation
National Science Foundation

Researchers document acceleration of ocean denitrification during deglaciation
Oregon State University Press Release

Researchers document acceleration of ocean denitrification during deglaciation
Eurekalert! Press Release

Press
Release

PAGES Press Release (English)

 

  

   Co-sponsor 

pages-images