Dissolved inorganic carbon isotopic composition of the Gulf of Mexico deep-water masses.

Thursday, 18 December 2014
José Gerardo Quintanilla-Terminel1, Juan Carlos Herguera1, Vicente Ferreira-Bartrina1, José Martín Hernández-Ayón2 and Víctor Camacho-Ibar2, (1)CICESE National Center for Scientific Research and Higher Education of Mexico, Ensenada, Mexico, (2)Autonomous University of Baja California- UABC, Instituto de Investigaciones Oceanológicas, Ensenada, Mexico
This study provides new data for the establishment of a carbon biogeochemical dynamics baseline in the deep Gulf of Mexico (GM) based on carbon isotopes in dissolved inorganic carbon. Water samples from 40 deep-water stations south of 25˚N were collected during XIXIMI-2 cruise, July 2011, aboard BO/Justo Sierra. Vertical profiles of temperature, salinity and dissolved oxygen (DO) were further measured in each station. In the Stable Isotopes Laboratory at CICESE we determined the carbon isotopic composition of the dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) (δ13CDIC). Remarkably, density, DO and δ13CCID profiles showed a clear difference between the Loop current and the deep-waters of the GM south of 25˚N. We found the following average δ13CCID values in the Loop current and in the deep-waters of the Gulf: subtropical underwater (SUW): 0.73±0.06‰ and 0.86±0.04‰; 18 degree water (18W): 0.76 ± 0.08‰ and 0.58± 0.06‰; North Atlantic central water (NACW): 0.77 ± 0.05‰ and 0.71 ± 0.09‰; South Atlantic central water (SACW): 0.80 ± 0.08‰ and 0.77 ± 0.07‰; Antartic intermediate water (AAIW): 1.00 ± 0.06‰ and 0.90 ± 0.08‰; North Atlantic deep water (NADW): 1.03 ± 0.06‰ and 1.01 ± 0.10‰. We will discuss how the biological component, δ13CCID-BIO, of subsurface water masses match very closely the apparent oxygen utilization relation described by Kroopnick, 1985, with the exception of SUW, and as a consequence the 18W is probably the water mass most affected by organic carbon remineralization processes in the GM south of 25˚N. We further show how these waters seem to store a larger proportion of anthropogenic carbon than the deeper water masses.