VILLAFAÑE virginia Estela
Multiple interacting environmental drivers reduce the impact of solar UVR on primary productivity in Mediterranean lakes
CABRERIZO, MARCO J.; HELBLING, E. WALTER; VILLAFAÑE, VIRGINIA E.; MEDINA-SÁNCHEZ, JUAN M.; CARRILLO, PRESENTACIÓN
Año: 2020 vol. 10
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.