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View Diary: News from the Arctic: 21 June 2012 (21 comments)

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  •  Did you see this story (7+ / 0-)

    about giant algae blooms under the thin ice? A snip about a study in Science:

    A group of U.S. scientists has discovered enormous blooms of algae growing in an area of the Arctic Ocean that they never thought could support the phytoplankton: below the sea ice.

    A microscopic view of phytoplankton found in the Chukchi Sea at a depth of 1.5 metres below the surface of the sea ice. A microscopic view of phytoplankton found in the Chukchi Sea at a depth of 1.5 metres below the surface of the sea ice. (William Balch)

    The discovery was a shock because living organisms don't usually survive underneath the ice pack that covers parts of the Arctic Ocean for much of the year and blocks out the light needed to sustain life.

    "Typically, what we find when we sample the ice is that occasionally, there's things inside the ice, but there's almost no biology below the ice," Arrigo explained in a separate interview on the website of the journal Science, where his team's findings were published last week.

    "The ice is a real effective barrier to light, and, generally, things just can't grow underneath it."

    http://www.cbc.ca/...

    Often, I am reading above my head on these matters. Even so, I know these changes are important and could be life-threatening. Thanks for helping educate me!

    "Let each unique song be sung and the spell of differentiation be broken" - Winter Rabbit

    by cotterperson on Thu Jun 21, 2012 at 11:14:33 AM PDT

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