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Atmospheric deposition and impact of pollutants, key elements and nutrients on the open mediterranean sea (ADIOS)

Objective

ADIOS is a focussed pan-European study of the atmospheric deposition and impact of pollutants, key elements and nutrients on the Mediterranean open sea. The extent to which atmosphere represents an important pathway for various pollutants and natural substances from Europe and North Africa towards this ecologically sensitive marine environment, and subsequently affects its biogeochemistry remains largely unknown. The magnitude and quality of atmospheric deposition will be assessed by an atmospheric sampling network encompassing the whole basin, as well as by the extensive use of Sea WIFS data and dust transport-deposition modelling. Biogeochemical processes, levels and ecotoxicological effects induced by natural and anthropogenic aerosols will be examined, from surface down to the deep sediments, in two central sites of the Eastern and Western basins, using oceanographic surveys, moored instrumentation and 3D ecohydro dynamical modelling.
The actual outcome of the project can be summarised in the following way, with respect to the initial objectives:
1. Remote sensing and modelling of atmospheric inputs: better characterisation of natural and anthropogenic inputs at the scale of the entire Mediterranean basin; improved dust load maps and atmospheric transfer-deposition models; improved integration between the two complementary approaches;
2. Sampling and chemical characterisation of atmospheric inputs: better quantification and chemical characterisation of the levels and variability of atmospheric inputs of pollutants, key elements and nutrients over the entire basin; improved ground truth/remotely-sensed data relations;
3. Biogeochemical response of the open Mediterranean environment to atmospheric inputs: better understanding of effects nutrients on the biogeochemical processes of the open Mediterranean ecosystem in response to natural deposition events; increasing knowledge of pollutants impact and nutrients bioavailability; model outputs to assess atmospheric influence on N and P budgets under different input scenarios;
4. Transfer of pollutants and key elements through the water column: quantification of open ocean SPM and downward fluxes of pollutants and key elements; better understanding of the respective role of atmospheric and continental margin derived material in the transfer of key elements and pollutants towards the deep environment; model ouputs of pollutant transfer;
5. Accumulation and impact of pollutants and key elements in the deep benthic compartment: quantification of pollutant concentrations, inventories and historical fluxes to the deep Mediterranean sea floor; pollutant ecotoxicological impact on benthic biota. The various achievements of the project represent, first, a scientific innovation by the fact that the project was an integrated, multidisciplinary effort that took into account, for the first time in its entirety, the open Mediterraenan system, an almost terra incognita regarding ecosystem response to atmospheric deposition. Indeed, the most outstanding efforts developed by previous projects addressed the processes and effects of atmospheric deposition in a fragmented approach, were restricted to coastal Mediterranean areas and only considered a limited number of pollutants or specific processes. By addressing the distribution and fate of a coherent set of representative pollutants, key elements and nutrients within the different compartments of the marine ecosystem, from the atmosphere down to the deep sediments, ADIOS provides new data that largely extend our knowledge beyond the previous state. This includes now the effects induced by these substances on the biology and biogeochemistry of the marine ecosystem, and their ecotoxicological impact on the deep Mediterraenan biota.

The project also represents a significant strategic innovation due to the simultaneous implementation of complementary approaches to the problem of atmospheric deposition in the Mediterranean Sea: dedicated atmospheric and oceanic sampling networks, field cruises, remote sensing, modelling, laboratory experiments. Identical atmospheric stations were installed for the first time all over the Mediterranean basin, including northern Africa. They were set-up and run with the same methodologies and principles, allowing comparable basin-scale data sets. To determine the effects of these inputs, two experimental sites were defined in the centre of the Eastern and Western Mediterranean, in the most central area of each basin, supposedly clear of major interference from continental run-off. These sites were instrumented to an unprecedented level (a total of 6 mooring lines with 22 sediment trap-current meter pairs) and worked for a period of one year. Seasonal surveys of the water column were performed. Sediments were analysed to assess present and past (pre-industrial) status of contamination. Last, the effects triggered by a strong atmospheric input were studied through a dedicated "Fast Response Experiment". Third, methodological innovation was provided by the integration of numerical models into the workplan structure. Simulations were no longer considered as per se research activities. Instead, they have been integrated at various levels to attack realistic multidisciplinary problems. Several other methodological innovations were further implemented. Deposition events were determined and categorised using satellite technology (SeaWiFS), meteorological modelling, and field sampling. This allowed an extensive, still underway intercomparison of the different methods and, thus, their improvement. Models for atmospheric dust and particle transport in the sea were also improved and coupled to provide a better understanding on the impact of dust deposition on the water surface and subsequent dispersion in the water column.

Funding Scheme

CSC - Cost-sharing contracts

Coordinator

CENTRE NATIONAL DE LA RECHERCHE SCIENTIFIQUE
Address
Avenue De Villeneuve 52
66860 Perpignan
France

Participants (25)

AUTONOMOUS UNIVERSITY OF BARCELONA
Spain
Address
Edificio B
08193 Bellaterra
CENTRE NATIONAL DE LA RECHERCHE SCIENTIFIQUE
France
Address
Avenue De La Terrasse, Bftiment 12
91198 Gif Sur Yvette
CENTRE NATIONAL DE LA RECHERCHE SCIENTIFIQUE
France
Address
Quai De La Darse, Observatoire Océanologique
06238 Villefranche Sur Mer
CENTRE NATIONAL DE LA RECHERCHE SCIENTIFIQUE
France
Address
Antenne De Toulon, Zone Portuaire De Brégaillon
83507 La Seyne Sur Mer
CENTRE NATIONAL DE LA RECHERCHE SCIENTIFIQUE
France
Address
Avenue Edouard Belin 14
31400 Toulouse
CENTRE NATIONAL DE LA RECHERCHE SCIENTIFIQUE
France
Address
Avenue De Luminy 163, Campus De Luminy
13288 Marseille
COMMISSARIAT A L'ENERGIE ATOMIQUE
France
Address
Cnrs,orme Des Merisiers, Batiment 709
91191 Gif Sur Yvette
CONSORZIO NAZIONALE INTERUNIVERSITARIO PER LE SCIENZE DEL MARE
Italy
Address
Universita Di Ancona, Via Brecce Bianche
60131 Ancona
ECOLE NORMALE SUPERIEURE
France
Address
Rue D'ulm 46
75230 Paris
ISTITUTO NAZIONALE DI OCEANOGRAFIA E DI GEOFISICA SPERIMENTALE
Italy
Address
Borgo Grotta Gigante 42/C
34010 Trieste
MIDDLE EAST TECHNICAL UNIVERSITY
Turkey
Address

33731 Erdemli - Icel
NATIONAL AND KAPODISTRIAN UNIVERSITY OF ATHENS
Greece
Address
33,Panespistimioupolis Building Phys 5
15784 Zographos, Athens
UNIVERSITAT DE BARCELONA
Spain
Address
C/ Marti I Franques S/n
08028 Barcelona
UNIVERSITE ABDELAMALEK ESSAADI
Morocco
Address
Ancienne Route De L'aeroport
90000 Tanger
UNIVERSITE DE DROIT D'ECONOMIE ET DES SCIENCES D'AIX-MARSEILLE III
France
Address
Europole De L'arbois
13545 Aix-en-provence
UNIVERSITE DE LA MEDITERRANEE D'AIX-MARSEILLE II
France
Address
Antenne De Toulon, Zone Portuaire De Brégaillon
83507 La Seyne Sur Mer
UNIVERSITE DE NEUCHATEL
Switzerland
Address
11,Rue Emile Argand 11
2007 Neuchatel
UNIVERSITE DE TUNIS
Tunisia
Address
Campus Universitaire
1060 Tunis
UNIVERSITE PAUL SABATIER DE TOULOUSE III
France
Address
18,Avenue Edouard Belin 14,
31400 Toulouse
UNIVERSITE PIERRE ET MARIE CURIE - PARIS VI
France
Address
Place Jussieu, 4
75252 Paris
UNIVERSITY OF CRETE
Greece
Address
Knossos Avenue
71409 Iraklion
UNIVERSITY OF EDINBURGH
United Kingdom
Address
West Mains Road Kings Buildings
EH9 3JW Edinburgh
UNIVERSITY OF LANCASTER
United Kingdom
Address

LA1 4YQ Lancaster /High Bantham
UNIVERSITY OF THE AEGEAN
Greece
Address
17,Karantoni 17
81100 Mytilini
UNIVERSITÉ DE PERPIGNAN
France
Address
Avenue De Villeneuve 52
66860 Perpignan