New evidence for enhanced ocean primary production triggered by tropical cyclone

Lin, I., W. T. Liu, C.-C. Wu, G. T.
F. Wong, C. Hu, Z. Chen, W.-D. Liang, Y. Yang, and K.-K. Liu,
New evidence for enhanced ocean primary production triggered
by tropical cyclone, Geophys. Res. Lett., 30(13), 1718,
doi:10.1029/2003GL017141, 2003.

Abstract: 
New evidence based on recent satellite data is presented to provide a rare opportunity in quantifying the long-speculated contribution of tropical cyclones to enhance ocean primary production. In July 2000, moderate cyclone Kai-Tak passed over the South China Sea (SCS). During its short 3-day stay, Kai-Tak triggered an average 30-fold increase in surface chlorophyll-a concentration. The estimated carbon fixation resulting from this event alone is 0.8 Mt, or 2–4% of SCS’s annual new production. Given an average of 14 cyclones passing over the SCS annually, we suggest the long-neglected contribution of tropical cyclones to SCS’s annual new production may be as much as 20–30%. INDEX TERMS: 4275 Oceanography: General: Remote sensing and electromagnetic processes (0689); 4805 Oceanography: Biological and Chemical: Biogeochemical cycles (1615); 0315 Atmospheric Composition and Structure: Biosphere/ atmosphere interactions; 4504 Oceanography: Physical: Air/sea interactions (0312); 1615 Global Change: Biogeochemical processes (4805).