Argument: Algae blooms do not sequester much carbon

Issue Report: Geoengineering, iron fertilization of algae blooms


“A scientific critique of oceanic iron fertilization as a climate change mitigation strategy”. Greenpeace Research Laboratories. September 2007 – “With the scientific discovery that phytoplankton growth can be stimulated by the addition of iron to HNLC waters, some have proposed that the ‘biological pump’ could be enhanced by fertilizing the oceans with iron, as a way of drawing down more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere into the oceans and, in so doing, helping mitigate climate change. However, such proposals are founded on an incomplete understanding and highly simplified interpretation of current scientific knowledge. They have not taken properly into account the results of the 12 mesoscale iron enrichment scientific studies carried out to date which suggest that the amount of carbon sequestered in this way would be very small, nor the fundamental influence of hydrodynamics and large uncertainties and indeterminacies in ecosystem response which those studies highlight.”