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Impact of saltwater inflows on phosphorus cycling and eutrophication in the Baltic Sea: a 3D model study
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Meteorology . Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute, Sweden.
2014 (English)In: Tellus. Series A, Dynamic meteorology and oceanography, ISSN 0280-6495, E-ISSN 1600-0870, Vol. 66, 23985- p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The impact of dense saltwater inflows on the phosphorus dynamics in the Baltic Sea is studied from tracer experiments with a three-dimensional physical model. Model simulations showed that the coasts of the North West Gotland Basin and the Gulf of Finland, the Estonian coast in the East Gotland Basin are regions where tracers from below the halocline are primarily lifted up above the halocline. After 1 yr tracers are accumulated at the surface along the Swedish east coast and at the western and southern sides of Gotland. Elevated concentrations are also found east and southeast of Gotland, in the northern Bornholm Basin and in the central parts of the East Gotland Basin. The annual supplies of phosphorus from the deeper waters to the productive surface layers are estimated to be of the same order of magnitude as the waterborne inputs of phosphorus to the entire Baltic Sea. The model results suggest that regionally the impact of these nutrients may be quite large, and the largest regional increases in surface concentrations are found after large inflows. However, the overall direct impact of major Baltic inflows on the annual uplift of nutrients from below the halocline to the surface waters is small because vertical transports are comparably large also during periods without major inflows. Our model results suggest that phosphorus released from the sediments between 60 and 100 m depth in the East Gotland Basin contributes to the eutrophication, especially in the coastal regions of the eastern Baltic Proper.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2014. Vol. 66, 23985- p.
Keyword [en]
Phosphorus, eutrophication, saltwater inflows, biogeochemistry, Baltic Sea, numerical modelling
National Category
Earth and Related Environmental Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-108019DOI: 10.3402/tellusa.v66.23985ISI: 000341106600001OAI: diva2:753436


Available from: 2014-10-07 Created: 2014-10-06 Last updated: 2014-10-07Bibliographically approved

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Meier, H. E. Markus
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