Project GENUS: Geochemistry and Ecology of the Namibian Upwelling System

The Benguela upwelling system off the coast of Namibia is one of the richest marine ecosystems on earth. The cold Benguela current draws nutrient-laden seawater from the deep ocean to the surface, which in turn replenishes the fertility of the inshore waters where high primary production rates nourish the entire ecosystem. Due to the short food chain external and internal changes have a direct impact on the entire Benguela region.

The research project GENUS is an international network of research institutes and aims to clarify and model relationships between climate change, ocean circulation, biogeochemical cycles, and ecosystem structure in this large marine ecosystem.

GenusPodcast in english

Universität Hamburg
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GENUS (Geochemistry and Ecology of the Namibian Upwelling System) aims to clarify relationships between climate change, biogeochemical cycles, and ecosystem structure in the large marine ecosystem of the northern Benguela/Namibian Coast (sout-west Africa). The coastal upwelling system has high seasonal and interannual variability in atmospheric forcing, in properties of water masses on the shelf offshore the Republic of Namibia, and in oxygen supply and demand on the shelf. In consequence, concentrations and ratios of nutrients in upwelling water and their CO2-content have steep gradients in space and time. In the past, significant and economically severe changes in ecosystem structure have occurred which are in part attributed to changes in physical forcing, translated to the ecosystem by oxygen dynamics.

The GENUS project is funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and is an endorsed project of the Integrated Marine Biogeochemistry and Ecosystem Research (IMBER)

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