Science – Levin et al. (2023): Deep-sea impacts of climate interventions

Lisa A. Levin , Joan M. Alfaro-Lucas, Ana Colaço, Erik E. Cordes, Neil Craik, Roberto Danovaro, Henk-Jan Hoving, Jeroen Ingels, Nélia C. Mestre, Sarah Seabrook, Andrew R. Thurber, Chris Vivian, Moriaki Yasuhara IN: Science 379 (6636), pp. 978-98; (limited access)

Efforts to develop ocean-based climate interventions (OBCIs) to remove and sequester carbon dioxide (CO2), manage solar radiation, or produce renewable energy have accelerated. Questions have been raised about OBCI costs, governance, impacts, and effectiveness at scale, but limited attention has been given to ocean biogeochemistry and ecosystems and particularly to impacts on deepsea ecosystems (>200-m water depth), an ocean region that is understudied but fundamental for Earth’s healthy function. Here the authors discuss OBCIs that could affect deep-ocean ecosystems and their services, identify governance challenges, and highlight the need for an integrated research framework to help centralize consideration of deep-sea impacts in mitigation planning.