Export production in the central Arctic Ocean evaluated from phosphate deficits



[1] Primary productivity in the central Arctic Ocean has recently been reported as being much higher than earlier thought. If a significant fraction of this primary production were exported from the immediate surface region, present estimates of the carbon budget for the Arctic Ocean would have to be reassessed. Using the deficit of phosphate in the central Arctic Ocean, we show that the export production is very low, on an average less than 0.5 gC m−2 yr−1. This is at least an order of magnitude lower than the total production as measured or estimated from oxygen data, thus indicating extensive recycling of nutrients in the upper waters of the central Arctic Ocean and very little export production.