AOS Faculty Profile
Professor, Ph.D. Columbia University
Address: 306A Sayre Hall
M44 Guyot Hall
Phone: (609) 258-6585
Email: jls at princeton.edu
Dr. Jorge L. Sarmiento is the George J. Magee Professor of Geoscience and Geological Engineering, Professor of Geosciences at Princeton University. He obtained his PhD at the Lamont-Doherty Geological Observatory of Columbia University in 1978, and then served as a post-doc at the Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory/NOAA in Princeton before joining the Princeton University faculty in 1980. He has published widely on the oceanic cycles of climatically important chemicals such as carbon dioxide, on the use of chemical tracers to study ocean circulation, and on the impact of climate change on ocean biogeochemistry. He has participated in the scientific planning and execution of many of the large-scale multi-institutional and international oceanographic biogeochemical and tracer programs of the last two decades. He was Director of Princeton's Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences Program from 1980 to 1990 and 2006 to the present, and is Director of the Cooperative Institute for Climate Science. He has served on the editorial board of multiple journals and as editor of Global Biogeochemical Cycles. He is a Fellow of the American Geophysical Union and the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
Statement of Research
Ocean Biogeochemistry and Circulation
My research aims to improve our understanding of the fundamental processes controlling the ocean-atmosphere distribution of climatically important chemicals, in particular the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide, and how these have changed through time. The research covers a wide span of processes such as ocean chemistry, biology, and circulation in the past, present and projected future and includes the effects of anthropogenic perturbations. The approaches I use include analysis of a variety of observations, many of which we obtain from oceanographic cruises, as well as the development of sophisticated process models to incorporate in global general circulation models of both the ocean and atmosphere.
For the past decade, the major focus of my research has been on the fate of carbon dioxide emitted to the atmosphere by fossil fuel burning and changes in land use. My group and I have developed general circulation models of the ocean constrained with tracers of ocean circulation and oceanic observations of dissolved inorganic carbon to estimate uptake of anthropogenic CO2. We have used atmospheric general circulation models constrained with atmospheric CO2 observations to estimate transport of CO2 in the atmosphere and carbon uptake by the terrestrial biosphere as well as the ocean. We are working in conjunction with ocean biologists to develop ecosystem models for predicting photosynthetic uptake of carbon in the surface ocean, as well as remineralization of organic matter in the deep ocean. We have used coupled atmosphere-ocean models of climate warming to study the impact of anthropogenic climate warming on the ocean carbon cycle, and are presently engaged in a major collaborative effort to develop a new earth system model that will predict climate change and the global carbon cycle simultaneously. We have participated in the scientific planning and execution of most of the large-scale oceanic observational programs of the last two decades and have contributed to national and international planning for studies of the global carbon cycle.
Some Recent Publications:
Frölicher, T. L., M. Winton, and J. L. Sarmiento, 2013, Continued global warming after CO2 emissions stoppage, Nature Climate Change, 3, 1–5, doi:10.1038/nclimate2060.
Kearney, K. A., C. Stock, and J. L. Sarmiento, 2013. Amplification and attenuation of increased primary production in a marine food web, Mar Ecol Prog Ser, 491, 1–14, doi:10.3354/meps10484.
Cheung, W. W. L., D. Pauly, and J. L. Sarmiento, 2013. How to make progress in projecting climate change impacts, ICES Journal of Marine Science, 70(6), 1069–1074, doi:10.1093/icesjms/fst133.
Pinsky, M. L., B. Worm, M. J. Fogarty, J. L. Sarmiento, and S. A. Levin, 2013. Marine Taxa Track Local Climate Velocities, SCIENCE , 341 (6151), 1239–1242, doi:10.1126/science.1239352.
Palter, J. B., I. Marinov, J. L. Sarmiento, and N. Gruber, 2013. Large-scale, persistent nutrient fronts of the world ocean: impacts on biogeochemistry. In: I.M. Belkin (ed.), Chemical Oceanography of Frontal Zones, Hdb Env Chem, DOI 10.1007/698_2013_241, Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013.
Österblom, H., A. Merrie, M. Metian, W. J. Boonstra, T. Blenckner, J. Watson, R. Rykaczewski, Y. Ota, J. L. Sarmiento, V. Christensen, S. Birnbaum, B. G. Gustavsson, C. Humborg, C.-M. Mörth, B. Müeller-Karulis, M. Schlüter, M. T. Tomczak, M. Troell, and C. Folke, 2013. Social-ecological scenarios for marine systems. BioScience, 63: 735–744, doi:10.1525/bio.2013.63.9.9.
Bianchi, D., C. Stock, E. D. Galbraith, and J. L. Sarmiento, 2013. Diel vertical migration: Ecological controls and impacts on the biological pump in a one-dimensional ocean model. Global Biogeochem. Cycles, 27: 1-14, DOI:10.1002/gbc.20031.
Plancherel, Y., K. B. Rodgers, R. M. Key, A. R. Jacobson, and J. L. Sarmiento, 2013. Role of regression model selection and station distribution on the estimation of oceanic anthropogenic carbon change by eMLR. Biogeosciences 10: 4801-4831, DOI:10.5194/bg-10-4801-2013.
Kwon, E. Y., S. Downes, J. L. Sarmiento, R. Farneti, and C. Deutsch, 2013. Role of the seasonal cycle in the subduction rates of upper-Southern Ocean waters. J. Phys. Oceanogr., 43: 1096-1113, DOI: 10.1175/JPO-D-12-060.1.
Winton, M., S. M. Griffies, B. L. Samuels, J. L. Sarmiento, and T. L. Frölicher, 2013. Connecting Changing Ocean Circulation with Changing Climate. J. Climate , 26 , 2268–2278, doi:10.1175/JCLI-D-12-00296.1.
Siegel, D. A., M. J. Behrenfeld, S. Maritorena, C. R. McClain, D. Antoine, S. W. Bailey, P. S. Bontempi, E. S. Boss, H. M. Dierssen, S. C. Doney, R. E. Eplee, Jr., R. H. Evans, G. C. Feldman, E. Fields, B. A. Franz, N. A. Kuring, C. Mengelt, N. B. Nelson, F. S. Patt, W. S. Robinson, J. L. Sarmiento, C. M. Swan, P. J. Werdell, T. K. Westberry, J. G. Wilding, J. A. Yoder, 2013. Regional to global assessments of phytoplankton dynamics from the SeaWiFS mission, Remote Sensing of Environment , 135 , 1–15, doi:10.1016/j.rse.2013.03.025.
Frölicher, T. L., F. Joos, C. C. Raible, and J. L. Sarmiento, 2013. Atmospheric CO2 response to volcanic eruptions: The role of ENSO, season, and variability, Global Biogeochem. Cycles , 27: 239-251, doi:10.1002/gbc.20028.
Beaulieu, C., S. A. Henson, J. L. Sarmiento, J. P. Dunne, S. C. Doney, R. R. Rykaczewski, and L. Bopp, 2013. Factors challenging our ability to detect long-term trends in ocean chlorophyll, Biogeosciences , 10: 2711–2724, doi:10.5194/bg-10-2711-2013.