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Simulated halocline variability in the Baltic Sea and its impact on hypoxia during 1961-2007
SMHI, Research Department, Oceanography.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-1068-746X
2013 (English)In: JOURNAL OF GEOPHYSICAL RESEARCH-OCEANS, ISSN 2169-9275, Vol. 118, no 12, 6982-7000 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Salinity and halocline depth variations in the Baltic Sea during 1961-2007 are studied using a three-dimensional ocean circulation model. Significant interannual and interdecadal variations in the halocline depth are found, together with distinct periods characterized either by shallow (1970-1975) or deep halocline (1990-1995). The model simulation indicates that the mean top layer salinity in the Baltic Sea is mainly controlled by the accumulated river runoff, while the mean below halocline salinity in the Baltic proper (which comprises Bornholm and Gotland basins) is more dependent on the low-pass filtered zonal wind stress, with cutoff period of 4 years, henceforth called the mean zonal wind stress. The halocline depth and stratification strength in the Baltic Sea are significantly affected by the mean zonal wind stress, while the impact of runoff is smaller. The ventilation of the halocline from bottom layers is stronger during the shallow and from surface layers during the deep halocline period. Due to changes in ventilation variations in halocline depth systematically affect bottom oxygen concentrations on seasonal and decadal, but not on interannual time scales. For instance, a deeper halocline reduces hypoxic (oxygen concentration in bottom water below 2 mL/L) and anoxic (anoxic conditions in bottom water) areas and increases the bottom oxygen concentrations in the Gulf of Finland but decreases them in the deeper parts of the Baltic proper. Model results suggest that due to undersampling during 1961-2007 mean hypoxic and anoxic areas calculated from observed profiles are underestimated by 41% and 43%, respectively.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2013. Vol. 118, no 12, 6982-7000 p.
Keyword [en]
Baltic Sea, oupled physical-biogeochemical modeling, halocline variability, oxygen
National Category
Oceanography, Hydrology, Water Resources
Research subject
Oceanography
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:smhi:diva-336DOI: 10.1002/2013JC009192ISI: 000329926200044OAI: oai:DiVA.org:smhi-336DiVA: diva2:805125
Available from: 2015-04-14 Created: 2015-03-31 Last updated: 2016-04-12Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
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