Benthic manganese fluxes along the Oregon-California continental shelf and slope

James McManus, William M. Berelson, Silke Severmann, Kenneth S. Johnson, Douglas E. Hammond, Moutusi Roy, Kenneth H. Coale

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations


Here we examine the factors that influence the manganese (Mn) benthic flux from eastern North Pacific marine sediments, with a primary emphasis on continental shelf locations off Oregon and California and studies that involve the use of in situ benthic chambers. Typical shelf-to-shallow margin (<~350m) sites have benthic Mn efflux rates that average ~8±5μmolm-2d-1. In contrast, for the Eel River continental shelf region the benthic Mn efflux can be an order of magnitude higher than other shelf settings with benthic effluxes exceeding ~50μmolm-2d-1. Based on prior work and some new results, continental margin and slope sites (350-~4000m) have benthic Mn efflux rates that average ~1±1μmolm-2d-1. The combination of the benthic flux and Mn solid-phase data, indicate that for the continental shelf off the Umpqua and Eel Rivers, approximately 15±10% of the total Mn that is delivered to the seafloor is remobilized. The compiled data set shows that the benthic Mn efflux co-varies with the organic carbon oxidation rate with a Mn to organic carbon oxidation (Cox) ratio of ~0.8mmol Mn mol-1. Although this ratio can be as high as ~5 for some Eel River sites, the generally close correspondence between Mn and organic carbon implies that the organic carbon oxidation rate exerts some primary control over the rate of the Mn efflux. The amount of organic carbon oxidized by Mn-oxides, however, represents a small fraction (i.e., generally <1%) of the total organic carbon oxidized in these seafloor sediments.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)71-85
Number of pages15
JournalContinental Shelf Research
StatePublished - Jul 15 2012

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Oceanography
  • Aquatic Science
  • Geology


  • California
  • Diagenesis
  • Flux
  • Manganese
  • Oregon
  • Sediments

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