Date of Award

12-2019

Degree Type

Report

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department

Watershed Sciences

First Advisor

Jiming Jin

Second Advisor

Sarah Null

Third Advisor

Phaedra Budy

Abstract

This thesis study focuses on simulating lake temperature and ice duration for four lakes at the Arctic Long-Term Ecological Research site, near the Toolik Field Station in Alaska. Model projections were driven by the representative global climate model outputs under different carbon emission scenarios. Results show that my simple lake model can reproduce historical lake temperature and ice duration observations, indicating the reliability of the model for future projections. Model projections show that JuneSeptember lake temperatures would increase by 4.3-5.8 °C from the historical period with most progressive carbon emission scenarios, but by 0.7-2.2 °C in the conservative scenarios. Results also indicate that in all carbon emission scenarios, the ice-off period would increase in duration by at least 10 days by 2100, but by as much as 25-30 days in the most progressive scenarios. In addition, while the timing of mixed lake conditions would shift with the timing of ice-off, the duration of mixing and onset of stratification would be unaffected by warming temperatures. This study provides important knowledge for modeling and predicting lake thermal processes for the Arctic region.

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