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Presentation

The research group on “Global Change and Biogeochemistry” aims at contributing to the study of several issues related to the modification of the chemical composition of the biosphere and its links and implications for Global Change. There are several vectors contributing to global changes, among them climatic change, perturbations of the hydrological cycles, perturbations to ecosystems and loss of biodiversity, social and economic changes and perturbations of the chemical composition of the biosphere. This sub-line of research focuses on the latter and its interactions with the other vectors of global change.
There are many perturbations of the chemical composition of the biosphere that are relevant to global change and can be identified globally. Some of them have been studied extensively (for example CO2 and nutrient cycles) and they are not covered by this research group. Contrarily our research interests are focused on the anthropogenic contributions to the organic carbon cycle, issues that have not received much attention in terms of its influence on global change, biogeochemistry and ecosystem health. Indeed, there are currently thousands of organic pollutants in the environment, and presumably its concentration and impact is increasing (Dachs & Méjanelle 2010). The fate and transport of these pollutants in the environment is coupled to the organic carbon cycle. There is now much evidence that biogeochemical cycles play an important role on the transport, sinks and impact of these pollutants in the environment. This has been, in fact, the central focus of the research of Dr. Jordi Dachs, leader of the grup on “Global Change and Biogeochemistry” during the last decade. During the last years, a large amount of work has been performed following these lines of research in the Mediterranean Sea, and the Atlantic, Arctic and Southern ocean. The same objectives, the study of the organic carbon influence on pollutant cycle are now studied in continental ecosystems (lakes and soils). Currently, the research is extended to the other direction, indeed, to the study of how organic pollutants are affecting biogeochemical processes, mainly by its influence on carbon fluxes and the lowest levels of the trophic chain (phytoplankton and bacteria). The group, in addition, performs research on several other issues such as the exchange of organic matter between the atmosphere and the oceans and soils, the exchange of semi-volatile fractions of nutrients (organic nitrogen and phosphor), modeling of the dimethyl sulfur (DMS) cycle, the implications of marine aerosol on climate and biogeochemical cycles, and the multiple degradative processes as key drivers of the environmental sinks of organic compounds.
The group performs modeling studies, laboratory experiments and field work.

 

 

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CSIC15-EE-3218
CSIC15-EE-3373