Climate change and ocean deoxygenation within intensified surface-driven upwelling circulations

Andrew Bakun

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Ocean deoxygenation often takes place in proximity to zones of intense upwelling. Associated concerns about amplified ocean deoxygenation arise from an arguable likelihood that coastal upwelling systems in the world's oceans may further intensify as anthropogenic climate change proceeds. Comparative examples discussed include the uniquely intense seasonal Somali Current upwelling, the massive upwelling that occurs quasi-continuously off Namibia and the recently appearing and now annually recurring 'dead zone' off the US State of Oregon. The evident 'transience' in causal dynamics off Oregon is somewhat mirrored in an interannual-scale intermittence in eruptions of anaerobically formed noxious gases off Namibia. A mechanistic scheme draws the three examples towards a common context in which, in addition to the obvious but politically problematic remedy of actually reducing 'greenhouse' gas emissions, the potentially manageable abundance of strongly swimming, finely gill raker-meshed small pelagic fish emerges as a plausible regulating factor. This article is part of the themed issue 'Ocean ventilation and deoxygenation in a warming world'.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number20160327
JournalPhilosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences
Issue number2102
StatePublished - Sep 13 2017


  • Climate change
  • Comparative approach
  • Ocean deoxyfication
  • Ocean eddies
  • Sardines
  • Upwelling intensification

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mathematics(all)
  • Engineering(all)
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)


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