Global estimates of the extent and production of macroalgal forests
AuthorsDuarte, Carlos M.
Pedersen, Morten F.
Middelburg, Jack J.
Burrows, Michael T.
Krumhansl, Kira A.
Ørberg, Sarah B.
Pinto, Isabel S.
Queirós, Ana M.
Smale, Dan A.
Serrão, Ester A.
KAUST DepartmentMarine Science Program
Red Sea Research Center (RSRC)
Biological and Environmental Science and Engineering (BESE) Division
Permanent link to this recordhttp://hdl.handle.net/10754/676668
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AbstractAim- Macroalgal habitats are believed to be the most extensive and productive of all coastal vegetated ecosystems. In stark contrast to the growing attention on their contribution to carbon export and sequestration, understanding of their global extent and production is limited and these have remained poorly assessed for decades. Here we report a first data-driven assessment of the global extent and production of macroalgal habitats based on modelled and observed distributions and net primary production (NPP) across habitat types. Location- Global coastal ocean. Time period- Contemporary. Major taxa studied- Macroalgae. Methods- Here we apply a comprehensive niche model to generate an improved global map of potential macroalgal distribution, constrained by incident light on the seafloor and substrate type. We compiled areal net primary production (NPP) rates across macroalgal habitats from the literature and combined this with our estimates of the global extent of these habitats to calculate global macroalgal NPP. Results- We show that macroalgal forests are a major biome with a global area of 6.06–7.22 million km2, dominated by red algae, and NPP of 1.32 Pg C/year, dominated by brown algae. Main conclusions- The global macroalgal biome is comparable, in area and NPP, to the Amazon forest, but is globally distributed as a thin strip around shorelines. Macroalgae are expanding in polar, subpolar and tropical areas, where their potential extent is also largest, likely increasing the overall contribution of algal forests to global carbon sequestration.
CitationDuarte, C. M., Gattuso, J., Hancke, K., Gundersen, H., Filbee-Dexter, K., Pedersen, M. F., Middelburg, J. J., Burrows, M. T., Krumhansl, K. A., Wernberg, T., Moore, P., Pessarrodona, A., Ørberg, S. B., Pinto, I. S., Assis, J., Queirós, A. M., Smale, D. A., Bekkby, T., Serrão, E. A., … Field, R. (2022). Global estimates of the extent and production of macroalgal forests. Global Ecology and Biogeography. Portico. https://doi.org/10.1111/geb.13515
SponsorsWe thank Chris Jenkins at the Institute of Arctic & Alpine Research (INSTAAR), University of Colorado at Boulder, USA, and Eleonora Manca at the Joint Nature Conservation Committee, UK, for providing substrate data for the evaluation of the global map of the maximum extent of macroalgal distribution.
Research for this paper was supported by Euromarine (http://www.euromarinenetwork.eu). We also received support from FCT – Foundation for Science and Technology through project UIDB/04326/2020 and the transitional norm – DL57/2016/CP1361/CT0035. JA and EAS received support from FCT – Foundation for Science and Technology (Portugal) through UIDB/04326/2020, SFRH/BSAB/150485/2019, and the transitional norm – DL57/2016/CP1361/CT0035 as well as project MARFOR (Biodiversa/0004/2015) and a Pew Marine Fellowship. J-PG received support from Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation, Veolia Foundation, IAEA Ocean Acidification International Coordination Centre and French Facility for Global Environment. DK-J received support from the Independent Research Fund Denmark through the project ‘CARMA’ (reference: 8021-00222B). AMQ acknowledges funding support from UKRI GCRF Blue Communities. JJM was supported by the Netherlands Earth System Science Centre. HG, KH and TB received funds from KELPPRO (RCN #267536), Nordic Blue Carbon (NEA #17080044), OPTIMAKELP (NFR #280732), and STORISK project (ANR-15-CE03-0003). TW was supported by the Australian Research Council (DP170100023). DAS was supported by a UKRI Future Leaders Fellowship (MR/S032827/1). KF-D was supported by the Norwegian Blue Forest Network. PM was supported by a NERC/Newton Fund Latin American Biodiversity Programme NE/SO11692/1.
JournalGlobal Ecology and Biogeography
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