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Global and regional drivers of nutrient supply, primary production and CO2 drawdown in the changing Arctic Ocean

Artikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift
Författare J. E. Tremblay
Leif G Anderson
P. Matrai
P. Coupel
S. Belanger
C. Michel
M. Reigstad
Publicerad i Progress in Oceanography
Volym 139
Sidor 171-196
ISSN 0079-6611
Publiceringsår 2015
Publicerad vid Institutionen för kemi och molekylärbiologi
Sidor 171-196
Språk en
Länkar dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.pocean.2015.08...
Ämnesord subsurface chlorophyll maxima, phytoplankton community structure, sea-ice, beaufort sea, nitrogen-fixation, atmospheric co2, uptake, capacity, surface waters, greenland sea, canada basin, Oceanography
Ämneskategorier Oceanografi


The main environmental factors driving spatial patterns, variability and change in primary production (PP) in the Arctic Ocean are reviewed. While instantaneous PP rates are predominantly influenced by the local factors affecting light penetration through clouds, sea ice and water, net PP (NPP) at the annual scale is conditioned by a hierarchy of remote and local processes that affect nutrient supply and light availability in general. Nutrient supply sets spatial differences in realized or potential trophic status (i.e. oligotrophic or eutrophic), whereas light availability modulates PP within each regime. Horizontal nutrient supply through Atlantic and Pacific ocean gateways differ markedly, which is explained by their position at opposite ends of the global meridional overturning circulation and imbalanced nitrogen (N) cycling in the Pacific sector. Nutrient supply by rivers is locally important, but does not appear to sustain a major portion of overall pan-Arctic NPP so far. Horizontal nutrient inputs to the surface Arctic Ocean are eventually transferred to the halocline through winter convection and the decomposition of settling organic matter. The subsequent re-injection of these nutrients to the euphotic zone varies by two orders of magnitude across sectors, depending on the strength and persistence of the vertical stratification. Such differences in nutrient delivery are commensurate with those of PP and NPP rates. Widespread N deficiency in surface waters fosters the occurrence and seasonal persistence of subsurface layers of maximum chlorophyll a (SCM) and phytoplankton carbon biomass in several sectors. The contribution of these layers to NPP is possibly higher in the Arctic than in thermally-stratified waters of the subtropical gyres due to a combination of extreme acclimation to low light and a shallow nitracline in the former. The overall impacts of SCM layers on biogeochemical fluxes remain to be quantified directly, both regionally and at the pan-Arctic scale. While CO2 intake by the Arctic Ocean should respond positively to reduced sea-ice extent, which facilitates air-sea exchange, the negative influence of rising temperatures and runoff on CO2 solubility might counteract the positive effect of modest PP increases in seasonally open waters. Overall, this review shows that local changes in light availability resulting from reduced sea-ice is only one factor in the intricate web of local and remote drivers of PP and CO2 drawdown in the Arctic Ocean. Understanding and predicting change requires an integrated biogeochemical approach that connects the small Arctic Ocean to adjacent ones and adequately resolves vertical nutrient supply processes at regional and local scales. (C) 2015 Published by Elsevier Ltd.

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