Christopher Hunt

Christopher Hunt

Research Topic

Transfers of Carbon and Alkalinity from Terrestrial and Estuarine Sources to the Coastal Ocean

The marine carbonate system is expected to be impacted by increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide and subsequent acidification.  These effects are projected to be the most pronounced in the coastal ocean, an area of particular economic and environmental significance.  Some species- such as shellfish- may be especially sensitive to acidification and changes to carbonate chemistry.  However, our understanding of the changes to carbonate chemistry on short and long time scales in the coastal ocean is still underdeveloped, and the influences of inputs from terrestrial outflows are poorly understood.

Chris hopes to focus his research on the connection between terrestrial inputs and the coastal ocean.  In particular, he is interested in the influence of organic carbon inputs on acidity, alkalinity and overall carbonate chemistry.  The Gulf of Maine is especially fresh and poorly buffered against acidity, making this region particularly vulnerable to acidification.  Gulf of Maine rivers also tend to be quite acidic, and can exert dramatic influence on their estuaries and coastal receiving waters.  His research aims to quantify the inputs of inorganic and organic carbon to estuaries, and then track the transformations and further inputs or removals of these materials through estuaries to the coastal ocean.

Selected Presentations and Publications

Education

  • M.S., Chemical Oceanography, University of New Hampshire, May 2003
  • B.S., Chemistry, Trinity College, May 2000

Professional Positions

Research Scientist, Ocean Process Analysis Laboratory (Coastal Carbon Group), conducting investigations into the carbonate chemistry of the Gulf of Maine and regional estuary systems, University of New Hampshire, May 2004-present.

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