EGU22-9618, updated on 28 Mar 2022
EGU General Assembly 2022
© Author(s) 2022. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Processes of interannual internal variability of the CO2 flux at the air-sea interface in IPSLCM6A

Matthew Menary1,2, Juliette Mignot1, Laurent Bopp2, and Lester Kwiatkowski1,2
Matthew Menary et al.
  • 1LOCEAN, Sorbonne Université, Paris, France (
  • 2LMD, Ecole Normale Supérieure, Paris, France

In order to improve our ability to predict the near-term evolution of climate, it may be important to accurately predict the evolution of atmospheric CO2, and thus carbon sinks. Following on from process-driven improvements of decadal predictions in physical oceanography, we focus on improving our understanding of the internal processes and variables driving CO2 uptake by the North Atlantic ocean. Specifically, we use the CMIP6 model IPSLCM6A to investigate the drivers of ocean-atmosphere CO2 flux variability in the North Atlantic subpolar gyre (NA SPG) on seasonal to decadal timescales. We find that DpCO2 (CO2 partial pressure difference between atmosphere and ocean) variability dominates over sea surface temperature (SST) and sea surface salinity (SSS) variability on all timescales within the NA SPG. Meanwhile, at the ice-edge, there are significant roles for both ice concentration and surface winds in driving the overall CO2 flux changes. Investigating the interannual DpCO2 variability further, we find that this variability is itself driven largely by variability in simulated mixed layer depths in the northern SPG. On the other hand, SSTs show an important contribution to DpCO2 variability in the southern SPG and on longer (decadal) timescales. Initial extensions into a multi-model context show similar results. By determining the key regions and processes important for skilful decadal predictions of ocean-atmosphere CO2 fluxes, we aim to both improve confidence in these predictions as well as highlight key targets for climate model improvement. 

How to cite: Menary, M., Mignot, J., Bopp, L., and Kwiatkowski, L.: Processes of interannual internal variability of the CO2 flux at the air-sea interface in IPSLCM6A, EGU General Assembly 2022, Vienna, Austria, 23–27 May 2022, EGU22-9618,, 2022.