Members of the Norwegian Polar Institute service ocean moorings under the Fimbul Ice Shelf. Photo courtesy: Sven Lidström (NPI)
A new SOOS working group will focus on long-term observations of the Weddell Sea/Dronning Maud Land area and will soon be looking for input by the wider scientific community.
Based on work carried out at last year’s Weddell Sea symposium in Bremerhaven, Germany, it is being established by Julian Gutt, Laura de Steur, Sebastien Moreau and Torsten Kanzow.
This part of the Southern Ocean, between the eastern coast of the Antarctic Peninsula and the 30° east meridian (South of Africa), is partly representative for its high latitude - for example in the pronounced seasonality of physical and biological processes - but it is also unique for its deep-water formation and multi-year sea-ice cover.
A focus on long-term observations is especially justified given the area east of the Peninsula is already under climate change pressure, while the remaining larger parts are so far still relatively stable. However, large-scale physical changes with effects on adjacent areas in the Southern Ocean and north of it are expected.
Evidence-based projections of the impact on pelagic and benthic biota are lacking due to missing long-term in situ observations on the vulnerability of most ecological key species.
Get in touch with the new working group team: