National Oceanic and
Atmospheric Administration
United States Department of Commerce


FY 2019

Projected biophysical conditions of the Bering Sea to 2100 under multiple emission scenarios

Hermann, A., G. Gibson, W. Cheng, I. Ortiz, K. Aydin, M. Wang, A. Hollowed, and K. Holsmann

ICES J. Mar. Sci., 76(5), 1280–1304, doi: 10.1093/icesjms/fsz043, View online (2019)

A regional biophysical model is used to relate projected large-scale changes in atmospheric and oceanic conditions from CMIP5 to the finer-scale changes in the physical and biological structure of the Bering Sea, from the present through the end of the twenty-first century. A multivariate statistical method is used to analyse the results of a small (eight-member) dynamically downscaled ensemble to characterize and quantify dominant modes of variability and covariability among a broad set of biophysical features. This characterization provides a statistical method to rapidly estimate the likely response of the regional system to a much larger (63-member) ensemble of possible future forcing conditions. Under a high-emission [Representative Concentration Pathway 8.5 (RCP8.5)] scenario, results indicate that decadally averaged Bering Sea shelf bottom temperatures may warm by as much as 5°C by 2100, with associated loss of large crustacean zooplankton on the southern shelf. Under a lower emission scenario (RCP4.5), these effects are predicted to be approximately half their calculated change under the high emission scenario.

Feature Publications | Outstanding Scientific Publications

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