Multiple interacting environmental drivers reduce the impact of solar UVR on primary productivity in Mediterranean lakes
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AuthorCabrerizo, Marco J.; Walter Helbling, E.; Villafañe, Virginia E.; Medina Sánchez, Juan Manuel; Carrillo Lechuga, Presentación
Cabrerizo, M. J., Helbling, E. W., Villafañe, V. E., Medina-Sánchez, J. M., & Carrillo, P. (2020). Multiple interacting environmental drivers reduce the impact of solar UVR on primary productivity in Mediterranean lakes. Scientific reports, 10(1), 1-11. [https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-76237-5]
SponsorshipMinisterio de Economía y Competividad (MINECO); European Union (EU) MICROSENSCGL2011-23681 METAS-CGL2015-67682-R; Medio Ambiente, Rural, y Marino PN2009/067; Junta de Andalucía CVI-02598 P09-RNM-5376; Fundación Playa Unión (Argentina); Juan de la Cierva-Formacion from the Ministerio de Ciencia, Innovación y Universidades FJCI2017-32318; Postdoctoral contract "Contrato Puente" from Plan Propio (FP7/2017) of the University of Granada; METAS project
Increases in rainfall, continental runoff, and atmospheric dust deposition are reducing water transparency in lakes worldwide (i.e. higher attenuation Kd). Also, ongoing alterations in multiple environmental drivers due to global change are unpredictably impacting phytoplankton responses and lakes functioning. Although both issues demand urgent research, it remains untested how the interplay between Kd and multiple interacting drivers affect primary productivity ( Pc). We manipulated four environmental drivers in an in situ experiment—quality of solar ultraviolet radiation (UVR), nutrient concentration (Nut), CO2 partial pressure ( CO2), and light regime (Mix)—to determine how the Pc of nine freshwater phytoplankton communities, found along a Kd gradient in Mediterranean ecosystems, changed as the number of interacting drivers increased. Our findings indicated that UVR was the dominant driver, its effect being between 3–60 times stronger, on average, than that of any other driver tested. Also, UVR had the largest difference in driver magnitude of all the treatments tested. A future UVR × CO2 × Mix × Nut scenario exerted a more inhibitory effect on Pc as the water column became darker. However, the magnitude of this synergistic effect was 40–60% lower than that exerted by double and triple interactions and by UVR acting independently. These results illustrate that although future global-change conditions could reduce Pc in Mediterranean lakes, multiple interacting drivers can temper the impact of a severely detrimental driver (i.e. UVR), particularly as the water column darkens.