Public talk to focus on geological record of ocean acidification

Talk by Andy Ridgwell of the University of Bristol on June 5 kicks off new lecture series at UC Riverside

RIVERSIDE, Calif. — Andy Ridgwell, a professor of Earth system modeling in the School of Geographical Sciences at the University of Bristol, United Kingdom, will give a free public talk at the University of California, Riverside on June 5, 2013, titled “The geological record of ocean acidification.”

The hour-long talk will begin at 4 p.m. and take place in Room 205/206, Winston Chung Hall.

Ocean acidification may have severe consequences for marine ecosystems. But these consequences are difficult to assess, in part because laboratory experiments are limited by their necessary short time-scales and reduced ecologic complexity.

In contrast, the geological record is replete not only with a variety of global environmental perturbations that may include ocean acidification, but also associated biotic responses such as adaptation and evolution.

In his talk, Ridgwell will review events exhibiting evidence for elevated atmospheric carbon dioxide, global warming, and ocean acidification over the past ~300 million years of Earth’s history, and address which, if any, events in the geological past exhibit the characteristics of anthropogenic ocean acidification.

“Ocean acidification has emerged as one of the top concerns on the long list of human impacts on climate and the environment,” said Timothy Lyons, a professor of biogeochemistry in UC Riverside’s Department of Earth Sciences.  “This rise in interest reflects the potential for immediate and devastating consequences on marine life.  Ridgwell shares a broad perspective of the phenomenon because his work is grounded in a rigorous global-scale understanding of how the ocean works, its coupling to the atmosphere, and how carbon cycles through it all.  His particular strengths include his ability to view present and future change through the predictive lens of Earth history — in a sense using the geologic record as a natural lab to explore the impacts of recent human activities.”

Sponsored by the Department of Earth Sciences, the College of Natural and Agricultural Sciences and the Center for Conservation Biology at UCR, the talk kicks off a new lecture series on campus: “Ecosystem dynamics and climate change in the modern and ancient.”

Media Contact

Tel: (951) 827-6050
Twitter: UCR_Sciencenews

Additional Contacts

Mary Droser
Tel: (951) 827-3797

Timothy Lyons
Tel: (951) 827-3106

Related Links

  • Department of Earth Sciences

University of California, Riverside, Iqbal Pittalwala, 4 June 2013. Article.

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