Primary Productivity

Changes in primary productivity on land

Graphic thumbnail: changes in primary productivity on land

This map of Canada with ecozone+ boundaries shows the change in annual peak NDVI as a measure of primary productivity on land. Change is displayed as either significantly increasing productivity or significantly decreasing productivity between 1985 and 2006. All ecozones+ show areas of increasing productivity with 22% of Canada showing a significant increase. The largest increasing trends were found in regions of arctic tundra and taiga, alpine tundra, the Pacific coast, and the eastern Prairies. Only 0.5% of Canada showing a significant decrease in  few small areas scattered mainly through the western boreal forest, central British Columbia, and a small area in the Prairies.

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Primary production in Arctic lakes, Lost Pack Lake, Nunavut

Graphic thumbnail: primary production in Arctic lakes, Lost Pack Lake, Nunavut

This line graph displays the levels of chlorophyll a contained in the sediment of Lost Pack Lake, Nunavut. The change in chlorophyll a is plotted as the difference from the mean value, in milligrams of chlorophyll a per gram of sediment. From over 5,000 years ago to the late 19th century chlorophyll a levels remained stable, fluctuating slightly around and below the mean value (0.00 milligrams per gram). At the end of the 19th century levels of chlorophyll a began to increase very steeply, reaching approximately 0.06 milligrams per gram above the mean value by the early 2000s. An inset map shows the location of Lost Pack Lake, Nunavut, on Baffin Island.

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Marine primary production

Graphic thumbnail: marine primary production

This graph shows the change in marine primary production, measured as total chlorophyll, in milligrams per square metre of ocean, in the North Pacific ocean region, from 1908 to 2008. The average annual primary production values, plotted as points, are distributed widely. These values are overlain with a trend line showing an overall significant decline. Total chlorophyll declined approximately from 0.8 to 0.3 milligrams per square metre from 1908 to 2008. In the periods from 1908 to 1930 and from 2005 to 2008 the trend line is marked as being based on limited data and hence having lower confidence.

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