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Air–sea flux of CO2 in arctic coastal waters influenced by glacial melt water and sea ice

Authors

  • M.K. SEJR,

    Corresponding author
    1. National Environmental Research Institute, Aarhus University. Vejlsøvej 25, 8600 Silkeborg, Denmark
      National Environmental Research Institute, Aarhus University. Vejlsøvej 25, 8600 Silkeborg, Denmark.
      e-mail: mse@dmu.dk
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  • D. KRAUSE-JENSEN,

    1. National Environmental Research Institute, Aarhus University. Vejlsøvej 25, 8600 Silkeborg, Denmark
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  • S. RYSGAARD,

    1. Greenland Climate Research Centre (Co. Greenland Institute of Natural Resources), Kivioq 2, Box 570, 3900 Nuuk, Greenland
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  • L.L. SøRENSEN,

    1. National Environmental Research Institute, Aarhus University. Frederiksborgvej 399, 4000 Roskilde, Denmark
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  • P.B. CHRISTENSEN,

    1. National Environmental Research Institute, Aarhus University. Vejlsøvej 25, 8600 Silkeborg, Denmark
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  • R.N. GLUD

    1. Greenland Climate Research Centre (Co. Greenland Institute of Natural Resources), Kivioq 2, Box 570, 3900 Nuuk, Greenland
    2. Southern Danish University, Institute of Biology and Nordic Center for Earth Evolution (NordCee), Odense M, Denmark
    3. Scottish Association for Marine Science, Dunstaffnage Marine Laboratory, PA37 1QA, Dunbeg, Scotland
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National Environmental Research Institute, Aarhus University. Vejlsøvej 25, 8600 Silkeborg, Denmark.
e-mail: mse@dmu.dk

ABSTRACT

Annual air–sea exchange of CO2 in Young Sound, NE Greenland was estimated using pCO2 surface-water measurements during summer (2006–2009) and during an ice-covered winter 2008. All surface pCO2 values were below atmospheric levels indicating an uptake of atmospheric CO2. During sea ice formation, dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) content is reduced causing sea ice to be under saturated in CO2. Approximately 1% of the DIC forced out of growing sea ice was released into the atmosphere while the remaining 99% was exported to the underlying water column. Sea ice covered the fjord 9 months a year and thereby efficiently blocked air–sea CO2 exchange. During sea ice melt, dissolution of CaCO3 combined with primary production and strong stratification of the water column acted to lower surface-water pCO2 levels in the fjord. Also, a large input of glacial melt water containing geochemically reactive carbonate minerals may contribute to the low surface-water pCO2 levels. The average annual uptake of atmospheric CO2 was estimated at 2.7 mol CO2 m−2 yr−1 or 32 g C m−2 yr−1 for the study area, which is lower than estimates from the Greenland Sea. Variability in duration of sea ice cover caused significant year-to-year variation in annual gas exchange.

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