The North Atlantic Oscillation: implications for freshwater systems in Ireland.

Jennings, Eleanor and Allott, Norman and McGinnity, Philip and Poole, Russell and Quirke, Bill and Twomey, Helena and George, Glen (2000) The North Atlantic Oscillation: implications for freshwater systems in Ireland. Biology and Environment (100B). pp. 149-158.

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The North Atlantic Oscillation is a winter phenomenon in which the north-south contrast in barometric pressure in the Atlantic shows interannual variability with approximately decadal cycles. Positive NAO index values are associated with increased wind speeds, temperatures and rainfall in Northern Europe. The present study explored the possible impacts of the NAO in the west of Ireland. Data was obtained from two synoptic meteorological stations (Valentia, Co. Kerry and Belmullet, Co. Mayo) and two lake systems (Lough Leane, Co. Kerry and Lough Feeagh, Co. Mayo). Mean winter air temperature, wind speed, rainfall, relative humidity and cloud amount were all found to be positively related to the NAO. In contrast, the relationship between solar radiation and the NAO was negative. Interannual variation in surface water temperatures and soil temperatures was also found to be highly dependent on the NAO. An inverse relationship was found between winter chlorophyll in Lough Leane and the NAO. The processes that might link winter phytoplankton biomass to the NAO were not confirmed. However, the results establish that the signal of the NAO is discernable in lacustrine biological activity in the west of Ireland.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: NAO; North Atlantic oscillation; Climate; Water temperature; Chlorophyll;
Subjects: Science
Research Centres: Centre for Freshwater and Environmental Studies
Depositing User: Concepta Woods
Date Deposited: 02 Feb 2012 15:22
Last Modified: 11 Nov 2014 16:10

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