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Prelim 2 Questions and Answers
Terms in this set (51)
What is the definition of Net Primary Production?
The difference between the CO2 gained by phytoplankton photosynthesis minus the CO2 lost through phytoplankton respiration.
What impact does light saturated levels of light intensity have on phytoplankton net primary production?
This light intensity produces the maximal levels of net primary production
How does iron primarily enter the surface layer of the ocean?
Iron is transported by the winds that blow iron-rich dust off of continents.
Subtropical Gyres have low levels of primary production per square meter because
There is a persistent lens of warm low-nutrient surface water that depresses the thermocline and associated nutricline and set up a permanent downwelling current.
Primary production along the equator in the Eastern Pacific (near Peru) is high because
The trade winds force an Ekman layer divergence in combination with the relatively shallow thermocline in the east (off Peru).
statement is true?
Phytoplankton can mix from the top of the ocean to below the compensation depth and still sustain a positive net primary production over the course of a day.
Why does the North Atlantic experience a strong spring phytoplankton bloom?
Deep winter mixing brings nutrients to the surface
The springtime formation of a shallow thermocline holds
phytoplankton in the well-lit zone of the surface ocean
Why should you thank the ocean for every other breath you take?
Because photosynthesis makes oxygen and approximately half of the entire planet's primary production occurs in the ocean.
It is said that pelagic food webs are strongly size-structured. What exactly does this mean?
Size determines almost everything about an organism's role in the food web - who it eats and who eats it.
Which statement below is the best definition of Exploitation Efficiency?
The efficiency of finding, capturing and ingesting all of the possible prey in a consumer's environment
Why is fish production summed over coastal regions so much greater than fish production summed over the entire open-ocean region?
There are fewer trophic steps between phytoplankton and harvestable fish in coastal regions
The introduction of the epifluorescent microscope brought about a revolution in biological oceanography because this new observational tool led oceanographers to discover that:
Heterotrophic bacteria were much more abundant than previously thought
What is so special about Prochlorococcus?
It is a type of autotrophic bacteria responsible for most of the
primary production that takes place in the oligotrophic open-
What do marine heterotrophic bacteria use to grow?
Dissolved organic matter
The vast majority of living biomass in oligotrophic open-ocean environments is in the form of large (about 100-micron diameter) phytoplankton cells and large (flea sized) herbivorous copepods.
What is the main form of carbon sinking into the deep ocean?
Fecal material from large (flea sized) copepods
What is the relative abundance of viruses to bacteria in the ocean?
10 viruses for every bacterium
What do viruses do to modify the dissolved organic matter pool?
They kill a lot of the heterotrophic bacteria and return the bacterial carbon back to the dissolved organic carbon pool.
What level of mortality can viruses inflict on marine bacteria?
10-50% of total mortality with grazing by protozoans making up
What typically sets the lower limit of a given zone in the rocky intertidal community?
What happens to a rocky intertidal community when the starfish Pisaster is removed?
Biodiversity decreases greatly
What percentage of a Corals' nutritional needs is supplied by its Zooxanthellae symbiont?
Crown of Thorns starfish eat corals, and when the starfish abundance becomes exceptionally large, they can destroy whole coral reefs. What is thought to be the leading contributor to population explosions of Crown of Thorns starfish?
Nutrient addition from fertilizer runoff that increases phytoplankton abundance, which feeds the starfish's planktonic larvae and allows the larvae to grow to high abundance
How much does seawater temperature need to rise before corals begin to bleach?
An increase of just 1°C for a few weeks can cause bleaching
We are currently at about 400ppm CO2 in the atmosphere and corals are expected to start suffering from ocean acidification when atmospheric CO2 reaches 450ppm. If current rates of CO2 emissions continue, how many more years do we have before coral reefs start to show obvious declines due to acidification?
About 20 years
How long ago did Pakicetus roam the shores as a wolf-like creature before eventually evolving to become a modern whale?
53 million years ago
Whale vocalizations can be used for
Which source of underwater sound does Professor Christopher Clark (Cornell whale expert who studies underwater sound impacts on whales) think may be the greatest threat to whale population survival?
Ambient noise from commercial ship traffic
Which of the following nations are currently hunting whales in large numbers?
Norway, Iceland and Japan
What is the relative strength of thermal (kinetic) energy relative to the strength of the hydrogen bond energy for the case of liquid water?
thermal (kinetic) energy is roughly equal to the hydrogen bond energy.
What determines the salinity of surface ocean water?
The difference between evaporation and precipitation.
What happens to the concentration of phosphate in the deep ocean as the deep water from the North Atlantic slowly moves down and around the Southern Ocean and up into the North Pacific?
Phosphate concentration increases as the deep water moves from the North Atlantic to the North Pacific
What is expected to happen to the oxygen minimum zone as global warming causes the surface ocean water above the thermocline to warm relative to the deeper water, and thereby increase the strength of the thermocline?
The oxygen concentration will become even lower than it is today
How much has oxygen declined in the global ocean over the past several decades?
What percentage of total anthropogenic CO2 inputs to the atmosphere has been taken up by the ocean?
With business as usual emissions (i.e., without cutting future emissions), what sort of timelines are we facing before polar seas become corrosive to calcium carbonate shells of planktonic organisms, and coral reef growth is slowed or stopped altogether?
In 20 to 30 years
What happens to the Trade Winds when the Pacific undergoes a transition from normal to El Niño conditions?
Trade Winds slow down and even reverse direction
What atmospheric feature connects El Niño conditions in the Pacific with weather patterns around the world?
The Jet Stream
Why are natural climate cycles, like El Niño, the Pacific Decadal Oscillation and the Arctic Oscillation, of interest to climate change scientists?
Because natural climate cycles temporarily warm and cool the planet on multi-year and multi-decadal cycles, and are superimposed on the multiple-decadal global warming trend.
What is the magnitude of the energy imbalance in the earth system that has been created due to anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions?
2 watts m-2
How much has earth warmed since the industrial era began?
Are humans now more powerful than the orbital forces that created all the ice ages over the past 800,000 years?
What is the level of statistical certainty with which scientists are confident that the observed global warming over the past several decades is largely human caused?
95% certain they are correct
What is the estimated asset value, associated with low-lying megacities around the world, that are vulnerable to a 1-meter sea level rise by the end of this century?
In the tens of trillions of US dollars range
When will the Arctic Ocean be largely ice-free during summer?
One of the key goals contained in the COP-21 consensus statement, that was signed in Paris in 2015 by every single leader of every single nation on earth, is that we should work to prevent the earth from warming beyond 2oC. In that same consensus statement, what must happen to global CO2 emissions in order to stay below a 2oC warming?
The entire planet has to go to net zero emissions by 2050
Of all the human generations that have ever lived on this earth, the current one is special because it is this generation that will decide if the world crosses the 2 oC global warming threshold and destabilize human civilization for the next 10,000 years.
What year is Cornell aiming to make Ithaca campus carbon neutral?
primary production along the equator in the eastern pacific (near peru) is high because
the trade winds force an Ekman layer divergance in combination with the relatively shallow thermocline in the east (off Peru)
which case has a low exploitation efficiency?
copepods feeding on phytoplankton during the very early spring bloom period in the North Atlantic
increases as the deep water moves from the North Atlantic to the North Pacific
THIS SET IS OFTEN IN FOLDERS WITH...
Climate Change I
The critical role of methane in global warming
Climate Change II
human impacts on fish population
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