Poleward displacement of coastal upwelling-favorable winds in the ocean's eastern boundary currents through the 21st century

Ryan R. Rykaczewski, John P. Dunne, William J. Sydeman, Marisol García-Reyes, Bryan A. Black, Steven J. Bograd

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

126 Scopus citations

Abstract

Upwelling is critical to the biological production, acidification, and deoxygenation of the ocean's major eastern boundary current ecosystems. A leading conceptual hypothesis projects that the winds that induce coastal upwelling will intensify in response to increased land-sea temperature differences associated with anthropogenic global warming. We examine this hypothesis using an ensemble of coupled, ocean-atmosphere models and find limited evidence for intensification of upwelling-favorable winds or atmospheric pressure gradients in response to increasing land-sea temperature differences. However, our analyses reveal consistent latitudinal and seasonal dependencies of projected changes in wind intensity associated with poleward migration of major atmospheric high-pressure cells. Summertime winds near poleward boundaries of climatological upwelling zones are projected to intensify, while winds near equatorward boundaries are projected to weaken. Developing a better understanding of future changes in upwelling winds is essential to identifying portions of the oceans susceptible to increased hypoxia, ocean acidification, and eutrophication under climate change.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)6424-6431
Number of pages8
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Volume42
Issue number15
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 16 2015
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • acidification
  • climate change
  • coastal upwelling
  • deoxygenation
  • ecosystem oceanography
  • ocean biogeochemistry

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)

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