Ocean acidification threatens Pacific’s ecosystems (audio)

An American scientist says ocean acidification is likely to pose a further threat to the Pacific Ocean’s ecosystems in coming decades.

Almost a quarter of carbon dioxide emissions are absorbed by the ocean, which causes water acidity to rise.

The director of a US-run Ocean Acidification Programme, Dr Elizabeth Jewett, says an increase in ocean acidity threatens marine life, coral reefs and local livelihoods in the Pacific.

Ms Jewett says there are ways to increase resiliency to ocean acidification, such as protecting coral reefs.

“Very specific approaches might include protecting and enhancing seagrass beds because seagrass actually improves the chemistry of the water, making it easier for coral reefs to grow.”

Radio New Zealand International, 12 October 2015. Audio.

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