24 Oct 2023
 | 24 Oct 2023
Status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal ESSD.

Updated climatological mean delta fCO2 and net sea–air CO2 flux over the global open ocean regions

Amanda R. Fay, David R. Munro, Galen A. McKinley, Denis Pierrot, Stewart C. Sutherland, Colm Sweeney, and Rik Wanninkhof

Abstract. The late Taro Takahashi (LDEO/Columbia University) provided the first near-global monthly air-sea CO2 flux climatology in Takahashi et al. (1997), based on available surface water partial pressure of CO2 measurements. This product has been a benchmark for uptake of CO2 in the ocean. Several versions have been provided since, with improvements in procedures and large increases in observations, culminating in the authoritative assessment in Takahashi et al. (2009). Here we provide and document the last iteration using a greatly increased dataset (SOCATv2022) and determining fluxes using air-sea partial pressure differences as a climatological reference for the period 1980–2021. The resulting net flux for the open ocean region is estimated as -1.79 PgC yr-1 which compares well with other global mean flux estimates. While global flux results are consistent, differences in regional means and seasonal amplitudes are discussed. Consistent with other studies, we find the largest differences in the data-sparse southeast Pacific and Southern Ocean.

Amanda R. Fay et al.

Status: open (until 23 Dec 2023)

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Amanda R. Fay et al.

Data sets

Climatological distributions of sea-air DeltafCO2 and CO2 flux densities in the Global Surface Ocean (NCEI Accession 0282251) Amanda R. Fay, David R. Munro, Galen A. McKinley, Denis Pierrot, Stewart C. Sutherland, Colm Sweeney, and Rik Wanninkhof

Amanda R. Fay et al.


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Short summary
Presented here is a near-global monthly estimate of the difference between atmosphere and ocean carbon dioxide concentrations. The ocean's ability to take up carbon, both now and in the future, is defined by this difference in concentrations. With over 30 million measurements of surface ocean carbon over the last 40 years, and utilization of an extrapolation technique, a mean estimate of surface ocean delta fCO2 is presented.