PhD opportunity – Will ocean acidification increase seagrass productivity in conditions of declining water quality?

Location: James Cook University (JCU) and the Australian Institute of Marine Sciences (AIMS), Townsville, Australia

Supervisors: Dr Sven Uthicke (AIMS) and Dr Catherine Collier (JCU)

Ocean acidification has, and is continuing, to result from the absorption of increasing CO2 in the earth’s atmosphere. Ocean acidification is detrimental for many marine organisms, and could be catastrophic for calcifying organisms such as coral. In contrast, increasing dissolved inorganic carbon can enhance seagrass productivity and some seagrass meadows could thrive as the oceans acidify. However, future changes in other climate (e.g. temperature) and water quality (e.g. turbidity, nutrients) factors will be important determinants of their capacity to respond to ocean acidification. In this project, the candidate will explore the interactive effects of ocean acidification and water quality using mesocosm and in-situ approaches.

The candidate will work within active groups at both AIMS and JCU and alongside related projects exploring climate change and water quality impacts in benthic organisms.

The candidate will need to apply for an APA-equivalent stipend scholarship within a competitive scheme at JCU (due January 2012) and will be embedded in a larger National Environment Research Program (NERP) funded project on “Experimental and field investigations of combined water quality and climate effects on corals and other reef organisms”. An operational fund will be provided.

Please contact either Sven Uthicke (s.uthicke(at) or Catherine Collier (Catherine.collier(at) to further discuss the project and for application procedures.

Lica Krug, NF-POGO Alumni Network for Oceans (nano), 6 December 2011. Job advert.

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