Long-term variability of shelf water intrusion and its influence on hydrographic and biogeochemical properties of the Seto Inland Sea, Japan
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The variability of the pathway of the Kuroshio is known to control that of the intensity of upwelling of the cold and nutrient-rich deep shelf water at the shelf-break point. This study has investigated the influences of the long-term variability of the hydrographical and biogeochemical conditions at the shelf-break point on those in the inner Seto Inland Sea. Results from observations conducted since 1972 by prefectural fisheries observatories showed a temporary decrease of temperature in the lower layer of the entrance of Kii Channel in summertime in the specific years when the Kuroshio pathway favored deep shelf water intrusion. A corresponding change in temperature was also found in the inner shelf sea, such as western Osaka Bay and Harima-Nada. The model developed in this study covers a 30-year period and well reproduces the temporal change in temperature. It also shows sufficient reproducibility in both seasonal behavior of hydrographical and biogeochemical properties and the inter-annual variability of hydrographical properties throughout the eastern Seto Inland Sea. It was found that the inter-annual variations of annual total flux through the section at the entrance to Kii Channel affect the inter-annual variation of the observed concentration of Dissolved Inorganic Nitrogen (DIN) in Harima Nada, but the effect was smaller than those of river input and other parameters.
KeywordsNutrient transport shelf water intrusion inter-annual variability Kuroshio Seto Inland Sea
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