JOURNAL OF GEOPHYSICAL RESEARCH, VOL. 110, C09S04, doi:10.1029/2004JC002671, 2005
Ken Caldeira (Carnegie Institution) and Michael E. Wickett (LL National Laboratory) have performed an experiment that uses ocean models to predict the changes in ocean chemistry due to carbon dioxide (CO2) absorption. In this study, simulations of CO2 are injected into “the deep ocean interior,” while criteria such as aragonite undersaturation, calcite undersaturation, and pH level are measured. For the emission of CO2, two different pathways are considered 1) century-scale SRES pathways and 2) pathways that release a certain amount of CO2 over several centuries.
Some of the main results compiled include the fact that 5,000 Pg C causes aragonite undersaturation in the majority of the ocean, while 10,000 Pg C produces calcite undersaturation as well. Simulations of the SRES pathways predict a global pH drop of about .3-.5 units by 2300. And also by the year 2300, CO2 emissions of 5,000 Pg C are predicted to produce a .8 drop in pH, while those of 20,000 Pg C will produce a 1.4 unit drop. Thus, the results and simulations show that the changes in ocean chemistry caused by CO2 injection (analogous to anthropogenic absorption) are biologically significant.