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Trends in primary production in the California Current detected with satellite data

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Abstract

[1] Several ocean primary production algorithms using satellite data were evaluated on a large archive of net primary production (NPP) and chlorophyll-a (Chl-a) measurements collected by the California Cooperative Fisheries Investigations program in the California Current. The best algorithm matching in situ data was found by empirically adjusting the Behrenfeld-Falkowski Vertically Generalized Production Model. Satellite-derived time series of NPP were calculated for the California Current area. Significant increase in NPP and Chl-a annual peak levels, i.e., the “bloom magnitude,” were found along the coasts of the California Current as well as other major eastern boundary currents for the period of modern ocean color data (1997–2007). The reasons for this increase are not clear but are associated with various environmental conditions.

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