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Rain-derived particles and CDOM distribution along the east coast of New Caledonia
Author(s): Cécile Dupouy; Guillaume Wattelez; Jérôme Lefèvre; Farid Juillot; Rémi Andréoli; Didier Lille; Hiroshi Murakami; Rüdiger Röttgers; Robert Frouin
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Paper Abstract

Shortly after strong rains or tropical storms, chlorophyll-a concentration (Chla), turbidity, and colored dissolved organic matter (CDOM) in the lagoon of New Caledonia may be tripled. This effect is visible as far as 50 km offshore. The Eastern Coast of New Caledonia is more impacted than the Western Coast because of its geomorphological structure. Higher frequency and intensity of the rains, and the dominance of highly erosive lateritic formations resulted from deep weathering of ultramafic rocks. At the deeper parts of the lagoon (> 20 m), increases of Chla, turbidity, and CDOM absorption can be detected by satellite imagery with their plumes extending off shore as a result of wind-driven circulation in the lagoon. Such increases agree with the oceanographic measurements of Chla, absorption, backscattering, turbidity and CDOM during extensive cruises. Satellite and in situ measurements allow tracing of particulates and dissolved matter in lagoon waters and up to the coral barrier reefs. The largest particles settle at a short distance from the coast influencing the sediments not far from the river outflows. Fine particles (< 10 μm), colloids and/or CDOM are exported to reefs where they can be beneficial through protection from high UV illumination (colloids) and feeding of the corals (CDOM). Phytoplankton and associated detritus, when not dominated by toxic filamentous cyanobacteria, can also feed coral reefs. Finally, the export of fine particles associated with colloids and/or CDOM can also contribute to the distribution of trace metals to the barrier reefs of the East Coast and offshore. The question whether this input of trace metals has an overall positive or negative effect on the coral reefs is still under debate.

Paper Details

Date Published: 30 October 2018
PDF: 11 pages
Proc. SPIE 10778, Remote Sensing of the Open and Coastal Ocean and Inland Waters, 107780K (30 October 2018); doi: 10.1117/12.2501807
Show Author Affiliations
Cécile Dupouy, l'Institut Méditerranéen d'Océanologie (France)
Guillaume Wattelez, l'Institut Méditerranéen d'Océanologie (France)
Jérôme Lefèvre, LEGOS (France)
Farid Juillot, Univ. Pierre and Marie Curie (France)
Rémi Andréoli, JBluecham SAS (France)
Didier Lille, JBluecham SAS (France)
Hiroshi Murakami, Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (Japan)
Rüdiger Röttgers, Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht (Germany)
Robert Frouin, Scripps Institution of Oceanography (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 10778:
Remote Sensing of the Open and Coastal Ocean and Inland Waters
Robert J. Frouin; Hiroshi Murakami, Editor(s)

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