The vertical distribution of iodine has been examined in interstitial waters of sediment cores from the Peru Basin, Bauer Basin, Guatemala Basin and the East Pacific Rise and the sediments have been analyzed for iodine and organic carbon. Interstitial water profiles show a strong enrichment of iodine at the sediment surface relative to overlying sea water. This enrichment is much greater than would have been expected had all the iodine originated solely from the breakdown of newly sedimented plankton. This implies recycling of iodine in the region of the water-sediment interface with most of the upward diffusing iodine being rescavenged and a small fraction escaping to the deep sea. A flux equivalent to 1–5% of the diffusive flux from interstitial waters can account for an excess iodine anomaly previously described for deep Pacific waters.
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