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Non-conservative behavior of dissolved organic carbon across the Laptev and East Siberian Seas
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Applied Environmental Science (ITM).
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Applied Environmental Science (ITM).
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2010 (English)In: Global Biogeochemical Cycles, ISSN 0886-6236, E-ISSN 1944-9224, Vol. 24, GB4033- p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Climate change is expected to have a strong effect on the Eastern Siberian Arctic Shelf (ESAS) region, which includes 40% of the Arctic shelves and comprises the Laptev and East Siberian seas. The largest organic carbon pool, the dissolved organic carbon (DOC), may change significantly due to changes in both riverine inputs and transformation rates; however, the present DOC inventories and transformation patterns are poorly understood. Using samples from the International Siberian Shelf Study 2008, this study examines for the first time DOC removal in Arctic shelf waters with residence times that range from months to years. Removals of up to 10%–20% were found in the Lena River estuary, consistent with earlier studies in this area, where surface waters were shown to have a residence time of approximately 2 months. In contrast, the DOC concentrations showed a strong nonconservative pattern in areas with freshwater residence times of several years. The average losses of DOC were estimated to be 30%–50% during mixing along the shelf, corresponding to a first-order removal rate constant of 0.3 yr−1. These data provide the first observational evidence for losses of DOC in the Arctic shelf seas, and the calculated DOC deficit reflects DOC losses that are higher than recent model estimates for the region. Overall, a large proportion of riverine DOC is removed from the surface waters across the Arctic shelves. Such significant losses must be included in models of the carbon cycle for the Arctic Ocean, especially since the breakdown of terrestrial DOC to CO2 in Arctic shelf seas may constitute a positive feedback mechanism for Arctic climate warming. These data also provide a baseline for considering the effects of future changes in carbon fluxes, as the vast northern carbon-rich permafrost areas draining into the Arctic are affected by global warming.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2010. Vol. 24, GB4033- p.
National Category
Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Research subject
Applied Environmental Science
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-43437DOI: 10.1029/2010GB003834OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-43437DiVA: diva2:356772
Available from: 2010-10-14 Created: 2010-10-13 Last updated: 2017-12-12Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Terrestrial organic carbon dynamics in Arctic coastal areas: budgets and multiple stable isotope approaches
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Terrestrial organic carbon dynamics in Arctic coastal areas: budgets and multiple stable isotope approaches
2010 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Arctic rivers transport 31-42 Tg organic carbon (OC) each year to the Arctic Ocean, which is equal to 10% of the global riverine OC discharge. Since the Arctic Ocean only holds approximately 1% of the global ocean volume, the influence of terrestrially derived organic carbon (OCter) in the Arctic Ocean is relatively high. Despite the global importance of this region the behavior of the, by far largest fraction of the OCter, the dissolved organic carbon (DOC) in Arctic and sub-arctic estuaries is still a matter of debate. This thesis describes data originating from field cruises in Arctic and sub-arctic estuaries and coastal areas with the aim to improve the understanding of the fate of OCter in these areas, with specific focus on DOC. All presented studies indicate that DOCter and terrestrially derived particulate organic carbon (POCter) are subjected to substantial degradation in high-latitude estuaries, as shown by the non-conservative behavior of DOC in the East Siberian Arctic Shelf Seas (ESAS) (paper I) and the even more rapid degradation of POC in the same region (paper II). The removals of OCter in Arctic shelf seas were further supported by multiple isotope studies (paper III and IV), which showed that a use of 13C/12C in both OC and DIC, together with 34S/32S is a powerful tool to describe the sources and fate of OCter in estuaries and coastal seas. High-latitude estuaries play a key role in the coupling between terrestrial and marine carbon pools. In contrast to the general perception, this thesis shows that they are not only transportation areas for DOCter from rivers to the ocean, but are also active sites for transformation, degradation and sedimentation of DOCter, as well as for POCter. In a rapidly changing climate, the importance of these areas for the coupling between inorganic and organic carbon pools cannot be underestimated.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Department of Applied Environmental Science (ITM), 2010. 51 p.
Keyword
organic carbon, DOC, POC, multiple stable isotopes, Laptev Sea, East Siberian Sea, Lena River, Arctic, residence times, degradation
National Category
Earth and Related Environmental Sciences
Research subject
Applied Environmental Science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-43455 (URN)978-91-7447-119-9 (ISBN)
Public defence
2010-11-12, Nordenskiöldsalen, Geovetenskapens hus, Svante Arrhenius väg 12, Stockholm, 10:00 (English)
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Note

At the time of the doctoral defense, the following papers were unpublished and had a status as follows: Paper 1: In press. Paper 2: Submitted. Paper 4: Manuscript.

Available from: 2010-10-21 Created: 2010-10-14 Last updated: 2017-08-25Bibliographically approved

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Alling, VanjaSanchez-Garcia, LauraMörth, Carl-MagnusSokolov, AlexanderHumborg, ChristophGustafsson, Örjan
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