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Interannual-to-decadal Variability of North Atlantic Air-sea Co2 Fluxes : Volume 2, Issue 4 (30/08/2005)

By Raynaud, S.

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Book Id: WPLBN0004020919
Format Type: PDF Article :
File Size: Pages 36
Reproduction Date: 2015

Title: Interannual-to-decadal Variability of North Atlantic Air-sea Co2 Fluxes : Volume 2, Issue 4 (30/08/2005)  
Author: Raynaud, S.
Volume: Vol. 2, Issue 4
Language: English
Subject: Science, Ocean, Science
Collections: Periodicals: Journal and Magazine Collection, Copernicus GmbH
Publication Date:
Publisher: Copernicus Gmbh, Göttingen, Germany
Member Page: Copernicus Publications


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Yiou, P., Rodgers, K. B., Aumont, O., Raynaud, S., & Orr, J. C. (2005). Interannual-to-decadal Variability of North Atlantic Air-sea Co2 Fluxes : Volume 2, Issue 4 (30/08/2005). Retrieved from

Description: Laboratoire des Sciences du Climat et de l’Environnement, CEA, Gif-sur-Yvette, France. The magnitude of the interannual variability of North Atlantic air-sea CO2 fluxes remains uncertain. Fluxes inferred from atmospheric inversions have large variability, whereas those simulated by ocean models have small variability. Part of the difference is that unlike typical atmospheric inversions, ocean models come with spatial resolution at the sub-basin scale.

Here we explore sub-basin-scale spatiotemporal variability in the North Atlantic in one ocean model in order to better understand why the the North Atlantic basin may well contribute very little to the global variability of air-sea CO2 flux.

We made two simulations with a biogeochemical model coupled to a global ocean general circulation model (OGCM), which itself was forced by 55-year NCEP reanalysis fields. In the first simulation, atmospheric CO2 was maintained at the preindustrial level (278 ppmv); in the second simulation, atmospheric CO2 followed the observed increase. Simulated air-sea CO2 fluxes and associated variables were analysed with a statistical tool known as multichannel singular spectrum analysis (MSSA).

We found that the subtropical gyre is not the largest contributor to the overall, basin-wide variability, in contrast to previous suggestions. The subpolar gyre and the inter-gyre region (the transition area between subpolar and subtropical gyres) also contribute with multipolar anomalies at multiple frequencies: these tend to cancel one another in terms of the basin-wide air-sea CO2 flux. We found a strong correlation between the air-sea CO2 fluxes and the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO), but only if one takes into account time lags as does MSSA (maximum r=0.64 for lags between 1 and 3 years). The contribution of anthropogenic CO2 to total variability was negligible at interannual time scales, whereas at the decadal (13-year) time scale, it increased variability by 30%.

Interannual-to-decadal variability of North Atlantic air-sea CO2 fluxes


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