Atmospheric deposition of inorganic nutrients to the Western North Pacific Ocean

Min Woo Seok, Dongseon Kim, Geun Ha Park, Kitack Lee, Tae Hoon Kim, Jinyoung Jung, Kitae Kim, Ki Tae Park, Yeo Hun Kim, Ahra Mo, Seunghee Park, Young Ho Ko, Jeongwon Kang, Haryun Kim, Tae Wook Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


We evaluated the potential impacts of atmospheric deposition on marine productivity and inorganic carbon chemistry in the northwestern Pacific Ocean (8–39°N, 125–157°E). The nutrient concentration in atmospheric total suspended particles decreased exponentially with increasing distance from the closest land-mass (Asia), clearly revealing anthropogenic and terrestrial contributions. The predicted mean depositional fluxes of inorganic nitrogen were approximately 34 and 15 μmol m−2 d−1 to the west and east of 140°E, respectively, which were at least two orders of magnitude greater than the inorganic phosphorus flux. On average, atmospheric particulate deposition would support 3–4% of the net primary production along the surveyed tracks, which is equivalent to ~2% of the dissolved carbon increment caused by the penetration of anthropogenic CO2. Our observations generally fell within the ranges observed over the past 18 years, despite an increasing trend of atmospheric pollution in the source regions during the same period, which implies high temporal and spatial variabilities of atmospheric nutrient concentration in the study area. Continued atmospheric anthropogenic nitrogen deposition may alter the relative abundances of nitrogen and phosphorus.

Original languageEnglish
Article number148401
JournalScience of the Total Environment
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Nov 1


  • Air-mass backward trajectory
  • Dry deposition
  • Marine productivity
  • Total suspended particles

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution


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