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Assessing the environmental safety and feasibility of artificial upwellings for ecosystem restoration and climate change mitigation.
What are artificial upwellings?
Artificial upwellings are engineered structures that mimic natural upwellings - a process by which deep ocean water is brought to the surface, enriching shallow ocean layers with cold water that is richer in nutrients.
What are the benefits of artificial upwellings?
Artificial upwellings can buffer coral reefs and other benthic communities from heat stress, enhance fisheries and aquaculture productivity and health, remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, and protect coastal populations from storms.
Why do we need artificial upwellings?
Artificial upwellings present one of the most promising interventions to protect marine ecosystems from catastrophic heat stress. In July 2023, coastal waters around Florida reached over 101º F - with many regions of the Caribbean reaching 90º F, and locations all over the world exceeding previous all-time records. Being able to cool targeted areas will buy us time, and upwellings have a variety of co-benefits beyond cooling that require additional investigation.
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