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Atlantic water in the main gateways to the Arctic Ocean - impact on climate, sea ice, tidewater glaciers and ecosystem
Convener: Waldemar Walczowski  | Co-Conveners: Frank Nilsen , Agnieszka Beszczynska-Möller , Wilken-Jon von Appen 
 / Tue, 19 Apr, 08:30–10:00
 / Attendance Tue, 19 Apr, 17:30–19:00

Oceanic transports of mass, heat, and freshwater from the North Atlantic towards the Arctic Ocean are closely linked to the ocean, sea ice and atmospheric dynamics in the Barents Sea and Fram Strait. Both regions play a crucial role as a conduit of the water mass of Atlantic origin, but are also a hot spot for dynamical interactions between the ocean, sea ice and atmosphere, that have a strong impact on ocean circulation, environmental conditions, and marine life along the two different pathways of the Atlantic inflow into the Arctic Ocean. Moreover, Arctic fjords, dominated by glaciers in the inshore part, are strongly influenced by the increased influx of warm Atlantic waters onto the shelf and into the fjords. The retreat rate of Svalbard glaciers has increased during the last decades, most likely as a response to oceanic- and/or atmospheric forcing of glaciers. The main goal of this session is to describe recent changes observed in the ocean, sea ice and marine ecosystem and to relate these to the variability of the Atlantic water inflow through Fram Strait and the Barents Sea. We will encourage a discussion on the links between these recent changes and the large-scale oceanic circulation, climatic changes in the Arctic region, and the interactions between the main components of the climate system (ocean, atmosphere and ice) responsible for the retreat of Arctic tidewater glaciers.