Coastal marine uptake of CO2 around Greenland

The uptake rates of atmospheric CO2 in the Nordic Seas, and particularly the shelf waters around Greenland, are among the highest in the world’s oceans. The driving factors behind the air-sea exchange of CO2 in open waters are the difference between the partial pressure of CO2 (pCO2) in the atmosphere and the surface waters, leading to an uptake in areas where the pCO2 of surface waters is lower. Because the coastal area of Greenland is very sensitive to climate change, and because it takes up more CO2 relative to other marine areas, a realistic estimate of the exchange rates is crucial in order to obtain reliable assessments of the CO2 uptake by the Greenlandic coastal area. The results from present study reveal the importance of a diminishing sea ice cover; and it is clear that the wind climate is essential to the surface uptake of CO2.