How Nutritious Will the Future Arctic Ocean Be?

Pearse J. Buchanan, Robyn E. Tuerena, Alessandro Tagliabue, Claire Mahaffey

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The ocean seems the same everywhere, whether at your local beach or in the cold Arctic. But ocean properties vary greatly. Like different types of soil on land, some seawater is rich in nutrients, while others are nutrient-poor. If more nutrients are available, then more life can grow. With more life, the ocean can remove more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and produce more fish for us to eat. Today, climate change is altering the amount of nutrients in Arctic seawater. Nutrient-rich seawater from the Pacific Ocean is flowing more quickly into the Arctic, while nutrient-poor seawater from the Atlantic Ocean is also invading. Which kind of seawater will dominate in a warmer, ice-free Arctic? Will the Arctic become rich with nutrients and support productive ecosystems, or will it become an oceanic desert? Scientists are working hard to predict what will happen in a warmer world.
Original languageEnglish
Article number8/93
Number of pages7
JournalFrontiers for Young Minds
Publication statusPublished - 24 Jul 2020


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