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Impact of a decreasing sea ice cover on the vertical export of particulate organic carbon in the northern Laptev Sea, Siberian Arctic Ocean

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Abstract

[1] Long-term sediment traps were deployed from September 2005 to August 2007 in the northern Laptev Sea to assess the annual variability in vertical export of particulate organic carbon (POC). The second year of deployment coincided with the record low in Arctic summer ice extent reached in 2007 that resulted in an increase in marine primary production over the Siberian shelves. POC export fluxes increased during ice melt in 2007, leading to a ∼2-fold increase in annual POC export relative to 2005–2006 over the continental slope of the Laptev Sea. These results suggest that the continuous decrease of sea ice extent could sustain increased POC export in the northern Laptev Sea and adjacent seas, potentially altering marine ecosystem structure in the Siberian Arctic.

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