Evaluation of Data-Based Estimates of Anthropogenic Carbon in the Arctic Ocean

Terhaar, J., Tanhua, T., Stöven, T., Orr, J. C., & Bopp, L. (2020). Evaluation of Data-Based Estimates of Anthropogenic Carbon in the Arctic Ocean. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 125(6), e2020JC016124. https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.1029/2020JC016124

Summary:

The Arctic Ocean is particularly vulnerable to ocean acidification, a process that is mainly driven by the uptake of anthropogenic carbon (Cant) from the atmosphere. Although Cant concentrations cannot be measured directly in the ocean, they have been estimated using data‐based methods and as a result, the total amount of Cant in the Arctic Ocean in 2005 was 8% higher and was estimated to be 3.3 ± 0.3 Pg C. In this study the authors estimated that all Arctic waters, from surface to depth, would become corrosive to aragonite by the middle of the next century even if atmospheric CO2 could be stabilized at 540 ppm.

Policy relevant message:

All Arctic waters, from surface to depth, will become corrosive to essential chemical carbonic species by the middle of the next century even if atmospheric CO2 could be stabilized at 540 ppm (>416 ppm as of February 20211).

1 https://www.esrl.noaa.gov/gmd/ccgg/trends/