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Ocean Science An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Volume 14, issue 6 | Copyright
Ocean Sci., 14, 1385-1403, 2018
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Research article 08 Nov 2018

Research article | 08 Nov 2018

A 3-year time series of volatile organic iodocarbons in Bedford Basin, Nova Scotia: a northwestern Atlantic fjord

Qiang Shi and Douglas Wallace Qiang Shi and Douglas Wallace
  • Department of Oceanography, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Canada

Abstract. We report weekly observations of volatile organic iodocarbons (CH3I, CH2ClI and CH2I2) over the time period May 2015 to December 2017 from four depths in Bedford Basin, a coastal fjord (70m deep) on the Atlantic coast of Canada. The fjord is subject to wintertime mixing, seasonal stratification and bloom dynamics, subsurface oxygen depletion, local input of freshwater, and occasional intrusions of higher-density water from the adjacent continental shelf. Near-surface concentrations showed strong seasonal and sub-seasonal variability, which is compared with other coastal time series. The vertical variation of CH2I2 and CH2ClI within the upper 10m is consistent with rapid photolysis of CH2I2. Average annual sea-to-air fluxes (46.7nmolm−2day−1) of total volatile organic iodine were similar to those observed in other coastal and shelf time series, and polyiodinated compounds contributed 80% of the total flux. Fluxes were subject to strong interannual variability (a factor of 2) mainly due to wind speed variability. Near-surface net production of CH3I averaged 1pmolL−1day−1 and was similar to rates in the English Channel but an order of magnitude higher than in shallow waters of the Kiel Fjord, Germany, possibly due to higher microbial degradation in the latter. The near-bottom (60m) time series showed evidence of CH3I production associated with organic matter degradation and a possible switch from the production of CH3I via an alkylation pathway to the production of CH2I2 by a haloform-type reaction. Near-bottom CH3I production varied strongly between years but was generally ca. 20 times lower than near-surface production.

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Short summary
Time series observations can reveal processes and controlling factors underlying the production and loss of iodocarbons in the ocean and provide data for testing hypotheses and models. We report weekly observations from May 2015 to December 2017 at four depths in Bedford Basin, Canada. Iodocarbons in near-surface waters showed strong seasonal variability and similarities and differences in their correlation with temporal variations of potentially related properties and causal factors.
Time series observations can reveal processes and controlling factors underlying the production...