Venture meeting: “Using spatial data and analysis to understand the human impacts of ocean acidification”

Tuesday, September 9, 2014 – 09:00 to Wednesday, September 10, 2014 – 17:00

This meeting constitutes part of  a project initiated in 2012 for the purpose  of accomplishing an integrated, spatial assessment of the potential chemical, biological, and human dimensions of ocean acidification. The project consists of three meetings and a parallel data synthesis guided by two overarching goals: 1) assess the potential impact of OA on coastal communities in order to identify hot spots where OA impacts will be most acute, and 2) assess whether current natural and social science research can address policy and environmental management needs for OA –  identifying research needs that are unmet. Globally, participants in the project will identify regions where impacts are likely to be acute. In the U.S., where data are more spatially refined, specific communities and fisheries at most risk will be identified.

To date, OA science has not been driven by tractable policy questions such as: Where can local action curb the effects of OA? How can we design better monitoring systems to collect data on OA to inform coastal managers? This project will compile interdisciplinary knowledge in a new type of framework designed to be useful for policymakers.

The synthesis will help policymakers tailor existing and planned activities to reduce the human consequences of OA. Understanding where local and regional impacts will occur is the first step in preparing for a more acidic ocean. The impacts of ocean acidification could be exacerbated by the impacts of other environmental problems (e.g. nutrient enrichment). Policy makers who understand where the effects of OA are likely to be acute can take steps to reduce the negative effects of these other “actionable”

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