Abstract

High-resolution diatom stratigraphies from two lakes on eastern Baffin Island (Nunavut, Canadian Arctic) are used to reconstruct lake-water pH over the past 5 k.y. Despite contrasting geomorphic histories and markedly different diatom floras, the inferred pH of both lakes declined in concert with Neoglacial cooling. This result confirms that climate exerts a first-order influence on the acidity of these poorly buffered oligotrophic lakes, through links between lake ice cover, primary productivity, and dissolved inorganic carbon dynamics. Diatom-based pH inferences from dilute lakes can therefore assist paleoclimatic interpretations from lake sediments.

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