An interdisciplinary project to explore the physical, chemical and biological factors that promote the growth of Sargassum blooms in the Tropical Atlantic and investigate the factors that may have changed in recent years (last decade). A novel combination of ecological approaches, remote sensing products, physical modeling, and oceanographic work at sea will be used to investigate and resolve the mechanisms that drive the onset of Sargassum blooms in the Central Tropical Atlantic and their growth and development in waters of the Western Tropical North Atlantic.
Advection and biological consumption are both important sinks for oil and gas released from natural seeps in the Gulf of Mexico. We will use a combination of stable isotope measurements and high resolution modeling with both passive and positively buoyant tracers to study the interaction between physical and biological processes in distributing and transporting the carbon released from natural seeps. We will focus on three major seep fields in the Northern Gulf with different water depths –GC185 (ca. 400 m), GC600 (ca. 1200 m), and GC767 (ca.
The exponential growth of human populations in the Mekong-South China Sea (SCS) system, the eutrophication of estuarine and coastal waters by excess nutrients transported by the Mekong River, and the rapid sinking of the Mekong Delta are fundamentally changing the biological productivity and biodiversity of the system, with uncertain implications these aquatic resources. In the near future, larger forcings will alter the linkages between the Mekong system and the SCS basin.