Modulation of the North Atlantic deoxygenation by the slowdown of the nutrient stream

Tagklis, Filippos; Ito, Takamitsu; Bracco, Annalisa

Western boundary currents act as transport pathways for nutrient-rich waters from low to high latitudes (nutrient streams) and are responsible for maintaining midlatitude and high-latitude productivity in the North Atlantic and North Pacific. This study investigates the centennial oxygen (inline-formulaO2) and nutrient changes over the Northern Hemisphere in the context of the projected warming and general weakening of the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC) in a subset of Earth system models included in the CMIP5 catalogue. In all models examined, the Atlantic warms faster than the Pacific Ocean, resulting in a greater basin-scale solubility decrease. However, this thermodynamic tendency is compensated by changes in the biologically driven inline-formulaO2 consumption which dominates the overall inline-formulaO2 budget. These changes are linked to the slowdown of the nutrient stream in this basin, in response to the AMOC weakening. The North Atlantic resists the warming-induced deoxygenation due to the weakened biological carbon export and remineralization, leading to higher inline-formulaO2 levels. Conversely, the projected nutrient stream and macronutrient inventory in the North Pacific remain nearly unchanged.

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Tagklis, Filippos / Ito, Takamitsu / Bracco, Annalisa: Modulation of the North Atlantic deoxygenation by the slowdown of the nutrient stream. 2020. Copernicus Publications.

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Rechteinhaber: Filippos Tagklis et al.

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