Hostname: page-component-77c89778f8-n9wrp Total loading time: 0 Render date: 2024-07-21T20:17:32.818Z Has data issue: false hasContentIssue false

Drivers of change in Arctic fjord socio-ecological systems: Examples from the European Arctic

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  13 January 2023

Robert Schlegel*
Affiliation:
Laboratoire d’Océanographie de Villefranche, Sorbonne University, CNRS, Villefranche-sur-mer, France
Inka Bartsch
Affiliation:
Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research, Bremerhaven, Germany
Kai Bischof
Affiliation:
Marine Botany, University of Bremen & MARUM, Bremen, Germany
Lill Rastad Bjørst
Affiliation:
Center for Innovation and Research in Culture and Living in the Arctic, Aalborg University, Aalborg, Denmark
Halvor Dannevig
Affiliation:
Western Norway Research Institute, Sogndal, Norway
Nora Diehl
Affiliation:
Marine Botany, University of Bremen & MARUM, Bremen, Germany
Pedro Duarte
Affiliation:
Norwegian Polar Institute, Fram Centre, Tromsø, Norway
Grete K. Hovelsrud
Affiliation:
Nordland Research Institute, Bodø, Norway
Thomas Juul-Pedersen
Affiliation:
Greenland Climate Research Centre, Greenland Institute of Natural Resources, Nuuk, Greenland
Anaïs Lebrun
Affiliation:
Laboratoire d’Océanographie de Villefranche, Sorbonne University, CNRS, Villefranche-sur-mer, France
Laurène Merillet
Affiliation:
Institute of Marine Research, Bergen, Norway Bjerknes Center for Climate Research, Bergen, Norway Marine Ecosystems Modelling Group, Collecte Localisation Satellite, Ramonville Saint Agne, France
Cale Miller
Affiliation:
Laboratoire d’Océanographie de Villefranche, Sorbonne University, CNRS, Villefranche-sur-mer, France Department of Earth Sciences, Utrecht University, Utrecht, The Netherlands
Carina Ren
Affiliation:
Center for Innovation and Research in Culture and Living in the Arctic, Aalborg University, Aalborg, Denmark
Mikael Sejr
Affiliation:
National Environmental Research Institute, Aarhus University, Silkeborg, Denmark
Janne E. Søreide
Affiliation:
The University Centre in Svalbard, Longyearbyen, Norway
Tobias R. Vonnahme
Affiliation:
Greenland Climate Research Centre, Greenland Institute of Natural Resources, Nuuk, Greenland
Jean-Pierre Gattuso
Affiliation:
Laboratoire d’Océanographie de Villefranche, Sorbonne University, CNRS, Villefranche-sur-mer, France Institute for Sustainable Development and International Relations (IDDRI-Sciences Po), Paris, France
*
Author for correspondence: Robert Schlegel, Email: robert.schlegel@imev-mer.fr
Rights & Permissions [Opens in a new window]

Abstract

Fjord systems are transition zones between land and sea, resulting in complex and dynamic environments. They are of particular interest in the Arctic as they harbour ecosystems inhabited by a rich range of species and provide many societal benefits. The key drivers of change in the European Arctic (i.e., Greenland, Svalbard, and Northern Norway) fjord socio-ecological systems are reviewed here, structured into five categories: cryosphere (sea ice, glacier mass balance, and glacial and riverine discharge), physics (seawater temperature, salinity, and light), chemistry (carbonate system, nutrients), biology (primary production, biomass, and species richness), and social (governance, tourism, and fisheries). The data available for the past and present state of these drivers, as well as future model projections, are analysed in a companion paper. Changes to the two drivers at the base of most interactions within fjords, seawater temperature and glacier mass balance, will have the most significant and profound consequences on the future of European Arctic fjords. This is because even though governance may be effective at mitigating/adapting to local disruptions caused by the changing climate, there is possibly nothing that can be done to halt the melting of glaciers, the warming of fjord waters, and all of the downstream consequences that these two changes will have. This review provides the first transdisciplinary synthesis of the interactions between the drivers of change within Arctic fjord socio-ecological systems. Knowledge of what these drivers of change are, and how they interact with one another, should provide more expedient focus for future research on the needs of adapting to the changing Arctic.

Type
Review
Creative Commons
Creative Common License - CCCreative Common License - BY
This is an Open Access article, distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution licence (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0), which permits unrestricted re-use, distribution and reproduction, provided the original article is properly cited.
Copyright
© The Author(s), 2023. Published by Cambridge University Press

Impact statement

It is now well documented that the Arctic, the northern polar region of our planet, is changing rapidly. It is likely that as soon as 2050 the Arctic Ocean will be largely ice-free over the summer. The consequences of this are vast and merit our effort to discern how we may best adapt to the coming changes that a melted Arctic cryosphere will mean for human habitation across the globe. Within the European Arctic (i.e., Greenland, Svalbard, and Northern Norway), fjord ecosystems are particularly important because they serve as loci for ecosystem functioning and human settlement. In this transdisciplinary review, we synthesise the knowledge that exists for the socio-ecological systems within European Arctic fjords. It is necessary to review the complete scope of knowledge on these systems for the past, present, and possible future projections because as the climate changes, the interactions within these systems will themselves likely change. Meaning that European Arctic fjords will experience both externally and internally driven pressures. The 14 key drivers of change within European Arctic fjords are identified here and classified into five categories. The scope of these relationships, and how they may change across the European Arctic, are discussed. The aim of this review is to provide future research projects with a more complete foundation upon which they can orient their research questions for how best to adapt Arctic fjord socio-ecological systems to the changing climate.

Introduction

Fjord systems are characterised as deep narrow inlets of water, usually created by glaciers and sometimes harbouring a sill, a physical barrier that creates inner and outer deep areas. These systems are of particular importance in Greenland, Svalbard, and Northern Norway; hereafter referred to as the European Arctic (25°W–60°E and 66°N–90°N; Figure 1), because they host highly productive ecosystems that may be exploited by humans (e.g., aquaculture; Hermansen and Troell, Reference Hermansen and Troell2012; Aanesen and Mikkelsen, Reference Aanesen and Mikkelsen2020), act as carbon sinks (Smith et al., Reference Smith, Bianchi, Allison, Savage and Galy2015; Cui et al., Reference Cui, Mucci, Bianchi, He, Vaughn, Williams, Wang, Smeaton, Koziorowska-Makuch, Faust, Plante and Rosenheim2022), and provide suitable areas for spawning grounds and nurseries (e.g., Spotowitz et al., Reference Spotowitz, Johansen, Hansen, Berg, Stransky and Fischer2022). These regions are also well studied, with the necessarily large body of attendant literature required for the following review (see also Cottier et al., Reference Cottier, Nilsen, Skogseth, Tverberg, Skarðhamar and Svendsen2010).

The European Arctic is not one monolithic entity. Indeed, there are many differences between the fjords found throughout the region and therefore a wide range of possible interactions between the forces responsible for the changes therein are possible. The three study regions (and sites therein) focussed on to frame the review of these differences are Greenland (Qeqertarsuup Tunua, Nuup Kangerlua, and Young Sound), Svalbard (Kongsfjorden, Isfjorden, and Storfjorden), and Northern Norway (Porsangerfjorden). Where relevant to the text, additional sites are also mentioned. While all are classified geographically as Arctic, many fjords in Northern Norway lack sea ice and glaciers altogether, and the west coast of Svalbard is in the process of transitioning from Arctic temperatures to boreal (Hop and Wiencke, Reference Hop, Wiencke, Hop and Wiencke2019). It is the fjords along the east coast of Greenland that have persisted as cold Arctic, for the time being.

The terminology used throughout the literature to describe the processes that cause changes in Arctic fjords is varied; therefore, we have decided to refer to them here as drivers: “Any natural- or human-induced factor that directly or indirectly causes a change in a system” (sensu Möller et al., Reference Möller, van Diemen, Matthews, Méndez, Semenov, Fuglestvedt, Reisinger, Pörtner, Roberts, Tignor, Poloczanska, Mintenbeck, Alegría, Craig, Langsdorf, Löschke, Möller, Okem and Rama2022). There is a general hierarchy to the scale and directional forcing of these drivers; however, there are many feedback processes between them and many non-linear relationships. For example, warming induces a loss of sea ice, increasing light availability, which stimulates primary production, thereby promoting the progressive abundance of zooplankton to fish to birds, the overall species richness of the fjord, and the ecosystem services that provide to the human settlement(s) along the fjord. Some drivers, especially those in the biology category, tend to drive changes within themselves, rather than impacting drivers in other categories.

The drivers are classified into five categories and separated into sections below: cryosphere, physics, chemistry, biology, and social. Subsections for each driver provide a review of the current state of knowledge, which are followed by a summary of the present and future uncertainties for the category. The focus of the summaries varies between categories, reflecting the differences in the scientific sub-disciplines of the natural and social sciences. Any references within the text to a specific subsection are made via the name of the section (i.e., section “Seawater temperature”). The review finishes with a discussion of the relationships between the categories and their drivers in the past, present, and future before providing concluding remarks. An analysis of the in situ data available for the key drivers reviewed below is available in a companion paper (Schlegel and Gattuso, Reference Schlegel and Gattusoin review).

Cryosphere drivers

Sea ice

Sea ice is a globally unique ecosystem that hosts a diversity of endemic flora and fauna, and whose presence in fjords provides an array of services to society (Eamer et al., Reference Eamer, Donaldson, Gaston, Kosobokova, Lárusson, Melnikov, Reist, Richardson, Staples and von Quillfeldt2013). Indeed, the presence of sea ice, or lack thereof, forms the basis through which many of the drivers in this review interact with one another.

The primary conditions for the formation of sea ice are air temperature and salinity (Pavlov et al., Reference Pavlov, Tverberg, Ivanov, Nilsen, Falk-Petersen and Granskog2013), but other complex factors also play an important role. Wind stress can fragment forming sea ice and prevent water stratification, freshwater inputs allow freezing at less negative temperatures, and snow cover can insulate against colder air temperatures which prevents further growth (Merkouriadi et al., Reference Merkouriadi, Cheng, Graham, Rösel and Granskog2017). The amount of sea ice formation and its location in late winter and spring determines the bottom temperature over the shelf when melted water is mixed with bottom water by storms (Hunt et al., Reference Hunt, Coyle, Eisner, Farley, Heintz, Mueter, Napp, Overland, Ressler, Salo and Stabeno2011), which has implications for benthic life (see section “Biomass”).

Large pulses of warm and salty Atlantic water (AW) have been increasing in the fjords along the North/West Svalbard Archipelago over the last three decades (Skogseth et al., Reference Skogseth, Olivier, Nilsen, Falck, Fraser, Tverberg, Ledang, Vader, Jonassen, Søreide, Cottier, Berge, Ivanov and Falk-Petersen2020). The combination of AW with increased air temperatures (e.g., winter trend of +3°C dec−1; Maturilli et al., Reference Maturilli, Hanssen-Bauer, Neuber, Rex, Edvardsen, Hop and Wiencke2019) have severely restricted sea ice formation (Kongsfjorden: Cottier et al., Reference Cottier, Nilsen, Inall, Gerland, Tverberg and Svendsen2007; Tverberg et al., Reference Tverberg, Skogseth, Cottier, Sundfjord, Walczowski, Inall, Falck, Pavlova, Nilsen, Hop and Wiencke2019; Isfjorden: Muckenhuber et al., Reference Muckenhuber, Nilsen, Korosov and Sandven2016; Skogseth et al., Reference Skogseth, Olivier, Nilsen, Falck, Fraser, Tverberg, Ledang, Vader, Jonassen, Søreide, Cottier, Berge, Ivanov and Falk-Petersen2020; Gronfjorden: Zhuravskiy et al., Reference Zhuravskiy, Ivanov and Pavlov2012). Pronounced warming in the temperature of AW inflow (see section “Seawater temperature”) itself has been recorded during the summer from 1912 to 2019 (Bloshkina et al., Reference Bloshkina, Pavlov and Filchuk2021).

Unlike North/West Svalbard, most of Greenland is not exposed to rapidly warming ocean currents. The tidewater glaciers (see section “Glacier mass balance”) of Nuup Kangerlua (W Greenland) introduce large amounts of icebergs to the fjord, creating a dense ice melange stretching over several kilometres and freezing together in winter (Mortensen et al., Reference Mortensen, Rysgaard, Bendtsen, Lennert, Kanzow, Lund and Meire2020). As of this writing, there was a scarcity of in situ time series measuring sea ice cover for West Greenland, but satellite measurements (NSIDC, Reference Fetterer, Savoie, Helfrich and Clemente-Colón2022) from 2006 to 2020 show trends of increasing cover within fjords and embayments (Schlegel and Gattuso, Reference Schlegel and Gattusoin review). The ice-free season in Young Sound (E Greenland) has been increasing, primarily driven by later formation of sea ice in autumn, accompanied by increased interannual variability since 2000 (Middelbo et al., Reference Middelbo, Møller, Arendt, Thyrring and Sejr2019). On the southern border of the Barents Sea, Porsangerfjorden (N Norway) does not freeze over in the winter, with only the very inner reaches of the fjord occasionally covered by seasonal sea ice (Petrich et al., Reference Petrich, O’Sadnick and Dale2017).

Glacier mass balance

Glaciers are mountainous bodies of land-borne ice that have formed and persisted over millennia. Glaciers have such a dominating downstream effect on fjords that the ecosystems therein are generally defined by whether there is a glacier present and, if there is, whether it is land-terminating or marine-terminating (Lydersen et al., Reference Lydersen, Assmy, Falk-Petersen, Kohler, Kovacs, Reigstad, Steen, Strøm, Sundfjord, Varpe, Walczowski, Weslawski and Zajaczkowski2014).

Most of the large reservoirs of glacial ice in the Arctic, including the Greenland ice sheet (GrIS), are losing mass by surface melt, basal ice melt, and solid ice discharge at marine-terminating glacier fronts (Kochtitzky and Copland, Reference Kochtitzky and Copland2022). The rate of this loss is projected to double by 2100 (Geyman et al., Reference Geyman, van Pelt, Maloof, Aas and Kohler2022). While the GrIS gained mass between 1972 and 1980 (+47 ± 21 Gt yr−1), since 1980 the GrIS has lost mass at an accelerating rate until a peak of 286 ± 20 Gt yr−1 between 2010 and 2018 (Mouginot et al., Reference Mouginot, Rignot, Bjørk, van den Broeke, Millan, Morlighem, Noël, Scheuchl and Wood2019). This process of ice loss (in both solid and liquid form) has also been well documented for fjord glaciers on Svalbard, such as those in Kongsfjorden (Schuler et al., Reference Schuler, Kohler, Elagina, Hagen, Hodson, Jania, Kääb, Luks, Małecki, Moholdt, Pohjola, Sobota and Van Pelt2020).

Terrestrial runoff

The Arctic Ocean holds ca. 1% of the world’s seawater, but receives 11% of global freshwater runoff (Shiklomanov, Reference Shiklomanov1997). Meltwater from land-terminating glaciers enters the fjord at the surface, resulting in strong stratification that drives estuarine circulation. This also increases turbidity (Konik et al., Reference Konik, Darecki, Pavlov, Sagan and Kowalczuk2021), which may have consequences for benthic life (see section “Biomass”). At marine-terminating glaciers, freshwater input comes mostly from below as subglacial discharge, often several hundred metres below the sea surface (Hopwood et al., Reference Hopwood, Carroll, Dunse, Hodson, Holding, Iriarte, Ribeiro, Achterberg, Cantoni, Carlson, Chierici, Clarke, Cozzi, Fransson, Juul-Pedersen, Winding and Meire2020). Due to its low density, the subglacial meltwater can drive upwelling, thereby resupplying nutrient-rich but potentially warmer deep water to shallower depths (Meire et al., Reference Meire, Mortensen, Rysgaard, Bendtsen, Boone, Meire and Meysman2016; Hopwood et al., Reference Hopwood, Carroll, Dunse, Hodson, Holding, Iriarte, Ribeiro, Achterberg, Cantoni, Carlson, Chierici, Clarke, Cozzi, Fransson, Juul-Pedersen, Winding and Meire2020) and stimulating primary production (see section “Primary production”; Hopwood et al., Reference Hopwood, Carroll, Dunse, Hodson, Holding, Iriarte, Ribeiro, Achterberg, Cantoni, Carlson, Chierici, Clarke, Cozzi, Fransson, Juul-Pedersen, Winding and Meire2020). Icebergs, which originate from the calving of marine-terminating glaciers, can add freshwater at the surface, increasing stratification. As the cryosphere warms, glaciers do not melt at a linearly increasing rate, rather the melt rate eventually slows as they lose mass (Huss and Hock, Reference Huss and Hock2018). On Svalbard, glacial meltwater is already decreasing due to mass loss below a critical tipping point (Nowak et al., Reference Nowak, Hodgkins, Nikulina, Osuch, Wawrzyniak, Kavan, Łepkowska, Majerska, Romashova, Vasilevich, Sobota and Rachlewicz2021).

In addition to the melting of glaciers, river runoff is a major input of freshwater into Arctic fjords. River runoff is similar to land-terminating glacier melt in that it decreases the penetration of light, surface heating, stratification, oxygen content, nutrient input, and finally primary production (Wassmann et al., Reference Wassmann, Svendsen, Keck and Reigstad1996; Aksnes et al., Reference Aksnes, Dupont, Staby, Fiksen, Kaartvedt and Aure2009). However, it differs in that the content of terrigenous material in Arctic rivers is highly variable and depends on the catchment type (Slagstad et al., Reference Slagstad, Wassmann and Ellingsen2015; Frigstad et al., Reference Frigstad, Kaste, Deininger, Kvalsund, Christensen, Bellerby, Sørensen, Norli and King2020). Glaciers and ice sheets can dominate catchments in Greenland, Canada, Alaska, and archipelagoes such as Svalbard and Franz Joseph Land, but tundra dominates on the Eurasian and American continents, where catchments extend beyond the Arctic region. The organic carbon content in the large Eurasian rivers can be 10-fold higher than in glacial meltwater, partly reflecting thawing permafrost (Wild et al., Reference Wild, Andersson, Bröder, Vonk, Hugelius, McClelland, Song, Raymond and Gustafsson2019). The nitrogen input (see section “Nutrients”) from land (rivers and eroding coasts combined) is also substantial and has been estimated to sustain a third of the net primary production (see section “Primary production”) of the Arctic Ocean (Terhaar et al., Reference Terhaar, Lauerwald, Regnier, Gruber and Bopp2021).

Summary

The cryosphere, a defining characteristic of the Arctic (Pavlova et al., Reference Pavlova, Gerland, Hop, Hop and Wiencke2019), is vanishing at an alarming rate (Meredith et al., Reference Meredith, Sommerkorn, Cassotta, Derksen, Ekaykin, Hollowed, Kofinas, Mackintosh, Melbourne-Thomas, Muelbert, Ottersen, Pritchard, Schuur, Pörtner, Roberts, Masson-Delmotte and Zhai2019), driven primarily by warming air and seawater temperatures (see section “Seawater temperature”; Isaksen et al., Reference Isaksen, Nordli, Ivanov, Køltzow, Aaboe, Gjelten, Mezghani, Eastwood, Førland, Benestad, Hanssen-Bauer, Brækkan, Sviashchennikov, Demin, Revina and Karandasheva2022). There is also a robust linear relationship between the increase in atmospheric CO2 and the decrease in sea ice extent (Stroeve and Notz, Reference Stroeve and Notz2018). Many West Svalbard fjords are already experiencing increasingly longer sea ice-free periods (Dahlke et al., Reference Dahlke, Hughes, Wagner, Gerland, Wawrzyniak, Ivanov and Maturilli2020), and given the current emissions trajectory most Arctic fjords will very likely follow this trend in the near future (Meredith et al., Reference Meredith, Sommerkorn, Cassotta, Derksen, Ekaykin, Hollowed, Kofinas, Mackintosh, Melbourne-Thomas, Muelbert, Ottersen, Pritchard, Schuur, Pörtner, Roberts, Masson-Delmotte and Zhai2019). Sea ice volume over the entire Arctic has already diminished by 75% (Overland et al., Reference Overland, Dunlea, Box, Corell, Forsius, Kattsov, Olsen, Pawlak, Reiersen and Wang2019). Within the Svalbard fjords, sea ice has reduced by 50% on average from the periods 1973–2000 to 2005–2019, with a further reduction down to ca. 90% in the next 10 to 20 years (Urbański and Litwicka, Reference Urbański and Litwicka2022).

Marine-terminating glaciers in the northern hemisphere have been losing mass at such unprecedented rates that 7% of them have transitioned to land-terminating over the last 20 years (Kochtitzky and Copland, Reference Kochtitzky and Copland2022). Such a change in glacier status restructures the entire local ecosystem and its services. Moreover, it is worth noting that rapid glacial melt may also be driving further increases in atmospheric CO2 (Wadham et al., Reference Wadham, Hawkings, Tarasov, Gregoire, Spencer, Gutjahr, Ridgwell and Kohfeld2019; Christiansen et al., Reference Christiansen, Röckmann, Popa, Sapart and Jørgensen2021).

Precipitation rates in the Arctic have been increasing, and are projected to continue to increase, and by the end of the century (except Greenland) the majority of this precipitation is projected to be rain rather than snow (Bintanja and Andry, Reference Bintanja and Andry2017). Indeed, from 1979 to 2009, the average trend throughout the Arctic for snow days per year has been −2.49 days per decade (Liston and Hiemstra, Reference Liston and Hiemstra2011). This has resulted in increases of river runoff (Mankoff et al., Reference Mankoff, Noël, Fettweis, Ahlstrøm, Colgan, Kondo, Langley, Sugiyama, van As and Fausto2020), associated with a peak date occurring earlier in the calendar year (Holmes et al., Reference Holmes, Shiklomanov, Suslova, Tretiakov, McClelland, Spencer and Tank2018). This increasing discharge intensifies the freshwater cycle and increases the connectivity between land and sea (Hernes et al., Reference Hernes, Tank, Sejr and Glud2021) through the increased delivery of nutrients, organic matter, sediments, and contaminants. This is especially pronounced for Eurasian rivers (Shiklomanov et al., Reference Shiklomanov, Déry, Tretiakov, Yang, Magritsky, Georgiadi, Tang, Yang and Kane2021). Within Arctic fjords specifically, we see that this process is beginning to affect the surface waters in Greenland fjords (Paulsen et al., Reference Paulsen, Nielsen, Müller, Møller, Stedmon, Juul-Pedersen, Markager, Sejr, Delgado Huertas, Larsen and Middelboe2017), and has a larger impact on Svalbard fjords (Wiedmann et al., Reference Wiedmann, Reigstad, Marquardt, Vader and Gabrielsen2016; Santos-Garcia et al., Reference Santos-Garcia, Ganeshram, Tuerena, Debyser, Husum, Assmy and Hop2022) and their adjacent ecosystems (Delpech et al., Reference Delpech, Vonnahme, McGovern, Gradinger, Præbel and Poste2021), with an even greater effect on northern Norwegian fjords (McGovern et al., Reference McGovern, Pavlov, Deininger, Granskog, Leu, Søreide and Poste2020).

Physics drivers

Seawater temperature

One of the primary controlling factors of the extent of the Arctic cryosphere is the earth’s temperature (Meredith et al., Reference Meredith, Sommerkorn, Cassotta, Derksen, Ekaykin, Hollowed, Kofinas, Mackintosh, Melbourne-Thomas, Muelbert, Ottersen, Pritchard, Schuur, Pörtner, Roberts, Masson-Delmotte and Zhai2019). This also has a dominating effect on the presence of species thriving in a given location (see section “Species richness”; Willis et al., Reference Willis, Cottier, Kwasniewski, Wold and Falk-Petersen2006; Vihtakari et al., Reference Vihtakari, Welcker, Moe, Chastel, Tartu, Hop, Bech, Descamps and Gabrielsen2018). It has been established that the rate of warming in the air is four times more rapid in the Arctic than elsewhere (Rantanen et al., Reference Rantanen, Karpechko, Lipponen, Nordling, Hyvärinen, Ruosteenoja, Vihma and Laaksonen2022). However, changes in seawater temperature are not always linear, nor are they uniform in scale temporally or spatially. Rather, disturbances may materialise as non-linear phenomena, such as shifts of ocean currents or the ephemeral appearance of extreme ocean temperature events.

AW, which is warmer and more nutrient-rich than Arctic waters, is circulated to Svalbard via the Fram Strait as part of the West Spitsbergen Current (WSC) where it forms much of the bottom layer of the West Svalbard fjords in summer. However, starting in 2006, AW has begun occupying much more of the water column (Tverberg et al., Reference Tverberg, Skogseth, Cottier, Sundfjord, Walczowski, Inall, Falck, Pavlova, Nilsen, Hop and Wiencke2019; Skogseth et al., Reference Skogseth, Olivier, Nilsen, Falck, Fraser, Tverberg, Ledang, Vader, Jonassen, Søreide, Cottier, Berge, Ivanov and Falk-Petersen2020), a process referred to as “Atlantification”. This occurs in part due to changes to patterns of the wind stress field in the area (Pavlov et al., Reference Pavlov, Tverberg, Ivanov, Nilsen, Falk-Petersen and Granskog2013) and the wandering of large-scale ocean currents. In addition to increasing temperatures, changes to the inflow of AW are so critical because this water body is the main nutrient contributor (see section “Nutrients”) to the European Arctic (Duarte et al., Reference Duarte, Meyer and Moreau2021).

In contrast to the warming in Western Svalbard, driven largely by increased AW temperature, Hanna and Cappelen (Reference Hanna and Cappelen2003) observed a significant cooling trend in southern Greenland seawater surface temperatures in eight meteorological stations from 1958 to 2001 (−1.22°C in 44 years), while the rest of the world was warming (+0.55 °C in 44 years). They suggested that this cooling could be attributed to a positive phase in the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO), which leads to northerly winds over Greenland pushing cold air masses down to the south, and was highly positively correlated (r = 0.76) to the historic seawater temperature trend (Hanna and Cappelen, Reference Hanna and Cappelen2003). However, after 2001, southern Greenland air and seawater temperatures began increasing and a more recent study by Jiang et al. (Reference Jiang, Ye and Xiao2020) found that in addition to climate indices, such as the NAO, that greenhouse gas concentrations are key drivers for seawater temperature changes in Greenland.

Salinity

The salinity of seawater creates bounding limits for the presence of many, but not all, marine species found throughout the Arctic (see section “Species richness”; Węsławski et al., Reference Węsławski, Kendall, Włodarska-Kowalczuk, Iken, Kędra, Legezynska and Sejr2011) and salinity changes can have impacts on the trophic structure of local fjord ecosystems (Bridier et al., Reference Bridier, Olivier, Chauvaud, Sejr and Grall2021). Changes in salinity also induce changes in total alkalinity, a key parameter of the carbonate system (see section “Carbonate system”). In general, fjords have three distinct strongly stratified water masses (Stigebrandt, Reference Stigebrandt, Bengtsson, Herschy and Fairbridge2012):

  1. 1) Surface water: generally, the lowest salinity due to local freshwater supply.

  2. 2) Intermediate water: mirrors the stratification of adjacent coastal waters but with some phase delay.

  3. 3) Basin water: rests below the sill level and contains the densest waters, which may enter from outside the fjord (NB: not all fjords have a sill).

The increasing rates of rainfall, glacial melt, and river discharge into fjords (see section “Terrestrial runoff”) may hypothetically impact the thickness and extent of the low-salinity layer in their inner regions so greatly that it slows the rate of the overturning circulation and deep-water renewal (Bianchi et al., Reference Bianchi, Arndt, Austin, Benn, Bertrand, Cui, Faust, Koziorowska-Makuch, Moy, Savage, Smeaton, Smith and Syvitski2020). High precipitation in temperate fjords can create a persistent low-salinity layer in surface waters (Gillibrand et al., Reference Gillibrand, Turrell and Elliott1995; Gibbs, Reference Gibbs2001) that accentuates salinity stratification and limits phytoplankton access to nutrient-rich saline bottom waters (see section “Primary production”), except during wind-induced mixing episodes (Sakshaug and Myklestad, Reference Sakshaug and Myklestad1973; Goebel et al., Reference Goebel, Wing and Boyd2005; Bianchi et al., Reference Bianchi, Arndt, Austin, Benn, Bertrand, Cui, Faust, Koziorowska-Makuch, Moy, Savage, Smeaton, Smith and Syvitski2020). A decrease in salinity of the surface water (0–50 m) in Young Sound (E Greenland) and on the adjacent shelf has been observed (Sejr et al., Reference Sejr, Stedmon, Bendtsen, Abermann, Juul-Pedersen, Mortensen and Rysgaard2017). The lower density of the freshening surface means that bottom water in the deeper part of the fjord is isolated from exchange with shelf water (Boone et al., Reference Boone, Rysgaard, Carlson, Meire, Kirillov, Mortensen, Dmitrenko, Vergeynst and Sejr2018).

Light (PAR and UV)

The light available throughout the water column, here specifically photosynthetically active radiation (PAR), is a key driver of the presence and composition of benthic and pelagic phototrophic communities due to their need to photosynthesise (see section “Biomass”). Assuming the availability of necessary nutrients (see section “Nutrients”), this means that light plays a major role in the global carbon cycle by controlling the geographical and depth distributions of primary producers (see section “Primary production”; Gattuso et al., Reference Gattuso, Gentili, Antoine and Doxaran2020). In the Arctic, three processes linked to climate change that affect the penetration of light into the water column have been well researched:

  1. 1) Current and future projected sea ice loss (see section “Sea ice”) creates longer sea ice free periods that allow for greater penetration of light (Pavlov et al., Reference Pavlov, Leu, Hanelt, Bartsch, Karsten, Hudson, Gallet, Cottier, Cohen, Berge, Johnsen, Maturilli, Kowalczuk, Sagan, Meler, Granskog, Hop and Wiencke2019).

  2. 2) Projected increases in freshwater input (see section “Terrestrial runoff”) reduce light penetration in the coastal zone by increasing turbidity via the delivery of particulate and dissolved organic matter (DOM; Frigstad et al., Reference Frigstad, Kaste, Deininger, Kvalsund, Christensen, Bellerby, Sørensen, Norli and King2020; Nowak et al., Reference Nowak, Hodgkins, Nikulina, Osuch, Wawrzyniak, Kavan, Łepkowska, Majerska, Romashova, Vasilevich, Sobota and Rachlewicz2021).

  3. 3) If summer cloudiness increases as the Arctic warms, it will decrease incident PAR above the sea surface (Bélanger et al., Reference Bélanger, Babin and Tremblay2013).

Largely due to increased freshwater inputs, most fjords in Western Svalbard (1997–2019; Konik et al., Reference Konik, Darecki, Pavlov, Sagan and Kowalczuk2021), and many fjords on mainland Norway (1935–2007; Aksnes et al., Reference Aksnes, Dupont, Staby, Fiksen, Kaartvedt and Aure2009) have experienced a regime shift towards darker water, a phenomenon referred to as “darkening” or “browning”. It is hypothesised that this darkening of water may cause a reduction in primary production (see section “Primary production”; Aksnes et al., Reference Aksnes, Dupont, Staby, Fiksen, Kaartvedt and Aure2009). Areas distant from sources of freshwater input (e.g., glaciers and rivers; section “Terrestrial runoff”) could, however, experience an increase in light penetration as is occurring in the open Arctic Ocean where reduced sea ice leads to increased PAR and thereby primary production (see section “Primary production”; Arrigo and van Dijken, Reference Arrigo and van Dijken2011).

For atmospheric radiation conditions, further stratospheric ozone loss will result in a higher UV-B burden in the Arctic (Manney et al., Reference Manney, Santee, Rex, Livesey, Pitts, Veefkind, Nash, Wohltmann, Lehmann, Froidevaux, Poole, Schoeberl, Haffner, Davies, Dorokhov, Gernandt, Johnson, Kivi, Kyrö, Larsen, Levelt, Makshtas, CT, Nakajima, Parrondo, Tarasick, von der Gathen, Walker and Zinoviev2011). The impact of UV-B on benthic communities in Arctic fjords has been extensively studied; however, the results with respect to the ecological implications are still somewhat inconclusive (see Bischof and Steinhoff, Reference Bischof, Steinhoff, Wiencke and Bischof2012, for review). UV-B may negatively affect biological processes in shallow waters, as experimentally tested for the germination of seaweed spores (Wiencke et al., Reference Wiencke, Roleda, Gruber, Clayton and Bischof2006). However, under natural field conditions, kelp spores germinating under parental canopies might not be exposed to harmful UV-B, and it remains questionable to what extent biologically significant UV-B fluxes will propagate into subtidal communities (i.e., deeper than 10 m; Laeseke et al., Reference Laeseke, Bartsch and Bischof2019).

Summary

Models show that a global temperature rise of +2°C will translate to +4°C of warming in the air temperature of the Arctic (Overland et al., Reference Overland, Dunlea, Box, Corell, Forsius, Kattsov, Olsen, Pawlak, Reiersen and Wang2019), with the worst-case scenario showing +15°C of winter air warming by 2100 (Overland et al., Reference Overland, Dunlea, Box, Corell, Forsius, Kattsov, Olsen, Pawlak, Reiersen and Wang2019). One must also consider the disproportionately larger surface heat fluxes into the Arctic (Bischof et al., Reference Bischof, Convey, Duarte, Gattuso, Granberg, Hop, Hoppe, Jiménez, Lisitsyn, Martinez, Roleda, Thor, Wiktor, Gabrielsen, Hop and Wiencke2019) that may inhibit the stabilisation of the global climate even if an effective emissions reduction strategy is implemented (Overland et al., Reference Overland, Dunlea, Box, Corell, Forsius, Kattsov, Olsen, Pawlak, Reiersen and Wang2019). There is therefore a high level of certainty that the rate of increasing seawater temperature will further accelerate in the future (Meredith et al., Reference Meredith, Sommerkorn, Cassotta, Derksen, Ekaykin, Hollowed, Kofinas, Mackintosh, Melbourne-Thomas, Muelbert, Ottersen, Pritchard, Schuur, Pörtner, Roberts, Masson-Delmotte and Zhai2019).

Rapidly increasing seawater temperatures appear to be accelerating the phenomenon of Atlantification, a process that will potentially decrease the density differences between polar surface water and the AW that rest below, which in turn may lead to more mixing and larger ocean heat fluxes towards the surface (Polyakov et al., Reference Polyakov, Alkire, Bluhm, Brown, Carmack, Chierici, Danielson, Ellingsen, Ershova, Gårdfeldt, Ingvaldsen, Pnyushkov, Slagstad and Wassmann2020). The changes to the salinity itself may also cause trophic restructuring of the ecosystems throughout many Arctic fjords (see section “Biomass”), with inherent knock-on effects to the human societies that are structured around present ecosystem services (see section “Fisheries”).

Less clear than the increases in temperature and changes in salinity are the changes to light penetration in Arctic fjords. While it appears evident that light penetration in the open Arctic Ocean will increase over time (Pavlov et al., Reference Pavlov, Leu, Hanelt, Bartsch, Karsten, Hudson, Gallet, Cottier, Cohen, Berge, Johnsen, Maturilli, Kowalczuk, Sagan, Meler, Granskog, Hop and Wiencke2019), it is still unclear whether or not this will hold true within fjords. While sea ice is melting rapidly within most fjords, there is also an increased rate of turbid water runoff. So while there is a longer period in which light may contact the sea surface, it is becoming more difficult for light to penetrate these waters. This is an area of investigation that still requires much research (e.g., Walch et al., Reference Walch, Singh, Søreide, Lantuit and Poste2022).

Chemistry drivers

Carbonate system

Increased atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) globally raises the partial pressure of CO2 in seawater (pCO2). The ocean has absorbed >25% of anthropogenic CO2 emissions since the industrial revolution (Friedlingstein et al., Reference Friedlingstein, Jones, O’Sullivan, Andrew, Bakker, Hauck, Le Quéré, Peters, Peters, Pongratz, Sitch, Canadell, Ciais, Jackson, Alin, Anthoni, Bates, Becker, Bellouin, Bopp, Chau, Chevallier, Chini, Cronin, Currie, Decharme, Djeutchouang, Dou, Evans, Feely, Feng, Gasser, Gilfillan, Gkritzalis, Grassi, Gregor, Gruber, Gürses, Harris, Houghton, Hurtt, Iida, Ilyina, Luijkx, Jain, Jones, Kato, Kennedy, Goldewijk, Knauer, Korsbakken, Körtzinger, Landschützer, Lauvset, Lefèvre, Lienert, Liu, Marland, McGuire, Melton, Munro, Nabel, Nakaoka, Niwa, Ono, Pierrot, Poulter, Rehder, Resplandy, Robertson, Rödenbeck, Rosan, Schwinger, Schwingshackl, Séférian, Sutton, Sweeney, Tanhua, Tans, Tian, Tilbrook, Tubiello, Van Der Werf, Vuichard, Wada, Wanninkhof, Watson, Willis, Wiltshire, Yuan, Yue, Yue, Zaehle and Zeng2022), which moderates climate change at the cost of ocean acidification, a process that describes the increase in dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC), the concomitant decline of pH, and the saturation state of calcium carbonate (CaCO3; Gattuso and Hansson, Reference Gattuso, Hansson, Gattuso and Hansson2011). The projected decrease in pH and CaCO3 saturation state will lead to undersaturation of surface waters with respect to aragonite-type CaCO3 in the entire Arctic Ocean by 2040 (Steinacher et al., Reference Steinacher, Joos, Frölicher, Plattner and Doney2009). This undersaturation has already been observed in situ throughout many Arctic Seas from 2008 onwards (e.g., Zhang et al., Reference Zhang, Yamamoto-Kawai and Williams2020; Fransner et al., Reference Fransner, Fröb, Tjiputra, Goris, Lauvset, Skjelvan, Jeansson, Omar, Chierici, Jones, Fransson, Ólafsdóttir, Johannessen and Olsen2022). This is due in part to the decrease of salinity (see section “Salinity”), which lowers the buffering capacity of these systems (Qi et al., Reference Qi, Ouyang, Chen, Wu, Lei, Chen, Feely, Anderson, Zhong, Lin, Polukhin, Zhang, Zhang, Bi, Lin, Luo, Zhuang, He, Chen and Cai2022). Aragonite undersaturation has negative consequences on ecologically important aragonite-shelled organisms in Arctic fjords (see section “Biomass”; Comeau et al., Reference Comeau, Gattuso, Nisumaa and Orr2012), which may have large knock-on consequences for a number of other taxa (see section “Species richness”; Bednaršek et al., Reference Bednaršek, Naish, Feely, Hauri, Kimoto, Hermann, Michel, Niemi and Pilcher2021; Niemi et al., Reference Niemi, Bednaršek, Michel, Feely, Williams, Azetsu-Scott, Walkusz and Reist2021).

Nutrients

Besides light, macronutrients (e.g., nitrate [NO3], nitrite [NO2], ammonium [NH4], phosphate [PO4], silicate [SiO4], and iron [Fe]) are the key drivers of primary production (see section “Primary production”). Within the euphotic zone, the shallower depths where light levels are sufficient for photosynthesis, nutrients are typically the limiting factor for primary production (generally used up by algae, depending on the season). Organic matter sinking out of the euphotic zone is slowly degraded and nutrients are regenerated; however, these nutrients stay at depth, unavailable for primary production, unless deep water is mixed up to the surface (see section “Salinity”; Valiela, Reference Valiela2015). The process of deep water mixing is particularly important because nitrogen may enter fjords via organic matter that is not directly available to primary producers (see section “Primary production”) and must be degraded by bacteria and archaea into bioavailable forms while at depth (e.g., NO3 and/or NH4; Valiela, Reference Valiela2015).

Four well-studied processes that can bring deep nutrient-rich water masses to the euphotic zone are the following (Cottier et al., Reference Cottier, Nilsen, Skogseth, Tverberg, Skarðhamar and Svendsen2010):

  1. 1) melting at the marine-terminating face of glaciers that drives local upwelling (see section “Glacier mass balance”),

  2. 2) reduced stratification of the water column in winter, typically weakened by decreased meltwater runoff (see section “Terrestrial runoff”), allows deeper mixing of the water column by physical forces (e.g., winds and tides),

  3. 3) surface currents exiting fjords over steep slopes (e.g., shelf breaks), and

  4. 4) icebergs melt from below driving local upwelling similar to marine-terminating glacier fronts (Moon et al., Reference Moon, Sutherland, Carroll, Felikson, Kehrl and Straneo2018).

Glacial meltwater is one of the primary sources of nutrient input into fjords and may be rich in SiO4 and Fe depending on bedrock geochemistry (Halbach et al., Reference Halbach, Vihtakari, Duarte, Everett, Granskog, Hop, Kauko, Kristiansen, Myhre, Pavlov, Pramanik, Tatarek, Torsvik, Wiktor, Wold, Wulff, Steen and Assmy2019; Hopwood et al., Reference Hopwood, Carroll, Dunse, Hodson, Holding, Iriarte, Ribeiro, Achterberg, Cantoni, Carlson, Chierici, Clarke, Cozzi, Fransson, Juul-Pedersen, Winding and Meire2020). PO4 may also be introduced by meltwater where it is quickly scavenged (Hopwood et al., Reference Hopwood, Carroll, Dunse, Hodson, Holding, Iriarte, Ribeiro, Achterberg, Cantoni, Carlson, Chierici, Clarke, Cozzi, Fransson, Juul-Pedersen, Winding and Meire2020). Land-terminating glaciers may provide even higher levels of nutrients and organic matter in systems with high levels of snowmelt and/or soil/permafrost leaching, which has large implications for local fjord ecology and adjacent coastal communities (Harris et al., Reference Harris, Macmillan-Lawler, Kullerud and Rice2018; Kotwicki et al., Reference Kotwicki, Grzelak, Opaliński and Węsławski2018; McGovern et al., Reference McGovern, Pavlov, Deininger, Granskog, Leu, Søreide and Poste2020; Delpech et al., Reference Delpech, Vonnahme, McGovern, Gradinger, Præbel and Poste2021).

River runoff is another primary input, with nutrient and organic loads that tend to be similar to neighbouring glaciers. A consideration for riverine inputs that differ from glacial is the increased nutrient load attributed to wastewater from human activities (Tuholske et al., Reference Tuholske, Halpern, Blasco, Villasenor, Frazier and Caylor2021). In Isfjorden, for example, where one may find the largest human settlement on Svalbard, nutrient concentrations in river runoff (i.e., NO2 + NO3) can be 12-fold higher than in the uninhabited regions of the fjord (McGovern et al., Reference McGovern, Pavlov, Deininger, Granskog, Leu, Søreide and Poste2020). Very rapid and sudden precipitation events may also lead to high-nutrient freshwater plumes in fjords, but whose effects on local ecosystems tend to remain very localised (McGovern et al., Reference McGovern, Pavlov, Deininger, Granskog, Leu, Søreide and Poste2020).

Summary

If the concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere keeps increasing as it has done in past decades (IPCC, Reference Masson-Delmotte, Zhai, Pirani, Connors, Péan, Berger, Caud, Chen, Goldfarb, Gomis, Huang, Leitzell, Lonnoy, Matthews, Maycock, Waterfield, Yelekçi, Yu and Zhou2021), the impacts of the seawater CO2 system on shell-forming organisms will almost certainly become more severe. The weakening or possible local extinction of these organisms may lead to an entire trophic restructuring of ecosystems both within and adjacent to fjords due to the trophic importance of these organisms to small pelagic fish and birds (see section “Biomass”; Bednaršek et al., Reference Bednaršek, Naish, Feely, Hauri, Kimoto, Hermann, Michel, Niemi and Pilcher2021).

Nutrient loading of Arctic fjord waters is likely to increase in the future due to higher rates of river runoff, glacial melt (see section “Terrestrial runoff”; Santos-Garcia et al., Reference Santos-Garcia, Ganeshram, Tuerena, Debyser, Husum, Assmy and Hop2022), and precipitation (Frigstad et al., Reference Frigstad, Kaste, Deininger, Kvalsund, Christensen, Bellerby, Sørensen, Norli and King2020), in combination with increased human activities. Therefore, the biogeochemical properties of fjords are projected to change apace with the climate (McGovern et al., Reference McGovern, Pavlov, Deininger, Granskog, Leu, Søreide and Poste2020). As more glaciers transition from marine- to land-terminating, their fjords will have fewer methods through which deep water mixing resupplies nutrients to the surface. The loss of icebergs caused by the change in a glacier’s status may reduce the transport of nutrients further out towards its mouth, resulting in a tighter concentration at the points of entry for freshwater runoff. These reductions to nutrient input may be offset by increased rates of terrestrial runoff, another point of research whose future outcome remains uncertain.

Lastly, and perhaps most dramatically, future warming may result in a winter melt, thereby preventing the normal seasonal recirculation of nutrients from deep waters and creating a situation where the nutrients in sinking biological matter are no longer resupplied to fjord ecosystems in the euphotic zone. Taken all together, the dramatic warming in the Arctic will likely lead to many fjords losing three of their four primary processes of deep water recirculation. The remaining process, surface currents exiting fjords, may become stronger due to increased river runoff.

Biology drivers

Primary production

Primary productivity in Arctic fjord ecosystems is a foundational measure of the trophic energy available in an ecosystem and has extreme interannual variability due to the multitude of non-linear interactions between physicochemical processes in nearshore systems (Hopwood et al., Reference Hopwood, Carroll, Dunse, Hodson, Holding, Iriarte, Ribeiro, Achterberg, Cantoni, Carlson, Chierici, Clarke, Cozzi, Fransson, Juul-Pedersen, Winding and Meire2020). Increasingly frequent warm water intrusions and glacial melt are affecting the inter-annual duration and stability of the pycnocline (i.e., surface salinity; section “Salinity”) and biological pump (i.e., deep water upwelling; section “Nutrients”), thereby modifying phytoplankton bloom periods and their species composition (see section “Species richness”; Piwosz et al., Reference Piwosz, Walkusz, Hapter, Wieczorek, Hop and Wiktor2009; Wiencke and Hop, Reference Wiencke and Hop2016).

Arctic fjord primary production is heavily seasonal, with the highest levels typically reached during phytoplankton bloom events in spring and occasionally autumn. The spring bloom occurs when the nutrients supplied by the deep mixing in winter (see section “Nutrients”) are joined by the sufficient light availability of the spring (see the section “Light (PAR and UV)”). A second bloom may develop in late summer when upwelling driven by marine-terminating glacial melt (see section “Nutrients”) supplies enough additional nutrients to the euphotic zone (Juul-Pedersen et al., Reference Juul-Pedersen, Arendt, Mortensen, Blicher, Søgaard and Rysgaard2015). The separate autumn bloom is driven by the seasonal weakening of water column stratification that leads to an increased deep water mixing while light is still sufficient for photosynthesis (e.g., Eilertsen et al., Reference Eilertsen, Taasen and WesIawski1989).

Even though primary productivity is undoubtedly an important ecological factor in the shallow margins of Arctic fjord systems, with only a few exceptions, it has not been comprehensively quantified. In Kongsfjorden (W Spitsbergen), the loss of sea ice (see section “Sea ice”) has led to changes in spring bloom dynamics, with higher light levels in the water column (see section “Light (PAR and UV)”) earlier in the year driving earlier spring blooms with higher biomass and diversity (see section “Species richness”; Hegseth and Tverberg, Reference Hegseth and Tverberg2013). Pelagic primary productivity in this fjord has been estimated across multiple studies conducted over a 20-year period (1979–1999) and ranges from 4 to 180 mg C m−2 yr−1 with no clear predictive trend or continuity (Hop et al., Reference Hop, Pearson, Hegseth, Kovacs, Wiencke, Kwasniewski, Eiane, Mehlum, Gulliksen, Wlodarska-Kowalczuk, Lydersen, Weslawski, Cochrane, Gabrielsen, Leakey, Lønne, Zajaczkowski, Falk-Petersen, Kendall, Wängberg, Bischof, Voronkov, Kovaltchouk, Wiktor, Poltermann, di Prisco, Papucci and Gerland2002 and references therein; Duarte et al., Reference Duarte, Weslawski, Hop, Hop and Wiencke2019). Primary production in Nuup Kangerlua (W Greenland) follows a recurring seasonal pattern with the highest production and biomass during the spring bloom or late summer (Juul-Pedersen et al., Reference Juul-Pedersen, Arendt, Mortensen, Blicher, Søgaard and Rysgaard2015; Krawczyk et al., Reference Krawczyk, Meire, Lopes, Juul-Pedersen, Mortensen, Li and Krogh2018). Primary production in Godthåbsfjorden (Nuup Kangerlua, W Greenland) has smaller interannual variability with ranges between 84.6 and 139.1 g C m−2 yr−1 (Juul-Pedersen et al., Reference Juul-Pedersen, Arendt, Mortensen, Blicher, Søgaard and Rysgaard2015).

Biomass

Phytoplankton biomass is directly related to primary production (see section “Primary production”); however, loss of this biomass can be related to grazing, viral or fungal lysis (e.g., Hassett et al., Reference Hassett, Borrego, Vonnahme, Rämä, Kolomiets and Gradinger2019), or sedimentation. Thus, high primary production does not necessarily lead to high phytoplankton biomass. Due largely to Atlantification (see section “Salinity”), a significant northward advance of temperate phytoplankton and changes of the planktonic organism size distribution towards smaller organisms (i.e., pico- and nanoplankton) have been observed (Oziel et al., Reference Oziel, Neukermans, Ardyna, Lancelot, Tison, Wassmann, Sirven, Ruiz-Pino and Gascard2017; Neukermans et al., Reference Neukermans, Oziel and Babin2018; Konik et al., Reference Konik, Darecki, Pavlov, Sagan and Kowalczuk2021). This means that climate change may be mediating trophic shifts in fjord ecosystems, a process referred to as “borealisation”.

The biomass of zooplankton communities in Arctic fjords relies heavily on the seasonal availability of highly productive phytoplankton (Vereide, Reference Vereide2019), making zooplankton one of the main pathways connecting pelagic primary production (see section “Primary production”) to larger predators. Zooplankton biomass is also affected by local scale perturbations in temperature (see section “Seawater temperature”), salinity (see section “Salinity”), and light availability (see section “Light (PAR and UV)”); all of which are in flux due to the changing climate. The borealisation of West Svalbard fjords, due to Atlantification, is already affecting seabirds via its impacts on zooplankton (Descamps et al., Reference Descamps, Wojczulanis-Jakubas, Jakubas, Vihtakari, Steen, Karnovsky, Welcker, Hovinen, Bertrand, Strzelewicz, Skogseth, Kidawa, Boehnke and Błachowiak-Samołyk2022).

The shifting of the large ocean currents in the Arctic will have widespread effects on pelagic macrozooplankton (i.e., copepods, euphausiids, and amphipods). It was found that the warming occurring in the Kongsfjorden ecosystem (W Svalbard), largely due to increased AW inflow (see section “Seawater temperature”), is having a positive effect on the abundance of euphausiids and amphipods (Dalpadado et al., Reference Dalpadado, Hop, Rønning, Pavlov, Sperfeld, Buchholz, Rey and Wold2016), which are key prey for target fishery species (see section “Fisheries”) such as capelin and polar cod (Dalpadado et al., Reference Dalpadado, Hop, Rønning, Pavlov, Sperfeld, Buchholz, Rey and Wold2016). As the borealisation of the fjords along Western Svalbard continues, it may alter the population dynamics of key prey macrozooplankton species so dramatically that the changes may be tracked by monitoring the diets of local black-legged kittiwakes (Vihtakari et al., Reference Vihtakari, Welcker, Moe, Chastel, Tartu, Hop, Bech, Descamps and Gabrielsen2018).

Although macrophytobenthos (seaweeds and seagrass) are mostly restricted to a narrow spatial stretch along fjords, being dependent on either rocky substrate (seaweeds) or light-flooded sandy sediments (seagrass), their local biomass can be considerable. The vertical structures they create as ecosystem engineers also translate into a strong bottom-up effect in Arctic fjords. Increases in the biomass of these communities over time have been observed (Kędra et al., Reference Kędra, Włodarska-Kowalczuk and Węsławski2010; Bartsch et al., Reference Bartsch, Paar, Fredriksen, Schwanitz, Daniel, Hop and Wiencke2016), and even though the in situ sampling in the study was spatially limited, the findings were striking enough to conclude that a regime shift of the rocky-bottom community occurred via a sharp increase in macroalgae cover in 1995 (Kortsch et al., Reference Kortsch, Primicerio, Beuchel, Renaud, Rodrigues, Lønne and Gulliksen2012). Indeed, a pan-Arctic study of 38 sites showed a general increase in abundance, productivity, and/or biodiversity, with a poleward migration rate of 18–23 km per decade (Krause-Jensen et al., Reference Krause-Jensen, Archambault, Assis, Bartsch, Bischof, Filbee-Dexter, Dunton, Maximova, Ragnarsdóttir, Sejr, Simakova, Spiridonov, Wegeberg, Winding and Duarte2020). An in situ study in Kongsfjorden (W Svalbard), which compared macroalgae biomass records from 2012 to 2014 against those from 1996 to 1998, found that biomass at the 2.5 m depth had increased by 8.2-fold, and that the community had shifted to shallower waters (Bartsch et al., Reference Bartsch, Paar, Fredriksen, Schwanitz, Daniel, Hop and Wiencke2016). The two forces driving shallower shifts in macrophytobenthos biomass are

  1. 1) decreases in sea ice cover (see section “Sea ice”) mean less ice scour and more PAR penetration at the shallow depths macroalgae like to inhabit (Fredriksen et al., Reference Fredriksen, Karsten, Bartsch, Woelfel, Koblowsky, Schumann, Moy, Steneck, Wiktor, Hop, Wiencke, Hop and Wiencke2019 and citations therein) and

  2. 2) increased turbidity, which inhibits PAR penetration (see section “Light (PAR and UV)”) to the historically deeper range where macroalgae have been found (Bartsch et al., Reference Bartsch, Paar, Fredriksen, Schwanitz, Daniel, Hop and Wiencke2016).

Demersal fish have a strong top-down effect on fjord ecosystems via predation, and their distribution in fjords is strongly driven by along fjord salinity and temperature gradients (Mérillet et al., Reference Mérillet, Skogen, Vikebø and Jørgensen2022). Fjords with a sill (i.e., physical barrier) that guard the inner waters from external oceanic forces create very cold habitats that harbour specific communities (Kędra et al., Reference Kędra, Włodarska-Kowalczuk and Węsławski2010; Węsławski et al., Reference Węsławski, Kendall, Włodarska-Kowalczuk, Iken, Kędra, Legezynska and Sejr2011). These are hypothesised to offer a refuge for Arctic endemic species against increasing seawater temperatures (see section “Seawater temperature”; Węsławski et al., Reference Węsławski, Kendall, Włodarska-Kowalczuk, Iken, Kędra, Legezynska and Sejr2011; Drewnik et al., Reference Drewnik, Węsławski and Włodarska-Kowalczuk2017). This may be particularly important as continuing poleward expansion of boreal communities and corresponding decreases in dominance of Arctic communities is being observed (see section “Species richness”; Jørgensen et al., Reference Jørgensen, Primicerio, Ingvaldsen, Fossheim, Strelkova, Thangstad, Manushin and Zakharov2019), which will likely have widespread impacts on the established fisheries in the Arctic (see “Summary” of “Social drivers” section).

Species richness

In addition to the primary production of an ecosystem and the biomass therein, the richness of species, their diversity, and evenness are critically important for stable functioning (Dı́az and Cabido, Reference Dı́az and Cabido2001; Gamfeldt et al., Reference Gamfeldt, Lefcheck, Byrnes, Cardinale, Duffy and Griffin2015; Isbell et al., Reference Isbell, Cowles, Dee, Loreau, Reich, Gonzalez, Hector and Schmid2018). Meaning that the more diverse the assemblage of species in an ecosystem is, the more likely that system will be able to withstand a range of external stressors, based on the insurance hypothesis that some species will have redundant characteristics (i.e., biological traits) and that the ones that will survive will be able to maintain the ecosystem functions performed (Yachi and Loreau, Reference Yachi and Loreau1999; Lamy et al., Reference Lamy, Wang, Renard, Lafferty, Reed and Miller2019). A consideration of paramount importance given the massive and rapid impacts that climate change and other human activities are having on Arctic fjords.

The first impacts of climate change on flora or fauna within the European Arctic (i.e., Greenland, Svalbard, and Northern Norway) were noted by Blacker (Reference Blacker1957), followed by a long pause until research on the species richness of rocky shore communities within European Arctic and sub-Arctic fjords showed that they had increased (Hansen and Ingólfsson, Reference Hansen and Ingólfsson1993; Włodarska-Kowalczuk et al., Reference Włodarska-Kowalczuk, Renaud, Węsławski, Cochrane and Denisenko2012; Fredriksen et al., Reference Fredriksen, Karsten, Bartsch, Woelfel, Koblowsky, Schumann, Moy, Steneck, Wiktor, Hop, Wiencke, Hop and Wiencke2019 and references therein). Due primarily to warming seawater (see section “Seawater temperature”), an increase in species richness of rocky littoral microorganisms has also been recorded on Svalbard (Węsławski et al., Reference Węsławski, Wiktor and Kotwicki2010). Similarly, fish species richness has significantly increased in Porsangerfjorden (N Norway) over 2007–2019, facilitated by reductions in sea ice cover (see section “Sea ice”) and the freshening of water (see section “Salinity”; Mérillet et al., Reference Mérillet, Skogen, Vikebø and Jørgensen2022).

While seawater temperatures in Arctic fjords remain below the present mean of 3°C, rising temperatures are projected to decrease species richness; however, upon passing that 3°C threshold, species richness is projected to begin to increase (Benedetti et al., Reference Benedetti, Vogt, Elizondo, Righetti, Zimmermann and Gruber2021). Plankton species richness in particular is expected to see an overall increase with global warming as species shift poleward (see section “Biomass”; Benedetti et al., Reference Benedetti, Vogt, Elizondo, Righetti, Zimmermann and Gruber2021). However, most decreases are expected in East and Southwest Greenland and West Svalbard (Benedetti et al., Reference Benedetti, Vogt, Elizondo, Righetti, Zimmermann and Gruber2021). The temperature of seawater (see section “Seawater temperature”) is described as the primary cause of the overall increase to species richness in the Arctic, with nutrients (see section “Nutrients”) playing an additional role in some areas (Benedetti et al., Reference Benedetti, Vogt, Elizondo, Righetti, Zimmermann and Gruber2021). Due to the almost certain continued increases to both of these drivers, it is likely that while species richness in fjords may decrease in the short term, on a multi-decadal scale it is likely that borealisation of fjord species (see section “Biomass”) will lead to an overall increase in species richness (with the possible exception of plankton). Unfortunately, this will not necessarily equate to a more resilient ecosystem because the incoming boreal species may lack the same diversity of functional traits found in Arctic species (Kędra et al., Reference Kędra, Moritz, Choy, David, Degen, Duerksen, Ellingsen, Górska, Grebmeier, Kirievskaya, van Oevelen, Piwosz, Samuelsen and Węsławski2015; McGovern et al., Reference McGovern, Pavlov, Deininger, Granskog, Leu, Søreide and Poste2020).

Climate change and increased anthropogenic activities are expected to contribute to the potential increases to species richness largely by elevating the potential for the introduction of non-indigenous species (NIS; Chan et al., Reference Chan, Stanislawczyk, Sneekes, Dvoretsky, Gollasch, Minchin, David, Jelmert, Albretsen and Bailey2019), which when established in novel ecosystems are often able to outcompete local species (Wood et al., Reference Wood, Spicer, Kendall, Lowe and Widdicombe2011). There is a particular risk of this along the coasts of Northern Norway and West Svalbard, where warming water masses and high potential for advection via the North Atlantic Current and WSC are good preconditions for the introduction of NIS (Węsławski et al., Reference Węsławski, Kendall, Włodarska-Kowalczuk, Iken, Kędra, Legezynska and Sejr2011; Tarling et al., Reference Tarling, Freer, Banas, Belcher, Blackwell, Castellani, Cook, Cottier, Daase, Johnson, Last, Lindeque, Mayor, Mitchell, Parry, Speirs, Stowasser and Wootton2022). In the Greenland Sea/East Greenland area, three known NIS have already been introduced (among them the Pacific diatom Neodenticula seminae) and five in the Barents Sea/Svalbard area. Among those, the following have become established: the Japanese skeleton shrimp Caprella mutica, the copepod Eurytemora americana, the Chinese mitten crab Eriocheir sinensis, and the red king crab Paralithodes camtschaticus (Chan et al., Reference Chan, Stanislawczyk, Sneekes, Dvoretsky, Gollasch, Minchin, David, Jelmert, Albretsen and Bailey2019). Of these, king crabs were intentionally introduced to the east of Porsangerfjorden (N Norway) in the 1960s to establish a commercial fishery (see “Summary” of “Social drivers” section), and are now spreading west over the north of Norway, causing widespread trophic perturbations (Dvoretsky and Dvoretsky, Reference Dvoretsky and Dvoretsky2015).

Summary

Decreases of sea ice cover (see section “Sea ice”) in the open Arctic Ocean have been associated with increased primary productivity (Ardyna and Arrigo, Reference Ardyna and Arrigo2020), but this relationship has not yet been conclusively measured in fjords. It is, however, hypothesised that this will eventually become a measurable relationship because further warming of seawater (see section “Seawater temperature”) within fjords will almost certainly result in prolonged sea iceice-free periods and larger volumes of meltwater (see section “Terrestrial runoff”), which will provide more nutrients that fuel primary productivity (Piquet et al., Reference Piquet, van de Poll, Visser, Wiencke, Bolhuis and Buma2014).

It is generally agreed that most Arctic fjords ecosystems will experience radical community changes, with many going through stable state shifts from Arctic to boreal (Kortsch et al., Reference Kortsch, Primicerio, Beuchel, Renaud, Rodrigues, Lønne and Gulliksen2012; Fossheim et al., Reference Fossheim, Primicerio, Johannesen, Ingvaldsen, Aschan and Dolgov2015; Pecuchet et al., Reference Pecuchet, Blanchet, Frainer, Husson, Jørgensen, Kortsch and Primicerio2020), though how these changes will look remains unclear. For example, it is known that demersal fish communities have an inherent adaptive capacity to survive long periods of seasonally low food availability (Sun et al., Reference Sun, Clough, Carroll, Dai, Ambrose and Lopez2009), which in combination with their opportunistic feeding strategy (Iken et al., Reference Iken, Bluhm and Dunton2010; Węsławski et al., Reference Węsławski, Kendall, Włodarska-Kowalczuk, Iken, Kędra, Legezynska and Sejr2011) might translate to some degree of stability in the face of the climate-driven changes to fjord ecosystems. Modelling efforts to predict the impact of potential warming and acidification scenarios by 2100 on demersal fish showed that habitat loss would be small (0–11%), with no appreciable difference between losses for Arctic and Arctic-boreal species (Renaud et al., Reference Renaud, Wallhead, Kotta, Włodarska-Kowalczuk, Bellerby, Rätsep, Slagstad and Kukliński2019). The extent of marine forests (macrophytobenthos) within the Arctic basin is also predicted to remain stable (Bringloe et al., Reference Bringloe, Wilkinson, Goldsmit, Savoie, Filbee‐Dexter, Macgregor, Howland, McKindsey and Verbruggen2022), if not increase due to the changing climate (Krause-Jensen et al., Reference Krause-Jensen, Archambault, Assis, Bartsch, Bischof, Filbee-Dexter, Dunton, Maximova, Ragnarsdóttir, Sejr, Simakova, Spiridonov, Wegeberg, Winding and Duarte2020). The depth structure of these forests, however, is likely to shift to shallower waters (Bartsch et al., Reference Bartsch, Paar, Fredriksen, Schwanitz, Daniel, Hop and Wiencke2016).

Until recently, the climatic conditions around Svalbard acted as a barrier to the spread of NIS, but the Atlantification (see section “Salinity”) of the marine environment has partly removed this (Øian and Kaltenborn, Reference Øian and Kaltenborn2020). The encroachment of NIS, due to borealisation, is currently squeezing Arctic species further northward (Fossheim et al., Reference Fossheim, Primicerio, Johannesen, Ingvaldsen, Aschan and Dolgov2015; Kortsch et al., Reference Kortsch, Primicerio, Fossheim, Dolgov and Aschan2015). A process that will almost certainly continue into the future (Filbee-Dexter et al., Reference Filbee-Dexter, Wernberg, Fredriksen, Norderhaug and Pedersen2019). It has been noted, however, that assemblages in Svalbard will likely remain different from those in Northern Norway due to the greater direct human influence on the continent (Kujawa et al., Reference Kujawa, Łącka, Szymańska, Pawłowska, Telesiński and Zajączkowski2021).

Social drivers

Governance

There are many ways that changes to the drivers detailed above may affect Arctic livelihoods, culture, identity, economy, health, and security, especially for Indigenous Peoples (IPCC, Reference Masson-Delmotte, Zhai, Pirani, Connors, Péan, Berger, Caud, Chen, Goldfarb, Gomis, Huang, Leitzell, Lonnoy, Matthews, Maycock, Waterfield, Yelekçi, Yu and Zhou2021); however, these are not the only drivers of change in the Arctic. Through its top-down control of human societies, governance may have broader impacts on Arctic fjord socio-ecological systems than nearly all other aspects of climate change by controlling the rapid and dramatic direct local impacts that human actions may have on the natural world (Tyler et al., Reference Tyler, Turi, Sundset, Strøm Bull, Sara, Reinert, Oskal, Nellemann, McCarthy, Mathiesen, Martello, Magga, Hovelsrud, Hanssen-Bauer, Eira, Eira and Corell2007; Hovelsrud and Smit, Reference Hovelsrud and Smit2010).

Self-determination in managing climate change impacts has inspired Greenlandic politicians to contemplate joining the Paris Agreement and to look for investors to expand the hydro-power resource enabling the storage and export of green energy within a decade (Bjørst, Reference Bjørst and Heininen2022). In parallel, the national strategy for oil and gas exploration has been abandoned. As another way to grow and diversify its economy, Greenland is in the process of building two international airports to improve transport and connectivity, specifically around tourism (see section “Tourism”). These two examples showcase how the Government of Greenland is managing the right to resources, subsurface and hydropower installation, and how regional governments are becoming key players for domestic development that are increasingly empowered to act on negative trends affecting the regional population, but in ways that may have negative ecological consequences.

In 2018, the Norwegian government decided to close most of its coal mines on Svalbard (the primary original reason for human settlements there) and identified tourism (see section “Tourism”) as a new cornerstone industry (NMJ, 2016). Concurrent with this recent shift is the goal for Svalbard to ensure the best wilderness management in the world (MoCE, 2020). Strict regulations have been followed, and currently underway is a major overhaul and tightening of the environmental protections and tourism management for the archipelago (Granberg et al., Reference Granberg, Ask and Gabrielsen2017; NEA, 2022).

Tourism

In recent decades (until the onset of COVID-19 countermeasures in early 2020), there has been an increasing global interest in the Arctic as a tourist destination, particularly fjords. Promoting this increase in tourism has been an intentional governance choice (see section “Governance”), with the stated goal being the development and diversification of the economies of the sparsely populated peripheral regions of Nordic countries (Ren et al., Reference Ren, James, Pashkevich and Hoarau-Heemstra2021a). This has, however, led to growing human impacts on small and remote destinations where signs of human activities had yet been scarce, and where these anthropogenic disturbances may have wide-ranging consequences.

Ironically, the changing climate is currently serving as a net benefit to Arctic tourism, with tourist arrivals via cruise ship in Longyearbyen (W Svalbard) doubling from 2010 to 2018 (Port of Longyearbyen, 2018; Epinion, 2019). This has led to calls for opportunity-based adaptations to the cruise tourism influx (Dawson et al., Reference Dawson, Stewart, Johnston and Lemieux2016) because the warming Arctic and its melting sea ice (see section “Sea ice”) will ensure that coastal destinations remain the most accessible. This is an important consideration because in addition to the impacts of the humans themselves, the ships they use for transport to and from the Arctic may drive changes in a number of different ways. Some of these may be more apparent, like the introduction of nutrients (i.e., via human waste; section “Nutrients”) and pollutants (Øian and Kaltenborn, Reference Øian and Kaltenborn2020), but some less so, like the introduction of NIS (see section “Species richness”; Hellmann et al., Reference Hellmann, Byers, Bierwagen and Dukes2008; Goldsmit et al., Reference Goldsmit, Archambault, Chust, Villarino, Liu, Lukovich, Barber and Howland2018). These are transported on the hulls of ships, via the emptying of ballast water (Chan et al., Reference Chan, Bailey, Wiley and MacIsaac2013), or by the tourists themselves. Weaver and Lawton (Reference Weaver and Lawton2017) argue that the potential economic benefits of cruise tourism in small coastal communities may be outweighed by their social and environmental stressors, and Ren et al. (Reference Ren, Jóhannesson, Kramvig, Pashkevich and Höckert2021b) stress the need for more locally based management of Arctic cruise tourism.

While human activities in the permanent settlements of Svalbard do have an environmental footprint, this is easily rivalled by that of tourism, where residents are outnumbered by tourists during the high season (Hovelsrud et al., Reference Hovelsrud, Veland, Kaltenborn, Olsen and Dannevig2021). Tourists arriving in Isfjorden (W Svalbard) tend to spend less than 3 days on the archipelago (Hovelsrud et al., Reference Hovelsrud, Veland, Kaltenborn, Olsen and Dannevig2021), but the increase in tourist arrivals has meant a doubling of total tourist nights per year (Visit Svalbard, 2020). Management decisions (see section “Governance”) to deal with this issue are ongoing (Hovelsrud et al., Reference Hovelsrud, Kaltenborn and Olsen2020). Of the cruise ships arriving on the archipelago, the average number of overseas arrivals per year has decreased (Stocker et al., Reference Stocker, Renner and Knol-Kauffman2020), most likely due to a ban on heavy oil fuel in most of the coastal waters of Svalbard. This is endemic to a shift towards smaller expedition cruises and pleasure craft vessels, which have increased by 42% from 2008 to 2018 (NEA, 2022). These smaller vessels benefit more from the retreating sea ice edge (Palma et al., Reference Palma, Varnajot, Dalen, Basaran, Brunette, Bystrowska, Korablina, Nowicki and Ronge2019; Hovelsrud et al., Reference Hovelsrud, Kaltenborn and Olsen2020) due to their ability to sail closer to the ice-edge and glaciers, a demand for which has become a recent market trend (Hovelsrud et al., Reference Hovelsrud, Veland, Kaltenborn, Olsen and Dannevig2021).

Accounting for about a third of all foreign visitors, cruises have for many years been a central part of tourism in Greenland. The country has previously set annual growth targets for cruises as a whole. However, Visit Greenland announced in late 2022 that it will abstain from marketing to conventional cruises after a summer with cruise tourism numbers matching the record year of 2019 (Visit Greenland, 2022). Whether this may actually enable a move from conventional cruises to cleaner and socially less impactful expedition cruise tourism remains to be seen but will have crucial implications for the fjord systems of Greenland as a return to mass tourism will mean greater anthropogenic impact in the future.

Fisheries

Besides adding nutrients (see section “Nutrients”) and pollutants, humans also engage in extractive behaviours that can upset natural trophic balance. These disturbances are generally monitored via target species and regulated by the management of fisheries (see section “Governance”). However, fishing also affects non-targeted species as well as the structure of the habitats, such as the use of bottom trawls (Gray et al., Reference Gray, Dayton, Thrush and Kaiser2006; Kaiser et al., Reference Kaiser, Clarke, Hinz, Austen, Somerfield and Karakassis2006). While the impacts of tourists are generally inferred via head counts at ports of call, the proxy for tracking the impacts of fishing vessels in the Arctic is by monitoring ship mileage. This value has been increasing in the waters around Svalbard as the ice edge steadily retreats (see section “Sea ice”; Stocker et al., Reference Stocker, Renner and Knol-Kauffman2020), and the duration of the operational season extends (i.e., longer sea iceice-free period per year). Unsurprisingly then the overall number of ships in the Arctic increased by 25% from just 2013 to 2019 (Stocker et al., Reference Stocker, Renner and Knol-Kauffman2020).

In Porsangerfjorden (N Norway), the shrimp fishery, which used the ecologically damaging method of bottom trawling, was closed in the early 1970s after intensive fishing caused the overexploitation of cod as well as small and young fishes (Søvik et al., Reference Søvik, Nedreaas, Zimmermann, Husson, Strand, Jørgensen, Strand, Thangstad, Hansen, Båtevik, Albretsen and Staby2020). This fishery was, however, opened again in 2021 for trial with only a few boats allowed to fish in the outer part of the fjord (G. Søvik, pers. comm.), a demonstration of the direct impact that governance (see section “Governance”) can have on a local ecosystem. Fishing for cod (Gadus morhua), saithe (Pollachius virens), haddock (Melanogrammus aeglefinus), and red king crab (P. camtschaticus) had always been allowed in the fjord with other less damaging gear. Red king crab in particular has become an important commercial fishery with 921 t landed in 2018 (Søvik et al., Reference Søvik, Nedreaas, Zimmermann, Husson, Strand, Jørgensen, Strand, Thangstad, Hansen, Båtevik, Albretsen and Staby2020). Originally a NIS (see section “Species richness”), the adaptation of a fishery for red king crab (Sundet and Hoel, Reference Sundet and Hoel2016), has potentially aided the recovery of kelp forests in Northern Norway by reducing sea urchin grazing pressure (Christie et al., Reference Christie, Gundersen, Rinde, Filbee-Dexter, Norderhaug, Pedersen, Bekkby, Gitmark and Fagerli2019), and is a good example of how governance can help to adapt to the inevitable changes that Arctic fjord ecosystems will experience.

The largest city of Greenland lies at the mouth of Nuup Kangerlua, where hunting for seals and seabirds, as well as fishing for cod, halibut, and redfish is common. Humpback whales have been protected inside the fjord since 2021, while other species remain open for hunting. As of today, fishing is the main economic sector for the country (Grønlands Økonomiske Råd, 2021). And while fisheries are affected by the changing climate, government regulations (see section “Governance”) and changes to the international prices on fish and shrimp likely have a greater impact. In 2021, for example, (because of COVID-19) the prices for cod dropped suddenly compared to previous years, leading to widely felt economic hardships (Andersen, Reference Andersen2022). To limit this reoccurrence, development in the formal economy is seen as important by decision-makers and business owners. However, fishing, hunting, and gathering activities remain a key part of the region’s mixed economy and hold great cultural and social value. This means that it is particularly difficult for the government of Greenland to tightly regulate the extractive behaviour of its citizens, and thereby the ecological impacts they may have. It is in part to address issues like this that many governments of Arctic nations have been leaning away from extractive economic strategies in favour of tourism (see section “Tourism”).

The northernmost fisheries on the planet, found in the fjords and waters around Svalbard, have been strictly regulated since 1977 when Norway claimed the right to regulate fishing 200 nautical miles around Svalbard under the Norwegian Economic Zone Act (reduced slightly in 2010 when a final dividing line agreement with Russia was made). Since 1980, the Directorate of Fisheries has collected detailed information on landings from Norwegian fishers in the Svalbard zone (Misund et al., Reference Misund, Heggland, Skogseth, Falck, Gjøsæter, Sundet, Watne and Lønne2016), and the main fisheries are Atlantic cod G. morhua with close to 75 million tonnes fished in 2021 with an estimated value of 1.2 billions NOK (or 114.2 million €), followed by shrimp (Pandalus borealis; 27.3 million tonnes; 550 million NOK or 52.3 million €), haddock (M. aeglefinus; 22.1 million tonnes; 331 million NOK or 31.5 million €) and snow crab (Chionoecetes opilio; 6.3 million tonnes; 586 million NOK or 55.7 million €; Fiskeridirektoratet, 2022). Within the coastal zone/fjords of Svalbard, the core areas for fishing (mostly for shrimp) are Isfjorden, Krossfjorden, and Hinlopen. At present, it is not possible to deliver landings directly to local communities on Svalbard, with most going to mainland Norway. While there is interest to develop the necessary local infrastructure, it has been inhibited by strict environmental regulations (see section “Governance”). A few local hunters provide seal meat and Atlantic cod to restaurants in Longyearbyen, and it is popular for the locals to fish cod and hunt seals for their own use.

Summary

It is very difficult to predict what the future social structure of Arctic communities will look like. One can, however, seek to understand how and why these societies have changed in the past and present (AMAP, 2017). Future policies that may be developed in order to adapt to the changing personal decisions of the inhabitants of the Arctic will in turn have top-down impacts on many of the drivers detailed in previous sections. One must also remember that the results of climate change research do not automatically translate into adaptive human behaviour (Hovelsrud et al., Reference Hovelsrud, West and Dannevig2015). Indeed, the many international climate meetings (e.g., Conference of the Parties [COPs]) and IPCC projections on the changing climate have had seemingly little impact when introduced into national politics and everyday lives. The need for economic growth and the development of new infrastructure in Arctic communities may very well lead to an increase in CO2 emissions, rather than a reduction, meaning that social drivers may negatively impact the Arctic climate system even more in years to come. For example, the increase in local pollution in the form of CO2, sulphur, black carbon emissions, and nutrient runoff are directly affected by how northern communities decide to manage the tourism industry (see section “Tourism”). The failure (or success) of local ecosystems and key taxa are also directly influenced by choices in how to manage northern fisheries (see section “Fisheries”) and the potential expansion of aquaculture endeavours (Heath et al., Reference Heath, Benkort, Brierley, Daewel, Laverick, Proud and Speirs2022), such as the farming of kelp forests.

Social drivers of change are generally perceived first and foremost to have local impacts, but they too are capable of having widespread feedback on the other categories of drivers. For example, while various aspects of climate change will likely have the largest impact on ecosystems and species in the future (Thierry et al., Reference Thierry, Bullock and Gardner2022), the greatest impacts historically have come from human overexploitation of species and destruction of their habitats (Caro et al., Reference Caro, Rowe, Berger, Wholey and Dobson2022). The melting Arctic will allow for even greater exploitation of the resources therein, which will have entirely new impacts that until present had not been possible.

Conclusions

Arctic fjords are changing rapidly at nearly every measurable level. Therefore, a clear understanding of the relationships of these drivers with each other in the past, present, and how they may change in the future is necessary for designing effective adaptation strategies (Søreide et al., Reference Søreide, Pitusi, Vader, Damsgård, Nilsen, Skogseth, Poste, Bailey, Kovacs, Lydersen, Gerland, Descamps, Strøm, Renaud, Christensen, Arvnes, Moiseev, Singh, Bélanger, Elster, Urbański, Moskalik, Wiktor, Węsławski, Moreno-Ibáñez, Hagen, Hübner, Lihavainen and Zaborska2021). Some of these changes, such as the increase in sea ice-free days, are easier to project than others, such as whether governance decisions to create economic growth will focus on developing industry over ecological protection. In this review, we have provided a summary of the knowledge of the key drivers of change in socio-ecological Arctic fjord systems (Table 1), and how those drivers interact with one another (Figure 2). Below, we provide a discussion on the choice of the drivers, gaps in knowledge, future changes, and concluding remarks.

Figure 1. The extent of the European Arctic (25°W–60°E and 66°N–90°N; sensu Copernicus Marine Environment Monitoring Service) highlighted here via a polygon, with the seven focal sites for this review paper shown as coloured points grouped into the regions: Svalbard (brown), Greenland (green), and Northern Norway (purple). Areas referenced in the text are indicated with black labels. The general position of the West Spitsbergen Current (WSC) is shown with a red arrow.

Table 1. The main point to consider for each driver of change, and the summary per category

Figure 2. Network chart of the interactions between the drivers of change in Arctic fjord socio-ecological systems as determined from a review of the literature. The trend in the change of each driver (i.e., increasing, decreasing, or uncertain) is shown via the coloured borders of the labelled points. The impacts that the drivers have on each other are shown with coloured arrows. The categories of the drivers are shown with the internal colour of the points and their labels. Note that “positive”’ governance is assumed here to be choices in favour of environmental protection rather than exploitation. It is for this reason that governance is shown here to have a negative impact on fisheries and tourism. The asterisk on the carbonate system is to note that it consists of several variables, including pCO2, DIC, TA, pH, and CaCO3 saturation state (see section “Carbonate system”), which do not vary in synchrony. The positive effect of increasing terrestrial runoff on the carbonate system refers to pCO2 and DIC, whereas the negative effect on calcifying organisms refers to pH and CaCO3 saturation state.

The list of drivers in this review was very carefully considered. A much longer list of drivers was initially constructed, but many were cut when no literature supporting their importance within Arctic fjords was found. An illustrative example is dissolved oxygen in fjord waters. The general global trend shows oxygen levels are decreasing and will continue to do so in a changing climate (Breitburg et al., Reference Breitburg, Levin, Oschlies, Grégoire, Chavez, Conley, Garçon, Gilbert, Gutiérrez, Isensee, Jacinto, Limburg, Montes, Naqvi, Pitcher, Rabalais, Roman, Rose, Seibel, Telszewski, Yasuhara and Zhang2018). There is, however, very little research on this issue in the Arctic, leading the IPCC to give medium confidence to the past trend (Arias et al., Reference Arias, Bellouin, Coppola, Jones, Krinner, Marotzke, Naik, Palmer, Plattner, Rogelj, Masson-Delmotte, Zhai, Pirani, Connors, Péan, Berger, Caud, Chen, Goldfarb, Gomis, Huang, Leitzell, Lonnoy, Matthews, Maycock, Waterfield, Yelekçi, Yu and Zhou2021). While decreasing oxygen levels will likely be deleterious for multicellular life in the global ocean (Storch et al., Reference Storch, Menzel, Frickenhaus and Pörtner2014), initial research in Arctic fjords shows they may be partially exempt (Kempf, Reference Kempf2020).

The melting Arctic will fundamentally reshuffle the biotic interactions within fjords, but will also increase the opportunity for fisheries and maritime traffic. For example, as multi-year sea ice becomes scarce to the north of Russia it will become an important arterial for shipping (e.g., Shanghai to Hamburg is 30% shorter than the Suez Canal route, saving 14 days of travel time/cost). Will Arctic communities adapt to these new logistical opportunities? Will they continue to exploit and extract from the natural world, or will the recent trends towards more ecologically responsible practices take root? One must also consider that once the Arctic cryosphere is mostly gone, tourism will almost certainly decrease. The main research gap then that persists in the social sciences is, in the face of the changing climate and the potential draw-down of tourism as a viable economic pathway, how can Arctic communities achieve sustainability given their need for long-distance travel and the increasing energy requirements to match economic development. In the natural sciences, a key unknown is how the light regime within Arctic fjord surface waters will change in the future, and how it will impact the borealisation of coastal communities.

Given that a range of data is collected in the Arctic via in situ measurements and remote sensing, it is possible to discern the numeric relationships for many of the drivers detailed above, and to project those relationships forward into the future based on different climate projections (Schlegel and Gattuso, Reference Schlegel and Gattusoin review). It is therefore possible to see where in the Arctic these historic relationships differ, and where the future projections may likewise diverge. Using the interplay of sea ice cover and seawater temperature as an example, while most fjords experience similar decreases in sea ice cover as fjord waters warm, the relationship at depth (>200 m) differs between Greenland and Svalbard due to the lack of Atlantification of fjord waters in the former (see section “Seawater temperature”; Schlegel and Gattuso, Reference Schlegel and Gattusoin review). It must be noted, however, that while the Arctic is becoming increasingly well sampled, data within most fjords remain scarce. The more thorough sampling of fjords, particularly for the 14 drivers covered in this review, should be an area of concerted future effort.

Without an immediate and massive reduction in anthropogenic emissions, accompanied by the rapid development and implementation of atmospheric CO2 extraction technologies to limit global warming to 1.5°C by 2100, the Arctic cryosphere will be altered significantly (Meredith et al., Reference Meredith, Sommerkorn, Cassotta, Derksen, Ekaykin, Hollowed, Kofinas, Mackintosh, Melbourne-Thomas, Muelbert, Ottersen, Pritchard, Schuur, Pörtner, Roberts, Masson-Delmotte and Zhai2019). Considering that the UN has concluded this is no longer possible, the work now is projecting when exactly massive significant shifts will occur (e.g., Wei et al., Reference Wei, Yan, Qi, Ding and Wang2020). Of the published models for Arctic Ocean sea ice, the soonest predicted ice-free summer period over the North Pole is 2030, though most err towards 2050 (Wei et al., Reference Wei, Yan, Qi, Ding and Wang2020). Taking into account the relationships between all of the drivers detailed in this review, and considering that the time scale of human governance only extends to 2050, we may conclude that many Arctic fjords will become entirely and irrevocably borealised in the coming decades. They may, however, continue functioning in some way resembling their current state, meaning that human strategies for adaptation will have to continue to change rapidly, but will likely not need to be fundamentally overhauled to match the types of ecosystems that are found below the Arctic circle. Taken all together, the drivers of change in socio-ecological systems weave a complex web of interaction, with no one driver or category being necessarily more or less important than another, and certainly, none of them can be excluded when one’s aim is to create effective adaptation strategies for a changing future Arctic.

Open peer review

To view the open peer review materials for this article, please visit http://doi.org/10.1017/cft.2023.1.

Data availability statement

No data were generated or analysed for this review, however, this paper is accompanied by a sister paper (Schlegel and Gattuso, Reference Schlegel and Gattusoin review) that describes and analyses a data product whose compilation was directed by the knowledge generated during this review process. The data product itself is openly available on PANGAEA at: https://doi.org/10.1594/PANGAEA.953115 .

Acknowledgements

This study is a contribution to the project FACE-IT (The Future of Arctic Coastal Ecosystems – Identifying Transitions in Fjord Systems and Adjacent Coastal Areas). We thank D. Storch (AWI) for providing information on oxygen deficiency in the Arctic. Figure 1 was created in large part thanks to the R package “ggoceanmaps” (Vihtakari, Reference Vihtakari2022).

Author contributions

R.S. and J-.P.G. defined the concept and frame of the paper. R.S. prepared a first draft of the manuscript, figures, tables, and coordinated the discussion rounds. All authors revised, commented, and edited the manuscript during multiple revision rounds and approved the final version for publication.

Financial support

FACE-IT has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement no. 869154.

Competing interest

The authors declare no competing interests exist.

References

Aanesen, M and Mikkelsen, E (2020) Cost-benefit analysis of aquaculture expansion in Arctic Norway. Aquaculture Economics & Management 24(1), 2042. https://doi.org/10.1080/13657305.2019.1641570.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Aksnes, D, Dupont, N, Staby, A, Fiksen, Ø, Kaartvedt, S and Aure, J (2009) Coastal water darkening and implications for mesopelagic regime shifts in Norwegian fjords. Marine Ecology Progress Series 387, 3949. https://doi.org/10.3354/meps08120.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
AMAP (2017). Adaptation Actions for a Changing Arctic (AACA)—Barents Area Overview Report. Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Programme (AMAP). Available at https://oaarchive.arctic-council.org/handle/11374/1960. (Accessed 14 October 2022)Google Scholar
Andersen, TM (2022) Grønland, en selvbærende økonomi – Krav og muligheder. Samfundsøkonomen 2021(4), 418. https://doi.org/10.7146/samfundsokonomen.v2021i4.132055.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Ardyna, M and Arrigo, KR (2020) Phytoplankton dynamics in a changing Arctic Ocean. Nature Climate Change 10(10), 892903. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41558-020-0905-y.Google Scholar
Arias, PA, Bellouin, N, Coppola, E, Jones, RG, Krinner, G, Marotzke, J, Naik, V, Palmer, MD, Plattner, G-K and Rogelj, J (2021) Technical summary. In Masson-Delmotte, V, Zhai, P, Pirani, A, Connors, SL, Péan, C, Berger, S, Caud, N, Chen, Y, Goldfarb, L, Gomis, MI, Huang, M, Leitzell, K, Lonnoy, E, Matthews, JBR, Maycock, TK, Waterfield, T, Yelekçi, O, Yu, R and Zhou, B (eds), Climate Change 2021: The Physical Science Basis. Contribution of Working Group I to the Sixth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change: Vol. Climate Change 2021: The Physical Science Basis. Contribution of Working Group I to the Sixth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, pp. 33144.Google Scholar
Arrigo, KR and van Dijken, GL (2011) Secular trends in Arctic Ocean net primary production. Journal of Geophysical Research 116(C9), C09011. https://doi.org/10.1029/2011JC007151.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Bartsch, I, Paar, M, Fredriksen, S, Schwanitz, M, Daniel, C, Hop, H and Wiencke, C (2016) Changes in kelp forest biomass and depth distribution in Kongsfjorden, Svalbard, between 1996–1998 and 2012–2014 reflect Arctic warming. Polar Biology 39(11), 20212036. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00300-015-1870-1.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Bednaršek, N, Naish, K-A, Feely, RA, Hauri, C, Kimoto, K, Hermann, AJ, Michel, C, Niemi, A and Pilcher, D (2021) Integrated assessment of ocean acidification risks to pteropods in the northern high latitudes: Regional comparison of exposure, sensitivity and adaptive capacity. Frontiers in Marine Science 8, 671497. https://doi.org/10.3389/fmars.2021.671497.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Bélanger, S, Babin, M and Tremblay, J-É (2013) Increasing cloudiness in Arctic damps the increase in phytoplankton primary production due to sea ice receding. Biogeosciences 10(6), 40874101. https://doi.org/10.5194/bg-10-4087-2013.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Benedetti, F, Vogt, M, Elizondo, UH, Righetti, D, Zimmermann, NE and Gruber, N (2021) Major restructuring of marine plankton assemblages under global warming. Nature Communications 12(1), 5226. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-021-25385-x.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Bianchi, TS, Arndt, S, Austin, WEN, Benn, DI, Bertrand, S, Cui, X, Faust, JC, Koziorowska-Makuch, K, Moy, CM, Savage, C, Smeaton, C, Smith, RW and Syvitski, J (2020) Fjords as aquatic critical zones (ACZs). Earth-Science Reviews 203, 103145. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.earscirev.2020.103145.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Bintanja, R and Andry, O (2017) Towards a rain-dominated Arctic. Nature Climate Change 7(4), 263267. https://doi.org/10.1038/nclimate3240.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Bischof, K, Convey, P, Duarte, P, Gattuso, J-P, Granberg, M, Hop, H, Hoppe, C, Jiménez, C, Lisitsyn, L, Martinez, B, Roleda, MY, Thor, P, Wiktor, JM and Gabrielsen, GW (2019) Kongsfjorden as harbinger of the future Arctic: Knowns, unknowns and research priorities. In Hop, H and Wiencke, C (eds), The Ecosystem of Kongsfjorden, Svalbard. Cham: Springer International Publishing, pp. 537562. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-46425-1_14.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Bischof, K and Steinhoff, FS (2012) Impacts of ozone stratospheric depletion and solar UVB radiation on seaweeds. In Wiencke, C and Bischof, K (eds), Seaweed Biology, Vol. 219. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer, pp. 433448. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-28451-9_20.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Bjørst, LR (2022) To live up to our name “Greenland”: Politics of comparison in Greenland’s green transition. In Heininen, (ed), Arctic Yearbook 2022. Lapland: Thematic Network on Geopolitics and Security, pp. 119.Google Scholar
Blacker, RW (1957) Benthic animals as indicators of hydrographic conditions and climatic change in Svalbard waters. Her Majesty’s Stationery Office.Google Scholar
Bloshkina, EV, Pavlov, AK and Filchuk, K (2021) Warming of Atlantic water in three West Spitsbergen fjords: Recent patterns and century-long trends. Polar Research 40, 111. https://doi.org/10.33265/polar.v40.5392.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Boone, W, Rysgaard, S, Carlson, DF, Meire, L, Kirillov, S, Mortensen, J, Dmitrenko, I, Vergeynst, L and Sejr, MK (2018) Coastal freshening prevents Fjord bottom water renewal in Northeast Greenland: A mooring study from 2003 to 2015. Geophysical Research Letters 45(6), 27262733. https://doi.org/10.1002/2017GL076591.Google Scholar
Breitburg, D, Levin, LA, Oschlies, A, Grégoire, M, Chavez, FP, Conley, DJ, Garçon, V, Gilbert, D, Gutiérrez, D, Isensee, K, Jacinto, GS, Limburg, KE, Montes, I, Naqvi, SWA, Pitcher, GC, Rabalais, NN, Roman, MR, Rose, KA, Seibel, BA, Telszewski, M, Yasuhara, M and Zhang, J (2018) Declining oxygen in the global ocean and coastal waters. Science 359(6371), eaam7240. https://doi.org/10.1126/science.aam7240.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Bridier, G, Olivier, F, Chauvaud, L, Sejr, MK and Grall, J (2021) Food source diversity, trophic plasticity, and omnivory enhance the stability of a shallow benthic food web from a high‐Arctic fjord exposed to freshwater inputs. Limnology and Oceanography 66(S1), S259S272. https://doi.org/10.1002/lno.11688.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Bringloe, TT, Wilkinson, DP, Goldsmit, J, Savoie, AM, Filbee‐Dexter, K, Macgregor, KA, Howland, KL, McKindsey, CW and Verbruggen, H (2022) Arctic marine forest distribution models showcase potentially severe habitat losses for cryophilic species under climate change. Global Change Biology 28(11), 37113727. https://doi.org/10.1111/gcb.16142.Google ScholarPubMed
Caro, T, Rowe, Z, Berger, J, Wholey, P and Dobson, A (2022) An inconvenient misconception: Climate change is not the principal driver of biodiversity loss. Conservation Letters 15(3), e12868. https://doi.org/10.1111/conl.12868.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Chan, FT, Bailey, SA, Wiley, CJ and MacIsaac, HJ (2013) Relative risk assessment for ballast-mediated invasions at Canadian Arctic ports. Biological Invasions 15(2), 295308. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10530-012-0284-z.Google Scholar
Chan, FT, Stanislawczyk, K, Sneekes, AC, Dvoretsky, A, Gollasch, S, Minchin, D, David, M, Jelmert, A, Albretsen, J and Bailey, SA (2019) Climate change opens new frontiers for marine species in the Arctic: Current trends and future invasion risks. Global Change Biology 25(1), 2538. https://doi.org/10.1111/gcb.14469.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Christiansen, JR, Röckmann, T, Popa, ME, Sapart, CJ and Jørgensen, CJ (2021) Carbon emissions from the edge of the Greenland ice sheet reveal subglacial processes of methane and carbon dioxide turnover. Journal of Geophysical Research: Biogeosciences 126(11), e2021JG006308. https://doi.org/10.1029/2021JG006308.Google Scholar
Christie, H, Gundersen, H, Rinde, E, Filbee-Dexter, K, Norderhaug, KM, Pedersen, T, Bekkby, T, Gitmark, JK and Fagerli, CW (2019) Can multitrophic interactions and ocean warming influence large-scale kelp recovery? Ecology and Evolution 9(5), 28472862. https://doi.org/10.1002/ece3.4963.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Comeau, S, Gattuso, J-P, Nisumaa, A-M and Orr, J (2012) Impact of aragonite saturation state changes on migratory pteropods. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 279(1729), 732738. https://doi.org/10.1098/rspb.2011.0910.Google ScholarPubMed
Cottier, FR, Nilsen, F, Inall, ME, Gerland, S, Tverberg, V and Svendsen, H (2007) Wintertime warming of an Arctic shelf in response to large-scale atmospheric circulation. Geophysical Research Letters 34(10), L10607. https://doi.org/10.1029/2007GL029948.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Cottier, FR, Nilsen, F, Skogseth, R, Tverberg, V, Skarðhamar, J and Svendsen, H (2010) Arctic fjords: A review of the oceanographic environment and dominant physical processes. Geological Society, London, Special Publications 344(1), 3550. https://doi.org/10.1144/SP344.4.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Cui, X, Mucci, A, Bianchi, TS, He, D, Vaughn, D, Williams, EK, Wang, C, Smeaton, C, Koziorowska-Makuch, K, Faust, JC, Plante, AF and Rosenheim, BE (2022) Global fjords as transitory reservoirs of labile organic carbon modulated by organo-mineral interactions. Science Advances 8(46), eadd0610. https://doi.org/10.1126/sciadv.add0610.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Dahlke, S, Hughes, NE, Wagner, PM, Gerland, S, Wawrzyniak, T, Ivanov, B and Maturilli, M (2020) The observed recent surface air temperature development across Svalbard and concurring footprints in local sea ice cover. International Journal of Climatology 40(12), 52465265. https://doi.org/10.1002/joc.6517.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Dalpadado, P, Hop, H, Rønning, J, Pavlov, V, Sperfeld, E, Buchholz, F, Rey, A and Wold, A (2016) Distribution and abundance of euphausiids and pelagic amphipods in Kongsfjorden, Isfjorden and Rijpfjorden (Svalbard) and changes in their relative importance as key prey in a warming marine ecosystem. Polar Biology 39(10), 17651784. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00300-015-1874-x.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Dawson, J, Stewart, EJ, Johnston, ME and Lemieux, CJ (2016) Identifying and evaluating adaptation strategies for cruise tourism in Arctic Canada. Journal of Sustainable Tourism 24(10), 14251441. https://doi.org/10.1080/09669582.2015.1125358.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Delpech, L-M, Vonnahme, TR, McGovern, M, Gradinger, R, Præbel, K and Poste, AE (2021) Terrestrial inputs shape coastal bacterial and archaeal communities in a high Arctic fjord (Isfjorden, Svalbard). Frontiers in Microbiology 12, 614634. https://doi.org/10.3389/fmicb.2021.614634.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Descamps, S, Wojczulanis-Jakubas, K, Jakubas, D, Vihtakari, M, Steen, H, Karnovsky, NJ, Welcker, J, Hovinen, J, Bertrand, P, Strzelewicz, A, Skogseth, R, Kidawa, D, Boehnke, R and Błachowiak-Samołyk, K (2022) Consequences of atlantification on a zooplanktivorous Arctic seabird. Frontiers in Marine Science 9, 878746. https://doi.org/10.3389/fmars.2022.878746.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Dı́az, S and Cabido, M (2001) Vive la différence: Plant functional diversity matters to ecosystem processes. Trends in Ecology & Evolution 16(11), 646655. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0169-5347(01)02283-2.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Drewnik, A, Węsławski, JM and Włodarska-Kowalczuk, M (2017) Benthic Crustacea and Mollusca distribution in Arctic fjord – Case study of patterns in Hornsund, Svalbard. Oceanologia 59(4), 565575. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.oceano.2017.01.005.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Duarte, P, Meyer, A and Moreau, S (2021) Nutrients in water masses in the Atlantic sector of the Arctic Ocean: Temporal trends. Mixing and links with primary production. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans 126(8), e2021JC017413. https://doi.org/10.1029/2021JC017413.Google Scholar
Duarte, P, Weslawski, JM and Hop, H (2019) Outline of an Arctic fjord ecosystem model for Kongsfjorden-Krossfjorden, Svalbard. In Hop, H and Wiencke, C (eds), The Ecosystem of Kongsfjorden, Svalbard, Vol. 2. Cham: Springer International Publishing, pp. 485514. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-46425-1_12.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Dvoretsky, AG and Dvoretsky, VG (2015) Commercial fish and shellfish in the Barents Sea: Have introduced crab species affected the population trajectories of commercial fish? Reviews in Fish Biology and Fisheries 25(2), 297322. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11160-015-9382-1.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Eamer, J, Donaldson, G, Gaston, A, Kosobokova, K, Lárusson, K, Melnikov, I, Reist, J, Richardson, E, Staples, L and von Quillfeldt, C (2013) Life Linked to Ice. A Guide to Sea-Ice-Associated Biodiversity in this Time of Rapid Change. Conservation of Arctic Flora and Fauna (CAFF).Google Scholar
Eilertsen, HC, Taasen, JP and WesIawski, JM (1989) Phytoplankton studies in the fjords of West Spitzbergen: Physical environment and production in spring and summer. Journal of Plankton Research 11(6), 12451260. https://doi.org/10.1093/plankt/11.6.1245.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Epinion (2019) Cruise Study Svalbard. An Examination of the Economical Impact of Cruise Tourism (Expedition- and Conventional Cruise) in Svalbard. Available at https://www.aeco.no/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/2019-Epinion-Cruise-Study-AECO-and-VisitSvalbard-Final-report.pdf. (Accessed 14 October 2022)Google Scholar
Filbee-Dexter, K, Wernberg, T, Fredriksen, S, Norderhaug, KM and Pedersen, MF (2019) Arctic kelp forests: Diversity, resilience and future. Global and Planetary Change 172, 114. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.gloplacha.2018.09.005.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Fiskeridirektoratet (2022) Norwegian Directorate of Fisheries Database. Available at https://www.fiskeridir.no/. (Accessed 14 October 2022)Google Scholar
Fossheim, M, Primicerio, R, Johannesen, E, Ingvaldsen, RB, Aschan, MM and Dolgov, AV (2015) Recent warming leads to a rapid borealization of fish communities in the Arctic. Nature Climate Change 5(7), Article 7. https://doi.org/10.1038/nclimate2647.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Fransner, F, Fröb, F, Tjiputra, J, Goris, N, Lauvset, SK, Skjelvan, I, Jeansson, E, Omar, A, Chierici, M, Jones, E, Fransson, A, Ólafsdóttir, SR, Johannessen, T and Olsen, A (2022) Acidification of the Nordic seas. Biogeosciences 19(3), 9791012. https://doi.org/10.5194/bg-19-979-2022.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Fredriksen, S, Karsten, U, Bartsch, I, Woelfel, J, Koblowsky, M, Schumann, R, Moy, SR, Steneck, RS, Wiktor, JM, Hop, H and Wiencke, C (2019) Biodiversity of benthic macro- and microalgae from Svalbard with special focus on Kongsfjorden. In Hop, H and Wiencke, C (eds), The Ecosystem of Kongsfjorden, Svalbard. Cham: Springer International Publishing, pp. 331371. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-46425-1_9.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Frey, KE, Comiso, JC, Cooper, LW, Grebmeier, JM, Stock, LV (2018) Arctic Ocean Primary Productivity: The Response of Marine Algae to Climate Warming and Sea Ice Decline. NOAA Arctic Report Card 2021. Available at https://repository.library.noaa.gov/view/noaa/34197. (Accessed 14 October 2022)Google Scholar
Friedlingstein, P, Jones, MW, O’Sullivan, M, Andrew, RM, Bakker, DCE, Hauck, J, Le Quéré, C, Peters, GP, Peters, W, Pongratz, J, Sitch, S, Canadell, JG, Ciais, P, Jackson, RB, Alin, SR, Anthoni, P, Bates, NR, Becker, M, Bellouin, N, Bopp, L, Chau, TTT, Chevallier, F, Chini, LP, Cronin, M, Currie, KI, Decharme, B, Djeutchouang, LM, Dou, X, Evans, W, Feely, RA, Feng, L, Gasser, T, Gilfillan, D, Gkritzalis, T, Grassi, G, Gregor, L, Gruber, N, Gürses, Ö, Harris, I, Houghton, RA, Hurtt, GC, Iida, Y, Ilyina, T, Luijkx, IT, Jain, A, Jones, SD, Kato, E, Kennedy, D, Goldewijk, KK, Knauer, J, Korsbakken, JI, Körtzinger, A, Landschützer, P, Lauvset, SK, Lefèvre, N, Lienert, S, Liu, J, Marland, G, McGuire, PC, Melton, JR, Munro, DR, Nabel, JEMS, Nakaoka, SI, Niwa, Y, Ono, T, Pierrot, D, Poulter, B, Rehder, G, Resplandy, L, Robertson, E, Rödenbeck, C, Rosan, TM, Schwinger, J, Schwingshackl, C, Séférian, R, Sutton, AJ, Sweeney, C, Tanhua, T, Tans, PP, Tian, H, Tilbrook, B, Tubiello, F, Van Der Werf, GR, Vuichard, N, Wada, C, Wanninkhof, R, Watson, AJ, Willis, D, Wiltshire, AJ, Yuan, W, Yue, C, Yue, X, Zaehle, S and Zeng, J (2022) Global carbon budget 2021. Earth System Science Data 14(4), 19172005. https://doi.org/10.5194/essd-14-1917-2022.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Frigstad, H, Kaste, Ø, Deininger, A, Kvalsund, K, Christensen, G, Bellerby, RGJ, Sørensen, K, Norli, M and King, AL (2020) Influence of riverine input on Norwegian coastal systems. Frontiers in Marine Science 7, 332. https://doi.org/10.3389/fmars.2020.00332.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Gamfeldt, L, Lefcheck, JS, Byrnes, JEK, Cardinale, BJ, Duffy, JE and Griffin, JN (2015) Marine biodiversity and ecosystem functioning: What’s known and what’s next? Oikos 124(3), 252265. https://doi.org/10.1111/oik.01549.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Gattuso, J-P, Gentili, B, Antoine, D and Doxaran, D (2020) Global distribution of photosynthetically available radiation on the seafloor. Earth System Science Data 12(3), 16971709. https://doi.org/10.5194/essd-12-1697-2020.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Gattuso, J-P and Hansson, L (2011) Ocean acidification: Background and history. In Gattuso, J-P and Hansson, L (eds), Ocean Acidification: Vol. Ocean Acidification. Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 120.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Geyman, EC, van Pelt, WJJ, Maloof, AC, Aas, HF and Kohler, J (2022) Historical glacier change on Svalbard predicts doubling of mass loss by 2100. Nature 601(7893), Article 7893. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41586-021-04314-4.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Gibbs, MT (2001) Aspects of the structure and variability of the low‐salinity‐layer in doubtful sound, a New Zealand fiord. New Zealand Journal of Marine and Freshwater Research 35(1), 5972. https://doi.org/10.1080/00288330.2001.9516978.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Gillibrand, PA, Turrell, WR and Elliott, AJ (1995) Deep-water renewal in the Upper Basin of loch Sunart, a Scottish fjord. Journal of Physical Oceanography 25(6), 14881503. https://doi.org/10.1175/1520-0485(1995)025<1488:DWRITU>2.0.CO;2.2.0.CO;2>CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Goebel, NL, Wing, SR and Boyd, PW (2005) A mechanism for onset of diatom blooms in a fjord with persistent salinity stratification. Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science 64(2), 546560. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ecss.2005.03.015.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Goldsmit, J, Archambault, P, Chust, G, Villarino, E, Liu, G, Lukovich, JV, Barber, DG and Howland, KL (2018) Projecting present and future habitat suitability of ship-mediated aquatic invasive species in the Canadian Arctic. Biological Invasions 20(2), 501517. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10530-017-1553-7.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Granberg, ME, Ask, A and Gabrielsen, GW (2017) Local Contamination in Svalbard. Overview and Suggestions for Remediation Actions. Brief Report No. 044. Tromsø: Norsk Polarinstitutt.Google Scholar
Gray, JS, Dayton, P, Thrush, S and Kaiser, MJ (2006) On effects of trawling, benthos and sampling design. Marine Pollution Bulletin 52(8), 840843. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.marpolbul.2006.07.003.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Grønlands Økonomiske Råd (2021) Grønlands økonomi Forår 2021. Available at https://pure.au.dk/portal/files/230707343/G_R_F2021_210519_final.pdf. (Accessed 14 October 2022)Google Scholar
Halbach, L, Vihtakari, M, Duarte, P, Everett, A, Granskog, MA, Hop, H, Kauko, HM, Kristiansen, S, Myhre, PI, Pavlov, AK, Pramanik, A, Tatarek, A, Torsvik, T, Wiktor, JM, Wold, A, Wulff, A, Steen, H and Assmy, P (2019) Tidewater glaciers and bedrock characteristics control the phytoplankton growth environment in a fjord in the Arctic. Frontiers in Marine Science 6, 254. https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/ 10.3389/fmars.2019.00254.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hanna, E and Cappelen, J (2003) Recent cooling in coastal southern Greenland and relation with the North Atlantic oscillation. Geophysical Research Letters 30(3), 1132. https://doi.org/10.1029/2002GL015797.Google Scholar
Hansen, JR and Ingólfsson, A (1993) Patterns in species composition of rocky shore communities in sub-Arctic fjords of eastern Iceland. Marine Biology 117(3), 469481. https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00349323.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Harris, PT, Macmillan-Lawler, M, Kullerud, L and Rice, JC (2018) Arctic marine conservation is not prepared for the coming melt. ICES Journal of Marine Science 75(1), 6171. https://doi.org/10.1093/icesjms/fsx153.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hassett, BT, Borrego, EJ, Vonnahme, TR, Rämä, T, Kolomiets, MV and Gradinger, R (2019) Arctic marine fungi: Biomass, functional genes, and putative ecological roles. The ISME Journal 13(6), Article 6. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41396-019-0368-1.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Heath, MR, Benkort, D, Brierley, AS, Daewel, U, Laverick, JH, Proud, R and Speirs, DC (2022) Ecosystem approach to harvesting in the Arctic: Walking the tightrope between exploitation and conservation in the Barents Sea. Ambio 51(2), 456470. https://doi.org/10.1007/s13280-021-01616-9.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Hegseth, EN and Tverberg, V (2013) Effect of Atlantic water inflow on timing of the phytoplankton spring bloom in a high Arctic fjord (Kongsfjorden, Svalbard). Journal of Marine Systems 113–114, 94105. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jmarsys.2013.01.003.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hellmann, JJ, Byers, JE, Bierwagen, BG and Dukes, JS (2008) Five potential consequences of climate change for invasive species. Conservation Biology 22(3), 534543. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1523-1739.2008.00951.x.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Hermansen, Ø and Troell, M (2012) Aquaculture in the Arctic – A Review (No. 36/2012). Nofima rapportserie. Available at https://nofima.no/publikasjon/1154618/. (Accessed 14 October 2022)Google Scholar
Hernes, PJ, Tank, SE, Sejr, MK and Glud, RN (2021) Element cycling and aquatic function in a changing Arctic. Limnology and Oceanography 66(S1), S1S16. https://doi.org/10.1002/lno.11717.Google Scholar
Holmes, RM, Shiklomanov, AI, Suslova, A, Tretiakov, M, McClelland, JW, Spencer, RGM and Tank, SE (2018) River Discharge. Arctic Report Card: Update for 2018. Available at https://www.arctic.noaa.gov/Report-Card/Report-Card-2018/ArtMID/7878/ArticleID/786/River-Discharge. (Accessed 14 October 2022)Google Scholar
Hop, H, Pearson, T, Hegseth, EN, Kovacs, KM, Wiencke, C, Kwasniewski, S, Eiane, K, Mehlum, F, Gulliksen, B, Wlodarska-Kowalczuk, M, Lydersen, C, Weslawski, JM, Cochrane, S, Gabrielsen, GW, Leakey, RJG, Lønne, OJ, Zajaczkowski, M, Falk-Petersen, S, Kendall, M, Wängberg, S-Å, Bischof, K, Voronkov, AY, Kovaltchouk, NA, Wiktor, J, Poltermann, M, di Prisco, G, Papucci, C and Gerland, S (2002) The marine ecosystem of Kongsfjorden, Svalbard. Polar Research 21(1), 167208. https://doi.org/10.3402/polar.v21i1.6480.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hop, H and Wiencke, C (2019) The ecosystem of Kongsfjorden, Svalbard. In Hop, H and Wiencke, C (eds), The Ecosystem of Kongsfjorden, Svalbard. Cham: Springer International Publishing, pp. 120. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-46425-1_1.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hopwood, MJ, Carroll, D, Dunse, T, Hodson, A, Holding, JM, Iriarte, JL, Ribeiro, S, Achterberg, EP, Cantoni, C, Carlson, DF, Chierici, M, Clarke, JS, Cozzi, S, Fransson, A, Juul-Pedersen, T, Winding, MHS and Meire, L (2020) Review article: How does glacier discharge affect marine biogeochemistry and primary production in the Arctic? The Cryosphere 14(4), 13471383. https://doi.org/10.5194/tc-14-1347-2020.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hovelsrud, GK, Kaltenborn, BP and Olsen, J (2020) Svalbard in transition: Adaptation to cross-scale changes in Longyearbyen. The Polar Journal 10(2), 420442. https://doi.org/10.1080/2154896X.2020.1819016.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hovelsrud, GK and Smit, B (eds) (2010) In Community Adaptation and Vulnerability in Arctic Regions. Cham: Springer Netherlands. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-90-481-9174-1.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hovelsrud, GK, Veland, S, Kaltenborn, B, Olsen, J and Dannevig, H (2021) Sustainable tourism in Svalbard: Balancing economic growth, sustainability, and environmental governance. Polar Record 57, e47. https://doi.org/10.1017/S0032247421000668.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hovelsrud, GK, West, J and Dannevig, H (2015) Exploring vulnerability and adaptation narratives among fishers, farmers and municipal planners in Northern Norway. In The Adaptive Challenge of Climate Change, pp. 194212.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hunt, GL, Coyle, KO, Eisner, LB, Farley, EV, Heintz, RA, Mueter, F, Napp, JM, Overland, JE, Ressler, PH, Salo, S and Stabeno, PJ (2011) Climate impacts on eastern Bering Sea foodwebs: A synthesis of new data and an assessment of the oscillating control hypothesis. ICES Journal of Marine Science 68(6), 12301243. https://doi.org/10.1093/icesjms/fsr036.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Huss, M and Hock, R (2018) Global-scale hydrological response to future glacier mass loss. Nature Climate Change 8(2), Article 2. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41558-017-0049-x.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Iken, K, Bluhm, B and Dunton, K (2010) Benthic food-web structure under differing water mass properties in the southern Chukchi Sea. Deep Sea Research Part II: Topical Studies in Oceanography 57(1), 7185. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.dsr2.2009.08.007.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
IPCC (2021) Summary for policymakers. In (Masson-Delmotte, V, Zhai, P, Pirani, A, Connors, SL, Péan, C, Berger, S, Caud, N, Chen, Y, Goldfarb, L, Gomis, MI, Huang, M, Leitzell, K, Lonnoy, E, Matthews, JBR, Maycock, TK, Waterfield, T, Yelekçi, O, Yu, R and Zhou, B (eds), Climate Change 2021: The Physical Science Basis. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
Isaksen, K, Nordli, Ø, Ivanov, B, Køltzow, MAØ, Aaboe, S, Gjelten, HM, Mezghani, A, Eastwood, S, Førland, E, Benestad, RE, Hanssen-Bauer, I, Brækkan, R, Sviashchennikov, P, Demin, V, Revina, A and Karandasheva, T (2022) Exceptional warming over the Barents area. Scientific Reports 12(1), 9371. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-022-13568-5.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Isbell, F, Cowles, J, Dee, LE, Loreau, M, Reich, PB, Gonzalez, A, Hector, A and Schmid, B (2018) Quantifying effects of biodiversity on ecosystem functioning across times and places. Ecology Letters 21(6), 763778. https://doi.org/10.1111/ele.12928.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Jiang, S, Ye, A and Xiao, C (2020) The temperature increase in Greenland has accelerated in the past five years. Global and Planetary Change 194, 103297. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.gloplacha.2020.103297.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Jørgensen, LL, Primicerio, R, Ingvaldsen, RB, Fossheim, M, Strelkova, N, Thangstad, TH, Manushin, I and Zakharov, D (2019) Impact of multiple stressors on sea bed fauna in a warming Arctic. Marine Ecology Progress Series 608, 112. https://doi.org/10.3354/meps12803.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Juul-Pedersen, T, Arendt, KE, Mortensen, J, Blicher, ME, Søgaard, DH and Rysgaard, S (2015) Seasonal and interannual phytoplankton production in a sub-Arctic tidewater outlet glacier fjord, SW Greenland. Marine Ecology Progress Series 524, 2738. https://doi.org/10.3354/meps11174.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Kaiser, MJ, Clarke, KR, Hinz, H, Austen, MCV, Somerfield, PJ and Karakassis, I (2006) Global analysis of response and recovery of benthic biota to fishing. Marine Ecology Progress Series 311, 114. https://doi.org/10.3354/meps311001.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Kędra, M, Moritz, C, Choy, ES, David, C, Degen, R, Duerksen, S, Ellingsen, I, Górska, B, Grebmeier, JM, Kirievskaya, D, van Oevelen, D, Piwosz, K, Samuelsen, A and Węsławski, JM (2015) Status and trends in the structure of Arctic benthic food webs. Polar Research 34(1), 23775. https://doi.org/10.3402/polar.v34.23775.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Kędra, M, Włodarska-Kowalczuk, M and Węsławski, JM (2010) Decadal change in macrobenthic soft-bottom community structure in a high Arctic fjord (Kongsfjorden, Svalbard). Polar Biology 33(1), 111. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00300-009-0679-1.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Kempf, S (2020) The Physiological Response of an Arctic Key Species Polar Cod, Boreogadus saida, to Environmental Hypoxia: Critical Oxygen Level and Swimming Performance. Master thesis, Uiniversität Bremen.Google Scholar
Kochtitzky, W and Copland, L (2022) Retreat of northern hemisphere marine-terminating glaciers, 2000–2020. Geophysical Research Letters 49(3), e2021GL096501. https://doi.org/10.1029/2021GL096501.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Konik, M, Darecki, M, Pavlov, AK, Sagan, S and Kowalczuk, P (2021) Darkening of the Svalbard fjords waters observed with Satellite Ocean color imagery in 1997–2019. Frontiers in Marine Science 8, 699318. https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fmars.2021.699318.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Kortsch, S, Primicerio, R, Beuchel, F, Renaud, PE, Rodrigues, J, Lønne, OJ and Gulliksen, B (2012) Climate-driven regime shifts in Arctic marine benthos. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 109(35), 1405214057. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1207509109.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Kortsch, S, Primicerio, R, Fossheim, M, Dolgov, AV and Aschan, M (2015) Climate change alters the structure of arctic marine food webs due to poleward shifts of boreal generalists. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 282(1814), 20151546. https://doi.org/10.1098/rspb.2015.1546.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Kotwicki, L, Grzelak, K, Opaliński, K and Węsławski, JM (2018) Total benthic oxygen uptake in two Arctic fjords (Spitsbergen) with different hydrological regimes. Oceanologia 60(2), 107113. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.oceano.2017.11.005.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Krause-Jensen, D, Archambault, P, Assis, J, Bartsch, I, Bischof, K, Filbee-Dexter, K, Dunton, KH, Maximova, O, Ragnarsdóttir, SB, Sejr, MK, Simakova, U, Spiridonov, V, Wegeberg, S, Winding, MHS and Duarte, CM (2020) Imprint of climate change on pan-Arctic marine vegetation. Frontiers in Marine Science 7, 617324. https://doi.org/10.3389/fmars.2020.617324.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Krawczyk, DW, Meire, L, Lopes, C, Juul-Pedersen, T, Mortensen, J, Li, CL and Krogh, T (2018) Seasonal succession, distribution, and diversity of planktonic protists in relation to hydrography of the Godthåbsfjord system (SW Greenland). Polar Biology 41(10), 20332052. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00300-018-2343-0.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Kujawa, A, Łącka, M, Szymańska, N, Pawłowska, J, Telesiński, MM and Zajączkowski, M (2021) Could Norwegian fjords serve as an analogue for the future of the Svalbard fjords? State and fate of high latitude fjords in the face of progressive “atlantification”. Polar Biology 44(12), 22172233. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00300-021-02951-z.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Laeseke, P, Bartsch, I and Bischof, K (2019) Effects of kelp canopy on underwater light climate and viability of brown algal spores in Kongsfjorden (Spitsbergen). Polar Biology 42(8), 15111527. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00300-019-02537-w.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Lamy, T, Wang, S, Renard, D, Lafferty, KD, Reed, DC and Miller, RJ (2019) Species insurance trumps spatial insurance in stabilizing biomass of a marine macroalgal metacommunity. Ecology 100(7), e02719. https://doi.org/10.1002/ecy.2719.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Liston, GE and Hiemstra, CA (2011) The changing cryosphere: Pan-Arctic snow trends (1979–2009). Journal of Climate 24(21), 56915712. https://doi.org/10.1175/JCLI-D-11-00081.1.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Lydersen, C, Assmy, P, Falk-Petersen, S, Kohler, J, Kovacs, KM, Reigstad, M, Steen, H, Strøm, H, Sundfjord, A, Varpe, Ø, Walczowski, W, Weslawski, JM and Zajaczkowski, M (2014) The importance of tidewater glaciers for marine mammals and seabirds in Svalbard, Norway. Journal of Marine Systems 129, 452471. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jmarsys.2013.09.006.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Mankoff, KD, Noël, B, Fettweis, X, Ahlstrøm, AP, Colgan, W, Kondo, K, Langley, K, Sugiyama, S, van As, D and Fausto, RS (2020) Greenland liquid water discharge from 1958 through 2019. Earth System Science Data 12(4), 28112841. https://doi.org/10.5194/essd-12-2811-2020.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Manney, GL, Santee, ML, Rex, M, Livesey, NJ, Pitts, MC, Veefkind, P, Nash, ER, Wohltmann, I, Lehmann, R, Froidevaux, L, Poole, LR, Schoeberl, MR, Haffner, DP, Davies, J, Dorokhov, V, Gernandt, H, Johnson, B, Kivi, R, Kyrö, E, Larsen, N, Levelt, PF, Makshtas, A, CT, McElroy, Nakajima, H, Parrondo, MC, Tarasick, DW, von der Gathen, P, Walker, KA and Zinoviev, NS (2011) Unprecedented Arctic ozone loss in 2011. Nature 478(7370), Article 7370. https://doi.org/10.1038/nature10556.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Maturilli, M, Hanssen-Bauer, I, Neuber, R, Rex, M and Edvardsen, K (2019) The atmosphere above Ny-Ålesund: Climate and global warming, ozone and surface UV radiation. In Hop, H and Wiencke, C (eds), The Ecosystem of Kongsfjorden, Svalbard. Cham: Springer International Publishing, pp. 2346. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-46425-1_2.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
McGovern, M, Pavlov, AK, Deininger, A, Granskog, MA, Leu, E, Søreide, JE and Poste, AE (2020) Terrestrial inputs drive seasonality in organic matter and nutrient biogeochemistry in a high Arctic fjord system (Isfjorden, Svalbard). Frontiers in Marine Science 7, 542563. https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/ 10.3389/fmars.2020.542563.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Meire, L, Mortensen, J, Rysgaard, S, Bendtsen, J, Boone, W, Meire, P and Meysman, FJR (2016) Spring bloom dynamics in a subarctic fjord influenced by tidewater outlet glaciers (Godthåbsfjord, SW Greenland). Journal of Geophysical Research: Biogeosciences 121(6), 15811592. https://doi.org/10.1002/2015JG003240.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Meredith, M, Sommerkorn, M, Cassotta, S, Derksen, C, Ekaykin, A, Hollowed, A, Kofinas, G, Mackintosh, Melbourne-Thomas, J, Muelbert, M, Ottersen, G, Pritchard, H and Schuur, E (2019) Polar regions. In Pörtner, H-O, Roberts, D, Masson-Delmotte, V and Zhai, P (eds), Special Report on Ocean and Cryosphere in a Changing Climate: Vol. Special Report on Ocean and Cryosphere in a Changing Climate. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, pp. 73129.Google Scholar
Mérillet, L, Skogen, MD, Vikebø, F and Jørgensen, LL (2022) Fish assemblages of a sub-Arctic fjord show early signals of climate change response contrary to the benthic assemblages. Frontiers in Marine Science 9, 822979. https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/ 10.3389/fmars.2022.822979.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Merkouriadi, I, Cheng, B, Graham, RM, Rösel, A and Granskog, MA (2017) Critical role of snow on sea ice growth in the Atlantic sector of the Arctic Ocean. Geophysical Research Letters 44(20), 10,47910,485. https://doi.org/10.1002/2017GL075494.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Middelbo, AB, Møller, EF, Arendt, KE, Thyrring, J and Sejr, MK (2019) Spatial, seasonal and inter-annual variation in abundance and carbon turnover of small copepods in young sound, Northeast Greenland. Polar Biology 42(1), 179193. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00300-018-2416-0.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Misund, OA, Heggland, K, Skogseth, R, Falck, E, Gjøsæter, H, Sundet, J, Watne, J and Lønne, OJ (2016) Norwegian fisheries in the Svalbard zone since 1980. Regulations, profitability and warming waters affect landings. Polar Science 10(3), 312322. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.polar.2016.02.001.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
MoCE (2020) Green Paper from the Ministry of Climate and Environment (MoCE) on Policies for the High North, (Mld. St. 9 2020–2021). (Stortingsmelding). Regjeringen.no. November 27. Available at https://www.regjeringen.no/no/dokumenter/meld.-st.-9-20202021/id2787429/. (Accessed 14 October 2022)Google Scholar
Möller, V, van Diemen, R, Matthews, J, Méndez, C, Semenov, S, Fuglestvedt, J and Reisinger, A (2022) Annex II: Glossary. In Pörtner, H-O, Roberts, DC, Tignor, M, Poloczanska, ES, Mintenbeck, K, Alegría, A, Craig, M, Langsdorf, S, Löschke, S, Möller, V, Okem, A and Rama, B (eds), Climate Change 2022: Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability. Contribution of Working Group II to the Sixth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, pp. 28972930.Google Scholar
Moon, T, Sutherland, DA, Carroll, D, Felikson, D, Kehrl, L and Straneo, F (2018) Subsurface iceberg melt key to Greenland fjord freshwater budget. Nature Geoscience 11(1), Article 1. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41561-017-0018-z.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Mortensen, J, Rysgaard, S, Bendtsen, J, Lennert, K, Kanzow, T, Lund, H and Meire, L (2020) Subglacial discharge and its Down-Fjord transformation in West Greenland fjords with an ice Mélange. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans 125(9), e2020JC016301. https://doi.org/10.1029/2020JC016301.Google Scholar
Mouginot, J, Rignot, E, Bjørk, AA, van den Broeke, M, Millan, R, Morlighem, M, Noël, B, Scheuchl, B and Wood, M (2019) Forty-six years of Greenland ice sheet mass balance from 1972 to 2018. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 116(19), 92399244. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1904242116.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Muckenhuber, S, Nilsen, F, Korosov, A and Sandven, S (2016) Sea ice cover in Isfjorden and Hornsund, Svalbard (2000–2014) from remote sensing data. The Cryosphere 10(1), 149158. https://doi.org/10.5194/tc-10-149-2016.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
NEA (2022) Høringsuttalelse: Endringer i svalbardmiljøloven og tilhørende forskrifter om naturvernområder, otorferdsel, leiropphold og om områdefredning og ferdselsregulering i Virgohamna. Miljødirektoratet (Norwegian Environmental Agency, Oslo, Norway).Google Scholar
Neukermans, G, Oziel, L and Babin, M (2018) Increased intrusion of warming Atlantic water leads to rapid expansion of temperate phytoplankton in the Arctic. Global Change Biology 24(6), 25452553. https://doi.org/10.1111/gcb.14075.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Niemi, A, Bednaršek, N, Michel, C, Feely, RA, Williams, W, Azetsu-Scott, K, Walkusz, W and Reist, JD (2021) Biological impact of ocean acidification in the Canadian Arctic: Widespread severe pteropod shell dissolution in Amundsen Gulf. Frontiers in Marine Science 8, 600184. https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/ 10.3389/fmars.2021.600184.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
NMJ (2016) Svalbard—Meld.St. 32. 2015–2016. White Paper to the Norwegian Parliament from the Ministry of Justice. (Stortingsmelding). Regjeringen.no. May 11. Available at https://www.regjeringen.no/en/dokumenter/meld.-st.-32-20152016/id2499962/. (Accessed 14 October 2022)Google Scholar
Nowak, A, Hodgkins, R, Nikulina, A, Osuch, M, Wawrzyniak, T, Kavan, J, Łepkowska, E, Majerska, M, Romashova, K, Vasilevich, I, Sobota, I and Rachlewicz, G (2021) From Land to Fjords: The Review of Svalbard Hydrology from 1970 to 2019 (SvalHydro). Leicestershire, UK: Loughborough University. https://doi.org/10.5281/ZENODO.4294063.Google Scholar
NSIDC (2022) U.S. National Ice Center and National Snow and Ice Data Center. Compiled by Fetterer, F, Savoie, M, Helfrich, S and Clemente-Colón, P. 2010, updated daily. Multisensor Analyzed Sea Ice Extent—Northern Hemisphere (MASIE-NH), Version 1. 4km resolution. Boulder, CO, USA: National Snow and Ice Data Center. https://doi.org/ 10.7265/N5GT5K3K.Google Scholar
Øian, H and Kaltenborn, B (2020) Turisme på Svalbard og i Arktis. Effekter på naturmiljø, kulturminner og samfunn med hovedvekt på cruiseturisme. Trondheim, Norway: Norsk institutt for naturforskning (NINA). https://brage.nina.no/nina-xmlui/handle/11250/2643245.Google Scholar
Overland, J, Dunlea, E, Box, JE, Corell, R, Forsius, M, Kattsov, V, Olsen, MS, Pawlak, J, Reiersen, L-O and Wang, M (2019) The urgency of Arctic change. Polar Science 21, 613. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.polar.2018.11.008.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Oziel, L, Neukermans, G, Ardyna, M, Lancelot, C, Tison, J-L, Wassmann, P, Sirven, J, Ruiz-Pino, D and Gascard, J-C (2017) Role for Atlantic inflows and sea ice loss on shifting phytoplankton blooms in the Barents Sea. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans 122(6), 51215139. https://doi.org/10.1002/2016JC012582.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Palma, D, Varnajot, A, Dalen, K, Basaran, IK, Brunette, C, Bystrowska, M, Korablina, AD, Nowicki, RC and Ronge, TA (2019) Cruising the marginal ice zone: Climate change and Arctic tourism. Polar Geography 42(4), 215235. https://doi.org/10.1080/1088937X.2019.1648585.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Paulsen, ML, Nielsen, SEB, Müller, O, Møller, EF, Stedmon, CA, Juul-Pedersen, T, Markager, S, Sejr, MK, Delgado Huertas, A, Larsen, A and Middelboe, M (2017) Carbon bioavailability in a high Arctic fjord influenced by glacial meltwater, NE Greenland. Frontiers in Marine Science 4, 176. https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/ 10.3389/fmars.2017.00176.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Pavlov, AK, Leu, E, Hanelt, D, Bartsch, I, Karsten, U, Hudson, SR, Gallet, J-C, Cottier, F, Cohen, JH, Berge, J, Johnsen, G, Maturilli, M, Kowalczuk, P, Sagan, S, Meler, J and Granskog, MA (2019) The underwater light climate in Kongsfjorden and its ecological implications. In Hop, H and Wiencke, C (eds), The Ecosystem of Kongsfjorden, Svalbard. Cham: Springer International Publishing, pp. 137170. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-46425-1_5.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Pavlov, AK, Tverberg, V, Ivanov, BV, Nilsen, F, Falk-Petersen, S and Granskog, MA (2013) Warming of Atlantic water in two West Spitsbergen fjords over the last century (1912–2009). Polar Research 32(1), 11206. https://doi.org/10.3402/polar.v32i0.11206.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Pavlova, O, Gerland, S and Hop, H (2019) Changes in sea-ice extent and thickness in Kongsfjorden, Svalbard (2003–2016). In Hop, H and Wiencke, C (eds), The Ecosystem of Kongsfjorden, Svalbard. Cham: Springer International Publishing, pp. 105136. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-46425-1_4.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Pecuchet, L, Blanchet, M-A, Frainer, A, Husson, B, Jørgensen, LL, Kortsch, S and Primicerio, R (2020) Novel feeding interactions amplify the impact of species redistribution on an Arctic food web. Global Change Biology 26(9), 48944906. https://doi.org/10.1111/gcb.15196.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Petrich, C, O’Sadnick, ME and Dale, L (2017) Recent Ice Conditions in North-Norwegian Porsangerfjorden. Available at: https://sintef.brage.unit.no/sintef-xmlui/handle/11250/2640259. (Accessed 14 October 2022)Google Scholar
Piquet, AM-T, van de Poll, WH, Visser, RJW, Wiencke, C, Bolhuis, H and Buma, AGJ (2014) Springtime phytoplankton dynamics in Arctic Krossfjorden and Kongsfjorden (Spitsbergen) as a function of glacier proximity. Biogeosciences 11(8), 22632279. https://doi.org/10.5194/bg-11-2263-2014.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Piwosz, K, Walkusz, W, Hapter, R, Wieczorek, P, Hop, H and Wiktor, J (2009) Comparison of productivity and phytoplankton in a warm (Kongsfjorden) and a cold (Hornsund) Spitsbergen fjord in mid-summer 2002. Polar Biology 32(4), 549559. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00300-008-0549-2.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Polyakov, IV, Alkire, MB, Bluhm, BA, Brown, KA, Carmack, EC, Chierici, M, Danielson, SL, Ellingsen, I, Ershova, EA, Gårdfeldt, K, Ingvaldsen, RB, Pnyushkov, AV, Slagstad, D and Wassmann, P (2020) Borealization of the Arctic Ocean in response to anomalous advection from sub-Arctic seas. Frontiers in Marine Science 7, 491. https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/ 10.3389/fmars.2020.00491.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Port of Longyearbyen (2018) Statistics Port of Longyearbyen 2006–2017 (Statistics). Port of Longyearbyen. Available at https://portlongyear.no/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/Statistics_2006-2017.pdf. (Accessed 14 October 2022)Google Scholar
Qi, D, Ouyang, Z, Chen, L, Wu, Y, Lei, R, Chen, B, Feely, RA, Anderson, LG, Zhong, W, Lin, H, Polukhin, A, Zhang, Y, Zhang, Y, Bi, H, Lin, X, Luo, Y, Zhuang, Y, He, J, Chen, J and Cai, W-J (2022) Climate change drives rapid decadal acidification in the Arctic Ocean from 1994 to 2020. Science 377(6614), 15441550. https://doi.org/10.1126/science.abo0383.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Rantanen, M, Karpechko, AY, Lipponen, A, Nordling, K, Hyvärinen, O, Ruosteenoja, K, Vihma, T and Laaksonen, A (2022) The Arctic has warmed nearly four times faster than the globe since 1979. Communications Earth & Environment 3(1), Article 1. https://doi.org/10.1038/s43247-022-00498-3.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Ren, C, James, L, Pashkevich, A and Hoarau-Heemstra, H (2021a) Cruise trouble. A practice-based approach to studying Arctic cruise tourism. Tourism Management Perspectives 40, 100901. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tmp.2021.100901.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Ren, C, Jóhannesson, GT, Kramvig, B, Pashkevich, A and Höckert, E (2021b) 20 years of research on Arctic and indigenous cultures in Nordic tourism: A review and future research agenda. Scandinavian Journal of Hospitality and Tourism 21(1), 111121. https://doi.org/10.1080/15022250.2020.1830433.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Renaud, PE, Wallhead, P, Kotta, J, Włodarska-Kowalczuk, M, Bellerby, RGJ, Rätsep, M, Slagstad, D and Kukliński, P (2019) Arctic sensitivity? Suitable habitat for benthic taxa is surprisingly robust to climate change. Frontiers in Marine Science 6, 538. https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/ 10.3389/fmars.2019.00538.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Sakshaug, E and Myklestad, S (1973) Studies on the phytoplankton ecology of the trondheimsfjord. III. Dynamics of phytoplankton blooms in relation to environmental factors, bioassay experiments and parameters for the physiological state of the populations. Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology 11(2), 157188. https://doi.org/10.1016/0022-0981(73)90053-1.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Santos-Garcia, M, Ganeshram, RS, Tuerena, RE, Debyser, MCF, Husum, K, Assmy, P and Hop, H (2022) Nitrate isotope investigations reveal future impacts of climate change on nitrogen inputs and cycling in Arctic fjords: Kongsfjorden and Rijpfjorden (Svalbard). Biogeosciences 19(24), 59736002. https://doi.org/10.5194/bg-19-5973-2022.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Schlegel, RW and Gattuso, J-P (in review, 2023) The Changing Fjords of the European Arctic: What Do the Data Say? Earth System Science Data. https://doi.org/10.5194/essd-2022-455Google Scholar
Schuler, TV, Kohler, J, Elagina, N, Hagen, JOM, Hodson, AJ, Jania, JA, Kääb, AM, Luks, B, Małecki, J, Moholdt, G, Pohjola, VA, Sobota, I and Van Pelt, WJJ (2020) Reconciling Svalbard glacier mass balance. Frontiers in Earth Science 8, 156. https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/ 10.3389/feart.2020.00156.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Sejr, MK, Stedmon, CA, Bendtsen, J, Abermann, J, Juul-Pedersen, T, Mortensen, J and Rysgaard, S (2017) Evidence of local and regional freshening of Northeast Greenland coastal waters. Scientific Reports 7(1), Article 1. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-017-10610-9.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Shiklomanov, A, Déry, S, Tretiakov, M, Yang, D, Magritsky, D, Georgiadi, A and Tang, W (2021) River freshwater flux to the Arctic Ocean. In Yang, D and Kane, DL (eds), Arctic Hydrology, Permafrost and Ecosystems. Cham: Springer International Publishing, pp. 703738. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-50930-9_24.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Shiklomanov, IA (1997) Assessment of Water Resources and Water Availability in the World (Comprehensive Assessment of the Freshwater Re-Sources of the World). World Meteorological Organization. Available at https://digitallibrary.un.org/record/261669. (Accessed 14 October 2022)Google Scholar
Skogseth, R, Olivier, LLA, Nilsen, F, Falck, E, Fraser, N, Tverberg, V, Ledang, AB, Vader, A, Jonassen, MO, Søreide, J, Cottier, F, Berge, J, Ivanov, BV and Falk-Petersen, S (2020) Variability and decadal trends in the Isfjorden (Svalbard) ocean climate and circulation – An indicator for climate change in the European Arctic. Progress in Oceanography 187, 102394. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.pocean.2020.102394.Google Scholar
Slagstad, D, Wassmann, PFJ and Ellingsen, I (2015) Physical constrains and productivity in the future Arctic Ocean. Frontiers in Marine Science 2, 85. https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/ 10.3389/fmars.2015.00085.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Smith, RW, Bianchi, TS, Allison, M, Savage, C and Galy, V (2015) High rates of organic carbon burial in fjord sediments globally. Nature Geoscience 8(6), Article 6. https://doi.org/10.1038/ngeo2421.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Søreide, JE, Pitusi, V, Vader, A, Damsgård, B, Nilsen, F, Skogseth, R, Poste, A, Bailey, A, Kovacs, KM, Lydersen, C, Gerland, S, Descamps, S, Strøm, H, Renaud, PE, Christensen, G, Arvnes, MP, Moiseev, D, Singh, RK, Bélanger, S, Elster, J, Urbański, J, Moskalik, M, Wiktor, J and Węsławski, JM (2021) Environmental status of Svalbard coastal waters: Coastscapes and focal ecosystem components. In Moreno-Ibáñez, M, Hagen, JOM, Hübner, C, Lihavainen, H, Zaborska, A (eds), SESS report 2020: summary for stakeholders: the State of Environmental Science in Svalbard: an annual report. Longyearbyen, NorwaySvalbard Integrated Arctic Earth Observing System (SIOS), pp. 142174. https://doi.org/10.5281/ZENODO.4293849.Google Scholar
Søvik, G, Nedreaas, K, Zimmermann, F, Husson, B, Strand, HK, Jørgensen, LL, Strand, M, Thangstad, TH, Hansen, A, Båtevik, T, Albretsen, J and Staby, A (2020) Kartlegging av fjordøkosystemene i Tana- og Porsangerfjorden. Havforskningsinstituttet. Available at https://www.hi.no/hi/nettrapporter/rapport-fra-havforskningen-2020-39. (Accessed 14 October 2022)Google Scholar
Spotowitz, L, Johansen, T, Hansen, A, Berg, E, Stransky, C and Fischer, P (2022) New evidence for the establishment of coastal cod Gadus morhua in Svalbard fjords. Marine Ecology Progress Series 696, 119133. https://doi.org/10.3354/meps14126.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Steinacher, M, Joos, F, Frölicher, TL, Plattner, G-K and Doney, SC (2009) Imminent ocean acidification in the Arctic projected with the NCAR global coupled carbon cycle-climate model. Biogeosciences 6(4), 515533. https://doi.org/10.5194/bg-6-515-2009.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Stigebrandt, A (2012) Hydrodynamics and circulation of fjords. In Bengtsson, L, Herschy, RW and Fairbridge, RW (eds), Encyclopedia of Lakes and Reservoirs. Cham: Springer Netherlands, pp. 327344. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4020-4410-6_247.Google Scholar
Stocker, AN, Renner, AHH and Knol-Kauffman, M (2020) Sea ice variability and maritime activity around Svalbard in the period 2012–2019. Scientific Reports 10(1), Article 1. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-74064-2.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Storch, D, Menzel, L, Frickenhaus, S and Pörtner, H-O (2014) Climate sensitivity across marine domains of life: Limits to evolutionary adaptation shape species interactions. Global Change Biology 20(10), 30593067. https://doi.org/10.1111/gcb.12645.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Stroeve, J and Notz, D (2018) Changing state of Arctic Sea ice across all seasons. Environmental Research Letters 13(10), 103001. https://doi.org/10.1088/1748-9326/aade56.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Sun, M-Y, Clough, LM, Carroll, ML, Dai, J, Ambrose, WG and Lopez, GR (2009) Different responses of two common Arctic macrobenthic species (Macoma balthica and Monoporeia affinis) to phytoplankton and ice algae: Will climate change impacts be species specific? Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology 376(2), 110121. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jembe.2009.06.018.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Sundet, JH and Hoel, AH (2016) The Norwegian management of an introduced species: The Arctic red king crab fishery. Marine Policy 72, 278284. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.marpol.2016.04.041.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Tarling, GA, Freer, JJ, Banas, NS, Belcher, A, Blackwell, M, Castellani, C, Cook, KB, Cottier, FR, Daase, M, Johnson, ML, Last, KS, Lindeque, PK, Mayor, DJ, Mitchell, E, Parry, HE, Speirs, DC, Stowasser, G and Wootton, M (2022) Can a key boreal Calanus copepod species now complete its life-cycle in the Arctic? Evidence and implications for Arctic food-webs. Ambio 51(2), 333344. https://doi.org/10.1007/s13280-021-01667-y.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Terhaar, J, Lauerwald, R, Regnier, P, Gruber, N and Bopp, L (2021) Around one third of current Arctic Ocean primary production sustained by rivers and coastal erosion. Nature Communications 12(1), Article 1. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-020-20470-z.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Thierry, A, Bullock, JM and Gardner, CJ (2022) The recent past is not a reliable guide to future climate impacts: Response to Caro et al. (2022). Conservation Letters 15, e12915. https://doi.org/10.1111/conl.12915.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Tuholske, C, Halpern, BS, Blasco, G, Villasenor, JC, Frazier, M and Caylor, K (2021) Mapping global inputs and impacts from of human sewage in coastal ecosystems. PLoS One 16(11), e0258898. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0258898.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Tverberg, V, Skogseth, R, Cottier, F, Sundfjord, A, Walczowski, W, Inall, ME, Falck, E, Pavlova, O and Nilsen, F (2019) The Kongsfjorden transect: Seasonal and inter-annual variability in hydrography. In Hop, H and Wiencke, C (eds), The Ecosystem of Kongsfjorden, Svalbard. Cham: Springer International Publishing, pp. 49104. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-46425-1_3.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Tyler, NJC, Turi, JM, Sundset, MA, Strøm Bull, K, Sara, MN, Reinert, E, Oskal, N, Nellemann, C, McCarthy, JJ, Mathiesen, SD, Martello, ML, Magga, OH, Hovelsrud, GK, Hanssen-Bauer, I, Eira, NI, Eira, IMG and Corell, RW (2007) Saami reindeer pastoralism under climate change: Applying a generalized framework for vulnerability studies to a sub-arctic social–ecological system. Global Environmental Change 17(2), 191206. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.gloenvcha.2006.06.001.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Urbański, JA and Litwicka, D (2022) The decline of Svalbard land-fast sea ice extent as a result of climate change. Oceanologia 64(3), 535545. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.oceano.2022.03.008.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Valiela, I (2015) Marine Ecological Processes. New York City, NY, USA: Springer-Verlag. https://link.springer.com/book/ 10.1007/978-0-387-79070-1.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Vereide, EH (2019) Seasonal Zooplankton Community Patterns along a Gradient from Land to Sea in Isfjorden, Svalbard. Master thesis. Available at https://www.duo.uio.no/handle/10852/74253. (Accessed 14 October 2022)Google Scholar
Vihtakari, M (2022) ggOceanMaps: Plot data on oceanographic maps using “ggplot2” (1.3.4) (R). Available at https://CRAN.R-project.org/package=ggOceanMaps. (Accessed 14 October 2022)Google Scholar
Vihtakari, M, Welcker, J, Moe, B, Chastel, O, Tartu, S, Hop, H, Bech, C, Descamps, S and Gabrielsen, GW (2018) Black-legged kittiwakes as messengers of atlantification in the Arctic. Scientific Reports 8(1), Article 1. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-017-19118-8.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Visit Greenland (2022) Visit Greenland Wants to Highlight the Challenges and Potentials in Cruise Tourism. Available at https://traveltrade.visitgreenland.com/latest-news/visit-greenland-wants-to-highlight-the-challenges-and-potentials-in-cruise-tourism/. (Accessed 14 October 2022)Google Scholar
Visit Svalbard (2020) Statistikk fra Visit Svalbard AS. Available at https://www.visitsvalbard.com/dbimgs/Statistikk%20gjester%20Svalbard%202007-2018%20%20per%20august.pdf. (Accessed 14 October 2022)Google Scholar
Wadham, JL, Hawkings, JR, Tarasov, L, Gregoire, LJ, Spencer, RGM, Gutjahr, M, Ridgwell, A and Kohfeld, KE (2019) Ice sheets matter for the global carbon cycle. Nature Communications 10(1), Article 1. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-019-11394-4.Google ScholarPubMed
Walch, DMR, Singh, RK, Søreide, JE, Lantuit, H and Poste, A (2022) Spatio-temporal variability of suspended particulate matter in a high-Arctic estuary (Adventfjorden, Svalbard) using Sentinel-2 time-series. Remote Sensing 14(13), Article 13. https://doi.org/10.3390/rs14133123.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Wassmann, P, Svendsen, H, Keck, A and Reigstad, M (1996) Selected aspects of the physical oceanography and particle fluxes in fjords of northern Norway. Journal of Marine Systems 8(1), 5371. https://doi.org/10.1016/0924-7963(95)00037-2.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Weaver, DB and Lawton, LJ (2017) A new visitation paradigm for protected areas. Tourism Management 60, 140146. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tourman.2016.11.018.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Wei, T, Yan, Q, Qi, W, Ding, M and Wang, C (2020) Projections of Arctic Sea ice conditions and shipping routes in the twenty-first century using CMIP6 forcing scenarios. Environmental Research Letters 15(10), 104079. https://doi.org/10.1088/1748-9326/abb2c8.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Węsławski, JM, Kendall, MA, Włodarska-Kowalczuk, M, Iken, K, Kędra, M, Legezynska, J and Sejr, MK (2011) Climate change effects on Arctic fjord and coastal macrobenthic diversity—Observations and predictions. Marine Biodiversity 41(1), 7185. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12526-010-0073-9.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Węsławski, JM, Wiktor, J and Kotwicki, L (2010) Increase in biodiversity in the arctic rocky littoral, Sorkappland, Svalbard, after 20 years of climate warming. Marine Biodiversity 40(2), 123130. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12526-010-0038-z.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Wiedmann, I, Reigstad, M, Marquardt, M, Vader, A and Gabrielsen, TM (2016) Seasonality of vertical flux and sinking particle characteristics in an ice-free high Arctic fjord—Different from subarctic fjords? Journal of Marine Systems 154, 192205. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jmarsys.2015.10.003.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Wiencke, C and Hop, H (2016) Ecosystem Kongsfjorden: New views after more than a decade of research. Polar Biology 39(10), 16791687. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00300-016-2032-9.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Wiencke, C, Roleda, MY, Gruber, A, Clayton, MN and Bischof, K (2006) Susceptibility of zoospores to UV radiation determines upper depth distribution limit of Arctic kelps: Evidence through field experiments. Journal of Ecology 94(2), 455463.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Wild, B, Andersson, A, Bröder, L, Vonk, J, Hugelius, G, McClelland, JW, Song, W, Raymond, PA and Gustafsson, Ö (2019) Rivers across the Siberian Arctic unearth the patterns of carbon release from thawing permafrost. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 116(21), 1028010285. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1811797116.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Willis, K, Cottier, F, Kwasniewski, S, Wold, A and Falk-Petersen, S (2006) The influence of advection on zooplankton community composition in an Arctic fjord (Kongsfjorden, Svalbard). Journal of Marine Systems 61(1), 3954. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jmarsys.2005.11.013.Google Scholar
Włodarska-Kowalczuk, M, Renaud, PE, Węsławski, JM, Cochrane, SKJ and Denisenko, SG (2012) Species diversity, functional complexity and rarity in Arctic fjordic versus open shelf benthic systems. Marine Ecology Progress Series 463, 7387. https://doi.org/10.3354/meps09858.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Wood, HL, Spicer, JI, Kendall, MA, Lowe, DM and Widdicombe, S (2011) Ocean warming and acidification; implications for the Arctic brittlestar Ophiocten sericeum. Polar Biology 34(7), 10331044. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00300-011-0963-8.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Yachi, S and Loreau, M (1999) Biodiversity and ecosystem productivity in a fluctuating environment: The insurance hypothesis. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 96(4), 14631468. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.96.4.1463.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Zhang, Y, Yamamoto-Kawai, M and Williams, Wj (2020) Two decades of ocean acidification in the surface waters of the Beaufort gyre, Arctic Ocean: Effects of sea ice melt and retreat from 1997–2016. Geophysical Research Letters 47(3), e60119. https://doi.org/10.1029/2019GL086421.Google Scholar
Zhuravskiy, D, Ivanov, B and Pavlov, A (2012) Ice conditions at Gronfjorden Bay, Svalbard, from 1974 to 2008. Polar Geography 35(2), 169176. https://doi.org/10.1080/1088937X.2012.662535.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Figure 0

Figure 1. The extent of the European Arctic (25°W–60°E and 66°N–90°N; sensuCopernicus Marine Environment Monitoring Service) highlighted here via a polygon, with the seven focal sites for this review paper shown as coloured points grouped into the regions: Svalbard (brown), Greenland (green), and Northern Norway (purple). Areas referenced in the text are indicated with black labels. The general position of the West Spitsbergen Current (WSC) is shown with a red arrow.

Figure 1

Table 1. The main point to consider for each driver of change, and the summary per category

Figure 2

Figure 2. Network chart of the interactions between the drivers of change in Arctic fjord socio-ecological systems as determined from a review of the literature. The trend in the change of each driver (i.e., increasing, decreasing, or uncertain) is shown via the coloured borders of the labelled points. The impacts that the drivers have on each other are shown with coloured arrows. The categories of the drivers are shown with the internal colour of the points and their labels. Note that “positive”’ governance is assumed here to be choices in favour of environmental protection rather than exploitation. It is for this reason that governance is shown here to have a negative impact on fisheries and tourism. The asterisk on the carbonate system is to note that it consists of several variables, including pCO2, DIC, TA, pH, and CaCO3 saturation state (see section “Carbonate system”), which do not vary in synchrony. The positive effect of increasing terrestrial runoff on the carbonate system refers to pCO2 and DIC, whereas the negative effect on calcifying organisms refers to pH and CaCO3 saturation state.

Author comment: Drivers of change in Arctic fjord socio-ecological systems: Examples from the European Arctic — R0/PR1

Comments

No accompanying comment.

Review: Drivers of change in Arctic fjord socio-ecological systems: Examples from the European Arctic — R0/PR2

Conflict of interest statement

Reviewer declares none.

Comments

Comments to Author: This is a high-level review-type summary of fjord ecosystems in the Arctic, particularly in the European sector and the environmental changes that are driving socio-ecological alterations. I think the abstract could be more precise as to the fjords of interest for the study. The areas of interest in the European Arctic are not defined until Figure 1, and seem to consist of Greenland, Svalbard, and northern Norway. The longest fjord in Iceland and those of Novaya Zemlya and the Kola Peninsula in Russia seem to be in the right geographical region, but are not discussed, so the coverage, even for the European Arctic is not comprehensive. Given the title, but the lack of coverage of Canadian fjords, such as on Baffin Island where significant human communities exist, I think a more precise title and keywords referencing European fjords are also desirable. The manuscript strives to comment specifically on fjord systems, but oftentimes, the references are to processes such as runoff from the great Arctic rivers like the Ob and Yenisey rather than to fjords, references to macrozoobenthos in the Chukchi Sea (Iken et al. ) and even to marine texts, e.g. Valiela, 1995 to back up well established organic carbon cycling process that are general to the ocean as a whole. As a result, I am skeptical of the statement in the abstract, that “this review provides the first full synthesis of the interactions between the drivers of change within Arctic fjord socio-ecological systems.” If that is the case, we have need for more progress. I am not an expert on fjords, but I wonder if there are not research reviews of fjord systems at more temperate latitudes such as in New Zealand’s South Island, in Chile or southeast Alaska and British Columbia, or the well-studied Puget Sound in the northwestern United States that can provide some predictive capabilities for understanding how Arctic fjords are likely to respond to borealisation. In putting the paper together, the authors have left fingerprints of a committee written document, with sudden shifts in topic, and references to some of the authors’ interests and geographical areas of interest. But the end-result is not a synoptic treatment or review of the topic. The summary sections at the end of each chapter do not really seem like summaries, for example, the Fisheries section (6.3) has a summary that launches into a discussion of the COP and IPCC process and the prospects that Arctic community development will increase greenhouse gas emissions rather than decrease them. This after a discussion of fisheries species and value of such harvests in Greenland and Svalbard. The uneven geographical attention provides the reader with well-sourced information and references, but on the other hand, it is not the comprehensive summary of knowledge of Arctic fjords that the authors had set out to provide. In part because fjords are such diverse ecosystems, I also think the authors struggle some to separate change and processes occurring in fjords from the Arctic as a whole, as well as among the different categories of fjords (water versus land terminating glaciers, fjords with sills and without, state of borealisation, etc.). I would support publication of this manuscript, but I think for the work to be commonly cited and be more useful to the scientific community, the authors could do a lot more in terms of pulling the topic together and providing a more cohesive contribution. I provide some line by line comments below, but hope that the next version of the manuscript will be a tighter review of the topic and challenges ahead.

Line 199. Not clear if inorganic carbon or organic carbon is being referred to here.

Line 200. Permafrost thaws rather than melts as it is a frozen soil, not a solidified liquid.

Line 212. Awkward phrasing. Probably “trajectories” works better here than the singular “pathway”

Line 218-219. This sentence is written imprecisely. It states that 7% of glaciers in the northern Hemisphere have transitioned from tidewater to land terminating glaciers in the past 20 years. But there are many more land terminating glaciers to start with, so it would be more precise to say that 7% of the marine terminating glaciers (not all northern hemisphere glaciers) have transitioned to land terminating in the past 20 years.

Line 230-234. Most of these references to runoff are to the large Arctic rivers that drain the Eurasian continent, not to runoff in fjords in general; Mankoff et al. is really about ice-water balance on the Greenland ice sheet, so while the statement may be roughly correct with respect to runoff trends, the references given are primarily studies that are not about fjords.

Line 266-269. The end of this sentence is awkwardly written. “a more recent study by Jiang & Xiao (2020) found climate indices, such as the NAO, but also greenhouse gas concentrations to be the key drivers for seawater temperature changes in Greenland.” Please change the formulation to something that is more grammatical correct, such as “a more recent study by Jiang & Xiao (2020) found that in addition to climate indices, such as the NAO, that greenhouse gas concentrations are key drivers for seawater temperature changes in Greenland.”

Line 354. Arctic is misspelled.

Line 514. For the most part, I don’t consider demersal fish to be macrozoobenthos. These fish may be associated with the sea floor, but they don’t exclusively live on or in the seafloor. Typically, I think of benthic invertebrates when this terminology is used.

Line 562-563. I think this text skips over a lot of relevant literature on biodiversity conducted by Russian scientists.

Section 6.2 Tourism impacts. A lot of the references here are to fairly “soft” sources of data, e.g. tourism websites. Are there more statistically robust sources of information that could be cited?

Line 772. The species name opilio shouldn’t be capitalized.

Line 770, 773. Shrimp is both singular and plural, so the correct usage is shrimp.

Line 763-779. Using Norwegian currency, while technically correct, might be converted into a more widely known international currency such as the euro, or perhaps better, the euro value can be given in parenthesis.

Line 849-850. I am not sure how it was concluded that the underwater light environment is the largest biological unknown. It might be an unknown, but how is this the largest biological unknown?

Line 861. Since data are plural, remains should be remain for grammatical agreement.

Recommendation: Drivers of change in Arctic fjord socio-ecological systems: Examples from the European Arctic — R0/PR3

Comments

Comments to Author: This is a well scripted review paper and quite comprehensive. However, it needs to be little more precise, cohesive, and focussed. The review comments are elaborate and a revision on those lines would result in a gripping manuscript.

Decision: Drivers of change in Arctic fjord socio-ecological systems: Examples from the European Arctic — R0/PR4

Comments

No accompanying comment.

Author comment: Drivers of change in Arctic fjord socio-ecological systems: Examples from the European Arctic — R1/PR5

Comments

No accompanying comment.

Review: Drivers of change in Arctic fjord socio-ecological systems: Examples from the European Arctic — R1/PR6

Conflict of interest statement

Reviewer declares none.

Comments

Comments to Author: I think the authors have addressed all of my concerns expressed in my prior review in an acceptable manner and I recommend the manuscript be accepted for publication. In reading over the revised manuscript, I did find a few minor typographical issues that should be corrected:

Line 183. Remove “I.A.” from Shiklomanov reference.

Line 242. Remove “A” from Shiklomanov reference

Line 438, 439. Subscript needed for the 2 in CO2

LINE 790, 791, 792. A paired initial parenthesis symbol is needed on each line.

Recommendation: Drivers of change in Arctic fjord socio-ecological systems: Examples from the European Arctic — R1/PR7

Comments

Comments to Author: These corrections need to be done.

Line 183. Remove “I.A.” from Shiklomanov reference.

Line 242. Remove “A” from Shiklomanov reference

Line 438, 439. Subscript needed for the 2 in CO2

LINE 790, 791, 792. A paired initial parenthesis symbol is needed on each line.

Decision: Drivers of change in Arctic fjord socio-ecological systems: Examples from the European Arctic — R1/PR8

Comments

No accompanying comment.

Author comment: Drivers of change in Arctic fjord socio-ecological systems: Examples from the European Arctic — R2/PR9

Comments

No accompanying comment.

Recommendation: Drivers of change in Arctic fjord socio-ecological systems: Examples from the European Arctic — R2/PR10

Comments

Comments to Author: Thank you for making the corrections. Congratulations!

The paper is accepted.

Decision: Drivers of change in Arctic fjord socio-ecological systems: Examples from the European Arctic — R2/PR11

Comments

No accompanying comment.