Global change and productivity

We compared the phytoplankton responses from the pre-bloom to the bloom period in the Chubut River estuary.

Chubut River estuary

In this study, as a result of scientific cooperation between researchers at the Estación de Fotobiología Playa Unión and the University of Granada (Spain), we compared how phytoplankton communities varying between the pre-bloom to bloom periods could respond to a future scenario of nutrient increases (due to anthropogenic activities) and temperature (due to the increase of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere) under ultraviolet radiation (UVR). The results evidenced an increasing inhibition of photosynthesis towards the bloom, which coincides with an increase in the abundance of diatoms, as well as with lower water temperatures and solar irradiance. This higher inhibition of photosynthesis during the most productive stage of the phytoplankton succession could have important consequences for this coastal area, affecting its ability to act as a ‘sink’ for CO2.

Complete reference

Cabrerizo, M. J., P. Carrillo, V. E. Villafañe & E. W. Helbling. Differential impacts of global change variables on coastal South Atlantic phytoplankton: Role of seasonal variations. Marine Environmental Research, 125: 63-72


This work was supported by Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas – CONICET, Agencia Nacional de Promoción Científica y Tecnológica, Ministerio de Economía y Competitividad y Fondo Europeo de Desarrollo Regional (FEDER), Ministerio de Educación, Cultura y Deporte, Campus de Excelencia Internacional-Universidad de Granada and Fundación Playa Unión.