Carbon fluxes across boundaries in the pacific arctic region in a changing environment

Wei Jun Cai, Nicholas R. Bates, Laodong Guo, Leif G. Anderson, Jeremy T. Mathis, Rik Wanninkhof, Dennis A Hansell, Liqi Chen, Igor P. Semiletov

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

9 Scopus citations


While the infl ow of dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) from the Pacific Ocean is relatively well quantifi ed, the intermittent input from the East Siberian Sea (ESS) is not. The export fl ux to the Atlantic Ocean has unknown uncertainty due to a paucity of DIC data from the Canadian Archipelago. Within the region, the Chukchi Sea is the dominant site for atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) uptake, while the Beaufort Sea and the Canadian Archipelago take-up much less CO2with latter potentially a weak source of CO2during certain times of the year. Additionally, the ESS shelf is a net source of CO2. Summertime CO2uptake capacity in the deep Canada Basin has increased greatly recently as sea-ice retreat progresses rapidly. The region appears to export more DIC than it receives by a small amount, suggesting that it is probably weakly net heterotrophic. In addition to labile organic carbon (OC) produced in the productive marginal seas, some riverine and coastal erosionderived OC likely is also recycled. As warming progresses, the Arctic Ocean may produce and export more DIC. Whether this change will turn the Arctic Ocean into a weaker CO2sink or even a CO2source for the atmosphere is uncertain and dependent on multiple factors that control the rate of surface water CO2increase versus the rate of the atmospheric CO2increase.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationThe Pacific Arctic Region: Ecosystem Status and Trends in a Rapidly Changing Environment
PublisherSpringer Netherlands
Number of pages24
ISBN (Print)9789401788632, 9789401788625
StatePublished - Jan 1 2014


  • Air-sea COflux
  • Arctic Ocean
  • Carbon cycle
  • DOC and DIC fl uxes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)


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