Variation of environmental forcings and the potential for changes in carbonate chemistry of the San Juan Archipelago
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The carbonate chemistry of the San Juan Archipelago is extremely varied between regions of low to high tidal flushing. Salinity seems to be a driving parameter of the carbonate system through its effects on alkalinity. Freshwater from the Fraser River may control the environmental characteristics of water moving through the archipelago. In areas of low flushing, biological effects may strongly influence the carbonate chemistry. The effects of upwelling, especially on the west side are understudied. Overall, the water of the different sounds, channels, and straits of the islands are exchanged and equilibrated by mixing during strong spring tides. It is important to understand the interplay between environmental and biological controllers of carbonate chemistry to interpret changes that may be observed with the advent of ocean acidification.