Hypoxia Is Increasing in the Coastal Zone of the Baltic Sea
Daniel J. Conley, Jacob Carstensen, Juris Aigars, Philip Axe, Erik Bonsdorff, Tatjana Eremina, Britt-Marie Haahti, Christoph Humborg, Per Jonsson, Jonne Kotta, Christer Lannegren, Ulf Larsson, Alexey Maximov,O, Miguel Rodriguez Medina, Elzbieta Lysiak-Pastuszak, Nijole Remeikaite-Nikiene, Jakob Walve, Sunhild Wilhelms and Lovisa Zillen
Environ. Sci. Technol., 2011, 45 (16), pp 6777–6783, DOI: 10.1021/es201212r
Hypoxia is a well-described phenomenon in the offshore waters of the Baltic Sea with both the spatial extent and intensity of hypoxia known to have increased due to anthropogenic eutrophication, however, an unknown amount of hypoxia is present in the coastal zone.

Here we report on the widespread unprecedented occurrence of hypoxia across the coastal zone of the Baltic Sea. We have identified 115 sites that have experienced hypoxia during the period 1955-2009 increasing the global total to ca. 500 sites, with the Baltic Sea coastal zone containing over 20% of all known sites worldwide. Most sites experienced episodic hypoxia, which is a precursor to development of seasonal hypoxia.

The Baltic Sea coastal zone displays an alarming trend with hypoxia steadily increasing with time since the 1950s effecting nutrient biogeochemical processes, ecosystem services, and coastal habitat.

Published July 19, 2011
Lowest recorded oxygen concentration at all monitoring locations throughout the period (1955-2009) in the entire Baltic Sea with insets for
the Stockholm Archipelago (upper left) and the Finnish Archipelago Sea (lower right).
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Updated: 2011-09-13
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