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Offshore wind farms in the southwestern Baltic Sea: A model study of regional impacts on oxygen conditions
Janßen, H.; Schröder, T.; Zettler, M.L.; Pollehne, F. (2015). Offshore wind farms in the southwestern Baltic Sea: A model study of regional impacts on oxygen conditions. J. Sea Res. 95: 248–257. hdl.handle.net/10.1016/j.seares.2014.05.001
In: Journal of Sea Research. Elsevier/Netherlands Institute for Sea Research: Amsterdam; Den Burg. ISSN 1385-1101, more
Peer reviewed article  

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Keywords
    Artificial reefs; Depletion; Hypoxia; Mytilus edulis Linnaeus, 1758 [WoRMS]; Marine
Author keywords
    Wind farm; Secondary hard substrate; Blue mussels;

Authors  Top 
  • Janßen, H.
  • Schröder, T.
  • Zettler, M.L., more
  • Pollehne, F., more

Abstract
    Offshore wind farm piles are secondary hard substrate and hence an attractive colonization surface for many species. Especially in marine areas dominated by soft sediments, wind farms may lead to a significant increase in biomass by enlarging habitats from benthos layers into the pelagic column. A concomitant effect is the increase in oxygen consumption through respiration of living biomass and especially through degradation of dead biomass, mainly Mytilus edulis. This leads to impacts on the regional oxygen budget, and local anoxia in the direct vicinity of wind farm piles has been documented in scientific literature. The present study investigates the regional impact of multiple wind farms on oxygen concentration levels and on the appearance of hypoxia. A five-year data sampling with a steel cylinder and fouling plates delivered data for a 3D ecosystem model. The results show that wind farms do not lead to a significant decrease in oxygen on the mesoscale level. But additional anoxia may occur locally, which may lead to the release of hydrogen sulfide on microscale level and potential subsequent regional impacts.

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