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Progress in Oceanography 82 2009 137 147 Contents lists available at ScienceDirect Progress in Oceanography journal homepage www elsevier com locate pocean Coastal phytoplankton blooms in the Southern California Bight Hey Jin Kim a b Arthur J Miller a John McGowan a Melissa L Carter a a b Scripps Institution of Oceanography University of California San Diego 9500 Gilman Drive La Jolla CA 92093 United States Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute 7700 Sandholdt Road Moss Landing CA 95039 United States a r t i c l e i n f o Article history Received 19 December 2007 Received in revised form 6 May 2009 Accepted 8 May 2009 Available online 19 May 2009 a b s t r a c t Surface chlorophyll CHL measured at the Scripps Pier in the Southern California Bight SCB for 18 years 1983 2000 reveals that the spring bloom occurs with irregular timing and intensity each year unlike sea surface temperature SST which is dominated by a regular seasonal cycle In the 1990s the spring bloom occurred earlier in the year and with larger amplitudes compared to those of the 1980s Seasonal anomalies of the Pier CHL have no signi cant correlation with local winds local SST or upwelling index which implies that classical coastal upwelling is not directly responsible for driving chlorophyll variations in nearshore SCB The annual mean Pier CHL exhibits an increasing trend whereas the Pier SST has no evident concomitant trend during the CHL observation period The interannual variation of the Pier CHL is not correlated with tropical El Ni o or La Ni a conditions over the entire observing period However the Pier CHL was signi cantly in uenced by El Nino Southern Oscillation during the 1997 1998 El Ni o and 1998 1999 La Ni a transition period The Pier CHL is highly coherent at long periods 3 7 years with nearby offshore in situ surface CHL at the CalCOFI California Cooperative Fisheries Investigations station 93 27 2009 Elsevier Ltd All rights reserved 1 Introduction Coastal algal blooms have been

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