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Nutrients From Below and From Above

The Benguela Current flows northwestward along the coast of South Africa and Namibia, and, because Earth rotates, surface waters are pushed offshore by a mechanism known as Ekman transport. Nutrient rich water wells up to replace the departing surface water, and this helps feed the phytoplankton that grow so vigorously in this region. Occasionally, dust plumes blow in from the continent as can be seen above. These plumes settle on the water and also contribute nutrients to further fuel phytoplankton growth.

The above image was collected by Landsat 8 on September 17, 2021. Click on it to get a larger version that extends up to the Namibia border.