Journal cover Journal topic
Biogeosciences An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
© Author(s) 2009. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
16 Jan 2009
Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. It has been under review for the journal Biogeosciences (BG). The manuscript was not accepted for further review after discussion.
Carbon cycling in the Arctic Archipelago: the export of Pacific carbon to the North Atlantic
E. H. Shadwick1, T. Papakyriakou2, A. E. F. Prowe3, D. Leong1, S. A. Moore1, and H. Thomas1,4 1Department of Oceanography, Dalhousie University, Halifax NS, Canada
2Center for Earth Observation Science, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg MB, Canada
3Leibniz-Institut für Meereswissenschaften, IFM-GEOMAR, 24105 Kiel, Germany
4NSERC Canada Research Chair in Marine Biogeochemistry, Canada
Abstract. The Arctic Ocean is expected to be disproportionately sensitive to climatic changes, and is thought to be an area where such changes might be detected. The Arctic hydrological cycle is influenced by: runoff and precipitation, sea ice formation/melting, and the inflow of saline waters from Bering and Fram Straits and the Barents Sea Shelf. Pacific water is recognizable as intermediate salinity water, with high concentrations of dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC), flowing from the Arctic Ocean to the North Atlantic via the Canadian Arctic Archipelago. We present DIC data from an east-west section through the Archipelago, as part of the Canadian International Polar Year initiatives. The fractions of Pacific and Arctic Ocean waters leaving the Archipelago and entering Baffin Bay, and subsequently the North Atlantic, are computed. The eastward transport of carbon from the Pacific, via the Arctic, to the North Atlantic is estimated.

Altered mixing ratios of Pacific and freshwater in the Arctic Ocean have been recorded in recent decades. Any climatically driven alterations in the composition of waters leaving the Arctic Archipelago may have implications for anthropogenic CO2 uptake, and hence ocean acidification, in the subpolar and temperate North Atlantic.

Citation: Shadwick, E. H., Papakyriakou, T., Prowe, A. E. F., Leong, D., Moore, S. A., and Thomas, H.: Carbon cycling in the Arctic Archipelago: the export of Pacific carbon to the North Atlantic, Biogeosciences Discuss., 6, 971-994,, 2009.
E. H. Shadwick et al.
E. H. Shadwick et al.


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