Acidic seas threaten coral reefs

A volcanic crater that recently emerged in the Mediterranean Sea has made it possible to experiment on how corals will be affected as the oceans become more acidic from carbon dioxide.

An Italian group will present their preliminary findings in Wageningen, Netherlands at the “Reefs in a Changing Environment” symposium (13-17 December) organised by the International Society for Reef Studies.

Preliminary results show that corals exposed to lower pH levels suffer higher mortality than corals at current pH levels. Seawater worldwide is predicted to increase in acidity (decrease in pH) due to carbon dioxide emissions, which dissolve in water and cause acidity to rise.

Mico Tatalovic, COSMOS, 29 November 2010. Full article.

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