Major pathways

Today's prevailing view is that there are only two dominating microbial processes, i.e. bacterial nitrification and bacterial denitrification, during which oceanic N2O is formed either as a by-product or as an intermediate (Figures 3.3 and 3.4). The global budget of oceanic N2O sources and sinks given in Bange and Andreae (1999) indicates that about 35 per cent of the oceanic N2O is produced during denitrification, with the rest resulting from nitrification.

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