Where Do All the Phytoplankton Go?

The School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences Presents Dr. Greg Britten, MIT

Where Do All the Phytoplankton Go?

Approximately 50 gigatons of organic carbon are produced annually via marine primary producers (mainly phytoplankton) - roughly equal to the production of plant matter on land. But where does all the organic matter go? 

I track the fate of marine primary production via two pathways. The first is 'export' production where a fraction of primary production is exported vertically from the surface ocean and sequestered in the ocean interior. The second is the trophic pyramid where primary producers are processed through higher trophic levels, ultimately fueling global fisheries. These pathways have significant implications for human well-being and will be impacted by climate change. I discuss progress towards understanding these pathways and their trajectories into the future.  

Event Details


  • Thursday, October 6, 2022 - 11:00am to 12:00pm

Hybrid seminar - Virtual & ES&T, L1205



For More Information Contact

Dr. Taka Ito