Global Ocean Storage of Anthropogenic Carbon

1. Introduction

GOSAC is a 3-year project (1998-2000) co-funded by GOSAC aims to improve understanding of the ocean's role in the global carbon cycle via comparison of ocean carbon-cycle models. GOSAC will help speed the development of these models which are used to test and compare paradigms of how the ocean's carbon-cycle operates. With its diverse group of models, GOSAC will also provide uncertainty estimates to accompany model predictions.

GOSAC has three primary goals:

  1. Objective 1: to better quantify past, present, and future CO2 uptake by the ocean, which is limited by relatively slow natural processes;
  2. Objective 2: to assess global aspects of the proposal which offers to artificially accelerate ocean storage of CO2 by diverting CO2 emissions from fossil-fuel fired power plants directly into the deep ocean, thereby short-circuiting the natural process; and
  3. Objective 3: to guarantee that predictions stemming from the first two objectives are reasonable by paying close attention to model evaluation.

2. How does GOSAC fit in?

GOSAC-EC funds seven European modeling groups to provide output and do analysis for OCMIP, i.e., objectives (1) and (3). GOSAC-EC also provides support for the same seven European participants to contribute model output for objective 2. GOSAC-IEAGHG will support analysis for objective (2), for modeling groups within GOSAC-EC as well as other interested OCMIP modeling groups.

OCMIP is an IGBP project, uniting efforts between GAIM (Global Analysis Interpretation and Modeling Task Team) and JGOFS (Joint Global Ocean Flux Study). OCMIP also focuses on Objectives 1 and 3, just as does GOSAC-EC. The latter offers the support necessary for the 7 European modeling groups to participate fully in OCMIP. Non-European OCMIP participants include 4 model groups from the U.S., 2 modeling groups from Japan, and 1 model group from Australia. The U.S. OCMIP project has been funded by the U.S. JGOFS Synthesis and Modeling Project, which is sponsored by NASA. Both U.S. OCMIP and GOSAC-EC are funded for the same objectives and the same duration. Both form OCMIP, along with the Japanese and Australian members.