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How Does Climate Change Lead To An Increase In Algal Blooms?

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How Does Climate Change Lead To An Increase In Algal Blooms?

It has been suggested by the researcher that the algal blooms results from the change in climatic conditions. The marine ecosystem can be strangled by the runaway growth of algae and this would lead to devastating coastal economies. A change in the water conditions, results in the occurrence of harmful algal blooms and consequently there would be huge growth in the number of particular species of algae. Such blooms produces toxins which turn water a different colour and kill the marine life.

In most bodies of saltwater and fresh water, there is occurrence of algae naturally and the occurrence of algae is fairly harmless. However, a combination of high level of nutrients, warm water along with adequate sunlight might cause harmful algae bloom. The aquatic ecosystem can be damaged by these blooms by depleting the oxygen that is required by the oxygen to survive and blocking the sunlight. The change in the climatic condition plays a vital role in an increase in the algae bloom globally. Some type of harmful and damaging algae grow faster compared to others because of warmer water. Water is prevented from mixing vertically due to the warmer water surface. A feedback loop is set up due to this that make water darker and this absorbs sunlight in the presence of bloom and this cause an enhancement of the conditions that causes blooms. In the oceans too, there is the occurrence of global warming and the rise in intense algae blooms in the North Atlantic is partially attributable to the rising temperate of ocean. On other hand, in some inland water of US, the increased frequency of algae bloom is majorly attributable to the rising temperature.

Another impact of the change in the climatic condition is increasing heavy precipitation and this can cause washing of the agricultural fertilizers into the water bodies and results in thriving of algae by providing nutrients. Moreover, there will be more evaporation of the water from surface in a supercharged water cycle due to heavy precipitation followed by drought conditions. Such increased evaporation of water from the surface concentrates the nutrients and this provides the opportunity for algae to multiply more and survive longer.

Decreased temperatures lead to an increase in phytoplankton growth.

The diversity of phytoplankton is expected to be altered due to environmental instability and warmer temperatures and they represent an essential characteristics underlying the trophic transfer and ecosystem functioning. However, the impact of direct temperature on diversity and the community structure is difficult to disentangle and poorly understood. Nevertheless, the effects of long term changes in the temperature on the structure and community diversity of phytoplankton growth warrant further attention. An increase in the temperature that is warmer temperature influence the growth of phytoplankton negatively. This is due to the fact that the nutrient rich water and water and deeper mixes less as the surface of water becomes warmer. The growth in the productivity of phytoplankton declines when the nutrients become scarce at the surface. Such effect is more prominent in the permanently stratified ocean where there is a distinct difference in the fresh water at the colder and surface and making the water saltier deep down and the density of warmer water. In such situation, there is a little vertical mixing due to heavier water below and lighter water on the top and thereby unable to move the nutrients to the surface. The layering and stratification become more pronounced due to warmer surface water and causing the mixing to suppress further. Consequently, there is a decline in the transfer of nutrients from the deeper to surface water and thereby reduction in the productivity of phytoplankton. Therefore, it is inferred that decrease in the temperature leads to declined phytoplankton growth.

Increased levels of carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas, and leads to increased phytoplankton growth.

The growth of phytoplankton is dependent upon the temperature and the change in the rise of atmosphere carbon dioxide that predicts the response of the community structure of phytoplankton to the change in the climatic conditions. One of the principal drivers of the change in the global climatic condition is the carbon dioxide and rising carbon dioxide has been identified as the major challenges. In addition to this, carbon dioxide is also considered to be essential for the growth of phytoplankton and plant. An increase in the level of carbon dioxide could result in an increase in the growth of phytoplankton by fertilizing few of their species taking carbon dioxide directly from water.  The species of phytoplankton can be benefitted by the increased availability of the carbon dioxide and any decrease in the Ph can harm the phytoplankton. The change in the photosynthetic rate of cells is difficult to predict and there can be increment or decrement under the scenario of ocean acidification. Also, the composition phytoplankton can be altered due to availability of increased carbon dioxide by favouring taxa that has less efficient concentrating mechanisms.

Increased pollution leads to lower levels of nutrients in aquatic ecosystems and therefore an increase in phytoplankton growth.

For all the water bodies around the world, nutrient pollution is a growing issue as this can lead to unhealthy ecosystem with a lack of biodiversity and pollution. Increased pollution level in the water bodies might lead to eutrophication that is characterized by excessive algal and plant growth resulting from the excess availability of limiting factors of photosynthesis. This would result in an associated growth of algal and thereby increasing the phytoplankton reproduction. Depending upon the nutrients level in the body and hydrodynamic conditions, there might be the difference in the community structure of phytoplankton. Pollutants affecting the nutrients relationship can be stimulated or inhibited by the algal growth and impacting the nutrient’s chemical state. It has been found that there can be increase in the copper toxicity to Chlamydomonas due to decrease in the concentration of phosphate in the growth medium. Cultural eutrophication results in the creation of foul smelling and dense bloom of noxious phytoplankton that harm the quality of water and reduces their clarity. The penetration of light gets limited because of algal blooms and thereby reduces the growth and lowering the success of predators along with die offs of plant in littoral zones. Furthermore, there are different level at which the communities of phytoplankton is affect ted by the low level of nutrients caused due to pollution and this include growth strategies, abundance, succession and dominance patterns. Pollutants might get accumulated in the phytoplankton and this can be passed onto trophic levels in a cascading manner which would result in certain pollutants bio magnification even though the impact on the phytoplankton communities are not directly visible. Any change in the nutrition supply ratio due to pollution is evident from the fundamental change in the composition of the phytoplankton species of coastal marine. This has clearly visible in the areas where there has been a dramatic increase in pollution. The impact of harmful or toxic species can be stimulated or enhanced by the nutrients and there can be abundance increase in the toxic phytoplankton at the simplest level. It is argued by the nutrient ratio that the human activities has altered the nutrient supply ratio in a harmful way that has caused environmental selection of phytoplankton species.

Decreased water levels caused by climate change lead to an increase in phytoplankton growth.

The rising level of carbon dioxide and the emission of greenhouse gases due to the human activities causes change in the level of water, oxygenation and ocean acidification leading to the change chemistry and ocean circulation. This in turn would impact the marine and coastal ecosystem by degrading it and threatens the economic, physical and food securities. The marine ecosystem including water temperature, winds, ocean circulation and sea ice cover is driven by the change in the climatic conditions. The nutrients is getting transferred from the surface water to deep down in the ocean due to the disruption and thereby leaving less at the surface water for supporting the growth of phytoplankton. It is estimated that the global fish catch would reduce by the increasingly nutrient starved marine ecosystem. The net primary production and the growth of phytoplankton in most of the ocean of the world would decline due to the nutrient starved marine ecosystem. The life of phytoplankton is critically impacted by the changes in the temperature of water and circulation of ocean. The physico chemical characteristics and the function of the ecosystem is affected by the excessive level of water and an increase in the level of water impacts various environmental variables such as total nitrogen and decrease in the biomass phytoplankton. On other hand, a decrease in the level of water would impact the phytoplankton by increasing its productivity. A direct relationship has been identified between abundance of plankton and changes in the climatic conditions impacting the water level. The decrease in the level of water reduced the growth and productivity of phytoplankton.

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